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About Y0rite

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    Travel, foodie, scuba diving, leisure cycling, plays, projects, etc. Also, "the company of clever, well-informed people who have a great deal of conversation and liberality of ideas."

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  1. Y0rite

    Chapter 16 Torture

    You have achieved total success in getting your readers empathizing with Keller's torture and thereby our own. ~chuckle~ Also, well done in showing us that there is real trust growing quickly between Tobyn and Keller. Respect keeps growing between our pair, too. So, I've been trying to suss out the disconnect that causes them to hold back. I think it might be a lack of faith? From both, but maybe more on Tobyn's side that blends with his hurting heart for his pack and the loss of those he loved and respected? The loss of Fendral and all that followed just added to the fears and burden of a young Tobyn's conviction that he had to find a way to change the tide. Keller is more hopeful in nature, and I think he's trying to hold onto a thin faith that Tobyn might come around. Though God knows he doesn't have an experience or a reason to have much faith in things turning out well for him from his history. Then there's your line, "There would be no forcing a choice on a man like Tobyn." I'm not so sure Elinor and the road trip will be the catalyst that will create change in Tobyn any more. She knows and loves her son, and she would know this fact about 'not forcing choices on Tobyn' even better than Keller or Tilly. Hopefully, I'm wrong. So, like Keller, I will keep my eyes open for more information, try not to fear the worst, but hold onto a thin hope until I read about the road trip with mom. You as the author is the only thing I have faith in, at the moment. ~ Ms. V
  2. Wow, a much needed break in the build of tension, thank you. The kids were great, and the guys were great with them, lots of warm fuzzies. So, the news of the infant mortality doesn't give me much hope for Tobyn's, 'have more babies' solution, and Keller isn't ready to share his ideas yet. Yet, it was like I lost 10 lbs of dead weight when Keller finally agreed to take in one day at a time, nothing written in stone. I always keep my hope up in communication, not isolation. Then, bam, you bring the tension right back up because the girls are trying to communicate something to the boys, but Tobyn's not filling Keller in due to the cliffhanger. I think Adelin's attempt to encourage without coming right out with it only made Keller imagine the worst even more, and he's pretty good at that already. Crap, yeah, when my stress is high I miss things people say to me, too. I'm right there with Keller, we seem so alike, and this feels all too real. I got a bad feeling about this climax you're building us toward. ~ Ms. V
  3. Y0rite

    Chapter 14 Collars

    Keller is (we are) getting so much new information in each new interaction. Thier history that's becoming hearsay because of the loss of keepers. Keller's unbiased view and fresh thinking is a salvation in itself. An innocent question about werewolf lore leading to silver collars stopping shifts, I love and am horrified by such a heritage. It seems so original and yet probable to this world and the story's reality. Seeing so many wolves with aches and pains that even we can conclude it's not a disease, and we still have seen to the kids yet. Wow, and I thought Keller was playing things close to the chest. Poor Tobyn is going to explode trying to suppress so much. He's not being obtuse, he's in agony, too long in pain, and seeing only the negative. It was one thing to plan a life with Tilly before meeting Keller, but now his choice it affecting her future as well. If he chooses her but doesn't communicate clearly, he might not be the man of character he thinks he is anymore. Tobyn's reasons for all this may be mature in nature, but he's so young; which his inner dialog just highlighted so well. He doesn't realize the years that can stretch out, the awareness of how little control we really have in life, and just how rare having these feelings when they are reciprocated in such synchronicity with Keller. Although, I can feel about 16 years old in my head no matter how old my body and mind when I first start falling in love with someone, so there's that. I'm off to the next chapter. ~ Ms. V
  4. I'm not sure how you're doing it, but it's working. I'm used to a day, two, or a couple in one chapter, yet here we are in chapter 13 with only two full days and some change having elapsed. The pace of information is smooth, yet creates anxiousness and false starts at the end of each chapter, which you use to great effect. The issues are weighing on our characters and yet, as you use supporting characters, and further insight between our guys, the complexity of these issues gains weight. The tension and stress are mounting, and now another threat in hunters. You must have been exhausted after days writing and editing with this intensity of emotion in this material, in addition to your everyday life. Fate or chaos theory is making itself felt and I think Keller is playing things 'close to the chest' and not sharing much. You're letting us know that, but not what it is yet which just makes me try to extrapolate and push on to the next chapter quickly. I'm not sure I could have taken the week between chapter releases back when you wrote this without it causing a nervous tick or something worse. ~chuckle~ But here's the thing for me, there is so much hope that keeps carrying us along, too. Just enough of the boys' mutual admiration society, the knowing smiles from Miss Sybil, even the 'road trip with mom' coming up. The complexities, layers, and yes, dialog are phenomenal and very addictive. The work you've put into your craft is showing. ~Ms. V
  5. Y0rite

