Welcome to my author page!
I am a teacher, musician, reader, and avid Harry Potter fan. I am originally from the Midwest and now live a bit farther south. I am thrilled to be a proud member of RAVENCLAW House and enjoyed being a site moderator for a time as well.
I hope you enjoy the many stories and poems I have written. I am proud of them all and appreciate any feedback you might care to leave (in other words, reviews are love!) I've listed them below with a short description since I know trolling through summaries can be tedious. Thanks for reading!
EDIT: Someday I will categorize my stories by genre. Today is not that day. ;)
The irony does not escape Severus Snape as he seeks to gain the favour of the Dark Lord on, of all nights, Christmas. The spectres of days dead and gone spur him on to complete his mission, but can the fond memories stop him from committing an unspeakable act?
This story has been nominated for a 2011 Quicksilver Quill Award: Best Marauder Era Story.
Wow, Jess - you wrote Snape! In first person! Present tense! And you really nailed it, too. :)
Using first person and present tense really conveyed his character well, and I couldn't imagine it any other way. You totally captured his darkness and the obsessive side of him that must have been present to have driven him all those years. Plus you touched on the reasons he joined Voldemort. I find it interesting that you don't see Snape as waffling in his beliefs for Lily - meaning, he didn't compromise his inner self in order to win her. In fact, it was very interesting to see him thinking that she would approve and forgive him, since she clearly would not. It shows a rather delusional side of him that I would suspect a lot of Voldemort's followers shared.
I agree that it's much more interesting for Lily's parents to have died in a suspicious way. I don't know if I buy that Snape was the one who did it, and with enthusiasm. I personally think a more canon Snape would have been far more reluctant and remorseful. However, you justify your Snape's actions perfectly - it's something he has to do, it doesn't bother him, and since LIly will forgive him, it's no big deal. Fascinating, really, because I wonder what your Denial!Snape would be like in the books.
Great use of Occlumency/Legilimency, and I really liked Voldemort here. It's a wonderfully dark and twisted story, Jess. Nice job and good luck in the challenge! ~Gina :)
Yay to a visit from Twin!
This story was strangely easy for me to contemplate. Whether that makes me slightly screwed up or not remains to be seen, but I didn't feel at all incongruous with its relative darkness and obsessive undertones. I suppose I just wanted to pick teh character that less people would write, since J/L fluff would probably dominate this particular catEgory. :D
I suppose I just wanted to pick teh character that less people would write, since J/L fluff would probably dominate this particular catEgory.
Nice spelling. ;)
And what's wrong with J/L fluff?!?!! You do realize I wrote a J/L fluff for this very same challenge, do you not? Are you poking fun at me? Hm? Because that sort of makes me want to torture my favorite pairing a bit, you know. ;)
I jest. I'm incapable of that, I think.
As to being able to write something like this easily - I don't think it means you are dark or obsessive or crushing on Snape. After all, I've written a few darker pieces, and I'm nothing like 'Shattered' or 'Blood on my Hands.' And I've written a lot of fluff but I am certainly not a romantic sop. I think it means that first of all, JKR developed Snape enough for you to be able to extrapolate something like this. And it means you are a damn fine writer who can put herself into a separate frame of mind and just go there. And when I write something easily, it means the story was already out there and I merely discovered and transcribed it.
This is why I wish we could respond to review responses. Ah well. I will say again this was very cool because it's not a very sympathetic Snape. In fact, it makes him even more of an enigma, to think he could do this while still doing all that he does for Harry. Fascinating character. Have you ever thought of shipping him with Harry or Hermione?
Just kidding. Don't.
I think the only way I could write a sympathetic Snape is if it was an early childhood, pre-Hogwarts story. But otherwise, by this point in his life, he's pretty much the sum of his influences. He simply wasn't capable of understanding why Lily turned on him, since he had no basis of comparison for a healthy relationship. That makes me think that his mind couldn't rationalise family dynamics and their inherent value to someone like Lily, so hence he thinks that she would actually understand the idea that he was compelled to kill her parents. Also, he didn't care about them in the first place outside of their deaths' effect on Lily. He just doesn't, you know... get it, lol.
