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48. Chance - SnowPotato_ (In Progress)

 

#42

March 14-April 5

(I'm so sorry for the wait, in my defense for a week and a couple days I was without internet.)

 

Okay, so this is a story about bullying. It will be my first and I'm not entirely sure what to expect based off the summary and cover. With the lighting and colors, the cover makes the girl in it seem almost angelic. Maybe that was your intention, based off the category it's in 'Paranormal & Supernatural'. Other than that I'm not sure why it's in that category because the summary tells a different story.

 

 

Where was her car seat? It's illegal to ride in a car with a child without a car seat. If she was in her mother's lap -which is closer to the floor of the car- how did her forehead hit the back of her father's seat? She also can't see the bruise that's on her head, or the colored veins in her body. Children that age can't lift their head on their own, so it's impossible for her to see.

You write that she was named two months after she was born. But then in the same paragraph, you continue on with telling of her accident. That sentence has nothing to do with the content in the rest of the paragraph. By stating she was named two months after she was born, we infer that her age in the chapter is two months. But then you state later she's barely fifteen minutes old, so it makes the reader stop and re-evaluate everything we've just read. Which can be a huge headache for us.

It didn't seem to take that long for her to get better. Which, I mean, is great but it doesn't feel realistic. There was no transitioning period between her sickness and her getting better. All we got was a sentence or two explaining how much time passed and that she was cured. I feel it could've been dragged out a bit so we could go through the transitioning with her.

I'm not sure how to take her nanny-nurse. Nurses are trained early on to not get so involved with their patients, it's not ethical. But I understand that bonds develop over time unintentionally. So I think in order to fix this to make your character seem less childish, is to find a way for her to voice her thoughts. To let us see how she knows she'll have to send the child home soon, but she can't help but feel nurturing toward and protective toward it.

In a mumble we talked on, I mentioned a note about her birthday and it still stands. There should be a mention somewhere in the first chapter or maybe later on about the specifics of her birthday. Then there's the plot hole about them leaving the hospital without naming her. 

I mean, in all this is a good first chapter. It's certainly unique and has great potential to become something amazing. But in it's current state there are a lot of plot holes and some unrealistic moments that make it unprofessional. This is a first draft so it's great you're asking for CC, it'll make your second draft better written and stronger. 

 

 

I thought it was interesting you chose to have a warning to readers stating your chapter was boring. That really shouldn't be in your chapter, it'll lead readers away. If they think your chapter is boring, let them tell you in the comments for your CC. But if you as the writer felt it was boring to write, you should've found another alternative for the information contained in the chapter.

Contrary to the warning at the beginning of the chapter, I did not find this one boring. Actually it helped clear up how she was able to recall her memories when she was a child. It also got us caught up to how she lived her life up to the present time. It's a simple but informative background chapter.

The only downfall I had while reading it was that it's repetitive. She mentions her new name and how no one knows her real name so much in the chapter that it gets annoying to read. It also seems very short too. I thought with the way things were going that we might get a diary excerpt. But the chapter ended abruptly instead.

It's a good chapter, just take out some of the repetitive sentence about her new name and how no one knows her old name.

 

To be perfectly frank, there really wasn't much to this chapter. I think the reason why you wanted it in the story was to show her bullied side. But aside from the comment made by that boy, we didn't really see it. We were told what happened to her. I think instead of writing about her cleaning herself up at the washroom, you should write what went on during the fight. This way we can empathize with her character more and grow a deeper attachment.

The dialogue between the aunt (Which I still think it's funny we share the same name.) and mother toward Chance, seems kinda bland. It doesn't feel real and almost seems staged in a way. Think of movies you've watched and shows you've seen. Would any of the characters' mothers talk that way?

The aunt I think is supposed to be in her teens? Twenties? But her dialogue makes her seem like a middle schooler. Making her dialogue a little grown would fix that up.

The friendship between Natalie and Chance is cute though. They are about the only thing in this chapter that felt real and I guess in a way, that's a good thing. Because I have a feeling that we're going to hear a lot from Natalie.

 

I'm glad we finally got to see what she goes through every day as opposed to just being told. But shouldn't all that damage they do get noticed by her parents? If she's beaten as hard as she claims, she'll end up with bruises and cuts that she never claims to hide with makeup. 

Not to mention, how does no one on the school grounds see this either? I didn't read anything about her stating that they attack her away from the school. Which means that the event would happen while there are students and faculty around.

