Monday, September 25, 2017

A Brief Q and A About the Royal Canterlot Library

In the last few weeks, I've gotten several e-mails about the RCL, and my involvement in it.  I replied to all of them (at least, I'm pretty sure I did.  If I forgot to reply to you, poke me!), but when several people all ask about something at once, I tend to assume that there's a larger contingent out there that are wondering in silence.  Well, wonder no more!  Here are the questions I was asked (minus a couple of redundant ones), with my answers presented in that most hoofy doofy handy-dandy of formats, the Q and A.  Click down below the break for some knowledge.

(Also, for juicy dirt about the RCL)

Friday, September 22, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 229: ...But the Kitchen Sink

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

I do try to arrange my Fandom Classics posts so that there aren't any major runs or ruts in them; I don't want to do five changeling fics in a row, say, or have several novel-length stories back-to-back.  But when I was adding to my short list of fics to review, I happened to see this fic and "Princest is Wincest" sitting next to each other in my folder, and--despite them both being short, silly-sounding stories--I found I didn't have it in my heart to break them up.  Ah well, something long and serious next for sure.  But now, head down below the break to read my review of Dubs Rewatcher's ...But the Kitchen Sink.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Mr. Ted

There's nothing pony- or writing-related in this blog.  More fanfic reviews will be here on Friday, at the usual time.  But right now, I'm going to take some time to talk about a major medical situation near to me.  If an unabashed personal blogpost doesn't appeal to you, I recommend you skip this--again, normal material returns next time.  If you do want to read it, though, it's below the break.

Monday, September 18, 2017

This Day in Pony History: September 18th, 2011

It's been six and a half years, give or take, since I got on the pony ride, and I'm feeling a little nostalgic.  So I thought I'd take a time-out from reviewing today, and instead look back at what the fandom was up to on this day in 2011--the first year there was a G4 fandom on this date.  If you too want to revel in remembrance--or if you're just curious to click around a few old links--head down below the break!

Friday, September 15, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 201

So, the fun of working with third-graders: yesterday, a boy asked to go to the bathroom.  A few minutes later, he comes back in the class, and very urgently tells me that I need to come to the boy's bathroom.  Thinking that there's some problem (and, this being a newcomers class, him not having enough English for me to get more specifics from him easily), I hustle over there in case someone's sick, or a toilet's overflowing, or something else is going on that's going to necessitate calling the nurse and/or janitor.

Turns out the kid had just dropped a particularly large deuce, and wanted to show it off.  Some things transcend culture, and boys being proud of their bowel movements is one of them.  Though socially appropriate ways to express that pride remain a work in progress.

Speaking of the often odious but vaguely fascinating results of digestion: fanfic reviews!  Get some, below the break.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 228: "Princest is Wincest," It Said

The author didn't use any cover art, so here's a visual representation of my feelings about authors not using cover art.  Also: to read the story, click the image or follow this link.

Work is too much work; I feel like I've got no time for the important things in life, i.e. reading MLP fanfics and writing those suckers up.  Somehow, I forgot what the start of the school year actually entails.  You'd think after all these years, the fact of the impending time sink wouldn't sneak up on me like that... and yet, it does.

But now, on to my review of the OMPR-award winning (in the category "Most Improbable Title for a Fic that Chris Actually Dedicated a Fandom Classic Review To," narrowly edging out Brony Hero of Equestria) "Princest is Wincest," It Said, by cleverpun.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 200

The big two-oh-oh!  I'm sure there's some significance to that, but I couldn't say what.  Turns out I'm not good with numbers, as my oh-so-clever decision to start Alshon Jeffery (5 fantasy points in standard scoring) while benching Leonard Fornette (18 points) attests.  I'd have won otherwise, too... what was I saying?  Oh yes!  Mini-reviews!  Find my less-than-200 of them, below the break.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 227: The Mane Makes The Pony

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

It's fantasy football time again!  It's actually also real football time; the first game of the season will have just finished by the time this post goes up.  I'm feeling pretty good about my team; I'll be starting three Cardinals (David Johnson and Larry Fitzgerald, plus I'm spot-starting Carson Palmer while I wait for Andrew Luck to get healthy), so I don't even have to worry much about conflicts of interest between my real team and my fantasy one!

Okay, that's enough fantasy sports; I'll talk about it some more sometime, no doubt, but I harbor no illusions than anyone cares.  Instead, let's move on to my review of Merlos the Mad's The Mane Makes the Pony, below the break.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

First Sentences in (Fan)Fiction the 22nd

I can't remember if I've done this before, but over the weekend I had a thought; what if I looked at some first sentences from a blind sample of fanfics I haven't actually read, instead of evaluating stories I've already read and reviewed?  So I started from the top of the "recently published" list on FiMFic's front page, and worked my way down it until I got tired of this exercise.  Well, more or less; I left the mature filter off, but I skipped over the clopfics.  I suppose first sentences matter for them too, but I've just got no interest in *glances at stories list* Fall of Equestria and maybe diapers?  Though thankfully, no Fall of Equestria with diapers.

So head on down below the break, to see what I found when I ventured into the world of effectively-randomly-selected fanfiction!

Monday, September 4, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 199

I did something yesterday that I haven't done in almost a decade: I pulled an all-nighter.  Not exactly deliberately; I'm coming off a stomach bug, and for some reason the general discomfort stayed right in that liminal state between "feeling better enough to successfully nod off" and "sick enough you just sort of pass out eventually."  Lucky that it's Labor Day weekend; I could use an extra day to get my schedule back on school hours.

Anyway, here's some mini-reviews, which--unlike this blurb--weren't written on zero hours of sleep.  Check them out below!

Friday, September 1, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 226: Through the Well of Pirene

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

And so, here we have my review of the fourth-longest story I've read to date, narrowly edging out The Life and Times of a Winning Pony, and slotting in behind Background Pony, Fallout:Equestria, and Project Horizons.  Interestingly (well, interestingly to me, anyway), those five stories represent nearly 15% of the wordcount that I've reviewed on this blog, despite my having reviewed over 1000 fics to date.