    Chapter 12 Reprieve

    Yep, of the two he met before Tobyn, Fendral and now the mechanic, which we didn't even know that much about him until now, you sneaky thing. Between how he's described these two, it's no wonder he thought wolves were loners, even though real wolves aren't. I obviously misunderstood both of your teasings. Sometimes, I wonder if I'm somewhere on the autistic spectrum when I miss social cues and emotions is writing. This wonderful story and the great comments are giving me a run for the money. LOL ~ Ms. V
  6. Y0rite

    Chapter 12 Reprieve

    So, onto the review: Ah, when fate seems to be conspiring against you 'getting out of Dodge,' huh, Keller? I have a feeling that the chaos theory is going to play a big part in our boy's best-laid plans, too many pieces and people in play now. Which doesn't mean it will go well, but it won't go according to the black and white stark reality they are choosing. Keller has others counting on him already, even if groups and expectations make him nervous. He will not be able to stop worrying that he needs to follow up with Adelin about being on her feet too soon. He already knows how hard it will be to convince Elinor, the 'real mom' that readily accepted him, choosing to avoid the conversation for now. He might be determined to leave, but he's surrounded, and the longer he stays, these relationships will grow. So often, it's the big-hearted smart ones who, when finding out more in order to help, find themselves tangled up and loved by others whether they like it or not. It might not fix anything, and it may hurt worse because both Keller and Tobyn are trying to do the hard thing for the greater good. However, fate and more information to this mystery of the malaise could change the big picture. You've got us. I mean, readers trying to use our real-world solutions to make this fictional world of lycans and earth mates better. The climax is gonna make me cry, I just know it, good or bad. Gary, you have the slow burn and layers building at a perfect pace. This is the book that makes it almost impossible to put down because the stakes are high and we just gotta know what happens next, a disaster or a reprieve. I'm off to find out more. ~ Ms. V
  7. Y0rite