How could Natalie not see or hear in her friend's voice and face how terrified she was? I also doubt that Chance is Dwayne and Kristy's only victim. So it's bound to be known around school what bullies they are. Why would she leave them with her?

Aside from all this though, your dialogue seems to have gotten better and you give some nice description. This is a nice plotted chapter and reads how a good written chapter should.

But honestly, any empathy I had toward Chance is gone with this chapter. Why would you tell your attackers that you don't tell anyone about the abuse? Not to mention she has powers that she can use against them and won't use them.

'But somehow knew I never told anyone' THAT'S BECAUSE YOU TOLD THEM!! Like, honestly! Sigh.

 

I love the introduction of the girl in the mirror! This is why you marked it for the paranormal category. But in the summary we don't get anything about this, so maybe you should mention something about the girl in the mirror.

Anyway, I love that the girl in the mirror is like another version of Chance. She's the version that Chance could be if she'd stand up for herself and ask for help. So she's stronger and more confident than the actual Chance is. Another thing I loved was that she's helping her to be more like her, by giving her advice and telling her to confess what's been happening to her. 

This was a good family chapter as well. We got to see how her life at home is, minus the grandmother. Where she also asks about bullying and I feel like that's a step in the right direction. I feel like though, that a good family would also ask Chance if she herself was being bullied. Because of this random questioning about the subject. You might want to think about adding that in as well.

But now that I mention the grandmother, I noticed that we haven't really heard much about her. We got vague tellings of how she is, but we've never actually read an experience between her and the grandmother. I might've forgotten, but I also don't remember reading that she's currently on a vacation. So you might wanna bring that up casually in conversation or something.

 

In all, this wasn't a bad chapter and it all worked well for the story plot. We were introduced with the harsh words of her grandmother, which oddly enough I mentioned in the last chapter. But we also got to see Kristy and Dwayne again tormenting her with more than just their hands this time. 

But we also got to see the happier things that're happening for her. Her family is starting to stand up for her toward the grandmother's rude remarks, instead of staying quiet. Then, she also got to spend the day with Natalie carving pumpkins for the holiday. It was nice to see her happier compared to the last few chapters.

There was a nice contrast between the good and bad, it read like a chapter should. But I wasn't sure what her power was supposed to be. I understood she had a vision of sorts that had to do with Kristy, but what was it telling her? If she tells Natalie that she'll become a bully toward Kristy?

 

This chapter was certainly interesting! 

I think I liked this chapter, because we got a diary entry and the girl from the mirror came back to put Chance in her place. Her warning is certainly unsettling. What event is going to take her to that outcome?

You're more descriptive in this chapter than you are for most of your earlier chapters. I think it's because you have more reason to seeing as not a lot happens in this one. But it fits nicely with this chapter and ties in well with the park scene.

It's also great to see what she does in order to help clear her head after these negative events take place. I wish there was more diary entries in the chapters. Maybe then I wouldn't want to choke her for being stupid all the time. I will say though, that her diary entries are kinda repetitive but I guess that's to be expected. No one knows how to write those well. But I still think you should try to tone it down a bit.

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter 1:

'But, then, they say you can't remember' The first comma feels unnecessary.

'I started shaking violently, and fell out of my mother's lap, as a result.' Again, both commas feel unnecessary.

'with the back of my father's car seat' I think you should take out the word 'car' from the sentence. It makes it sound like her father is in a child's seat.

'I, then, started bawling- so hard that my body was streaked with narrow veins of blue, green and purple.' The two commas at the beginning can go and the dash can be replaced with a comma.

'My father's mother and my mother's sister' Wouldn't it be simpler to say, my grandmother and my aunt?

'when the road was at it's safest but he inevitably focused on the road.' I think it would read better if you added a comma between 'safest' and 'but'. 

'with grey streak in her chocolate brown bun.' The word 'streak' is missing an 's' unless she only has one, in which case the sentence is missing an 'a'. Let me remind you as well that 'grey' is used in the England spelling and 'gray' for the American spelling. I don't know where you're stationed at, but I don't think it's England.

' "Oh, she is crying!" "Oh, she is hurt!" ' This dialogue is so bland. When you're child is hurt, you don't say things like this. You'd say things like "Aw, poor thing!" or "Shh, it's okay. You'll be okay." in attempts to console them. 

'My aunt was peering, with terrified eyes, from behind my mother's hair and my Grandmother was simply making remarks like, 'Rock her like this,' 'Rock her like that!' ' The first comma can go, it adds an unnecessary pause to the sentence. I also feel the word 'simply' can go because it ruins the flow of the sentence. The word 'Grandmother' doesn't need to be capitalized either.