It really drives home how long some of the fandom's epics are, compared to "fanfiction" as a whole.  But let's zero in on today's fic!  Head down below the break to check out my review of Ether Echoes' Through the Well of Pirene.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 198

Did you know that back-to-school workshops started right away this week, instead of on Thursday like usual?  I didn't!  Specifically, I didn't know that until I got home on Sunday.  And yes, it was entirely my fault for not knowing (checking e-mail and keeping up-to-date over the summer--who does that?), but the point is that I got back from my trip to Arizona only to immediately go into back-to-work mode.  So, having not had time to put together my review of Through the Well of Pirene yet, here instead is a set of mini-reviews that I had in my back pocket in case I didn't get enough guest columns.  Enjoy, and I'll try to get myself ahead of the curve for Friday!

Monday, August 28, 2017

Second Opinion: Who We Are, by kits

By the time you read this, I'll already be home (unless something's gone horribly wrong and I'm trying to hitchhike 2000 miles.  Let's... let's hope I'm at home by the time you read this).  But I probably only got in a few hours before this post went up, and let's face it; I'm not gonna be interested in trying to rush out my review of Esther Echos' Through the Well of Pirene right after rolling back into town.  So look for that on Wednesday--but first, check out our last guest post!  It's one you won't want to miss, as author extraordinaire Cold in Gardez bookends my vacation with a look at a story I gave a one-star review to which he thinks was a lot better than I gave it credit for.  If you have any interest at all in second opinions (and let's face it: if you're visiting a fanfic review blog, you probably are), then make sure you head below the break to see what CiG has to say.

Friday, August 25, 2017

A Critique of My Little Dashie – Part 2

And here's part two!  Head down below the break for more on structure, storytelling, and summing-up.


Wednesday, August 23, 2017

A Critique of My Little Dashie – Part 1

Okay, we've had our fun, now it's time to get serious.  You see, ColonelWaffle might not be a name you immediately recognize, but he's put together one of the most detailed, in-depth critiques of a piece of fiction I've ever seen.  And it's long, too--long enough that I'm breaking it into two parts, and they're both still heavy reads.

But don't mistake length for garrulousness!  What he's assembled is a comprehensive look at every aspect of construction, narrative, and cohesiveness, all meticulously and thoroughly explored.  ColonelWaffle makes a lot of statements, but he backs up everything he claims with story quotes and laudable analysis.  If you've ever wanted to take a deep dive into a story, today's your lucky day: head down below the break, and explore My Little Dashie with unparalleled fidelity.  

Monday, August 21, 2017

SOYBEAN SUBSIDIES IN 19TH CENTURY AMERICA

Time for week two of my vacation--a week which I will be dedicating entirely to guest posts about My Little Dashie.

...No, really!  I've got an excellent analysis to share with you all that's so long I'm going to split it into two parts, which dissects the fandom's most famous story in stunning detail.  If you enjoy deep dives into storywriting, you're in for a treat.  But before that, I've got something a little... let's say, lighter, to share with you.  Head down below the break for a quote-filled point-by-point rebuttal of my review, brought to you by the inimitable Richard!

Friday, August 18, 2017

Experiences and Thoughts for New and Prospective Writers

Ready for round three?  Because we're closing out week one of the guestravaganza with a fairly new author who you might have seen in the feature box once or twice in the past month.  That's right, today's post is by All Art Is Quite Useless, who's here to share some writing tips that he's picked up over the past few months, as well as offer some advice to would-be or prospective authors.  If you're still thinking about publishing that first story, make sure you check out what he has to say:

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Seeing Through Your Characters’ Eyes: The Finer Points of Perspective

Speaking, as I ever-so-briefly did in the intro blurb on Monday, about Bronycon (smooth segue, Chris!), here's something that may look familiar to the attendees who went to Pascoite et al's panel.  That's right, everyone's favorite author/editor/pre-reader/mineral is at it again (I'd like to his past guest columns, but frankly he's written so much so well for OMPR that one could be forgiven for wondering who the OM is at this point!  To go back and see all his goodness, plus some reviews of his excellent stories, just type his name into the search bar on your right), this time with some thoughts about narrative distance and perspective.  Head down below the break for some truly excellent writing advice.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Couchfire

Welcome back from Bronycon, those of you who went, and welcome to day one of my vacation!  Batting lead-off for the fortnight is Icy Shake, a gentleman who's contributed his analysis here before, with reviews of In a Tavern, Down By the River, as well as of Somber's and Twilight Snarkle's entire outputs.  Today, he's once again going to dive into some fanfic analysis, by comparing and contrasting two well-known stories by well-known authors.  These fics may have similar premises, but Icy dives into why he found one more effective than the other, and what writing lessons can be learned from both.  Make sure you head down below and check it out!

Friday, August 11, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 197

Well, today's my last day for the next couple of weeks.  When I come back, I'll presumably be refreshed, rejuvenated, and ready to write up a review of the fic I'll be reading on vacation: Through the Well of Pirene, by Ether Echoes.  That'll be the 30th, but before then, I've got seven guest posts lined up for y'all!  And, having already read all the posts that will be going up before I get home, let me assure you all that you're in for a treat: we've got some reviewing, some analysis, some writing advice, and even a little comedy, all from a mix of old and new fillers-in.  There's a lot of horsewords talent coming down the line for the next fortnight, is what I'm trying to say, and you'll want to make sure you don't pull a Chris and just lay off of OMPR for a while.

Speaking of, something I'm also laying off of for a while is the Royal Canterlot Library, which I assume will immediately burn down, fall over, and sink into the swamp in my absence.  But as a going-away-for-a-couple-weeks present/placating gesture, I thought I'd review a story by each of the other RCL curators before I skedaddled!  Head down below the break to see my thoughts on other reviewers' writing.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 225: The Magic Never Fades Away

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

I am certain there was something I was going to say up here... but for the life of me, I can't remember what it was.  Oh well, it'll probably come to me in the morning; if you all behave, maybe I'll even share it when (/if) I remember it.  Until then, enjoy a classic-style OMPR review, courtesy of yours truly.  Get it below!

Monday, August 7, 2017

Episode Talk: S7E13, The Perfect Pear

The mid-season hiatus is finally over!  At least, it is for those of us who've been watching episodes as they're released stateside.  What fortuitous timing; they've returned just in time for me to... miss the next few weeks.  Huh.

