Just a story I came up with yesterday. very early draft.

2
Overall



Taking into consideration that you mentioned this was an "early draft" in your author's note, you have a good body of material to work with if you would like to expand this into something more. I think you do an excellent job of pacing. The conclusions drawn are easy to follow. That's great because it means you can have an element of surprise that doesn't feel "random". I think that's especially helpful considering that you are working within the 'crime drama' genre. Or at least, that's the mood I was getting from your work until Cross made his declaration about werewolves. What an interesting turn! I really liked that. 

 

Combining supernatural elements with the crime genre is a good call, something that can be refreshing if done right. It's original depending on how you want to go through with it. In your case, this is about a man solving "unexplainable" incidents with his knowledge of the "unknown". Which is definitely intriguing. As soon as Cross makes his diagnosis, it breeds curiosity about who he is and how does he know? And what else does he know? That curiosity is key to engaging the reader more down the line, if you were to continue this. And I feel like you could, or you have at least left yourself the room to, with the cliffhanger you use at the end. 

You also establish an interesting relationship with Wardell towards the end, when Cross is very strict about how he wants the matter to be handled, and how he expects to be paid. I was thinking the two men would have some sort of camaraderie but perhaps not. I think you should look into how you want to handle their dynamic. Do they resent relying on each other but suck it up? Will they bond eventually later on? Though the dialogue between them is not substantial enough to draw any conclusions, it does hint at some sort of past connection or mutual acquaintance. That guy named Briggs, for example. Who is he? 

 

These are just details that I feel you can expand on, because they happen to be the most interesting. What I do think you could use work on, however, is the writing itself. It's a little choppy and doesn't always flow well. Sometimes it gets redundant. For example, when Cross shoots the werewolf, you wrote: "He whimpered like an injured dog." You're using a simile that actually literally applies! Therefore, it's not effective. The descriptions could be stronger. For example, you give us this description of Wardell:

He looked like a cop from a mile off. It was the looks. Cop's suit, cop's shoes, cop's demeanor.

Why does this fail? You told us absolutely nothing. In the preceding line, you mention that he's overweight, but that's all we know. "Cop's suit, cop's shoes?" What does that mean? It's vague. It's meaningless. It gives the reader no mental image whatsoever. I don't know what a cop's demeanor is supposed to be, and I would rather you slip something in to demonstrate exactly what you mean by this. I would like to know what the man is wearing so that I can make some sort of inference about him based on appearance. 

Again, here:

The body was mutilated. Chunks of flesh scattered around the room. Blood covering the ceiling and the walls. Big, deep gashes across the woman's body. Her leg completely severed from her body. The face now unrecognizable.

This is weak description as well. I think you would benefit a lot from varied sentence structure. Combine long sentences with short ones. It will give your writing personality. This reads like a vague list and is not engaging. You could really take care to describe in a bit more vivid detail the extent of the gore. Also, another tip, trying to avoiding using the same words too often. For example, you say "deep gashes across her body" then the next line "her legs severed from her body". The word 'body' used in two sentences so close together reads awkwardly. Not only that, this paragraph is all fragments. Stylistically, fragments can be great for emphasis or impact, but what you have here is essentially a list in paragraph form. Try to fix that. 

Overall, I like this. Your strength is pacing and having interesting things happen in your story. However, your failure to make your descriptions of those events equally as compelling will be a hindrance to your readers. 

 

 


When the end of the world comes to a group of young adults in an unnamed western city, they decide to grab the opportunity to just fucking drive and escape ...

Overall



I liked this piece. It was compelling enough to read all the way through. I guess that because it's a short story, a lot of the details were left out unintentionally, but I think that perhaps so more information could have been useful. Such as, for example, what happened to the world? And who are these people? Who are they to each other, and why have they banded together? 

Those are a lot of the questions readers will have as they go through this, and by the end, few of those are answered. 

I would suggest taking time to put that information in, weaving it carefully with the imagery you use, because it negatively impacted your pacing. Suddenly, towards the end, one character turns on the others. Two paragraphs later, she's run over. And then the other girl has been shot. It's a lot of panic packed into a very small space, and it's not very effective because there's absolutely no connection for these characters, and no hint of a motive. The girls didn't speak much in this piece, so when they happen to be the targets of disaster, I kind of just shrugged and kept reading. 

 

I think you definitely could have done more to include them. You seem to have a penchant for strong dialogue, which is the first thing I picked up. You seem to know a lot about who your characters are, you just failed to reveal that information. But I really loved the personality of your writing and I feel like you could do well to bring that out more. I mean, I don't know if this is just throwaway prose or what, but it's nice - I did like it - and with some polishing, it'd be really good.