'My mother had a very hard time, trying to keep me quiet and still, but then, my aunt dropped the bombshell.' The first and third comma can go.

' "OMG!! Look at her head!" ' The only time acronyms are acceptable in stories are when the characters are texting. I understand you wrote the aunt is young so it would make sense that she'd say something like that. But in a traumatic situation like the one she's in I feel she would use the actual words 'Oh my God' and not the acronym. 

'Then did my mother and Grandmother' The sentence starts so abruptly, it would read better if you added maybe 'Only then' at the start. The Grandmother is unnecessarily capitalized again.

'It was a bulging red, the entire little egg-shape and my mother screamed in horror at the sight of it.' This entire sentence should go considering she can't see her own wound. If you were to keep anything, it should be the small portion containing the mother screaming at her wound. 

'Not only was she my mother but the way my brain was making me behave, it was horrific.' This sentence seems unnecessary, the comment about her being the MC's mother seems repetitive and how does her behavior make the wound more horrific?

'slammed the brakes at once and parked the car just to see what on earth was wrong.' There should be a comma between 'car' and 'just' and 'earth' should be capitalized.

'his eyes could tell that the sight of my head was not a pretty sight.' The repetition of the word 'sight' is a little much. I feel it would read better if you took out the second usage of the word and change 'his eyes' to 'he' to make it sound less textbook.

'I could feel the goo-ey, foamy liquid' How could she tell the consistency of the vomit when those things are foreign to babies. Unless she recognized what it is now that she's older. But if that's the case it should be cleared up in the writing.

'Back then, it was an unknown language to me' The comma can go.

'as she turned to her little sister, my aunt.' You can just say 'my aunt' you don't have to state it's the mom's little sister again.

'my bawling mouth and bursting brains' Unless her head was split open and there hasn't been anything that says so, he can't see her brains bursting.

'Then did my parents realize that they should have named me earlier but my father clearly refused to name me in a hurry.' There should be a comma between 'earlier' and 'but' to make it read smoother. This is also a big plot hole, because you aren't permitted to leave the hospital until you've named your child to put it on the birth certificate.

'I was found to diagnosed with' This sentence doesn't make sense. If you took out 'found to' it would read smoother.

'they were asking one another that how' The word 'that' can be removed.

'My parents only visited me twice in the hospital, not because they didn't want to, but because I was a very sensitive case for the doctors and they wanted me to settle in the hospital environment comfortably.' This is a long sentence. A normal sentence is anywhere from twenty to thirty words long. Any longer and it's a run on sentence or an eyesore. 

'My parents visited me twice in the hospital. They would've visited more, but because I was a very sensitive case they wanted me to settle in the hospital environment comfortably.' This is how I feel it should be written.

'I missed an important part, of both this story and my life.' The comma can go.

'I giggled and sucked on her thumb as she hugged me and a doctor went to phone my father to inform him that I was fine and ready for discharge.' This is another long sentence that can be fixed.

'I giggled and sucked on her thumb as she hugged me. A doctor went to phone my father to inform him that I was fine and ready for discharge.' This is how it should be fixed. All I changed was the removal of the word 'and' while putting a period in its place.

'Amina didn't want to let me go, even though she had to.' The comma can go.

'a long discussion with the surgeon, just about who' The word 'just' can go to make it a smoother read.

' "She has handled quite a few, I"m sure!" the surgeon said in a calming tone.'  You use an exclamation mark in the dialogue but the text says he's calm, the two create a conflict. A change in punctuation can fix this.

'When my mother and father arrived, with my aunt, Amina hesitated so much that a senior nurse had to push out of the room, with me, rolled in baby towels.' This is another long sentence that's also missing a word, it can be fixed by removing or re-phrasing words.

'When my family arrived, Amina hesitated so much that a senior nurse had to push her out of the room with me rolled in baby towels.' The same content is used but less words cloud it up.

' "It is truly a miracle! ' You're missing a quotation mark.

'With great reluctance and pressure of a surgeon, along with a horde of, at least, a dozen nurses, my angelic nurse handed me over to my crying mother.' The second comma can be removed.

'The first thing my aunt said, as soon as I entered my mother's arms' The comma can be removed.

'and only when she sat in the car, me in her lap, did she cool down.' The first comma can be changed to the word 'with' for a smoother read.

 

Chapter 2:

'Seriously, though,' The first comma can be removed.