Well, I was still here this Saturday, and I wanted to share a few opinions.  And post pictures of Carrot Top, because natch.  As usual, this isn't a comprehensive review of what I saw--more "here's some things that stuck out to me/random thoughts I had while watching."  If that sounds interesting to you, see what I had to say about the latest episode, below the break!

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 224: The Last Pony on Earth

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

One week until I leave on vacation!  If you're working on/planning to do a guest post, this weekend is the time to finish them up.  I'll plan to put together the posts and e-mail everyone with the days theirs will go up on Wednesday, and then guest postage will commence on the 14th.  From the columns I've already read, I can promise you all that there's some good stuff coming up!

But until the 14th, this is still One Man's pony ramblings!  So head on down below the break to see what that one man had to say about starscribe's The Last Pony on Earth.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Review Delayed Until Tomorrow

...because I'm at Bronycon!  Wait, no, that's just every single other person on FiMFic, if my feed is anything to go by :P  Have fun without me, guys... if you can.

No, but I was just doing my last once-through/fill-in-the-above-the-break-bit on The Last Pony on Earth, realized there was a significant portion that I wanted to re-write, and don't feel like doing it right now.  Rather than let it go up as-is or push myself to re-write it right before bed, I'm just going to push it back 24 hours.  Expect the hopefully-improved review tomorrow!

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 196

Had to get a new phone today, since my old one decided that a big chunk of the bottom half was tired of being touch-sensitive and would rather remain totally unresponsive whenever I tried to type something on it.  Why does getting a phone fixed cost more than just getting a new one?  I don't know!  Oh well, I guess it'll be nice to have something new, even if figuring out what to buy came at the expense of the better part of my day.

So, here's some mini-reviews.  Get 'em below the break!

Monday, July 31, 2017

For a Change, Let's Talk About Actual Books (Part 23)

Been a while since I did one of these!  Let's take a quick time-out from all that yabber about ponyfic and instead talk about reading material of the sort that normies don't arch their eyebrows at!  Head down below the break for a quick peek at the books I'm currently in the process of reading, and what I think of them to whatever point I'm at in them.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 195

I got a nice surprise yesterday when one of my friends who lives on the other side of the country showed up here in town!  I knew he was moving back at some point, but he managed to surprise me nonetheless; it was good to see him again, and now it won't even have to be a couple-of-times-a-year thing like it's been for the past decade!

And, him being him, it didn't take ten minutes before he'd asked when our next D&D session would be.  Some things never change, but luckily they're mostly good things.

Speaking of good things, here're some fanfic reviews!  Check them out, below.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 223: Vanilla Twilight

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

My little sister is visiting this week!  Should be fun times; her only precondition for coming by for a few days was that I had to buy her cheese curds at the county fair.  That seems eminently reasonable to me, insofar as cheese curds are delicious and I was going to be buying them for myself anyway; why not get a bunch, and pretend that she's going to eat all the extra?

Also, review below.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 194

I have not been treating my body well the last few days.  Between the staying up late to watch the WSOP, and getting up early to watch the Tour de France (cool British guy lost and boring British guy won, respectively), I probably averaged only four or five hours of sleep a night the last few days.  It's left me thoroughly zombified, and trying to catch a nap or two just seems to make it worse.  Man, I'm pretty sure I didn't used to get this drained from a few days of insufficient shut-eye back when I was in college, and that was only... oh damn, I am getting old, aren't I?

Well, my productivity may have been shot in most other areas of my life, but I still got a couple of mini-reviews out, at least!  Good to know I have my priorities straight.  Go check 'em out below.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 222: Savage

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

You know what kills me every time I try to get back into online poker?  People who go all-in on the first hand of a tournament.  And if nobody calls them, they just do it again next round, until eventually somebody's doubled (tripled, quadrupled...) up, and the rest of us finally get to play--with a massive chip disadvantage.  It's no fun, dangit!

What will hopefully be more fun?  My review of Ese Way's Savage.  Get it below!

Monday, July 17, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 193

I watched the premier of the new season of Game of Thrones just a few hours before this post was gonna go up, and I gotta say... for all that the visuals and music are still absolutely top-tier (and they are!  They're almost entirely why I'm still watching at this point!), the show is really striking out on characterization, tone, pacing, and basically everything that's not the music and visuals.  I mean, Euron is straight-up Jack Sparrow at this point, you know?  Sam somehow got stuck in a gross-out comedy flick that's being intercut with the rest of the show.  Nobody seems to care--or even notice!--that Sansa is the rightful Warden of the North.

Honestly, it's enough to make me glad that they killed off Stannis two years ago; he may be my favorite major character in the books (sidebar: my favorite minor characters are Damphair, Patchface, and Hodor; if I ever write an ASoIaF fanfic, it will be about those three traveling Westeros, and every time they encounter anyone or anything, Damphair will say something gloomy and portentous, Patchface will start singing a vaguely foreboding nonsense rhyme about it, and Hodor will say "Hodor."  About every.  Single.  Thing.), but it's kind of nice to know that the show can't miss the point with him any more.

Now!  Ponyfic!  Below!

Friday, July 14, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 221: Two Peas in a Pod

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

If you like reading in-detail, stream-of-consciousness reviews, be ye advised that PresentPerfect has finally finished his six-part review of Project: Horizons.  According to the google doc I just pasted it into out of morbid curiosity, his review runs a whopping 44,193 words.  Normally this would be a case where I'd say something like "frankly, you're better off just reading the story and deciding for yourself," but given that the fic in question is 1.7 million words, a short novel about it is still a significant potential timesaver.  Plus, PP's irreverent summarizing is really funny in its own right (plus plus, he curses like a wounded pirate and/or 14 year-old Call of Duty player).

Or you could just read my review of it.  It's only 3311 words, which I believe means that it's over 13 times better :B  And if even that's too many words for you, try my significantly shorter review of Blueshift's Two Peas in a Pod, below the break.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Mini-Reviews Part 192

Hey, maybe one of you can solve a mystery for me: has someone or somewhere I don't know about promoted to my FiMFic account recently?  Because in the last few days, I've picked up several new followers, and had a bunch of my stories (i.e. it's not just one fic that's benefiting) added to different people's favorites folders.  I haven't published any new stories recently, so I'm at a loss as to what's going on.  Do you guys have any clues?

