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Thread: Quicksilver Quills

  1. #1
    emily_the_poet
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    Quicksilver Quills

    I was wondering if you could add a "Best Characterisation of a Canon Character" category. I was looking at the recent winners and noted that, while we have a place for OCs, there is nothing for those who have taken characters that we know and love (or hate), turned that image on its head and done a fine job of doing so.

  2. #2
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    Oh, I love that idea! And, if you want to take it further, there could be best portrayal of a MAJOR canon character, and best portrayal of a MINOR canon character, instead of Male and Female like the OCs.
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    I'll third that, because anyone that's ever written a fic in which a major canon character plays a significant role, that person would recognize how incredibly difficult it is to not step on JKR's toes with their own characterization. I myself find it extremely challenging not to screw up my characterization, and anyone that can do that deserves a freaking medal, in my book.
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  4. #4
    Inverarity
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    Wouldn't "Best canon character" be subsumed under categories like "Best canon romance," "Best _____ story," etc.?

    Personally, I think being able to write canon characters in character is sort of implied when judging the quality of fan fiction.

    Keep in mind, every new category you ask for requires an entire new set of nominations and panel of judges.

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    I've been a judge of the QSQ, so I know the process, and yes, being able to portray canon characters correctly is an obvious requirement. Inn fact, it's more than implied; using the mod heading the category will expressly say that characterization is one of the requirements a judge should be considering.

    However, that's not necessarily the only requirement for broad categories like 'Best ____ Story' - the key word is one of the requirements. A story can be really good without having the best characterization out there, and a story can have really good characterization while the whole picture is not the best.

    Besides, in my opinion, if you're going to argue that characterization is already a given for best story fics, then you should consider that it's the same thing with an OC fic - there's a category for best OC Romance, and there's also a category for best OC. While an OC is a little differently, obviously, because the character is created from scratch, it still comes down to the same thing - a believable portrayal of a character. Portraying a canon character correctly, especially the major ones, isn't exactly an easy task for some people, and I personally think it's something that should be recognized.
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  6. #6
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    The mods are currently discussing this idea. One thing though - if we did create this category, or two if we count major and minors - do you think we're in danger of having too many categories for our awards? In nominating, people need to remember that we don't allow a fiction to win more than one category, and they can't win multiple years either. Once the best stories are gone, others need to be nominated in their place. Is there enough great writing out there to warrant another pair of categories?



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    [assuming that because Roxy asked a question, the general rule of not posting after a mod doesn't apply ...]

    Well, what about re-evaluating the current ones? I mean, that is a GREAT point, and I'm not necessarily saying you NEED to make room for these new categories, but it might be a good idea, when considering this decision, to look at all the categories in general, even if you don't add new ones. There are a lot of categories already as it is, anyway.
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  8. #8
    Inverarity
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roxy Black
    The mods are currently discussing this idea. One thing though - if we did create this category, or two if we count major and minors - do you think we're in danger of having too many categories for our awards?
    I think that's exactly the problem. "Best canon characterization" is so broad, it seems like it would just serve as a way of giving everyone's favorite story a second chance to win a QSQ.

    In nominating, people need to remember that we don't allow a fiction to win more than one category, and they can't win multiple years either. Once the best stories are gone, others need to be nominated in their place. Is there enough great writing out there to warrant another pair of categories?
    I think the question is, how selective do you want the QSQs to be? If one author and/or story is nominated in half a dozen different categories, how likely is it that s/he won't win something? Of course everyone likes winning, but frankly, I think it's a little less meaningful when there are so many categories that the committees can give something to almost all of the top contenders.

  9. #9
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    I'm not sure there's a need for Best Portrayal of a Major Canon Character award, because surely that is covered in the judging process for evey 'Best Canon Romance', Best General' etc etc, and also any bad characterisation should have been kicked out at the modding process. However, I can see a gap for 'Best Portrayal of a Minor Character' because those type of stories do make you perceive the Pansys, Lavenders, and Ernies in a totally new way.

    Quote Originally Posted by Inverarity
    If one author and/or story is nominated in half a dozen different categories, how likely is it that s/he won't win something? Of course everyone likes winning, but frankly, I think it's a little less meaningful when there are so many categories that the committees can give something to almost all of the top contenders.
    Mm, I agree. I'm not totally sure I understand why a story/author can't win more than one award. (Thinks of the OSCARS - ) Surely if their writing is good enough to win the award, they shoudn't be excluded because they've won another category.

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  10. #10
    Fifth Year Hufflepuff
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carole
    However, I can see a gap for 'Best Portrayal of a Minor Character' because those type of stories do make you perceive the Pansys, Lavenders, and Ernies in a totally new way.
    But ... you could argue that for major characters, too. I mean, you could argue that someone's portrayal of a canon character in a new/different light, while still completely in character, are also stories that make people perceive characters differently. I've read a fair few of these myself, and I've even been told that about a couple of my stories featuring major characters as well. So ... I just think that they should either both be in or both be out, but one without the other just doesn't seem fit to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Carole
    Mm, I agree. I'm not totally sure I understand why a story/author can't win more than one award. (Thinks of the OSCARS - ) Surely if their writing is good enough to win the award, they shoudn't be excluded because they've won another category.
    I think the idea is to give everyone a fair shot, rather than person x winning everything. Like Inverarty said, the more times a person is nominated, the better chance they have of winning - assuming, of course, that their fic/s really is/are that good. And if that's the case, then if people could win more than one QSQ a year, then said person x with y amount of noms would then have an even HIGHER chance of winning more than one category. While those authors/artists/whatevers lucky enough to be nominated numerous times would love to win more than one QSQ each year, if you think about it, one person winning numerous categories would probably be annoying to everyone else. And, even though the wait is agonizing ... if the story/author is that good, they're bound to be nominated until they do win in so many categories. I've won twice myself so far, with two different stories in two different years, but Inverarity's sig banners and wins really prove my point - same story, two different categories, two different years. [shrugs] It may take longer, but an author/story will get there, if they/it are really that amazing. It's probably the most fair system there could be.

    [hopes that large ramble made some semblance of sense ... ]

    Also - since you brought up the Oscars - those are only done with recent movies, aren't they? You wouldn't see a nomination for a movie older than a year, would you? It's only done with movies released the previous year, I believe, so they've only got that one shot. But with fanfics here ... unless the author removes them, they'll always be there for nomination.

    The system has it's flaws, though, of course. Nothing is going to be completely perfect. This rule often means that other stories win 'by default', meaning that the best stories of a certain category don't always win in one category because they/the author have already won in another. And, while generally only the judges know this for sure ... it does make one wonder each year. Or, at least, it makes me wonder. >.>
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