'but everyone I used to knew' That's the wrong tense. It should be 'know'.

'Everyone except my family, that is.' The comma can be removed.

'And, thing is,' The sentence would read smoother if you removed the first comma and replaced it with the word 'the'.

'they didn't know, that in the outside world' The comma can be removed.

'My grandmother was one strict family member' This reads so textbook. It would read better if you changed it to something like, 

'My grandmother was a very strict woman' Also remember that if she is still living, 'was' should be changed to 'is' because she is still currently a strict woman.

'Then, again,' The first comma can go.

'the nurses and doctors who treated my cerebral palsy.' This isn't the same disease she had in the first chapter.

 

Chapter 3:

'with one hand and, keeping the other' The comma can go. 

'No doubt, there was a new message.' The comma is unnecessary.

'and put the cotton pack in my bag before washing' There should be a comma between 'bag' and 'before' to make it an easier read. 

 

I feel there should also be another space between the text messages and inner monologue. Then, it prevents confusion of the inner monologue being part of the message.

 

'without observing the caller id.' This is more of my nitpickiness but 'id' should be capitalized. 

'That was all mum said and, then, she didn't speak for a long while.' The first comma can be removed.

'But, she jolted back, all the same.' The first comma can be removed. Also, how can she her mother jolt back if she isn't home yet?

' "I love you!" I spoke slowly.' This should end with a period not an exclamation mark if it's spoken slowly.

 

Chapter 4:

'praising her that she told me she was' There should be a comma between 'her' and 'that'.

'but I waved back, in a scared manner, to be truthful.' The first comma can go.

'who got to punch and slap me while Kristy' There should be a comma between 'me' and 'while'.

'but beat me to a relative extent and called me names and laughed' There's a lot of 'and's in this sentence that can be replaced with commas.

'but beat me to a relative extent, called me names and laughed' Like this.

'They, someway, knew' The word I think you meant was 'somehow' in replace of 'someway', the first comma can go as well.

'her mulberry lips.' Mulberries are a dark purple. Raspberries are the dark pink ones.

'she shook me to sit straight again so that she could slap me again' Use another word besides 'again' to avoid the repetition.

'This, however, roused' The first comma can go.

'with a snort as I coughed' It would read smoother if you added a comma between 'snort' and 'as'.

 

Chapter 5:

I understand what you were trying to accomplish with the first paragraph, but the repetition of 'I was writing' is actually quite annoying.

'But, no, you are' The first comma can be removed.

'And, I swear, if' The first comma can go.

'seemed to be speaking gently, for once, and' The first comma can go.

' "Chance, you've to be strong." ' I think you're missing a word.

'Well, then, all' The first comma can be removed.

'because I was perplexed, and climbed under the blanket' The comma can be removed.

'tomorrow we are craving pumpkins' I think you meant 'carving'. 

 

Chapter 6:

'I was being watched, and I felt scared, to say the least.' The first comma can be removed.

 

'The tall mirror was right in front of me and, though I saw nobody in my room, I might say that the girl who stayed in that mirror was watching me earlier, before I woke up.' This sentence is really long. I think I mentioned before a normal sentence is anywhere from twenty to thirty words before it lingers in the run-on category. I think it would be better if it read like this,

'The tall mirror was in front of me and though nobody was in my room, I think the girl in that mirror was watching me before I woke up.' this way it's still the same, just without all the unnecessary words.

 

'I laughed at imagining her, chuckling and shaking her head, when she typed. So, sleepy as I was, I replied:' The first sentence reads a little off and the second sentence has too many commas. Remove the word 'at' in the first sentence and replace it with a comma, then remove the other two commas in that sentence. For the second sentence, remove the second comma.

'I put on a little makeup and perfume and, feeling quite nice' The comma can be removed.

'That grin didn't last long, because as soon as I stepped down, the whole family was sitting in the verandah on sofas, talking.' There are a lot of commas in this sentence and a location mishap. It would be better if you stuck with the traditional living room because, a verandah is located on the outside of a home, not on the inside. The first comma I feel can be replaced with a period to achieve the desired effect you were going for. Then, remove the word 'because' and the last comma.

 

'And, when I say 'whole, I mean whole' The first comma can go.

'So, for a while' The comma can go.

'she is already fourteen and, when she is a young lady,' The first comma can go.

'I swear I'll either cut off your tongue and throw you out.' The word 'either' can be removed or the word 'and' can be replaced with 'or' because the two contradict each other.