Let me know if you figure it out.  Otherwise, I'll just keep on doing what I do: reviewing fanfics!  Click down below the break for more.

Monday, July 10, 2017

HA HA, TIME FOR (YOU TO WRITE) GUEST POSTS!

If you've been around the OMPR block a few times, you know that it's summer, and you know what that means: I'm going on vacation!  Specifically, I'm going on vacation in about a month's time, and I'll be gone two weeks.  I'd like to be able to spend my vacation not worrying about this site, and while building up a small buffer is one thing, getting eight posts ahead (two weeks, plus the Monday and Friday on either side) is tough.  So, time for my annual call:

I'm looking for people to write guest columns which I can post on this site, about either writing, reviewing, ponies, or some combination thereof. Write something, let me share it, and wallow in the glory of being featured on a MLP fanfic review blog!

Interested?  Intrigued?  Just plain curious?  Get the details, below!

Friday, July 7, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 220: Friendship Is Optimal: Caelum Est Conterrens

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

Okay, all that show-talk was good and well, but now let's get back to my bread and butter: fanfic reviews!  Click down below the break for my take on Chatoyance's Friendship is Optimal: Caelum Est Conterrens.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

In Which Chris Complains About an Episode. A Lot.

A few weeks ago, I said this about A Royal Problem:
Didn't like it. Actually, hated it. Not quite as much as I hated stuff like Bats!, or... actually, it might be my second-least-favorite episode, after Bats! I'd have to think about it, but that would require thinking about it, which I really would rather not do.
Apparently, not many of you were terribly thrilled that I'd mention my opinion without justifying it.  I've gotten comments and e-mails asking me to talk about the episode, multiple times from some people.  I've been had my failure to say more about the episode than "I hated it, I don't wanna talk about it" called "the lazy way out" and "unprofessional."

Well, fine.  Let's talk about A Royal Problem.  Let's go through all the reasons I didn't like it.  If you come here for fanfiction reviews, go ahead and close your browser now, and come back on Friday; otherwise, below the break is a whole bunch of bellyaching.

Monday, July 3, 2017

First Sentences In (Fan)Fiction the 21st

Hope you're all enjoying some cycling goodness!  It's Tour de France season, and I'll probably (definitely) update you if Voeckler does anything exciting in this, his final Grand Tour.  Sadly, I'm pretty sure Mystic was the only other person in my circle of ever-so-marginal influence who cared one bit about pro cycling, but you all are just going to have to suffer my sports interests anyway.  Mwa-ha-ha!

Or, you know, you could skip this blurby bit on my posts.  But why would you want to do that?  In any case, I'm done blurbing at you now.  Head down below the break for my thoughts on some first sentences from past Fandom Classics!

Friday, June 30, 2017

Mini-Reviews Part 191

First, my complete and comprehensive analysis of the new trailer for the MLP movie:


Carrot Top confirmed!  There was probably some other stuff, but why focus on the negative (no really, please don't ask me bitch about everything I don't like, or I'll never stop)?  Let's instead take a moment to acknowledge that, no matter what else goes wrong, there will be at least one reason to watch the film.

But for now, let's focus on the fanfiction side of the pony equation--and, in keeping with our best-part-of-the-trailer theme, let's make it another Carrot Top edition!  Well, an edition of stories wherein Carrot Top is one of the tagged characters, anyway.  Head down below the break for my thoughts.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 219: Keeping Your Hooves On The Ground

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

Hey!  Do you like fanfic readings?  If so, then definitely check out Illya Leonov's reading of my Equestrian folktale, The Sweetest Water.  He has a wonderful, rich voice, but don't let that fool you; he also has plenty of range, which he gets to show off through the voices of the different pools.  The Sweetest Water is now two-for-two on having awesome readings done of it (the other being Neighrator Pony's wonderful reading from a while back).  If audiobooks and Chris-writing are your things, don't miss it!

Also, don't miss my review of InsertAuthorHere's Keeping Your Hooves On The Ground, below the break.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 190

In case you missed it, my inaugural Seattle's Angel's post went up over the weekend!  Head over there, and you can read my and RedSquirrel's fic recommendations (contrary to what the blurbery might suggest, I didn't actually select all four of the fics we featured), including one story that's never been reviewed anywhere else--even here!

And if that isn't enough reviewing for you, have some more reviews!  Specifically, reviews of the mini- variety, which you can find below the break.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 218: Luna, There's a Sentient Race Inside Your Mane

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

I guess Australia is airing episodes in advance now?  Nutters, I'd just last week caught up with everyone who doesn't follow the US release schedule!  Oh well, it was nice being able to interact with the fandom on equal footing for a few days, at least.  Back to not knowing what everyone else is talking about.

But hey, one nice things about fanfics from 2012: they never surprise you with new-to-you canon.  Check out my review of boardgamebrony's Luna, There' s a Sentient Race Inside Your Mane, below the break.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 217: Exit Through Canterlot

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

Time for the first Fandom Classic review of June!  Wait... *checks date* it's seriously been twenty days since I did one of these?  Jeez.  To be fair, the end of the school year was a doozy, and this is a long story, but still.

Oh well; now I'm back to it!  Head down below the break for my review of TheBrianJ's Exit Through Canterlot, and make sure you savor it--though with any luck, it won't have to tide you over until July 10th.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Episode Talk: S7E11, Not Asking for Trouble

I debated doing one of these; I think everyone else watched this episode a month ago, and have probably forgotten it by now.  But dangit, I just got to see it for the first time this weekend, and I am gonna talk about it!  Get my thoughts, after the break.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Reviewer Reviews: Loganberry

There's too many fanfics for any one person to read.  That's why you turn to fanfic reviewers: to help guide you away from fics that you wouldn't enjoy anyway, and towards ones that you'll love, and might have missed otherwise.

But there are also too many fanfic reviews for any one person to read.  Okay, that's probably not technically true... but the BIG MASTER REVIEW LIST has nearly 15,000 fanfic reviews in it as I type this, and who knows how many more are flying under its radar?  Point is, you don't have time to read every single review.  That's why you turn to fanfic reviewer reviews: to help you find the reviewers whose reviews will help you the most, and whose styles gel with your own review-reading desires!

