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Reviews from
Gladiator


We who are about to try, salute you...

  20 total reviews 
Comment by
Quillian
 
Review Stars
 
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Sorry I used my sixes, because your writing deserves one. I think the thing I like the best is your clean, tight style of writing. I'm hearing echoes of Robert Parker here.Your descriptive phrases are brilliant, I love 'more dangerous than short' and 'whoever wrote this script...' You made us love this wise before his years kid with his generosity and dignity. I am a fan.


 Comment Written 10-May-2013



reply by the author on 10-May-2013
    You've made a lot more than my day, new friend. To even mention me in the same paragraph with Robert B. Parker is high up compliment. I've read the man since his first book in the seventies. I was weaned on Hammett but cut my teeth on Parker.

    I really, do appreciate your time spent with me and even more so for considering me worth another read. Here's hoping you find 'visits' worthy of repeats...

    'Til next time... in either my house or yours.

    greg
Comment by
2014 Novelist and 2016 Short Works Writer Of The Year
Phyllis Stewart
Premier Writer
Premier Reader
 
Poet Rating
 
Author Rating For Short Works
 
Author Rating For Novels
 
Review Stars
  
 Rank:  26
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Dammit! This stupid system won't allow me to give you another six yet.

Let me get this part over with: This is extreeeeeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeemely well written.

It's also very complex and says enough in, and between, its lines that it's a compilation of book jacket excerpts for a very important book. Not since I read "Black Like Me" have I been so shaken by the "world that coexists" with the white, Eastern European ethnic world of my own youth. I thought some of the folks in our neighborhood were scary, but this... Can't really get my head around it. The impact strikes my head like a hammer and hurts like hell, but can't quite get through to my brain, hiding and shivering inside.

I copied a ton of phrases to address for different reasons, but I don't want to lay all those lengthy comments here. I'll take the rest of what will be a very in depth review to email, where I can save it and go back to work on it more until I get it right. This superb piece deserves to be examined properly.

So, watch for the mail... going there now with my raw material.

Both clapping and crying as I go there.


 Comment Written 02-Apr-2013



reply by the author on 03-Apr-2013
    Dear friend Phyllis,

    Thank you much for your interest in and reading of 'Gladiator'. I did think of pushing this short into a longer piece but never got back to it... this last year has been a very busy one at the 'Paycheck Place'.

    I do appreciate your reviews and views.

    greg
Comment by
mtnspirit
 
Review Stars
 
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Hi Gregory K Shipman,

Interesting and imaginative. I enjoyed it very much. Your words flow smoothly making for an easy read. Well written and worthy of the 6 stars if I had them. Good job and good luck with this contest.


 Comment Written 12-Oct-2012



reply by the author on 12-Oct-2012
    Thank you much for reading my posted story. I appreciate your kind words and your generous review...

    Be well

    greg
Comment by
Alexmi1984
 
Review Stars
 
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
It was an interesting thing to read. It was violent, gruesome and it sounded poetic, at times. I've been captivated by the beauty of your true-sounding dialogues and by the surgical precision of your description.

To sum my review up, I loved it!!

Alex :)


 Comment Written 03-Oct-2012



reply by the author on 03-Oct-2012
    Thank you, Alex... I appreciate your review and certainly am grateful for you sharing your thoughts with me... Violent and gruesome is that life... but poetic is an observation by you I really appreciate.

    Again Thanks

    greg

reply by Alexmi1984 on 03-Oct-2012
    It's my pleasure, Greg.
Comment by
2012 Short Works Writer Of The Year
Realist101
 
Poet Rating
 
Author Rating For Short Works
 
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  Rank:  650
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Hi Gregory! Congrats on this nomination...I really enjoyed this post and found it more than realistic....it's gritty, and down to earth in a way only someone who knows what they're talking about can convey. I saw one small nit, according to what I've been told, maybe add the (****)'s between the conversation and the beginning of the fight. Nice work. Susan


 Comment Written 03-Oct-2012



reply by the author on 03-Oct-2012
    Thank you, Susan... I appreciate your reading, input and encouragement...

    I also appreciate your suggestion on the 'nit'... I'll certainly follow it... I always like other writers to help me along. Don't stop!

    Again I thank you for your review...

    Greg

reply by Realist101 on 03-Oct-2012
    I'll do my best Greg. Welcome to FS! :) Susan
Comment by
Carrie Carson
 
Review Stars
 
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Absolutely, live when living or why bother? This story placed me kicking down that sidewalk towards Low boy...great job.

Teeny bits of spag, at least to me:

Para "Hit more, hit harder...thanks(,)..."?
Para "After my clean up(,)..."?
Para "Later(,)we decide..."?
Para "Outside the theater(,)...At the window(,)..."?

Love the sideways humor in this, suits me. Great job, good luck in story of the month contest. :) Carrie


 Comment Written 03-Oct-2012



reply by the author on 03-Oct-2012
    Thanks, Carrie...

