Itís my great pleasure to bring you the results of the 2016 Quicksilver Quill Awards!
As you know, the Quicksilver Quill Awards are about awarding the best writing MuggleNet Fan Fiction authors have had to offer for the year. This year, nominations were received across six categories and we have thirteen winners in total.
Before we get to the results, I would like to profusely thank the judges and category leaders, who made this all possible. This could not have been done without them, and having winners chosen by our members and for our members really reflects how our community works and what sets it apart from other sites out there.
Despite our smaller number of judges and categories than previous years, we had a large number of nominations and many of the decisions were fiercely contested. To preserve the integrity of the QSQs, we still judged to the standards we have held for nearly a decade, and the results are truly reflective of how our fandom has carried on for so many years and still produces fine, well-honed literature after all this time. Always.
Like in previous years, winners of the awards and judges will also receive a personalised banner, created by me. You can view a sneak peak by clicking here. Banners will be sent out to winners in the next few days as well as posted below. But now, on to the moment youíve all been waiting for!
QSQ Winners 2016
Best General Fic
One-Shot - Aunt Margeís Even Bigger Mistake by FloreatCastellum
We loved this fic for bringing us pure enjoyment. With laugh-out-loud moments and excellent characterisation, this is more than just your average humour fic. The characters are just right, not so over the top as to make them caricatures, but still undeniably unpleasant. Ginny is an absolute gem, and Harry's anxiety about seeing his family again is captured perfectly. The laughs are in the rhythm of the writing, and in the words that paint a picture ripe with comedy. Delightful.
Chaptered - Makers of Fine Wands by CanisMajor
The research and detail that has gone into this fic is phenomenal, and the execution of the premise is rich and flawless. Everything works together to build up a very vivid picture of an era and place we very rarely see in fanfiction Ė Athens, 382 BC. We love the mixture of canon and mythology, and the different portrayal of the Muggle/Wizarding divide that could have existed in Classical times. This is an exciting and original backstory for the Ollivander family.
Not From Others by FloreatCastellum
With great writing and fresh characterisation, we loved the way this fic filled in those Seventh-year gaps. This fic gave us chills, excited and intrigued us. Ginny can be a difficult character to write, and we appreciated the way she was captured in this fic, giving us a window into her inner self and her experiences during that year at Hogwarts. The scope of this fic is astounding, and those of us who didnít finish it during the judging process canít wait to go back and read more!
Best Dark/Angsty Fic
One-Shot - Fortress: An Anatomy by teh tarik
This story is brilliantly written, and the metaphor of the building as a living thing survives the entire story without becoming repetitive or forced. Telling the story from the perspective of a personified building is a bold choice, but it works oh so well. The characters of Gellert and Albus are done just as well as their surroundings. In the young Albus we glimpse the older Albus we know, and Gellert feels both human and inhuman, the man he was and the monster he has become. This story takes the time to dig into the dark elements and find something new. It is both creepy and beautiful, stepping over the line and pushing the imagination.
Chaptered - A Slant-Told Tale by Squibstress
Many unique elements of dark desperation appear in this author's vision of the earlier part of Minerva McGonagall's life. We described the story as "extremely dark and gritty", "edgy, original", "well-written", "powerful". It dives into the taboo depths of the Wizarding World that were not explored in the original, children's series, and delves into the pureblood society, bringing to light the nastiness that was only hinted at in the books. It is a disturbing story at many points involving choices that Minerva makes and their inevitable fallout. The author adds a new dimension to Minerva: she is seen not only as a strong, powerful witch, but as a faulty human being who is sitting on some pretty big secrets. We look forward to reading the conclusion of this imaginative, original story.
Best Post-Hogwarts/Next Generation Fic
The Aurors by FloreatCastellum
We found this story original and new, gripping and exciting, and we couldnít wait to read more of it! The action is great, the mystery tense and intriguing. We liked how it portrays Harry's transition from always having Ron (and Hermione) by his side to making it on his own and having to put his trust and faith in someone else. Theia is also a richly drawn character with her own past, quirks and flaws.
On The Verge of Happy Endings by WrenWinterSong
We loved the hopefulness of this story, and the way the separate chapters can be read as one-shots yet flow together nicely to give it a sense of completeness too. The story does a great job of filling in some of the gap between the end and the epilogue.
The Lethifold by Oregonian
The Lethifold didn't grab us as much as slithered its way into our imaginations, wrapping us in its atmosphere. It is an impressive feat of Gothic storytelling, rhythm, structure, and pacing. This is a visceral poem which is perfectly matched to the subject matter. The writing itself is fleshy and full, like the lethifold as it devours its victim.
Best Canon Romance Fic
One-Shot - The Moon and the Sea by FloreatCastellum
Stories about the last days of James and Lily are not uncommon, but this one stands out for its originality, simplicity, and poignancy. It gave us chills when we read it, whimsical and bittersweet, the relationship of parents with an infant who they are in love with as much as they are with each other, ending with the heart-dropping revelation of the date, the unexpected flash of tragedy in the midst of this peaceful, happy interlude. The romance shines through in the small moments, the easy back-and-forth dialogue, the little details and simple acts, and the way in which baby Harry is part of their love.
Chaptered - Firewhiskey (A Love Story) by Wonk
We were impressed by the originality of this story and the remarkable detail about Neville's efforts to restore his parents' minds, really showing his love for them and his determination to heal them. At a deeper level it shows the great love between Hannah and Neville in their efforts to protect each other and then in the sacrifices they are willing to make for each other. The dramatic tension is well-developed and believable, the characterizations are true, and the complex and richly detailed plot makes sense in terms of Neville's determination, bravery, and loyalty, which we all know makes Neville Neville.
Best Non-Canon Romance Fic
One-Shot - love and lycanthropy and other institutions by teh tarik
The writing of this story blew us away: the prose hooked us from the very first sentence. The words seem nearly acrobatic, bending and contorting themselves in new and unusual ways to accommodate the authorís wishes. The characterisation of the Marauders is beautifully drawn; Sirius and James are as we expect them to be from canon, and Remus is poignantly written: his anguish, his surprise at finding friends. We were particularly impressed by the way the author has written Peter in a way that predicted his eventual betrayal while also making it understandable that the other three didnít suspect a thing. The romance is intense yet believable. A well-crafted, gorgeous piece of writing.
Chaptered - The Green Knight Rises by Kerichi
The main characters in this story, Scorpius and Rose, are appealing and sympathetically portrayed. They are a contemporary couple, both pursuing careers post-Hogwarts and they are adorable together Ė they almost feel like a canon couple. Kreacher in his new role as Harryís house elf was a source of amusement, and we also particularly felt that the characterisation of Lucius Malfoy and his relationship with Scorpius stood out. Itís clear that a lot of work went into this story, and the result has action and romance in spades.
A Slant-Told Tale by Squibstress
The premise of this story is great: a young Minerva McGonagall enters a loveless marriage to secure her familyís financial security and a chance to continue her Transfiguration studies, and her life thereafter is haunted by some of her early choices. Much of the story is non-romance, to the point that one might wonder if romantic love was something Minerva did not count on including in her life, but the story also shows us that she is capable of and receptive to love, even though it is difficult to fit into her complicated life. The writing is top-notch and the background setting wonderful. Although the story is long, there is a consistent premise that keeps it exactly on track. An excellent example of how all the dialogue and detail serve to propel the plot forward, and nothing is extraneous.