So head on down below the break, and we'll take a look at what Loganberry (as he calls himself on FiMFic.  On his blog, simply Logan) has on tap for the discerning review reader.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 189

Saw A Royal Problem.  Didn't like it.  Actually, hated it.  Not quite as much as I hated stuff like Bats!, or... actually, it might be my second-least-favorite episode, after Bats!  I'd have to think about it, but that would require thinking about it, which I really would rather not do.  So instead, let's do some fanfic reviews, below the break.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Stuff That Isn't Reviews, Upcoming Reviews, and Reviews You Can Read Right Now!

Well!  The end of the year has proven... busier than I'd expected.  I thought that moving from an environment where I was interacting with over a hundred kids every year to a single-classroom setting would mean less end-of-year scrambling, but my current job and age range came with its own unpleasant surprises on that front.  Good news: they're all (almost) behind me, and summer is officially here!

So, sorry for missing the last two posts, and thank you for not tracking me down and egging my house in the interim.  To repay you, here's a pseudo-roundup of ponyfic-related stuff--including episode discussion, my reviews, and other people's reviews.  Check it out below!

Monday, June 5, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 188

It's the last week of the school year, and I'm scrambling.  I'm behind on episodes, I've done less reading than I'd like, and that's just what's piling up in my pony sphere of influence.  So, roundabout way of saying: I may end up missing a post this week, but I'll try not to.  I've got enough material to make the necessary posts, but sometimes it's hard to find time even to turn those notes and drafts into a post proper.

But I'm ready for today, at least!  Click down below the break for some short reviews (and one less-short review) of stuff I've recently read.

Friday, June 2, 2017

First Sentences In (Fan)Fiction the 20th

Have I really not done one of these posts since February?  Jeez, time sure gets away from ya sometimes.  Welp, let's dive in and correct the record, so to speak!

This time, I thought that instead of looking at stories I've reviewed, I'd tackle the stories which FiMFic has listed as "Top - All-time," as of a bit earlier this week (for those of you who don't keep up with FiMFic algorithms, the list is subject to significant turnover; one downvote can easily knock most stories' ranks down a few hundred places, and being on the list in the first place is a good way to attract downvotes).  So, let's see how the top stories on FiMFic hold up, when all you look at is their first line!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 216: Twilight Hears the Narrator

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

In place of anything of substance, I will relate the following true story: I read this top 18 list of "best movie montages," because obviously I have nothing better to do with my life.  I read through the whole article, mentally preparing myself to be annoyed when Rocky IV wasn't in the number 1 spot, and already composing in my head a detailed explanation for why the Rocky IV montage is the best montage of all time (Rocky outruns the KGB--who are in a car--and then climbs a Siberian mountain in the middle of winter, in order to defeat communism!  And that's before we even get into the fact that "Hearts on Fire" is objectively the best montage song).  So of course, I get to the end, and it turns out they did put Rocky IV first overall, and all my pent-up annoyance suddenly had no outlet.

I feel like there's a lesson to learn from this, but instead I'm just going to listen to that song again.  Anyway, Stratocaster's Twilight Hears the Narrator review, below!


Monday, May 29, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 187

Over the weekend, I got around to posting a couple more pieces to my microfic collection.  So if you didn't already see it, go take a look at Bantam Tales, and enjoy a Carrot Top jokefic and/or a dark story about Tirek's fate!  Or, if you haven't read all my fics in there yet, feel free to read some or all of the other stuff, too; it's all unrelated, so feel free to pick and chose whatever looks good.

Speaking of picking and choosing whatever looks good, let's do some reviews!  I read 'em so you can make marginally more informed decisions about whether or not to do the same, after the break.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 215: Nosflutteratu

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

Two more weeks of school, and I am officially counting the days until summer.  I always try to wait as long as possible--I don't want to get into a "only X days left!" mindset in the middle of February, like certain other people I could name--but at this point... yeah, it's hard not to have that "we're in the homestretch" feeling.  But although the school year may end, the reviews never do!  Click down for my thoughts on Charcoal Quill's Nosflutteratu.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 214: Let's Find You a Date!

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

Does anyone else feel like season seven has done a great job of fracturing the fandom?  I mean, I haven't been on Equestria Daily in weeks, and until very recently, that was an every-day stop for me.  Not so much to avoid spoilers--I'm not super worried about that, at least when it comes to pony--but more because I know the conversation and features will be even heavier on stuff that I don't have a frame of reference for than usual.  Ditto new fanfics and blogposts; when half the fandom is having a completely different viewing experience from the other half, it's easy to lose touch with what a whole bunch of people are talking about, really quickly.

Maybe it's just me, but this is increasingly feeling to me like a "drifting away" inflection point for the fandom.  We'll see.  And meanwhile, we'll continue to read the fandom's classics!  Head down below the break to see what I thought of Soundslikeponies' Let's Find You a Date!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 186

I didn't write about last week's episode because it was honestly pretty forgettable, but I have things to say about Parental Glidance!  And you probably don't care, because you watched it with the Canadians two weeks ago :P  But I just watched it this weekend, so here we go!  First, Dash's parents were great, but I don't like that they never learned any sort of lesson: I mean, we've seen the kind of neurotic mess that they created by stifling their daughter's ability to distinguish legitimate praise from mindless acceptance, and the ridiculous lengths Dash goes to because she keeps seeking genuine, meaningful recognition, yet is unable to see it for what it is when presented to her.  I mean seriously, Dash is my favorite main-six pony, but she's got issues, and we finally find out why... and the only lesson at the end is "this is fine?"  Don't get me wrong, I'm no advocate of Tiger Mom-ism, but come on.\

Second, and more importantly, Carrot Top!

What, did you think I wouldn't notice Carrot Top sitting third from the left, top row?  I'VE GOT EYES LIKE A STEEL TRAP.  As you can see, she's in literally the cheapest seats at the show; she assumed that, because it was a matinee, attendance would be sparse and she'd be able to move down to a better seat.  She was half-right; there were plenty of empty spots in the "gold" and "diamond" seating areas, but it turns out the Sugarcube Corner Skyline® at Hayburger Stadium® had recently instituted a new PSL policy that allows season ticket-holders to hold and sell their paid-for spaces through the Wonderbolts' resale front for a small commission.  The upshot?  Carrot Top could've moved down a few rows... but only if she wanted to cough up an extra 80 bits.  Oh well; at least she wasn't sitting behind anyone wearing a ridiculously large hat this time.