'striking in their abstract form' The word 'abstract' doesn't really suite the sentence correctly. Maybe try 'coarse' instead? Considering he's being harsh and that would still work for the rest of the sentence.

'I shuddered too, and I felt tears rising.' The comma can be removed.

'beaten up and teased, and I never told my family.' The comma can be removed.

'If I did, they would defend me' The comma can be removed.

' "And, in my purse," ' The first comma can go.

 

'I said, and, as soon as I had taken the money, I got out of the house and walked along the cold streets, considering that it was still early morning and people were just starting to decorate.' Another long sentence and a lot of commas. It could be fixed like this,

'I said and as soon as I had taken the money, I got out of the house. I walked along the cold streets, considering that it was still early morning and people were just starting to decorate.' 

 

'The reply came back fast as lightening, but then, I didn't expect less from Natalie.' The first comma can go.

'I didn't see how it helped that much, but, at least, now I' The commas can be removed.

'And, then I ran to the park at full speed.' The comma can be removed.

'When I reached, Natalie was already waiting at the gate.' When she reached what? 

'home-grown pumpkins, from their own farm.' The comma can go.

'since we got there first, we could claim the bench without any fights.' The comma can be removed.

'are hanging around, next Halloween, everyone will do the same' The second comma can be removed.

'Mum called me home to breakfast to which I reluctantly agreed but made Natalie promise that she would still be there when I would return.' This sentence could use a comma. It would be best if it was placed between 'breakfast' and 'to'.

'in the most facetious way' I don't like the usage of this word with the sentence it's in. It doesn't make sense, I think a better word for it would be 'mischievous'. 

'and, twitching her lips, thought for a brief deep while.' The first comma can go.

' "We want to harass you. Embarrass you. Taunt you. Torture in all ways we can." ' Instead of stopping to make a new sentence, you should replace the periods with commas.

' ''And, also, we" ' The first comma can go.

 

Chapter 7:

'I absolutely using my daunting, forbidding powers for anything ever.' I think you're missing a word.

'It came like a faded ray- as if I had uncovered a half dead body.' This is a very weird simile. There's nothing wrong with it, I just thought it was weird to read especially considering your writing style is nothing like this.

 

'An actual chance to do something about the dark wall of tortures and secrets building around me as it built up with such reckless swiftness that it blurred my desolate mind with speed.' This a long sentence and it's all repetitive.

'An actual chance to do something about the dark wall of tortures and secrets building up with speed.' This is the same sentence just less words.

 

'but, no, that is not the reason.' The first comma can go.

You did that thing again from chapter five with the repetitive use of a couple words. 'What else?' is used frequently in one paragraph and it's annoying.

'She is my heart, and if not for her;' I feel like you should end the sentence after 'heart' to add a finality to that statement and then continue on with the rest of it.

 

'I love her so much for caring for me when I desperately needed the hands of someone who would, for just once, treat me like a normal person and care for me just a little.' This is another long sentence and could be shortened.

'I love her so much for caring for me when I desperately needed the hands of someone who would treat me like a normal person and care for me.' This is how it should read.

 

You write about the verandah again and as I explained in the last chapter, you can't have it in the house.

'at the gates of the beautiful, local park.' The comma is unnecessary.

'into letting me sit down but, when everything turned hopeless, I stubbornly fell back on the bench again.' The first comma can be removed.

 

 

 

 

Your story is certainly unique, it isn't like anything I've read before and that's great. Between the concept of her being bullied and having powers she can use against them, it piques the interest. I like that you have a picture at the start of every chapter as well. That's something I used to look forward to in middle school for my chapter books. Oddly enough it works for this type of story and brings back that familiar feel.

But I wish your character wasn't so naive and weak. I understand that your character has to have a growth period during the story, but this is ridiculous. Why can't she tell someone about her bullying? I can understand being scared of the repercussions, but not even her best friend? She could swear her to secrecy until she's ready to tell others of her tormentors. 

Your grammar is a little weird too. But I anticipated as such because of English not being your strong suite. You should loosen up the comma usage as well. Unless you're listing things, most sentences have only one or two commas in them. You also like to break sentences away from paragraphs and I find that odd too. It's acceptable for certain things but not all. 

In all, I thought it wasn't a bad first draft. Your first chapter needs some serious replanning and writing, but the rest of the chapters aren't half bad. They need some cleaning up as well but the content isn't as horrible as other stories I've read. You have a wonderful story here, all it takes is some minor adjustments and it can be amazing. I can't wait to see what you do with your second draft. 

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