I, for one, really appreciate the idea that James wasn't in love with Lily from first year. I especially liked how your James gradually realized he liked her. That seems far more realistic. I also liked how the others teased him when they found out who he had a crush on, especially Peter. And lovely little kiss at the end!
Author's Response: Thanks so much, Gina! I'm really glad you liked it. Sarah x
I like this! I like the structure and repetition you've used, and it builds to a nice ending. I do, however, wonder if using Voldemort's name at the end might take away from the poem centering on Harry as the hero, since that's the last thing the reader is left with. Just something to think about. :) Nice job!
Author's Response: I'm glad you liked it! You made a really good point about the use of Voldemort's name. I wanted a powerful ending, but while Voldemort plays a vital role in the poem, it is supposed to be mainly about Harry. Hmmm...I will have to think about that, and maybe mess around with the poem a bit. Thanks much for reading and reviewing. I appreciate your feedback:)
Nominated for a 2011 Quicksilver Quill Award in Best Non-Canon Romance.
Ah Julia - I've already given you many of my thoughts about your story, but I did want to come by and publicly tell you how much I liked your story and enjoyed working with you and your writing. Forgive me if I repeat myself, but it's just so amazingly evocative. It's hard to even pinpoint what and how, but from your word choice to your sentence structure, your style is all your own and its really beautiful to read.
I admitted I knew nothing about the GG pairing, but as far as I'm concerned, this works on its own. Draco is done particularly well. And like many of your other fics, it leaves the reader wanting to know more about these characters you've developed as your own. What happened to the people in that photograph? How did Draco and Hermione first hook up? And of course - what happens next?? That's one thing you do so well, is give the reader just enough to want more.
Really wonderful story, Julia! I hope you get more reviews. Thanks for allowing me to work with you on it!
Author's Response: Awww Gina, thank you so much! For your review, your patience, and everything else! It was such a pleasure to work with you :)
Oh, I really loved the snowball fight. That was well played. Once again, you write the next generation so effortlessly I am envious. And between you and Natalie, I rather like Hugo/Scorpius. It's a nice twist on what Ron tells Rose at the end of DH. And I like how Gryffindor bravery doesn't always extend to relationships - I wrote the same idea into a J/L fic (what else?) because I think it's an interesting way to see Gryffindor. Two questions: who was Rose's ex, and what does Hugo do?
I liked it! Do you have more stories? Keep writing! (haha, don't you love it when reviews ask/say that?)
Author's Response: Oh, hmm, I can't think of anything else about Scugo at the moment and I have to say I haven't really thought about Hugo's career. I can't see him at the joke shop - well not in this incarnation - so maybe he works at the Ministry. I like the Gryff bravery thing when applied to relationships because we don;'t see them being that brave, do we? It took Hermione seven years to kiss Ron, after all, and they were rubbish at asking girls to the Ball. Rose's ex is just some random Ravenclaw - probably a prefect. In High she's with a Hufflepuff called Benedict MacMillan - I like him. This isn't compliant though. Thank you for the review ~Carole~
I think this is a lovely start! You touched on so many things that should be touched on when exploring Lupin's life, from his job issues to his lycanthropy to the loss of his friends. I notice there was no mention of Peter and am curious how your Lupin feels about that.
I really liked him using the name John for some reason. Such a nice detail.
While I noticed an occasional awkward turn of phrase - for example: "would not ever be washed away" might be "would never be washed away" - it's really a matter of preference and I thought your writing was very smooth and natural and easy to read.
I think you did a wonderful job with Lupin and have already, in one short chapter, set up a good cliffhanger! I look forward to more, so good luck as you continue!
Very cute! You picked the right little song to set for the twins. 'Mischief' is the perfect word for them as well. I would have loved more verses! Nice job! ~Gina :)
Nominated for the 2011 Best Poetry QSQ! Thanks, Gina/Gmariam!
Oooh, I like this! What a lovely look at Harry/Hermione's relationship. I love poems that use repetition like this, and the 'in silence' was a great phrase to use. And the way it changed at the end was a subtle, nice touch.
