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Thread: February Activities 2012

  1. #11
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  2. #12
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    What are some of the challenges of reviewing stories featuring a mix of these shipping genres?

    I think if it goes against my own head canon, then it's a challenge for me to read it. For example, I ship Scorose, so for me to read a Scugo, Scalbus or Scily is a bit of a challenge because I have to stop myself wanting Scorpius to get together with Rose, lol. And vice versa -- I ship Loulily so hard it's probably at the top of my OTP list, so Lily and Louis with other people can kill me a little. (But then I have to resurrect myself because I love High and Collateral Damage and Though the Heavens Fall )

    As long as something's well-written, I don't mind stories that contradict my head canon. I don't really seek such stories out, however. I prefer reading Scorose over Scily, not because Scorose is ALWAYS better-written than Scily, because it's not, but because I like one ship more than the other. Of course, there are lots of exceptions to the rule, because often, I like shipping the same people with different people if that makes sense. As in, I ship James/Lily, but I also love James/Remus, James/Sirius and Lily/Alice. In the same way, I like Neville/Luna but I love Hannah/Luna more

    Also-- when I was a noob, I didn't like anything canon contradictory. Non-canon was fine, but even then, I didn't really seek out such pairings because I was more interested in canon pairings. Obviously, things have changed since then, and my tastes are very different from then.

    Which is your favourite to read? To review? Why?

    I LOVE reading non-canon pairings and rarepairs. I think, with rarepairs especially, there's the challenge of making a pairing which not many people have seen before believable. I like to see if the author has achieved that. The fact that they've taken the risk/been creative with the pairing makes me like them already, lol.

    New TQ: The LoveNotes has meant a lot of OTPs have been written for others. Do you ever feel apprehensive writing someone else's OTP? How does that affect your writing?

    I'm assuming that, by the time anyone else contributes to the discussion, the authors of the LoveNotes will be revealed, but in case anyone does answer this question before the 14th, remember not to say anything about which LoveNotes you wrote

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  3. #13
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    What are some of the challenges of reviewing stories featuring a mix of these shipping genres?

    I tend to avoid reviewing romance period. It's hard, because being thirteen I don't know if it's realistic or wildly clichéd. So I can't help the author much. BUT . . . if I come across a rarepair or Neville/Luna, I might have to read it, but I just can't do a review justice in romance, I think.

    Which is your favourite to read? To review? Why?

    Favorite to read: Teddy/Victoire and some James II/OC and Al/OC (but my OTP is a bromance (not slash): James/Al) I think James and Al have a unique relationship; they can fight, but in the end they're closely knit. (I have an idea that's been swimming around in my head for awhile . . . but it's not ready yet)

    On the Teddy/Victoire front: I think their is just something simple and bittersweet there. I don't think there would be a classic Lily/James love and hate, but I think they are really compatible. Plus, they both share something: genes of a (at least part) werewolf. I also think they could balance each other out. I love Not Alone, by The_Real_Hermione, because I think it captured Teddy/Victoire perfectly. I actually reviewed on it, too!

    I don't know why, but I love reading and writing Next Gen.

    Favorite to Review: As I said, and because I'm a horrible person, I don't really review romance.


    New TQ: The LoveNotes has meant a lot of OTPs have been written for others. Do you ever feel apprehensive writing someone else's OTP? How does that affect your writing?

    Yes, I do feel kind of apprehensive. I want to do it justice . . . and I'm not the best at romance. I gave it my best, though, but it definitely affected my writing. I must have re-wrote on of mine five times, to get it right.

    Also, I know I'm not the biggest fluff-maniac around, (though if you check in my review history I used to be) so I find it hard to gauge what degree of fluff people want, or what degree of romance. I know some people love the dark stuff, and I find it extremely hard to write a ship that way. My ships just kind of happen . . . I'll write the characters for the first few chapters, but when I have a clear picture of the major plot points in my head . . . I know who to ship. So deliberate shipping is kind of hard for me.

    My new TQ: Does anyone else have difficulty reviewing romance? How do you review a romance fic?
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  4. #14
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    What are some of the challenges of reviewing stories featuring a mix of these shipping genres?
    I think that for me, I will have a hard time reviewing a pairing I don't support. For example, if I'm reading a Hermione story, and there is a Harry/Luna subplot, I won't comment on it because for me Harry is Ginny's (though I don't read Harry/Ginny stories). Often times, I find myself reviewing a bit about everything else in the story other than the romance, because, like Ellie, I have very little experience.

