Hello everyone!

It's the moment I know you've all been waiting for - the QSQ winners are ready to announce - I will shortly announce the Forum QSQ winners in the next post of this thread.

Before I get on to the list of the winners, we have the annual banner reveal. This year's winning banner was designed by the very talented Hokey. Here is a preview:


All winners will receive their banners in the next few days. Hokey only received the winner list yesterday so editing is still ongoing.

Now, without further stalling, I present to you, the winners of the 2012 Quicksilver Quills!

General
One-ShotReveries & Butterflies by lucca4

This is an absolutely beautiful story, with an interesting and unusual viewpoint. Neville is also well-written here, with a good mix of good old Neville and grown-up Healer Longbottom. Stunningly original and heartrending.

AND - Maps by the opaleye

So stylish. I could happily drown in this prose. The story was beautifully written and really sensual, too. I loved the brief snippets of all four couples. They just flowed together so well, that I was sorry to see it end. As someone who doesn't think Neville became an overnight star after his bravery (he was so diffident in the books and that doesn't vanish overnight), I think this story captures him perfectly.

ChapteredThe Unbreakable Curse by Karaley Dargen

The author wove a very good mystery that kept me guessing (and I read a lot of mysteries). What brought the story to life was the characterisation, in fact, as well as the wonderful mystery plot. I also liked the setting of the story and the amount of research Kara must have done to make this believable; the mention of the heliographs, describing the way the curse-breakers worked; it all added to the sense of story. This is such a well-plotted fic, showing great characterisation of both canon characters and OCs, amazing world-building and rather sensational smut.

Dark/Angsty
One-ShotHangman by littlebird

The characterisation of Ron is truly exceptional in this fic. This period of time, when the trio is searching for Horcruxes, is a very difficult time for the three of them, but yet, we never really see Ron’s conflicts, especially before he leaves. The author has managed to characterise Ron perfectly, all while in first person. Instead of being told what Ron is feeling, it is incorporated into the narrative, so the reader is never getting the information just thrown at them. The reader really feels as if they are Ron in this story.

Chaptered Inner Demons by lucca4

This story is so beautifully written. This story manages to draw emotion from the reader without it feeling forced. The characterisation of Draco and Katie and the way that their relationship develops over the two chapters is so well-paced. The tone of desperation and lust is always there, whether it be simmering below or bursting to the surface. The story is intense. The pain that Katie and Draco feel is so well done. It also ends on a hopeful note, which makes it all the more powerful, because otherwise the dark and angst would be too much.

Humour
One-Shot'i' Before 'e' by Equinox Chick

The characters in this story were rich and real, and the panel loved the unique take on the Percy/Audrey dynamics. And Percy Weasley? Funny and in-character? You really must see this.

ChapteredMuch Ado About Nothing by Argelfraster

This story charmed the judging panel with its clever mesh of Potterverse and Shakespeare, but without taking away from the power of either. It takes a brow-raising pairing in the form of Filch/Pince and really makes an audience believe in them and want them to be happy, all while sporting snappy, witty dialogue. It was the clear winner.

Alternate Universe
Quiet In Our Town by the opaleye

Julia, we’re giving you this award only on the condition that you write more! I’m not sure any of us thought we’d be saying we needed more zombie apocalypse but we absolutely do! It's original and fresh, and it's everything AU should be. It was a really brilliant piece of writing. Writing in reverse worked perfectly and I think gave the story even more impact than if we'd seen it in chronological order. When I first heard of the zombies in HP idea floating around I could only picture something slightly ridiculous And yet this worked. It worked really well. It was serious and moving and believable. Wow.

Original Character
Henry Tstosie from Alexandra Quick and the Stars Above by Inverarity

Though not a major character in the story for which he was written, Henry has the feel of a character who is a rich, fully-realised human being and leaves readers wanting to know more about what stories he has to tell. His life has meaning and scope outside of the realm of the story and the main character. Also, the art of portraying an antagonist who is on the side of good is a difficult one, but Inverarity succeeded with flying colours in the form of Henry Tstosie.

Marauder
One-Shot Vendetta by lucca4

Vendetta was effing amazing, so chillingly violent and showing the very much darker side to Bellatrix's character. It’s such an impressive insight into Bellatrix; she is made understandable, almost, by her past, but you can still see the insanity building in her. The writing is gorgeous, too, with lovely imagery throughout. As an example of skill in writing, Vendetta takes it. Bellatrix is not a character that I can give my sympathy to, but Ariana made her seem real. I am completely in love with the style and flow of this story. It works so well and makes the story itself and the plot very strong.