The rhyme and rhythm was well done. My only issue was with the second to last stanza, where bond/strong/Ron don't exactly rhyme, and the rhythm is off a bit as well as I read it. Really, you probably could leave it out and not even mention Ron's name, since we know that's what's going on and sometimes leaving it unsaid makes it more powerful. But, I like how the stanza talks about their bond and what they do for each other. Any awkwardness of that one part doesn't take away from the overall feel and flow of the poem. I thought it really captured Harry and Hermione's relationship in a wonderful way. Really nice job!
Author's Response: I didn't like the bond/strong/Ron thing as much as the other lines either, but... I didn't know what else to do with it. =/
Thanks for the great review, Gina!
I loved it! Wonderful story, Natalie. I am once again in awe of your ability to tell the minor characters' stories. Mandy Brocklehurst? Never heard of her, and now I love her. And what a beautiful job you've done of humanizing Ernie. He was a bit of a prat in the books, but he's so damaged here one can't help but feel sympathy for him.
The dialogue was great, and their lovemaking as a form of healing was perfectly done. But my favorite part? The mirror. Not only its wisecracks, but how you started and ended with it, and took us on a journey in between. Really well structured.
Fabulous story, dear. *hugs* ~Gina :)
Author's Response: You remember how difficult I found the prompt at first, don’t you? Ernie…is such a perfect picture of ‘unromantic’ that I had to dedicate a few angry AIM statuses to him. SO – I am relieved and happy to know you liked how I wrote him here. You’re one of those people whose opinion I value because you never shy away from criticism. : ) The mirror was my favourite part, too!
Lovely poem! I love the structure of this poem, Natalie. And the language is very beautiful, just flowing off the tongue with easy simplicity. The one word I didn't understand was the 'But' toward the end. It seems like it should be contrasting something, only I don't see the contrast, if that makes sense. Really, though, that's just a nitpick from a clueless free-verse reader, because I still love it! ~Gina :)
Author's Response: Ahhh...The 'but' part. All I can say in my defence is that I took my poetic license to create a contrast where it wasn't really needed. :P
Aww, isn't that last line sad? Because we know what happened after O.W.L.s, and he never got the chance to show her.
Very nice look into Snape's teenage character, Carole! It's all so perfectly balanced - his relationship with Lily, her relationship with James, Snape's drive and ambition. I really liked how he internalized flying - it wasn't just about beating Potter or showing Lily, but he grew to like it. I could see that. He obviously appreciated the journey of hard work, which seems very in character for a potions professor.
Author's Response: Thank you, Gina. Yes, I thought the last line was sad too - poor Snivellus. I did want to make the story more than just his obsession with Lily because I think that's overplayed and he was far more than just that. Glad you enjoyed the story. ~Carole~
This is very cool! I had not idea what a villanelle was but it's fascinating. Your two repeating lines are very powerful, most especially in the final stanza. You sure are crushing on Draco. ;) What was neat about this was how his relationship with Dumbledore was contrasted with his relationship to Voldemort. Almost makes me feel bad for him. ;) Lovely job! ~Gina :)
Author's Response: Thank you, Gina. I have to admit that I found this very hard and this was about the sixth attempt. I do seem to be crushing on Mr Malfoy at the moment, but originally I started writing about Ron and being attacked by the brains. Draco just lends himself to dark poetry. Thanks again ~Carole~
Carole! I once again can't believe you took this pairing of all the suggestions we gave you. It's really fascinating, though, so I'm glad you did. Well done and super original.
I think, though, that there is a bit too much dialogue at the beginning.
Haha! Just kidding! ;)
Actually, I really liked the beginning. Starting it as a fun makeup session seemed so age-appropriate and was a perfect set-up for their accidental kiss. You know I love dialogue. :)
One thing that surprised me was that I was sort of rooting for . . . Seamus. You make him such a decent, likable guy. I felt sort of bad that Lavender wasn't completely into him. Nice job with him.
Hermione was well done also, especially after events at the MoM. I really liked that you used Lavender's point of view, though. That was the right choice, as opposed to Hermione. Great job with Lavender.