    Chapter 12 Reprieve

    Oh, you've lost the plot or you're teasing... it was Fendral, silly. Not you, too? I will love the next book, I'm sure, do to your skills, but you shouldn't tease your Robin with what he forgot. ~chuckle
  8. This was such an amazing piece of writing steeped in details and brewing emotions. The length was perfect for the getting to witness Keller in a healing not just hear it explained. It became so realistic as you took us step by step while layering in the other characters and their reactions. I can only imagine the exhaustion you felt after writing, but then also going through the editing process as well. My heart breaks for Keller for I fear he will never leave because of his own pain and heartbreak, but he will should he decide his staying would hurt another. It is a classic "forgotten child" syndrome I have witnessed in so many foster kids. He will continue to dig into the malaise and heal others to push back his pain. Yet, as long as he has a possibility to know love without causing harm, he will be drawn to the flame no matter how it hurts him. 😭 My heart aches for both him and Tobyn. ~ Ms. V
  9. Oh, these boys are not stupid, their young. Everything is perceived as very black and white without maturity. They are not ignorant of the other's feelings. Actually they seem to have an emotional feedback loop going, where each is tuned into the other. The trouble comes in when feeling someone else's emotion but not communicating the why or the real trigger behind it. That way lies dragons and certain misfortune. In some ways, they are more mature for their age, in their sense of honor, responsibility, and self sacrifice. It's just without the foundation of wisdom that only age brings. I don't think Tobyn will ever see the forest for the trees with Keller without help. His sense of duty is bone-deep, and he has a hard time believing in hope or in good things with the burdens of guilt he has lain on himself. Keller has the hope and faith in good things happening that Tobyn lacks, yet his own history doesn't include someone picking him, his welfare, or loving him for himself, ever. He'll stay to heal and to learn more, even as his heart breaks. My hope lies in the fact they are not alone, they are in the center of a community of relationships. The pack loves Tobyn, and they won't be able to resist caring about Keller, too. (If they know what's good for them. "To the moon!" if they hurt my Keller.) It's gonna get bumpy, but it's so worth the ride with great writing like this. Time for another layer of new insights for our pair, onto the healing. ~ Ms. V
  10. Boy, when Keller decides to bite his tongue on something he's still working out, he's amazing. Elinor threw him for a loop, but he has yet to figure out in how many positive ways. Never underestimate a mother's ability to dispense TLC as well as scary Mom lectures as needed, it goes along with her innate leadership qualities. It's a good thing he's a healer in more ways than one. I think grabbing Tobyn to hug and talk out the misplaced guilt is just another way Keller wants to instinctively make the situation better. (Heal it for Tobyn.) If Tilly is as close to her sister as Tobyn professes, I think Keller's ability to help Adelin will sway Tilly's opinion more, either positive or negative, depending on how the healing transpires. Regardless, Keller's POV is amazingly written balancing doubt and confidence in addition to a desire to be connected while struggling with the thought of meeting so many new people and what they'll think of him. Onward I go. ~ Ms. V
  11. So, I had to laugh at myself out loud when I read Tobyn's line. “Wow... I'm sorry too, Kellar. Maybe you can tell me more sometime… my mom? She’s cool." Such a serious topic of sharing the loss of Keller's parents at the tender age of four. Yet, answering Keller's need for more information on the pack, as well as Tobyn. Your dialog is excellent as ever and spot on to each character's personality. What struck my funny bone is how polite these two young men are in conversation. These boys are definitely Canadian. I absolutely love this story! I totally understand why their focus is elsewhere than on each other, too. It also adds an element to Tobyn's avoiding the gay feelings for now, and Keller's to understand what would be best to make his man happy. Thanks for such an amazing unfolding in such an amazing world. ~ Ms. V
  12. There are so many awesome comments! I read in your hesitation to bury the reader in information overload, the careful intention you took in tone and dialog. Dialog is a tool you wield with great effect, even where Keller cuts himself off or hesitates. It is so much part of the 'show-don't-tell' that adds to your awesome character development. The strength of Keller's character (literally) shines through in how he holds back questions, crafts carefully those he does ask, as well as the struggles to convey what he's struggled to learn about his healing ability through his years alone. (The gift of feedback in words from his patients is going to have more insight than the medical texts he's been gleaning from, I'm sure.) The fact that neither of them went into this with a self awareness of being gay is affecting some of the giddy or awkwardness they both share in complimenting each other at times. A kind of coltish way of conveying their attraction in fits and starts that they can't seem to control, yet don't want to put pressure on the other. I will hope to write such layered and nuanced dialog one day. ~ Ms. V
  13. The word I would pick for this chapter would be balanced. The growing questions out paced the answers in this one and much of them were dark news. Yet, the growing friendship between our pair, the fun, and the quiet peace kept a thread of hope. Hope for Keller's isolation coming to an end even as he steps into the isolation of Tobyn's pack. Hope that Keller's healing will have an effect, but the mounting odds of so many sick and the heartbreak it could bring to Keller if he can't change the tide. The pace of the piece and the connection of our pair feel real because they are not rushed. Life all too often gives us a lot fewer answers than we feel we need, but we just move forward with the best information we've got to make decisions and hold onto hope. So beautifully written I read it twice in a row. ~ Ms. V
  14. I totally agree with @MacGreg comment. The strength in the hold on this reader is the character development. As Mac said, "I do love the show-don't-tell style you're using with this story," I think it's the key to a strong connection to characters that can last through multiple books. It's the characters that make it possible for me to read some of Stephen King when I'm not a fan of scary books. It's the attention to character development in Keller's craving to know his kind and his drive to help that are powerful across a whole spectrum of readers. The trick to a second book is a new story of growth and change for the characters and where most sequels trip themselves up, IMHO. There is one technical bit that tripped me up. You wrote, “I stayed upwind of you, so you couldn’t have smelled me until I let you.” I have spent a good chunk of time around hunters, and there seems to be a common mistake with upwind versus downwind when I'm reading stories. Upwind is the wind at your back and carrying your scent forward. To be upwind is to be alerting your prey, staying downwind is the key. Now, there are occasions when upwind can work, say if the direction is just off adjacent to be detected or you're disguising your scent, etc. Here is a link to the technical explanation. Most wouldn't catch this, and it certainly didn't stop me long enough last time to make a comment. I was just enjoying the interaction and eager for the next chapter. And yes, I did compare your character development skills to Stephen King's and not lightly. (Especially like "The Green Mile" or "Stand By Me." ~ Ms. V
  15. Such great comments from everyone that I don't have much to add for this chapter. I love reading your responses so much, too. You surprised me with not sharing the important plot details but being open with the back story. It was also so helpful for me as I try to learn better writing habits that you shared bits of your process. Is there somewhere that you share more of those kinds of details? Thanks! ~ Ms. V
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