Hello! I'm Julia and when I'm not cavorting with elves in Middle Earth, I'm a moderator for this archive, among other things.
Poetry, Anyone? I am the resident Poet Laureate over on the Beta Boards as leader of this fun little group. We have monthly challenges all with a Harry Potter twist. You can also find solid and comprehensive critique for any poems and help for all your archive-based concerns.
Susan Bones Book Club. I am the leader of this fun little group. Each month the SBBC chooses two to three fics from the archives to discuss. We also have monthly drabble activities and an incredibly lively chat thread. We accept new members at all times so if you're interested go and take a look. It's open to all members of the beta boards. If you have any questions or concerns then don't hesitate to PM me.
Eileen Prince has always struck me as a tragic figure although I've never read much about her in fanfiction so I'm interested to see where you take this. It's pretty new territory for me.
This was a beautifully sad start, Lafonna. Well done :)
Author's Response: I have never given her a thought. D: I hope I'll be able to write her well. Thanks for the review! <333
This is a great first chapter, Lafonna. I think you've built on the epilogue really well, moving everything forward in time but referring back to that moment in the library. I really enjoy your Narcissa because I think you've caught her voice perfectly. She wants to be cold and indifferent and so she is, outwardly so, but her interest in Florean is overwhelming and she just doesn't understand it. Gah. I'm looking forward to you fleshing out Florean more because I feel like we've only scratched the surface with him (durrr it's the first chapter, Julia).
The kite. Hmmm I really liked the parallel between Narcissa feeling tethered to her clearly laid out future and the kite. The kite was set free. What's going to happen to Narcissa, then? I think you have some excellent bones here for a very insightful (and sexy?) fic about Narcissa. And Florean, of course, but I will reserve my theories on him until we see more.
Author's Response: I am extremely pleased you liked my characterisation of Narcissa. She's not as black-and-white as Bellatrix tends to be, and it was a challenge trying to write her youthful self, as well as the transition from the 13-yr-old to the 17-yr-old. I hope that the rest can only be as exciting and sexy.
This is a beautiful start and I'm intrigued to see where you go with this. It all felt very, very Narcissa. Her irritation, her insecurities and need for everything to be just so. And the way she feels nauseated at the prospect of him acknowledging her in front of others. Guh I just loved how much you managed to pack into 500 words. Beautiful.
Author's Response: YAY! I won't deny that this review got me writing the first few paragraphs of the main section today :D Thank you, my love!
It may be daft but it was also pretty damn sweet. Awwww. And now I'm feeling all nostalgic again. Ohmygosh I just want to cuddle this fic.
I don't think I've read your other Thrustin... I will have to add it to my ever growing list of stuff to read which the cotillion has dangerously lengthened.
Author's Response: Thank youuuu, I did giggle a lot that day and was glad I could resurrect the hat for this story. Mind you, I did nearly bin this so I'm very pleased with the reception it has received - hee!
Fracture is all from Theo's POV - they should be compliant but I realised I cocked up in this story with the way Justin's brother died. I should change it, and I will when the judging is over.
Sometimes, there is little else to hold onto except dreams and moments.
Because sometimes, when all else is lost, they are all we have left.
I owe infinite thanks to Alex/welshdevondragon, who took the time to beta and primp this story and is also just a wonderful person.
Winner of the 2012 Quicksilver Quill Award - Best General Story, along with Julia/theopaleye's fabulous fic Maps
Ariana, I'm actually speechless here. This is one of the most beautifully written, heart-wrenching, deeply, deeply moving fics I've ever read. At first I thought it was Pomona Sprout as an old woman but as you peeled back the layers I began to realise who Mona really was.
I feel like the voice you captured was just astounding. There is this fragility to it and yet a certain strength of will as though her former self is fighting to get through. I loved the way you used the butterfly throughout the fic, and it was not only symbolic in it's use but it also gave us insight into who Mona is, and who she was. Before.
The way you never explicitly tell us what happened was also very effective and I like being kept in the dark because, as a reader, we're really immersed in how Mona perceives what goes on around her and we can only glean what Neville (and Lysander) truly mean to her by what she decides to think about and what she observes.
Honestly, Ariana, I can only stare at the screen in awe. Keep on being amazing and, most of all, keep on writing!
Author's Response: Thank you so much for leaving me this fabulous review. I admire your stories so much and so your comments mean a lot :). I didn't even think about this being the story of Pomona Sprout as an old woman, but now that I reread it with your review in mind it really works (up to a point, of course).