Here is what I found so fascinating: the whole set-up for the end. The second kiss, the summer writing, the rejection. And then the last line: "You wouldn't want another witch snapping him up." OH! Brutal! I mean - what an awesome twist on Ron/Lavender - it was all revenge on Hermione! That was very, very cool, and perfectly done. Great job!
Author's Response: Thank you! Mmm, I felt sorry for Seamus, but it did spark off a whole new idea about him ... hee hee. Gina, I'm glad you enjoyed the story and the random pairing, and I hope you can understand how essential> the dialogue is to this story. I thought about using Hermione's POV for some parts, but it didn;t seem to work as well as Lavender's probably because I can't write Hermione very well. Thanks for reading and reviewing ~Carole~
Hi Natalie! What a neat idea, to explore all the Next-Generation kids this way. It will be interesting to see how their perceptions of each other play out. For example, Lucy gives her opinion of all her cousins, so it will be fun to see if their stories line up with that perception. Fun idea: you could take it anywhere. Are you planning on using the same day for all of them?
I already love Albus. Just the idea of him being kind to the cousin who doesn't fit in melts my heart. You mentioned something about Lucy not being very likable on LS, but I think it's more than she remains fairly enigmatic. She's not unlikable. She's unique. There are several things she says or does that make me go, Why? Now, it's probably not the scope of this piece to answer that question every time, but I would like a bit more depth to answer some of them.
I saw the kiss conversation and have to admit I did find it confusing as to whether she really did kiss him or not It could be made a little clearer that she is imagining it. Plus, I might have liked the details on her relationship/feelings with Albus to come before that to make it less out of the blue.
I LOVED the bits on Dominque and really hope you follow up on that in other chapters. And the idea of Hugo following Uncle Charlie into dragonry is great too!
Nice start, Natalie! Good luck as you continue! ~Gina :)
Author's Response: Yes! I’m planning for everything to happen on the same day. :D I’ve already finished Hugo, but I’m debating if I should post him later on, and do Fred’s first.
I like it! What I really like is how this chapter also nods back to your other fics. I can guess who Hugo is seeing, and no, I don't think Hermione is prepared. ;)
I thought you handled Hugo's talk well. Of course Hermione would be accepting, she just seems like that sort of person. You keep referring to how Fleur reacted and how Dominique left, so I hope you write more of that (not necessarily this story, of course, but sometime.)
I did notice one technical thing: a few times you used the word 'got' and it seemed a bit awkward. For example, "Today, I really got to talk to her." I think "Today, I really NEED to talk to her." might sound better. Also, "I should have just done this before she got a chance to speak." I hear "I should have just done this before she HAD a chance to speak." But then, I still use 'gotten' sometimes and I know that drives Carole nuts. ;)
Well done, Natalie. Keep up with this one! Who's next??
Author's Response: *saunters in late ungracefully*
You know, I quite like this! I wrote a James/Sirius story myself back in October (did not post it) and there is something about it that really intrigues me. I find it very believable and even a bit romantic. But I get ahead of myself. :)
First of all, I loved the beginning. You painted a very dark and dramatic picture of the night Sirius runs away. His desperation and defeat is palpatable. You added an interesting twist with Sirius being worried about James's reaction about the Whomping Willow incident. At least, I assume that is what you are referring to. I love stories that delve into that, because it had to have been traumatic for the Marauders. I thought it added another sad layer to his situation. I do wonder about the timeline though: in DH, Lily is still speaking to Snape about the Whomping Willow incident, and the incident in Snape's Worst Memory appears to happen later. James and Sirius don't seem angry at each other in Snape's Worst memory, which is at O.W.L.s, so it seems odd that now over the summer James is mad at Sirius about the Whomping Willow incident.