Plus, she was able to get a signature from the Wonderbolts' newest member!  And it only required standing in line for four hours in the blazing hot sun!  Unfortunately, she didn't get quite the reaction she was expecting when she brought her "souvenir" home.  "You got Rainbow Dash's signature?  Rainbow Dash's?"  Written Script would ask her, his confusion plain to see on his face.  When Carrot Top assured him that RD's signature was going to be worth a lot someday, he shrugged.  "I suppose we'd better start saving our monthly weather bills, then.  You... you do remember that they're signed by the Ponyville weather manager, right?  And that that manager is still Rainbow Dash?"

Carrot Top did not, in fact, remember that.  But she didn't admit that she didn't remember it, which (she was pretty sure) was the important thing here.

Okay, okay.  On to some reviews of fanfics!  Get 'em below.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 213: Negotiations

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

For those of you who keep up with writeoff-related happenings, the most recent minific round has concluded, and I managed to pace well; my story sandwiched neatly in between Ceffyl Dwr's first- and third- place entries.  Seriously, who writes two good stories in 24 hours?  Anyway, look for it to show up in either my minific collection or on its own (depending on how much my edits expand the wordcount) sometime in the near future.

But if my horsewords don't interest you, you could always read my words about horsewords!  My review of Rated Ponystar's Negotiations, below.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 185

Sorry for the lack of post on Monday; I spent the weekend up north, and forgot to set this to post.  And by the time I got home on Monday night, it was already almost a day late... so at that point, it felt like it made more sense to just call it a loss and move on (and move it) to today.  Mea culpa!

But now, your extended jonesing is over; get some mini-reviews, below the break.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 212: A True, True Friend?

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

So, I made mint juleps last Saturday, because you're supposed to drink mint juleps for the Kentucky Derby.  And they were great, and that was all fine as far as it went.  But to make them, I first had to make simple syrup (i.e. I boiled some sugar water), and you need, like, a tablespoon of simple syrup for mint julips, and my friends and I aren't exactly heavy drinkers, and now I've got a cup and a half of simple syrup in my fridge and nothing to do with it.

If you have any suggestions for what to do with a bunch of sugar water, I'd love to hear them.  But if not, you can just shrug your shoulders and move on to my review of Blazewing's A True, True Friend?, below the break.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 184

I try to occasionally look through the "new stories" list on the FiMFic main page; it's not the best way to find great stories in terms of raw numbers, but it is a good way to catch new authors who haven't had a chance to get eyes on their works yet.  That said, there are the usual pitfalls with this method of story searching: barely-coherent writing, weird fetishes... and stories with totally opaque descriptions.  Take this short description, which I came across this afternoon:
Rainbow Dash thinks that Paladins is a rip-off of Overwatch. Sunset Shimmer begs to differ.
I don't know what Overwatch is/are, nor how paladins could be said to be a ripoff of anything, but I'll assume this statement makes sense if only I had some key bit of background or cultural insight.  Then there's stuff like this one:
Giratina goes to Equestria
Where it's obvious the author expects me to know who "Giratina" is... except, of course, I don't.  Which isn't the author's fault (if anything, it's nice that they're so up-front about who is(n't) the target audience)--but yeah, obviously I'm not going to read a story where the premise leaves me floundering like that.

But here are some older stories that I did read, all of which were fundamentally comprehensible to me!  Head down below to see what I thought of 'em.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Odds and Ends

It's been a while since I've done a "bit of this, bit of that" post, but today I have several things that don't really tie together, but which I want to throw out to y'all.  Some reading stuff, some writing stuff, and some episode stuff!

Friday, May 5, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 211: Winds of Change

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

This afternoon, I watched my cat stare down a spot on the wall, eventually pounce at it, then try to run away from it full-speed, only to barrel headfirst into the leg of my dining-room table.  This is not the first time he's smacked his face at high speeds.  I think he's permanently concussed.

But you didn't come here to hear about my cat's self-inflicted injuries; you came here for fanfic reviews!  So go get some below the break, as I look at Masterweaver's Winds of Change.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Change a Title by One Letter

Perhaps some of you (heck, perhaps all of you) are aware of the "change one letter" challenge/joke/meme that's been floating around for... oh, years, probably.  The gist is this: you alter, add, or remove a single letter to/from a title, and summarize the plot of your newly created work.  Good fun.

So I decided to do a few pony ones, mostly based on stories I've reviewed recently (so as not to leave y'all wondering what the reference is).  With any luck, maybe a few of them are even funny!  See for yourself, below the break.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 183

Due to my internet connection having been wonky most of the weekend, I still haven't seen the newest episode (or the newest two, I guess, since Canada has wonderful taste in sports but terrible ideas about TV scheduling).  I'm not optimistic, though; two of the past three episodes have featured Carrot Top, and a more typical ratio in the past couple of seasons has been, like, 1:4.  I'll find out soon enough, I suppose.

Until then, let's review some fanfics!  A trollfic-themed set, because I don't normally read them, so I might as well get several out of the way all at once :P  Check it out, below.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Fic Memorability: a Quick Look Back

One thing that all great stories have in common is that they're memorable.  Whether you love them or hate them, great stories stick with you, key scenes and emotions remaining locked in your memory long after you've read them.

Of course, lots of terrible stories are memorable, too.  So I'm not saying that being memorable makes a story great; just that being memorable is one of the prerequisites to a story being great.

With that in mind, today I want to look back a bit at my old 6-star reviews.  Excluding Binkie Pie and Project Horizons, it's been more than two and a half years since I've read any of those fics, and I found myself wondering how well I remembered those stories--and whether the stories I rated highly stuck with me as well as I might have assumed they would.

