Editing for authors: because every writer needs a good editor.


Feb 17, 2017
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Jacob Reilly had always been strange. As a child he was all but completely silent but as an adult he chattered almost constantly in nervous, high-pitched tones. He usually chatted to women; women he met on buses or in shops or at the doctor’s. Sometimes he chatted too much and was asked to stop, which he always did immediately, mumbling apologies as he shuffled away. Years ago he’d learnt not to talk to children, people didn’t seem to like that at all.

It was a Tuesday so Jacob was preparing to shuffle his way to Lunch Club to meet up with the others. He didn’t like the dirty, smelly lift ('too much like a cage') so he slowly tackled the seven small flights of steps that lead to the ground floor. Once there he paused for breath and decided to take the short cut across the park. 'Shouldn’t be too muddy', he muttered, 'not much rain lately.'

There were no games of football happening so he cut across the pitches, heading towards the public toilets that he’d only ever used once and had sworn he'd never use again.

He was almost at the toilets (the halfway point of his journey – '2158 steps') when a man stepped out from them and stood in front of him, arms folded.

“You’re that paedo from Sutton House aren’t you?”
“Not a paedophile”, mumbled Jacob.
“Yeah you are. You’re a dirty paedo”, the man casually insisted.
“Not a paedophile. Just a man. Normal man.”
The man moved forward quickly and placed his palms on Jacob’s chest. Jacob hated being touched and the hands seemed to sting his skin despite his winter coat.
“Please, I haven’t…”
Before he could say anything more Jacob was sitting on cold, damp grass. His breathing had become shallow and he began to babble.
“Please… just… only want to… not a… just man… lunch club… please…”
“Shut up!” shouted the man and he kicked Jacob, catching him in his chest and then his grey-stubbled chin.

Jacob rolled over onto his side and covered the top of his head with his shaking blue hands, all the time begging the man to leave him alone.

Three or four minutes later the kicking and punching stopped and Jacob almost heard rapid, fading footsteps. His face was cold and sticky with blood and spit and he couldn’t move. His heartbeat was deafening and the ringing in his ears unbearable.

Soon the beating and the ringing stopped and as Jacob slipped away he thought only of Emily.

jaus tail

Aug 10, 2013
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This was very easy to read with good sentence structure variations. I didn't understand the ending though. Who's Emily?

Typo: He didn’t like the dirty, smelly lift ('too much like a cage') so he slowly tackled the seven small flights of steps that lead(maybe this should be 'led') to the ground floor.