That said, I'm perfectly happy accepting this how it is because I like how you used its effect on Sirius. It always seemed odd to me anyway that something so deadly would happen at the Whomping Willow, and then James and Sirius go and pick on Snape afterward at the lake. So I'm curious to hear your take on the timeline. :)
I love that James just instinctively seemed to know something had happened and took Sirius in. I thought their talk was great - really, I'm impressed to read dialogue in second person! And their kiss was well done. I didn't give Lily a second though. ;)
The second person narrative - come on, I'd be remiss if I didn't mention it, right? - really grabbed me. I really liked reading it this way and thought you did a great job with it.
The last line was brilliant. This is a great look at Sirius running away as well as a lovely James/Sirius moment - nice job! ~Gina :)
Author's Response: I agree, James/Sirius is very intriguing! er, honestly, with regards to the timeline, I didn't remember the order of events correctly. >.> I don't have a copy of DH available atm and it didn't occur to me that I was wrong and I wasn't really thinking that much about it when I was writing . . . so, yeah. I'm glad you liked the second person aspect! I love writing in second person. I think it's really hard to find a way to tell a story so that it needs to be in second person and I love the challenge, but I know some people don't particularly like to read second person. Thank you so much for this review! It's got me grinning like a mad woman. :D <3Mere
I have to admit, when I read this on the boards, I wasn't sure who the woman was. I think I know now, and I think you've hit on a fascinating pairing. There is a great story in this poem, if that makes sense. Are you going to do more with the whole one-night-of-stolen-memories idea?
I really like the flow of the poem, but I wonder if there is just a bit too much repetition. I usually love repetition, but it might overwhelm the poem here.
Otherwise, you totally nailed Tom Riddle and like I said - fascinating story! Good luck in the challenge! ~Gina :)
Author's Response: I...completely forgot I had reviews to respond to. *fail*
On the day of Draco Malfoy's post-war trial for the conspiracy to murder Albus Dumbledore, one Harry James Potter offered to give testimony. But what did Draco's oldest enemy have to say about the boy who had caused him nothing but grief for seven years?
This story has been nominated for a 2011 Quicksilver Quill Award: Best General Story.
Hey Twin. I'm making my way through the Recents list tonight and quite liked your piece. You chose a really interesting moment to touch on, and I think you hit on exactly the right thing: that Draco finally started to question right and wrong that night on the Tower. What's interesting is that Harry--and as we know from canon, the Wizengamot--decided that Draco should not be punished for what he did in order to continue the change that began that night. That's a fascinating way to look at the justice system. I don't think I would have voted for Draco if I was on the Wizengamot. Consequences are consequences. They should have all gone to prison. I liked that your broke Draco a little--arrogant little twit--and kept Harry's edge. I wouldn't want Harry to go all soft in this moment, because like he pointed out, Draco was NOT a good person. He did loads of bad stuff besides join the Dark Lord.
Anyway - that's rambly. Like I said, I think you did a very good job with this moment. My only concrit would be that at times it felt a bit unfocused. It seemed to float between an omniscient point of view to being more focused on Draco at the beginning and Harry at the end. I would only suggest sticking to one point of view to make it more effective.
All right, time to keep reading and writing. And an unofficial welcome to the prolific list! ~Gina :)
I'm so not surprised that it felt unfocused, considering the time of day itw as when I wrote it (i.e. 2am). I took an old drabble and expanded it, which was originally omnisient, which is probably how that happened. I would go back and re-read it, but I cba at the moment, lol.
I really wanted Harry to get his measure of revenge on Draco, because we KNOW that he has it in him to be just as petty, but he's disguising it as doing something nice. It's almost like the boardroom scene in teh movie Liar, Liar where Jim Carrey's character insults his boss very crassly and they all laughed. Well, I laughed. Oh, I laughed ebilly.
Lovely visit, Twin, and great review!
Ha, that's cute! Great idea with the charmed perfume, and especially in using Romilda. She got her Harry after all. I was glad Seamus came in and stopped it, though...but then happy to see Harry let Draco get his Valentine, lol. I think you worked out the end just right, the last line was brilliant. Happy Valentine's Day!
Author's Response: Do you think I should save Draco? Hmm, not sure. Glad you enjoyed the story even though it was pretty silly. I had to save Harry from Romilda or my canon card would have been revoked indefinitely. Thank you for the review; I do appreciate it ~Carole~