    I appreciate not only reading and sharing but also giving me spag critique. I always appreciate help from other writers... I liked your comments

    greg

reply by Carrie Carson on 03-Oct-2012
    Thanks, happy to oblige. :) Carrie
Comment by
Just Alyx
 
Review Stars
 
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
Your latest post gave me a nudge to set time aside to read this one, and glad I did. Thought I had, actually. Now I'm looking forward to the series that'll bounce off this choice intro to their lawless-by-their-own-laws world. Strong picture of the father-son expectations and the dad's confidence infiltrates everything. Witty kid, destined to chip with his own stamp as well, I'll bet. Really enjoyed them both.

A few nuisance typos for you to chew over for clean copy:
*Shading my eyes from the sun's glare I look up at him[.] "Nothin' much."
*Seems some [jerk-off's] in the barber shop braggin'. ... of Milton Ave. [Named] Low-Boy."
*The man, the short dangerous one[,] happens to be my father -- a comma is better because it's a continuous thought, not a split two dimensional one used with semicolons.
*I look at the ground noticing [Dad's] shadow is really long then I look up at the real him.
*My three partners, Dink and the twins, sitting next to me on the curb are bug-eyed - I thought this might read better shuffled around: "My three partners sitting next to me on the curb, Dink and the twins, are bug-eyed."
# (smilin') "Whoever wrote this script has horns and a pitchfork. I wonder if ..."; I see what you mean about the devil references, but like them in this one because they suit the characters and storyline, heh.
# Loved this: I know my dad wants me to be tough but sometimes tough and dumb ain't that far apart (this occurred in my family but it was me trying to convince my kid, so this kid cracks me up).
*As we walk towards Milton Ave[,] I reply, "Can't collect from a dead man."
*"Almost [every day]."
*The 'shade-tree' looks over at me and snarls, "You ready, skinny boy[?]"
*But I'm hurting and I'm bleeding. Low Boy is ... He is, however[,] breathing hard.
*"Because it was a lot easier than when he was up[,]" I respond.
*"No problemo, Amigo. Four against one ain't exactly worry-time for us.["]
*"I fell down[,]" I reply.

Enjoyed the easy way you introduced the Red Voice. "Because of it I see red and all I feel is a cold rage." Great quote followed immediately by sad certainty that 'crazy' ethics are the only surety, but the kid's got 'spunk and honour' ... liberally confused, but there, ha. I liked him heaps; insightful little dude and a survivor: "I'm just an underage visitor".

Hope the typo suggestions are useful to your style--the writing mechanics of your mind obviously gel with your engineering career (accuracy *and* flexibility), so I enjoy just rolling with yours. Banished stars-smars for random typos? Nuh, much too high quality a write and loved it. Best, hey. AJ.



 Comment Written 29-Sep-2012



reply by the author on 29-Sep-2012
    AJ... you're a godsend. Help me with my typo/editing I'll never let you go (unless you burn my eyebrows off or put bamboo splinters under my fingernails). Thank you for the edit/critique. I really, really, really appreciate... Truth be when I write I'm like a fighter pilot in a dogfight. I only concentrate on that plane in front of me... nothing else matters. I do recognize editing and re-write but it's a necessary evil like Presidential elections... you can't live without them but you can't shut them up!

    I always enjoy you and I hope you approve of those Douglas's.

    And again, thank you for the corrections...

    greg
Comment by
jjstar
 
Review Stars
 
 
Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level
Well, it doesn't happen often, but I am dumbstruck and just about speechless. Okay, maybe not quite. This amazing portrait you've drawn of life in your (your character's) kingdom, brought me to tears. Being a former teacher in an inner city, I've struggled to understand and support kids who could be the characters you've described. While we try to teach these kids, often the lessons we teach are completely irrelevant to the lives they lead. I had the same trouble reading this. I was horrified by the dad basically ordering the child to fight the bully, but sat here and cheered for the underdog, just because I know that it's the way things are. Gregory, you have outdone yourself. This is a masterpiece. Get thee to a publisher. Or actually, make this into a collection of short stories. It is the most in depth character study and realistic (I'm assuming inner city)story ever. Heartbreaking on the one hand, while exhilarating on the other. HATS OFF TO YOU. YOU ARE AN INCREDIBLY INCREDIBLY FABULOUS WRITER. KEEP THEM COMING!

Actually I tried to kick right through his balls. He screams and collapses. It's a girly scream which isn't going to do his reputation ===he deserved it for stealing lunch money!
'Round here people bet on a street fight faster than they'd look for easy women in hard places and both are as plentiful as pimps and Cadillacs. ==stupendous phrase!

The man, the short dangerous one; happens to be my father.
==silly me, of course it is!

there's already enough crap in here and I ain't got a broom.
===awesome!

I know my dad wants me to be tough but sometimes tough and dumb ain't that far apart.
==very closely related if you ask me! Scary nonetheless..

He's at ease... never uncomfortable... never scared... never wrong. To him it is what it is... period.
===truly to some it is just a way of life.

block out the sun and dumb enough to misspell it===holy crap==can I steal??? just kidding...

he'd turn me into a chocolate pretzel. ==what a description!