I am so glad to hear that you liked the voice of Mona, as well. I've never written a crazy person before from first person, and it was really strange and I didn't know if it was going to make sense at all. This probably makes me sound like a pretend writer, but I didn't even know I was going to use the butterfly throughout the entire story until after I used it the first time…so thank you for thinking it was cohesive ;).
This review made me squee so much. Thank youuuu! xx Ariana
I'm a bit of a Dudley fan so I was really happy when one of my friends pointed me this way. I haven't read your other fics yet but I really enjoyed this is as a standalone fic. I do have a few questions that I hope the other fics may answer, though!
It's an interesting premise having Harry as the non-magical one. I thought you wrote Dudley's character well given his setting and his slightly different upbringing to canon. He was still recognisable as Dudley and the differences seemed to make sense considering he's obviously been brought up with his extended family rather than being pitted against Harry. Lily 'was' a witch... hm I am intrigued to know more about that! I also loved the way you set up an interesting Dudley-Draco dynamic.
Anyway, great fic! It drew me in instantly. I hope to read more from you.
Author's Response: Thanks so much! I'm glad Dudley made sense to you. I am currently writing a sequel/chapter two to this one and it's much harder to get him right as he's growing and changing at Hogwarts. I'm really excited about the Dudley-Draco dynamic, though; I'm glad it intrigued you.
Awwww I love this!!! Natalie put me in a J/L mood last night as well hehe so I'm really glad you posted this. I adore the way you write the J/L dynamic. It feels so genuine. Guhhh I can't stop grinning.
Author's Response: Thank you so much, Julia!! J/L moods are fun to indulge so I'm glad you did. And I'm glad you enjoyed it so much to smile. Thank you for the compliments, I really appreciate it! ~Gina :)
Oh my heart. Gina, how do you write them so well??? This is so adorable and yet incredibly sad. It's like reading a losing battle because it's so pleasing to see them together and talking like this but then knowing what's going to happen... OH MY HEART.
Author's Response: Thank youuuuuuu, Julia! I'm so glad you enjoyed it. I just love writing them. Yes, it can be a bit sad at times. Bittersweet, really. I don't know why I'm drawn to that, but I am. Thank you so much for reading this and leaving such a lovely review! ~Gina :)
Carole, you always write these boys so well! I think James' birthday put me in a Marauder mood because I've been reading quite a bit lately so this was a great read.
Sirius fears nothing - not even death - whereas Peter fears far too much, and that makes him the far safer bet.
Guh that is just so right. I loved the way you contrasted all the characters here in so few words, showing the inherent differences between them. I felt myself nodding along, especially at that line. And the final line, with its allusion to the Fidelius Charm that will be James' downfall was rather poignant and sad. Great fic, Carole.
Author's Response: For some reason I've been staring at this review since you left it, Julz, and haven't been able to think of a satisfactory response except ...
Thank you so very much for reading, enjoying and for reviewing. It means a great deal that you enjoyed the story.
I'm so glad that we added Episotlary at the last minute because I absolutely adored this as a drabble and I love that you've expanded it for the archives.
Percy's development from being uptight and formal to his adorable way of asking Audrey out was great. Awww. It really felt like a Percy who was still the one we know in canon but who has also learnt some hard lessons from his wayward days post-DH. And, dare I say it, but you built up some fabulous chemistry, I was almost waiting for it to end with a post-coital love note or something.
And I also think you should write Unrobed by a Passionate Flame ;)
Author's Response: I think I need to write that, too ...
Julia, thank you for the review. I'm sort of scratching my head in both bemusement and glee at the response this story has received because I was in two - or perhaps four- minds whether to bother sending the drabble in let alone expanding it into a one shot. However, it made me giggle when I was writing, and the idea of Audrey being unable to spell and also hiding her passion for witch-lit made me think she was the ideal wife for Percy.
Thank youuuuuu for the review. I am now planning my robe-ripping best seller! ~Croll~
What I love about this poem is the discordant and shrill imagery. I can hear it. The bangs and snaps and hissing, and it really gives the feeling of being cooped up, and the building frustration and self-loathing within Merope. I have no idea why this poem does not have any reviews yet because, while short, it immediately explodes off the page with it's vivid imagery before simmering down into the haunting second stanza.
You're so talented, Natalie. It's a pleasure to read your poetry every month.
Author's Response: Oh! I am glad it had that effect - that's what I was trying to go for :D Thanks for reviewing, and for giving us all these fabulous challenges. I wouldn't have been able to write poetry any decently if it weren't for them. <333
This is lucca4 of Gryffindor submitting my entry for Rosmerta's Mini-Gauntlet being held in The Three Broomsticks over at the MNFF beta boards.