So, I came up with a few categories which broadly describe how well I remember these stories which I haven't read in years, looked through the 6-Star Reviews By Star Rating page, and sorted the stories accordingly.  Head down below the break to see which fics stuck with me, and which ones... didn't.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 210: Forever and Again and Again

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

Yesterday, it got close to 70 degrees.  Tomorrow, there's snow in the forecast.  What's a man supposed to do with this kind of this kind of schizophrenic weather?  Stay inside and read fanfics, I guess.  Head down below for my review of Titanium Dragon's Forever and Again and Again.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Episode Talk: S7E3, Flurry of Emotions

Well, did you all join me in watching that terribly disheartening mess they put on TV over the weekend?  Did you cringe, as I did, at all the missed opportunities, the flatly boneheaded decisions by those in charge, and the questionable calls?

I'm talking about the Wild losing to the Blues, of course.  Talk about a wasted year.

But from what I hear, there was another show in town on Saturday.  Head down below the break, and I'll tell you what I thought of that, too.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 182

So, I've noticed that since April first, despite my thorough and definitive (and definitely not tongue-in-cheek) trashing of it, Cold in Gardez's The Carnivore's Prayer has gained a total of four upvotes and zero downvotes.  God, it's like you guys don't even listen to me when I tell you that something is terrible and nobody should like it.  You know, like I so often do.

On that note, here are some short reviews of things I recently read.  Make sure you vote appropriately on the following stories (actually reading them is optional); remember, the only purpose of those green and red thumbs is to allow you, the reader, to magnify whatever summary judgement Chris renders!  Do your duty, below the break.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 209: Changeling Courtship Rituals

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

After yesterday, I'm still feeling overfull with the milk of human kindness (incidentally; that's always seemed like kind of a gross metaphor to me.  Human kindness is warm and fuzzy, and warm and fuzzy milk sloshing over a glass and spilling all over everything is a terrible mental image).  But I'll try to resist the urge to just go around handing out 5-stars like candy!  I know you all come here for OPINIONS, and I'm not going to let your generosity weaken them!

Though, I wouldn't mind handing out a bunch of 5-stars, since that would mean that I get to read a bunch of superb fanfics... well, sounds like a win-win, doesn't it?  Well, we'll see what happens.  In fact, we'll see right now!  Click down below the break for my review of Codex Ex Equus's Changeling Courtship Rituals.

Monday, April 17, 2017

HOLD THE FREAKING PRESSES

So I got home today and there was a giant box on my doorstep.  "Hmm," I said to myself, "What's this?  I don't remember ordering anything recently."  Then I remembered that PresentPerfect asked for my address not to long ago.  I assumed it was to send me a book (on those rare occasions when ponyfolk ask for my address, it's almost always to send me a book), but this box was way too big for that, and not nearly heavy enough.  What gives?

So I open it, and what do I see?


What.


WHAT.


WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT.


I... I don't even know what to say right now.  This is the most ridiculously, absurdly amazing thing that anyone's ever done completely out of the blue for me (okay, I assume it wasn't "out of the blue" for you guys, since crazy awesome plushies don't just happen on their own... but it was out of the blue to me).  And she's even got that gorgeous dress from A Hearth's Warming Tale!  

I'm honestly tearing up right now.  I'm touched that I've done something--even something as silly-sounding as "writing a bunch of fanfic reviews"--that you guys have enjoyed so much, and... okay, so this plushie is ridiculously nice, but even if it weren't... just the idea that you guys would all go out of your way to try to do something so nice for me, someone who you've never even met in person, is kind of overwhelming.

I can't put the words in the right order right now, so I'll just repeat myself: this is an amazing, wonderful, unexpected gift, and the meaning behind it is humbling.  Thank you, all of you who were part of this.  It's incredible.

Episode Talk: S7E01-02, Celestial Advice/All Bottled Up

Well, a new season has come, and I'm here to talk about it!  Okay, about 90% of what I'm here to do is post screenshots of Carrot Top, but that's good too, right?

Oh, and happy Easter, I guess, if you're into that sort of thing.  But below the break, we talk about only the important stuff: my opinions--arranged mostly as a mass of "here's something I think"s rather than as a cohesive review or summary--on the S7 opener!

And Carrot Top.

Below!

Friday, April 14, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 181

In case you somehow haven't seen this elsewhere, the Royal Canterlot Library is looking to refeature an author, and we're giving everyone a chance to vote on what fanfics better represent their authors than the ones we actually featured!  The nominations have died down, so even if you were following before, now's a good time to go through the thread and vote for the stories you think best "correct the record."

Also, I hear something pony-related will be happening over the weekend.  Of course, so's Easter, so we'll see if I get to it before Monday, i.e. in time to post about it when it's still at least vaguely fresh-ish.  For now, though, we'll still have to content ourselves with fanfiction... so head on down below the break for my reviews of some of the good (hopefully!) stuff!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 208: The Centerpiece of My Collection/The Collection of My Centerpiece

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

The NHL playoffs start today, so reserve a comfy spot on your couch: the first round is multiple games every day, so you're going to be there a long time!  And if you don't already have a rooting interest, consider my Minnesota Wild a viable ponyfan pick.  Why, you ask?  Well, they are basically Carrot Top: the team.  Consider:

1) They've tried their best, but they're not quite there,
2) They kicked a puck and say it's just not fair,
3) [They're] A simple team living simple dreams.

So I'm high on the Wild in a way I haven't been in years, if only because "a rumor that's not quite as it seems" would seem to promise that our record of postseason futility against the Chicago Blackhawks will finally come to an end when we inevitably meet them in round two.

So, hockey talk over; let's talk about fanfics!  Click down below the break for my thoughts on Geldon's The Centerpiece Of My Collection / The Collection Of My Centerpiece.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Reviewer Reviews: Titanium Dragon

Over the weekend, I was introduced to long-running webcomic Gastrophobia, which I've been dutifully archive bingeing on since.  A comedy/action comic that's much heavier on the former than the latter, set in ancient Greece, with just enough mythology gags to make me feel smart when I read it without feeling like it's all going over my head?  Yeah, that's a good'n.

But if you're more interested in fanfiction than in Amazonians, then perhaps you'd like to learn a little more about one of the other fanfic reviewers that are out there trying to separate the wheat from the chaff in a doomed quest for horsefame for the benefit of you, the prospective reader?  Head below the break for my thoughts on Titanium Dragon's fanfic reviews.


