…and then Sherlock said, “Wassup?”

Okay, so today’s story is not quite that bad.  But it’s up there!

Got a hankering for some Johnlock, and started reading.  The thing about the Sherlock fandom is that it’s pretty mature, and there are good writers out there – people who, if they wrote professionally, I would happily hand over my hard-earned cash for their books.  Hell, even the author of the travesty I’m about to discuss has written some good stuff.

But not “Going Once, Going Twice” by prettysailorsoldier on AO3. My main issue with this story is that it’s so completely out of character that it’s unbelievable.  I mean if you have to choose any fandom out there, Sherlock is one of the tops when it comes to proper use of language.  So it’s quite unbelieable when Sherlock uses the word “wanna” repeatedly, as does other supporting characters.  And Sherlock absolutely abhors his brother – but he would never introduce him as “Mike”, even if it’s to get his goat.

There are other good Sherlock stories out there, and like I said, even by this same author.  I wouldn’t even consider this a Sherlock story, though.  I would consider it a story that happens to have character names the same as you would have found in an episode of the BBC series, “Sherlock” – but that’s where the similarities end.

I just… AAA!!!!!

I try to give people the benefit of the doubt.  A messed up word here, a punctuation thing there, and I can overlook it.  But there are those that I cannot overlook, and it’s this story: “You’ve Got (Blutbaden) Mail“.

I have a personal pet-peeve when a story description is nothing but a clip from the story.  I mean, that can work if you’re actually setting something up for the reader.  But the description of this story doesn’t really do much.  But it goes beyond that.  I personally didn’t get past the first paragraph.  Why?  Here it is:

It had all started rather innocently. Whilst trawling through Marie’s trailer one late evening, Nick happened across a very old watch. At first he had been cautious as most of the trailers contents were either weapons, books or more weapons. What if it send him back in time? Or forward? What if poisoned the wearer? Holding it up to the light, he had noticed that it was stopped. Its hands frozen forever on three minutes past twelve. He wonders if it has any relevance. Knowing the things that lurk in the dark interior of the trailer, probably. Carefully setting it back down, he forgot about it.

So the things that get me right off the bad are the tense changes – sometimes within the same short sentence.  Such as the sentence “Holding up to the light, he had noticed that it was stopped.”  Present tense in the first five words, but not the rest of the sentence.  Same thing with “Carefully setting it back down, he forgot about it.”

Writers: You give your readers whiplash when you write like this.  You need to pick a tense, and stick with it.  A good way to tell, is to read your story aloud.  If it doesn’t sound right, then you need to fix it.  If you’re not a native-English speaker, or if you just don’t know what to fix, then find a beta.  It’s relatively easy these days!  There’s a community on LiveJournal called “Find Me A Beta“; people are there to help  you.  Trust me!

If you’re looking for a well written Grimm fic, then try “Hotel California” by VampirePam.  She’s only written one work in the Grimm fandom, but it’s phenomenal!

Not everyone talks like Data from Star Trek

I saw a H50 fic mentioned on tumblr, and thought I’d check it out.  It’s called, “Five Times it Didn’t Count (and One it Totally Did)“.  Yes, the concept is pretty cute.  And I’m a sucker for kidfic – and this one starts out with Gracie, so yeah, it’s cute.

But there’s something about the dialogue of this fic.  It’s like it’s written by Data from Star Trek: The Next Generation.  There’re no contractions in it.  At first it was a little off, but the more I read, the more it bugs me.

A little help from a beta – especially one good with dialogue, would help a great deal.  Also, words like “bedroom” are just that – bedroom and not “bed room”.

When it’s pretty good, but needs something…

So I’ve not really been into Hawaii Five-0 fiction yet.  I’ve drabbled a little, but nothing has caught my fancy; just really the “Commander Octopus” series; the first two are pretty darned good!

My cohort sent me a link to “Home Improvement” on AO3 by JiM and kalena, and said, “Trust me – you’ll like it.”  So I started reading it.  Then I got confused and had to put it down.

Then I started again.  Put it down again.  Started.  Down.  Started.  Down.

I finally called her and said, “Dude…  WTF?”  I went on to explain that the fic is majorly confusing to me.  I mean, in the first 500 words, we go backward and forward in time, in and out of dream states and the like.  And not a single bit of it is identified by the author.  Even major points between Danny showing up at the office to get Steve and them showing up at a dogfight aren’t really defined.  I was reading, but wasn’t really “getting it”.  And the more I read, the more frustrated I was getting.