ChapteredDefiance by Gmariam

The plotting was fantastic, and I just think all the characters were really well-rounded and beautifully characterised, particularly James and Lily. I couldn't forget Defiance. The plot was so jaw-droppingly amazing. The characterisation in this fic is outstanding and I loved the twists and turns in the plot. The prose was full of tension and a darkness that was so apt for the plot. It was extremely brilliant and well-thought out.

Post-Hogwarts
One-ShotThe Latecomer by halfaslug

This story had me laughing one minute and nearly crying the next -- I genuinely don’t think any piece of writing has made me go through emotions so fast before. The characterization is so...perfect. I love the little portraits of grief, and I love Fred and George's trademark silliness. It was a marvelous way to bring closure. I was truly blown away by this, it is so well-written. In addition, despite being quite humorous, it still deals with the subject matter sensitively. Even though I've read tons of fics about this period before, this one still kept me interested and I still evoked strong emotions in me which is a testament to just how good the writing is.

ANDSteel Hearts by ToBeOrNotToBeAGryffindor

This was a wonderfully written story focusing on two characters we don’t hear about that often. The perspectives of one person just few years younger than Harry and one just a few older were interesting, different experiences of the war than we saw in canon. Romilda Vane is not a likable person in the books, but Jess shows how her actions towards Harry were just the result of, well, being a teenager, and that actually she's a nice person. The characters have complex, sometimes conflicting, motivations for continuing to meet with each other. It feels very…human. Their characterization isn’t sacrificed to bang on about the themes of the story. It’s just a brilliant story!

ChapteredUncommon Friends by Gmariam

I liked this forging of an unlikely friendship, and the ways Draco and Neville been there for each other over the years. They're both well-characterized, and Gina made it work very well. This fic also tugged at my heartstrings. It showed not only their friendship, but what Draco and Neville made of their lives after Hogwarts, and I liked the details of their lives, from Neville's studies to Draco trying to cut out his Dark Mark and the subsequent drug addiction to their wives and families. Gina does a wonderful job in creating circumstances under which Draco and Neville might conceivably be friendly. Her evolution of that friendship shows us how people really can change.

Next Generation
One-ShotToday Is Victory Day by Maple_and_PheonixFeather

It's a touching and powerful story, which is about more than characterising Next Generation characters in a believable way and with an interesting plot, but tapping into something deeper than that. It’s also a very universal fic in that Maple captures something which is so relatable to real life. It's elegantly written, and Lily's characterisation is so well done, without seeming overbearing, something that's so easy to do in the first person, as well as the present tense. Her internal monologue gives such a strong impression of a very clever, thoughtful teenager, without that seeming unrealistic.

ChapteredStars or Carousels by Equinox Chick

As a Next-Gen story, it is exemplary of what this category can offer. Nothing is typical about it. James isn't the usual James-The-Marauder-Reincarnated; he has some of Harry's hesitancy and doubt. Dominique isn't a carbon copy of her mother, either -- she's more down-to-earth, and she has some of the same doubts that James does.The canon details are firm and it feels very much a part of the Potterverse. The way the author unfurled Dominique and James's relationship -- from the humorous opening scene to the heartbreaking last section -- was perfect. The structure is so beautiful, slipping backwards and forwards in time very easily, and never feeling over-worked or complicated. The central image of the stars or carousels is so powerful, and memorable long, long afterwards.

Poetry
Enterprising Young Men by Equinox Chick

Reading this poem is like taking a walk through the twins' life. It is by far the greatest tribute to the twins that I’ve had the good fortune to experience. It’s also a wonderful example of prose poetry, equipped with a particular rhythm that carries me like a tide. Enterprising Young Men has stayed with me ever since I read it for the first time. I remember being in awe of it then and I still am. It still hits me in the gut each time I read those final two lines, and that is the mark of a truly powerful poem – when you can read it over and over and still feel like it’s the first time.

Canon Romance
One-ShotAnother Horcrux Down by WeasleyMom

Every emotion, every word, every moment was just so perfect. It had a great feel to it without being overbearing, and it really allowed the reader to get into the mood of being down in the Chamber. The language is beautiful, I loved the characterisation of both Ron and Hermione, and Lori built up the tension so beautifully in such a short story. Ron's sense of humor, Hermione's deep-down insecurity, the whole scene with the Horcrux, their interactions, everything is just pitch-perfect.

ChapteredRaindrops by Gmariam

The characterisation of James and Lily was wonderful. They have that canon