Because of it I see red and all I feel is a cold rage. In this case not just because of Low Boy but because I'm here; and I'm here because I'm too scared to say 'No'. Too scared to say, 'This is stupid===I'm in awe. I'm doing the I'm not worthy arm motions...

I, like him, was born in Hell. He doesn't mind being here. I hate it but it's nice to get a paycheck from it every once in a while. ==it's a fact, my friend..you do what you do to scrape your way out==

I, like him, was born in Hell. He doesn't mind being here. I hate it but it's nice to get a paycheck from it every once in a while. ===awwww..so sweet, even though I rarely condone gangin' up, but in the world you're talking about, I get it..

I respond with a finger raised high. Since I'm generous I make it my longest finger.===yeah, exactly

I follow my friends to the candy counter, somehow knowing this asshole inside of me will be my biggest and most frequent opponent in life. ===wow wow and more wow!


 Comment Written 25-Sep-2012



reply by the author on 25-Sep-2012
    Okay, ma'am... now that you've made my day today... what about tomorrow? Withdrawal is such a painful process...

    I absolutely have to thank you for all. For reading. For your kind observations. For your thorough critique. And for your incredible insight.

    I have to tell you... in all truth... your review inspires me. I am going to write more and give serious thought to the heart-breaking trials and tribulations of trying to publish... God willing and the creek don't rise...

    Three notes:
    1. my dad always said: if someone says to you, 'in all truth'... get ready for the lie that's coming next'... (not true in this case)
    2. I have no clue why people say, '... if the creek don't rise' In Baltimore, during my youth, I never saw a creek rise, and come to think on it, never saw a creek.
    3. Last not I penned a little snippet primarily because of your wonderful comments... and the fact you were an inner city teacher (which I have to thank you for). My third grade teacher (Miss Kornblat) encouraged me to read more than comic books and write more than notes supposedly from my mother. I'm posting the little snippet in a few days and it's dedicated to you and Miss Kornblat.

    So thank you, thank you, thank you

    greg

reply by jjstar on 25-Sep-2012
    Aw, you'll never have withdrawals over a lack of shining reviews from me! I'm glad if I've inspired you! You keep going like you are and you'll be published right quick. I know what you mean, the terrors of trying to go through the publishing process...ugh. My husband is just finishing his book and will give it a whirl! I don't know why people say the thing about the creek rising either. My mom and dad always say it. I think it's ever so much meaningful than, barring any unforeseen circumstances! HaHa..okay. Going off to read your new post. :) I'm honored!
Comment by
DIS-illusioned
 
Review Stars
 
 
Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level
"Gladiators aren't born; they're made. Right?"
Yes--though you didn't want an answer.
"We got some bills ain't busy right about now"
Ha! Loose change, eh? :)
"There's going to be a fight and there's going to be blood. Welcome to my world"
Geez! Can I stay unborn in it?
"Whoever wrote this script has horns and a pitchfork. I wonder if his red tail gets in the way when he walks?"
Ha! Great imagery.
"sometimes tough and dumb ain't that far apart."
Profound.
"Cryin' is a sissy thing and is held against you for a lifetime and a half."
Death to the macho world.
"big enough to block out the sun and dumb enough to misspell it"
Haha! One o' those, eh? :)
"Hit more, hit harder and hurt him more. Thank you father. It's these little tidbits I'll treasure in my old age."
And you're quite welcome. :))
"Lord if you're not busy could you please notice that I'm about to be."
Now, if that didn't move the 'Big Man', nothing would.
"I will try to keep him moving to keep him moving in the other"
Broken-record typing?
"I just keep dancing and praying... both are good for the soul"
Ace!
"Did I mention my Temper?
It's a gift I'd like to give back."
That scorching, eh?
"I, like him, was born in Hell. He doesn't mind being here. I hate it but it's nice to get a paycheck from it every once in a while."
Wow! What a way of life! ... *Sigh*
"the soap and water works fine for my outsides. Too bad there's no 'soap' for my insides."
Excellent metaphoric imagery.
"this asshole inside of me will be my biggest and most frequent opponent in life."
I'm glad the narrator is aware of this.
A most excellently narrated tale!


 Comment Written 25-Sep-2012



reply by the author on 25-Sep-2012
    So you answered my rhetorical question? Don't answer this... it's just rhetorical.

    I told you once and yet again... I love your reviews/comments/suggestions/yada/yada/yada... I'm like a horse being led to water... and you don't have to make me drink!

    Thanks for taking the time to read... 'cause when you do I benefit

    greg
Comment by
c_lucas
 
Review Stars
  
 
 
Excellent
Not yet exceptional. When the exceptional rating is reached this is highlighted
You'll never find a winner lying on the ground, whimpering in pain. This is very well written with an interesting flow of words, making for a good read.


 Comment Written 24-Sep-2012



reply by the author on 24-Sep-2012
    Thanks for reading and sharing these thoughts... I appreciate your comments

    greg

reply by c_lucas on 24-Sep-2012
    You're welcome, Gregory. Charlie
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