Then she told me what the trick was – to read the story with your internal editor turned on.  That’s what she’d done, and it worked for her.  And you know what?  It worked for me, too.

This is a really well done piece of fiction, as long as you come at it knowing that about the first 1/2 of the story needs you to engage your internal editor as you’re reading.  It gets much better (less distracting scene differentiations) the farther along that you go.  Trust me, it’s well worth the read.  And at more than 30,000 words, it’ll take you a while to get through it.  But like I said, trust me – it’s well worth it.

And to the authors: Just a little cleanup at the beginning – maybe even just a single “*” to indicate how it moves from timeline to timeline or such.  Just a little, that’s all it needs.  But you know what?  The line ‘The Williams Anal Experience’ is the best four words ever strung together in the history of the English language!!!  Okay, of slash, but still!!!!

We don’t even have a section/tag for this… I’m just going to put it under “review” ’cause it mostly is.

Want to know what makes me cry?

I mean seriously…  Cry, or want to harm someone, I forget which.  And that’s people that IGNORE constructive criticism.

I found a McShep comment ficlet and read it.  It definitely needed some touchups, and there was a commenter that said as much.  The author blew them off, though they apparently did make the change that needed to be made (“Rodney was exited” versus “Rodney was excited”).  Nobody brought up the “loose” thing (which the author used incorrectly – twice), though they should have.  And don’t get me started on Sheppard being way out of character…

Then there was the second person, also offering constructive criticism.  At that point, apparently, the author had enough – because they stopped answering their comments.  I mean, when authors write for free, their payment is comments from the general public.  Why not even just acknowledge them back?  Ugh.

You were SO close…

Okay, so I can usually take a word or two out of place.  You know, the mixup of “your” and “you’re” and the like.  It’s not too bad.  But when you couple a bunch of them with such an out-of-character description of John Sheppard?  Yeah, that makes it pretty bad…  That’s how I feel about the SGA/Sentinel fusion story “For Me“.

Now don’t get me wrong.  The premise of the story is good.  It’s just – I don’t know… REALLY hard to swallow when John Sheppard is so blatantly out of character it’s not even funny.  This is the very first passage that includes Sheppard:

He wiped at his eyes hurriedly as he went in search of the enticing aroma his nose was sniffing appreciatively.

He found it in the Gate room scattered in with the new recruits that’d just gated in. Rodney went up to it and buried his face in its neck, sniffing happily.

“What the fuck?”  A startled voice exclaimed.  But the person it belonged to didn’t try to push him away.  Rather strong arms pulled him closer.

After a long moment of ecstatic sniffing Rodney looked up.  “Hi,” he said shyly.

Gentle hands cupped his face.  “Hello.  Mind telling me what you’re doing?”

Seriously.  John Sheppard, as emotionally repressed and standoffish as he is, would never willingly let a stranger, who’s suddenly attached to him at the neck, just stay there, much less pull him in closer.

I think there’s so much you could do with an SGA/Sentinel fusion story (and honestly, I think this story could be salvaged by being rewritten to be more in character, etc).  I mean seriously – go read esteefee’s “A.W.O.L.“; it’s incredible!


So, not much lately?

Well, we’ve been deep into some really good stuff lately.  Stuff that hasn’t needed CBN to jump in, put our hands out like a traffic cop, and pull a writer over for crimes so abominable against the English language, they shouldn’t be allowed to write.

One thing got passed between two of the people here.  A cute story.  Really cute.  I love the premise and everything.  The author’s pretty darn good.  It’s just that this particular story is in “rough draft” form; it says right in the title that it’s not betaed.  I take that into consideration when reading things.  And trust me – “Daughter” by velocitygrass is cute.

I just – me personally – have a hard time reading the following without wanting to claw my eyes out.

Ugh!  When speaking, you don’t say “Lt.” and you sure as hell don’t tell someone “btw”.  But yes.  It’s not betaed, so we’re not going to come down on the author.  We just hope it gets betaed sometime soon!

When it’s not horrible, but it can be better

So I was reading a story (found here at this link).  It’s actually kind of cute; the premise is good.  Of course we’re suckers for John Sheppard and his stunted emotions.  There’s actually a lot of intriguing things about this piece of fic.

It’s just that I, personally, cannot get past the idiosyncrasies of the story bits themselves.  Things like this:

“Oh, and Lt, next time you try a stunt like that, you’ll be on inventory duty for the next six months.”


(snip)… he had the other man’s back and knew his 2IC had his.

See, these would be considered a distractingly improper use of abbreviations.  That, and several bits of word choices in the piece just are irksome.  This author could very well have use for a beta to sort these things out.