Thank you and hugs to the lovely Jess for reading this over, and to Alex, for everything ♥.
Winner of the 2012 Quicksilver Quill Award - Best Marauder-era Story.
Ariana, this is heartwrenching, and I never thought I'd use that word to describe a Bellatrix-centric fic. Wow. I think you caught Bella's disturbed mania so well. Everything felt so her. And yet, at the same time, it was such an interesting take on her because I've always thought of her as someone who only enjoyed the pointlessness of killing. Here you've shown us The Three, and these three aren't pointless, they're almost like revenge from what has happened to her in the past and it's like she views these three killings as important because their catalysts are what made her such a twisted and broken person.
Seriously, this is brilliant. It's a brilliant insight into Bella's mind, and you manage to humanise her, which is not often seen. I am abhored by her, and yet, I am also sickened by what led her to the first two killings. You've definitely given me some food for thought.
I haven't even touched on your beautiful writing, yet. Well.
Keep on being fab :)
Author's Response: Thank you so much for this lovely review! I am so flattered that you liked the story. I wasn't sure on how far I could go without Bella becoming OOC, so I'm glad that you thought the story still felt like *her*. You are so sweet for reviewing -- thank youuuu! xx Ariana
Carole, this poem never ceases to amaze me. Every time I read it, I think back to when I first read it in PA and it still hits me as hard as that first time. I read my favourite poetry over and over and over. This is one of my favourite poems. Poetry should be moving. It might make you laugh, it might make you blush, it might make you nostalgic. It should always evoke a response, no matter how trivial it seems - and you draw out such a strong response with this poem. The joy, the hope, the grief is all so natural. You capture the spirit of Fred and George perfectly, transitioning into the gut-wrenching sadness of the end.
Carole, you truly deserve the QSQ. I love your poetry and always look forward to seeing what you come up with in PA. Never stop being fabulous.
Author's Response: I have delayed responding to this review because I really can't find the words. Coming from you, Julia, this means an incredible amount because you're possibly the most talented and informed poet that I know. (Obviously I hob nob with WB Yeats all the time :D and can tell you he knows nothing!)
I loved this challenge. It was so hard at first, but challenges always make me think, and this one was no exception. Thank you again. ~Croll~
This made the short shortlist when I was judging the challenge. I have a sort of love/hate relationship with this poem because, while I love it so much, it also gave me a lot of grief when I was trying to make a judgement decision!
But in all seriousness, this poem sends shivers down my spine. I remember when that song came up on shuffle for you, I thought, wow, this could be interesting. And it was. It is. Even after re-reading it numerous times, it still gives me chills, particularly that final line. The fact that Voldemort still lives on in the minds and in the fears of the wizarding world is like a slap in the face. He's dead but they're never going to rest easy. They're never going to forget. I love that you built that all up from this random quirky title.
The structure is also really well done. I love the way you alternate between the three-line stanzas and the single lines. It's like you're punctuating each long stanza, and not only does it flow really well, it's another way to make the theme of the poem all the more effective.
I guess the only crit I could give you is that I find the fourth long stanza the weakest. Clamour/clammy sounds a bit awkward and breaks the flow somewhat. Sorry, I know it's a bit late to point this out now that it's on the archives. I can't think of another synonym for clammy that would work better in that stanza but perhaps something like 'restless'?
Other than that, though, I really love this poem to bits. The structure is fresh, the narrative fits so well with the title, the ending is superbly blunt. Keep on being fabulous, Carole.
Author's Response: Julia, thank you very much for the review. It's great when a poem gets decent crit, so I'm very grateful. This was the song title I struggled the most with. I had something else at first which was a literal meeting for ghosts who wanted to pass on, but it got silly, so then came up with the Voldy idea. To be honest, I was surprised you were torn with this one because it's one I tried working on but was half dead so didn;t craft as much as I should have done. The clammy/clamour was deliberate but it does look clumsy (oooh, clammy/clamour/clumsy) so I think I'll take that on board and fiddle with it. I was trying to get the impression of clammy ghosts - the way Nick makes Harry feel when he glides through him, so I shall ponder a while.
