The Fog Wraith by Lucas Leuzzi centers around a pond with a secret. The setup is long and unnecessary, followed by little-to-no action and a poor use of suspense. The characters are severely underdeveloped, even for a short story, and the author should have put more effort into the flashback within the journal. The pond's history could have made a good horror story, but a professional editor is the only one who can salvage this.
Most people probably think a short story isn't important enough to require a professional editor, but I think if you're seriously considering writing as a full-time career, you need to invest in making a good first impression. With all the stories readers have to choose from, the last thing they want to deal with is poorly written fiction. Win a reader over and you have a possible fan for life.
Editors do so much more than correct spelling, punctuation and grammar. They can help with character development, storyline pacing and the setting. Freelance editors aren't as expensive as you might think they are. Keep in mind, they want your story to succeed as much as you do. They want to make a good impression in the literary community as well. Best of all, a freelance editor works for the author, not a publisher. You can't accomplish your best writing by yourself.
UPDATE 1/21/2018: The author re-released the story to eliminate my Amazon review, after he complained to me on Facebook.
I can count on one hand and have fingers left over how many times I've called a story total shit...and it's usually stories that involved the graphic rape scene of a child as a plot device.
Usually, I soften my criticism by suggesting some editing or I admit if something just wasn't my cup of tea.
I would never tell someone to stop writing...I have seen reviewers tell authors to go kill themselves, etc....really cruel stuff.
If suggesting the use of an editor triggers this guy, what would happen if he got one of those soul-crushing reviewers?
I also think if you're going to sell your stories on Amazon, customers have the right to post reviews, whether you like what they say or not.