Friday, April 7, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 180

These days, I rarely read incomplete fics.  The fact is that there are so many finished works out there that there's little incentive to take a chance on something that might never be finished--and let's face it, unfinished fics are an ever-present risk one runs when reading incomplete stories.

But that's not to say that I never read incomplete stuff!  So head down below the break, and take a look at my thoughts on three still-in-the-making stories.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 207: A Pony Walks Into a Bar...

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

Why does AJ have a bunch of red Solo cups sitting next to her?  She's clearly perched at a bar; why would a bar be using disposable cups?  It doesn't look like they're set up for beer pong or some other one-off activity; just what is going on here?  I do not have an answer; all I know is what I've reviewed.  And today, what I've reviewed is A Pony Walks Into a Bar..., by chief maximus.  Check out my thoughts, below the break.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 179

Well, that was fun.  Doubly fun for me, actually; I was out of town for a friend's wedding on Saturday, so it was a doubly great day!  But one day's enough; let's get back to my normal M.O., shall we?  Short reviews of stuff I recently read, below the break.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Your Much-Anticipated April 1st Review

Hello and welcome to a very special April 1st edition of One Man's Pony Ramblings!  As you all know, I mostly write reviews of fanfiction around here.  But let's face it; there are a lot of ways to write a review, and I've been sticking with my particular idiom for over five years now.  It's time to branch out, if only for one day, and try something a little... different.

That's right, today only, we'll be experimenting with a RAGE REVIEW!  Surely, the ideal format to calmly and rationally discuss my feelings about a work of fiction.  But of course, a rage review is traditionally directed at an awful story.  Well, no worries there, either: I found a teen-rated gorefic (always guaranteed to be edgy!) written in 2012 (when standards were often lax) by an author who's notorious for taking his ponyfic personally (just look at his short bio for proof).  Should be a real trainwreck, alright.

So, head on down below the break for the most brutal takedown this side of an MMA ring!

[But first, if I may pause to be serious for just one moment: I'd like to preemptively thank both the author, and the RR folk, for being good-humored about me poking fun at their fic and their reviews, respectively.  I hope y'all will take this exactly as seriously as I did]

Now, onward, to my review of...

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 178

As a heads-up: Friday's post will go up 24 hours late.  Why yes, that will put it on April 1st!  Make of that what you will.  

In all seriousness, though: here are some totally on-the-level mini-reviews.  Get them below the break.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 206: Celestia's Prophet

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

I'm coming back from a weekend of Barbershop contest, which is mostly great fun... except for the 5 a.m. wakeup times.  Who wants to get up that early?  One of the underreported hazards of having "old people" hobbies is that old people don't sleep in on weekends.  Ah well, it was worth it.  So, is Aegis Shield's Celestia's Prophet worth it, too?  Find out what I think, below the break.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 177

I went to the dentist to get a cavity drilled yesterday.  This is particularly annoying because I take pretty good care of my teeth (I even floss!  I think I might be the only person on the planet who flosses on something approaching a regular basis!), and yet my last two check-ups have had less than heartening responses.  Bah.

So to help un-sour my mood, let's turn to fanfic.  Short thoughts on stuff I've recently read, below the break.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 205: A Change in Three Parts

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

I don't know about anyone else, but I'm not super bothered about Scarlett Johansson playing the Major in the new Ghost in the Shell movie.  I mean, yes, it's whitewashing, but I guess I don't expect Hollywood to be culturally sensitive to begin with?  My expectations are too low to be really disappointed.  It does kind of bug me that Batou looks so goofy, though.  He really should have, like, 100 more pounds of muscle and ocular prosthetics that don't make him look like he's constantly trying to stare down the tip of his own nose.  That just seems like (aesthetic) common sense, no?

Whatever; I'm probably not going to see the movie anyway (I see so few these days), so I reckon there's no point caring too much.  Instead, let's move on to my review of GaPJAxie's A Change in Three Parts, below the break.

Monday, March 20, 2017

For a Change, Let's Talk About Actual Books (Part 22)

I do like to read things that aren't horsewords sometimes, after all.  So, here's a look at what non-horsewords I'm reading at this very moment, and what I think of them!

Below the break, as always.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Mini-Reviews Round 176

Happy St. Patrick's Day!  Go out and enjoy your terrible, terrible green beer if you must; just try not to throw up on me, if you please.  Or if you're not the over-imbibing type, do like me and make yourself some corned beef and soda bread.  Okay, so I'll have a beer or two with that as well... but at least it won't be green beer.

Either way, check below the break for a couple of short reviews, one of which is even seasonal.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 204: The Mare Who Once Lived on the Moon

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

Just a lil' reminder that if you had any intention of reading and/or voting on any of the stuff in the current writeoff, you've got just over a day left (from when this post goes up, anyway) to do so!  And, since the preliminary round is over, your odds of guessing which fic I wrote have risen from 1:19 to 1:10.  Come give it a shot!

But while you're here, maybe start by checking out my review of MrNumbers' The Mare Who Once Lived on the Moon.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

The Agony of Excessive Commas

I want to talk about something I see in fanfiction with some regularity: overuse of commas.

Not, mind you, incorrect use of commas; that's another matter altogether, and one that can be much more easily (or at least, more prescriptively) fixed.  No, I'm talking about technically correct sentences which, nevertheless, have too many commas--not too many for accuracy, but too many for aesthetics.  Head down below the break for some explication, and why not to do the thing I don't want you to do.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Fandom Classics Part 203: It's Elementary, My Dear Rainbow

To read the story, click the image or follow this link.

So, I wrote a story for the original fiction writeoff over the weekend.  I tried something different this time around, and I'm pretty sure my story is going to completely tank in the voting.  But hey, at least it won't screw up my ponyfic stories score, right?  I'll be Chris: that guy who writes nice pony stories, and who's terrible without that crutch.

So yeah, if you want to read some not-ponyfic, give the writeoff a look.  Vote for a few stories, see if you can figure out which one is mine (I won't be telling until after voting's over, but if you guess right, I'll give you an as-yet undetermined fabulous prize!), and all that jazz.  But first, head down below the break to read my review of bats' It's Elementary, My Dear Rainbow.