    Which is your favourite to read? To review? Why?
    My favourite to read are Hermione based romances - but only certain Hermione ones, such as Hermione/Oliver, Hermione/Remus, Hermione/Charlie, Hermione/Fred. Those seem to be my biggest four right now, though I did read along of Snamione for a bit. I tend to review the same. I have also really began to like Lily/Scorpius. In all honesty, I think I like Hermione stories becuase they are like self-insertions (haha) and I review usually if I know the author or have some comments.

    The LoveNotes has meant a lot of OTPs have been written for others. Do you ever feel apprehensive writing someone else's OTP? How does that affect your writing?
    I'm not going to comment on LoveNotes, but in general, I find other people's OTPs can be so much harder. LIke, I've written Harmony twice, both times for other people, and its just crazy how much I struggled with it, and I think that it is very apparent in the writing.

    Does anyone else have difficulty reviewing romance? How do you review a romance fic?
    Again, I don't typically review the romance, per se, unless its reallly clever or really bad. I more talk characterisation and plot.

    What pairings do you find hardest to review?
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  5. #15
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    What are some of the challenges of reviewing stories featuring a mix of these shipping genres?


    I know I’m probably in the minority here, but I actually prefer non canon and canon contradictory romances. Don’t get me wrong—I still adore a good James/Lily, but I think it’s a lot more interesting to read the other kinds, especially rarepairs.


    Quote Originally Posted by Sprays
    I think, with rarepairs especially, there's the challenge of making a pairing which not many people have seen before believable. I like to see if the author has achieved that. The fact that they've taken the risk/been creative with the pairing makes me like them already, lol.
    (Don’t question the name, I’m typing this on my phone and the autocorrect made me laugh)


    I totally agree with this. I personally find it hard to make any romance seem realistic but not angsty or cheesy, and that’s with the canon romances. If you’re trying to pair up, say, Roger Davies and Pansy Parkinson, you need to really make it believable. (Now I’m really tempted to try this, but as most people who have betaed for me know, I’m awful at making romances believable).


    Which is your favourite to read? To review? Why?


    Personally I think it’s easiest and more fun when you review rarepairs. Perhaps that’s just me, because I love reading them. There’s a lot more to comment on (i.e. rather than saying “I love the creative way you put Harry and Ginny together,” you can say, “I think that the believablity of the Roger/Pansy ship really makes this story…”)


    Does anyone else have difficulty reviewing romance? How do you review a romance fic?


    Quote Originally Posted by Maple
    I more talk characterisation and plot.

    I’m not really sure what you mean by this, because the characterisation and plot really make the romance for me. In example if you’re writing a H/G Post-Hogwarts story and Harry is uncharacteristically brave and Ginny is uncharacteristically weepy and they run off to the Room of Requirement to (and here the author thinks s/he is really clever) comfort each other and/or celebrate which inevitably leads to a get together, that is a characterisation and plot LACKING that makes it where the romance really doesn’t work. I think I touched on this in a SBBC discussion a couple months ago about how it’s not the pairing specifically that’s cliché, it’s the plot that leads up to the pairing and the characterisation of the pair.


    NEW TQ: Why do you think Romance is the most popular category? What do you think draws people to it?



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  6. #16
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    What are some of the challenges of reviewing stories featuring a mix of these shipping genres?

    By “mix”, do you mean a fic with all of them? In that case it would depend on the combination and the circumstances under which it was written… I know that sounds like a cop-out answer, but it’s completely true for me. I’m very much a “fic-by-fic” sort of reviewer (unless I’ve read something truly terrible to put me off!).