Thanks again (my response is sadly inadequate. :( ) ~Croll~
Oh Lori, this is wonderful. I loved the way you showed Hermione's insecurities. It's always been something I've thought about - what the horcrux did to her when she killed it. I think the book was a really clever idea. Not only that, I thought you caught Hermione's voice really well throughout the entire fic, the way she isn't sure about Ron's feelings even though it's rather obvious. They're so very similar, in that regard! You really know how to push my Romione buttons, Lori :P Thanks for another fab read!
Author's Response: So sorry, I didn't realize I hadn't responded to your review! Thanks so much for taking the time to read and review this one, Julia. I really wasn't planning to get involved with this challenge, but when I saw Carole's drawing, I knew I had to do it. I've imagined it so many times, in so many different ways. And I've always thought something important must have happened between them down there, because of the way Rowling wrote Hermione when Harry came upon them in the corridor. I'm so glad you liked it, and thought it worked. Pushing your Romione buttons is motivation enough to keep me writing Romione forever--haha. (That, and my own hardcore addiction, of course.) :) Thanks so much, Julia! <3
Oh my good Godric, Gina. I think you nearly made me pee at university. This is quite possibly one of the funniest things I've read on this site. I am incoherent. I cannot physically function right now. *crawls off to die a happy death*
Author's Response: Thank youuuuuuu! I was giggling as I wrote it so I'm glad that's coming across. Thank you so much for reading it, I hope you did not embarrass yourself, lol! I don't think it's one of the funniest things around, but it was definitely fun to write. Thanks for the review, I am grinning ear-to-ear because you've made my night! ~Gina :)
I'm always weary of rhyming poems in the challenges because all too often, while there are some great lines that come out of them, a lot of the rhymes end up being forced. This was not the case with The Call, and it was one of many reasons why it stood out to me. This poem is really beautiful in its simple structure and language, and the way you really capture Colin and his life. The final stanza kills me. It's so bittersweet. I love this poem, Carole, and I'm so glad it's now up on the archives. Well done!
Author's Response: Thank you very much. I like trying to rhyme, but do find it hard work, which is one reason I though internal rhymes gave a better flow to the poem. Really appreciate the review, Julia. I hadn't really thought about this poem until the last few days of the challenge when I had a sudden idea (although at one stage it was going to be Fred -ha!). Love your challenges, they are so .... challenging :D ~Carole~
Awwwww that's really beautiful, Carole. And what a perfect gift for Gina. The final stanza makes me think of Harry and Hermione in Godric's Hollow when Harry wishes he were sleeping under the cold ground in his parents arms. What gorgeous imagery, and what a sadly sweet tone. Gah.
Author's Response: Thank youuu. I'm glad you picked up on the final line. I'd love to be able to say that was exactly what I had in mind, but really it was more the irony that they wouldn't have the years together and fall asleep forever in each others' arms when they're old and grey, :( . They make me all saaaaaaad. Anyway, thank you for reviewing - much appreciated. ~Croll~
I was, and still am, completely blown away by this fic. The first time I read it, I had no idea what to expect. In fact, I didn’t have any expectations at all. I hadn’t read anything by you before, and I hadn’t really paid attention to the summary. It immediately swept me off my feet and has quickly become one of my favourite stories on the archives, let alone about Minerva.
I love the way you structure the fic in Acts and Interludes. You draw from Minerva’s homelife, using the Pottermore canon we’ve learnt to great effect. Everything flows so seamlessly, and I find Minerva’s characterisation to be wonderfully done. Young Minerva is clearly not the woman we see in the books, and yet she is recognisable, she just clearly hasn’t yet matured into the amazing professor we know and love.
I believed in her attraction to Amelia, and I believed in their relationship - all of it - from the beginning to the break down to their rediscovery of one another in later life. You choose which details of Minerva’s life to focus on with great restraint and skill, and it all comes together so well.
For a one-shot, we are swept along Minerva’s life from childhood to late adulthood. And even though it is a long one-shot, it is still a one-shot and yet the pacing works so well! I just wanted to keep reading and reading and never stop. When I'm reading a book I particularly love, I always feel sad when it comes to an end, even if the ending is as satisfying as it can be, because I miss being immersed in that particular world and in the heads of those characters. Reading your fic was like that. I felt sad at the end because I wanted to relive the experience of reading it for the first time.
This fic is beautiful. Congratulations on the QSQ award.
Author's Response: Thank you so much for your lovely comments. This was the first fic I wrote that tried to incorporate the Pottermore bio on Minerva, so I'm especially happy if you thought that worked in the context of an Amelia/Minerva story. I've always liked that pairing, so it was a pleasure to try to imagine it here. Thanks again for reading and commenting. Cheers, Squibstress