    Still, each category has its own challenges to overcome. I have a few questions I like to “ask” myself when planning to review a fic from each category:

    Canon – has the author done anything original here? IE, am I reading a cliché that anyone could have written, or has the author tried to put their own spin on it?
    Non-Canon – is the relationship reasonable? Everyone needs to be IC, and the set-up should make sense: IE, Alicia Spinnet meeting and having a relationship with Viktor Krum through a Quidditch career is reasonable, whereas Pansy Parkinson becoming a professional Quidditch player, meeting Viktor Krum and having a whirl-wind romance is not… (Well, not to me anyway… Perhaps this is why some non-canon pairings become popular and others remain as rarepairs, because it’s easier to envision?)
    Canon-Contradictory Romance - is everyone IC? It’s maddening to me when people twist perfectly good characters to make them fit into a couple when they patently don’t suit each other. For example, a Draco/Ginny fic with Ginny as a vain and simpering and Draco suddenly starting to chill with the Gryffindors would drive me mad! That’s not to say that Draco/Ginny can’t be done well, but just changing them for no good reason is a complete no-no for me!
    Rarepairs – Again, IC is a big deal for me, I can’t stand OOC behaviour: it breaks my suspension of disbelief, I suppose. And set-up… it usually is important to me, but sometimes the fic is about the relationship (ie, more of a character study than a plot-based fic), so in that case I can ignore a dodgy set-up.

    In fact, on reflection, OOC in Romance is a universal deal-breaker for me, and yet OOC-ness can run absolutely rampant, so I suppose one of the biggest challenges for me is how to tell the author so in a review that isn’t too harsh.

    Which is your favourite to read? To review? Why?

    I don’t think I have a strong preference, because each sub-genre has its own pitfalls (whether it’s clichés, OOC-ness or dodgy premises). I’m quite fussy about Romance (in fact, Romance and Angst, I think, are the ones I both love and loathe, because they’re both so easy to get wrong), because I think it’s the one that a lot of… (tries to think how to put this)… I think it’s where a lot of beginner’s start, and that’s fine, but that kind of means that, as a reviewer, I feel quite a duty to try and get them into good habits, which can be difficult (particularly if I struggle to get through the fic, or if, as it’s already been published, the author doesn’t feel my critique is valid or relevant – this doesn’t happen so much on MNFF, but has on other sites).

    New TQ: The LoveNotes has meant a lot of OTPs have been written for others. Do you ever feel apprehensive writing someone else's OTP? How does that affect your writing?

    I don’t think I’ve ever written anyone else’s OTP – the closest I’ve come is writing Jess’ Christmas Fic Swap fic (I’m not sure if she’s even seen it yet actually!), but in that case I had the choice of the second character… I don’t think it would matter to me though, I’d put in the same amount of effort I would for any requested fic (or, indeed, one for myself – can’t let my standards slip!).

    My new TQ: Does anyone else have difficulty reviewing romance? How do you review a romance fic?

    I think the difficulty is in finding a fic I can get through to review… It sounds terrible, but I find it very easy to start reading a Romance fic, then just switch off half-way through because I don’t like how it’s been executed. That probably makes me a terrible SPEW-er… It’s just, I’ve read so many boring Romance fics, that if I see the same plot over again (eg, Hermione/Harry “comforting” each other after Ron’s death), then unless it’s done extremely well (which, again, I’m not saying it can’t be), I switch off. I then find it’s very hard to tell writers, whose work has already been posted, that they’re using clichés; there doesn’t seem to be a polite way to do it, especially as, well, the fic is written…

    What pairings do you find hardest to review?


    Ones that have been written badly, particularly with regards to OOC characters… This is the same in all genres; it’s very hard to say politely that you think someone is acting OOC. I find Ginny is a big offender here – the number of writers who make her out to be… easy, perhaps is the best word, for having a grand total of 3 boyfriends (1 of whom she later married… oh, and 1 date with Neville Longbottom…). I mean, some people will argue alternative character interpretation, and I’m fine with that, but I don’t think you can argue the case for an IC, canon-compliant Ginny who is also a nymphomaniac…!

    But there are no specific pairings that I'm adverse to: I suppose I slightly prefer canon/canon-compliant, but if on the day I feel like reading Romance I can't find one of those that appeals to me, I'll read a non-canon compliant or a rarepair without too much hassle; indeed, a pairing I haven't seen before can be utterly fabulous (or completely dreadful... but I don't know until I read!).

    NEW TQ: Why do you think Romance is the most popular category? What do you think draws people to it?

    Umm… I think writers are drawn to it initially because it seems easy: after all, everyone has a romantic fantasy of some sort, and where better to play it out than the anonymity of the internet? That, then, is also part of the appeal of reading Romance; it’s an escape, but (unlike, say, Angst or Mystery), one that you really want to come true for you, like a form of wish-fulfilment.

    NEW TQ: why do some pairings remain as rarepairs, whereas others get a huge following? Is it the popularity of the characters involved, or is it something else?
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