Hi! Thanks for the questions! I all but forgot about this place so I was pretty surprised to see someone posting!
Hi, Celeste! I adore your stories, and I thought I'd ask you a few questions!
1. Your writing style is so lovely and distinctive. How has it formed and developed over time?
Thank you! Um, to be honest, my style comes and goes without ever letting me know where it's headed. I started off in HPFF with some of the clunkiest writing ever; basically, I was one of those people trying to write deep, dark angst but not knowing how pretentious about half of that stuff is. Then it developed into this flowery style that makes me seriously cringe when I go back to reread it. I toned down on the flowery a bit and developed this style my writer friends called 'floaty', I think. The thing about 'floaty' is that it makes for some very pretty writing, but being overhanded with it can seriously impair your writing's emotional honesty. It worked for those little one-shots I have like 'Cloud' and 'orange groves', but trying to maintain it for a longer work became suffocating - ie my novella 'The Sound of Silence'. I'd kept myself wrapped up in angst for so long that I became a bit sick of it and tried to do comedy, which I ended up having lots of fun with. Working on stuff like my James/OC 'The Heartache Squadron', my Cho fic and especially my Albus/OC really freed me from being chained to writing 'pretty' and allowed me to just have fun with writing. Which is where I think it is now, actually. If the emotions don't ring true with me or the observations don't sound honest, I really struggle with writing it these days.
2. If you could choose one author that really inspired you and is someone you aspire to be like, who would it be and why?
Elesphyl really inspired me to write in my early days. Back in about 2008 when I was just a lurker on this site and didn't know the faintest thing about writing, I really found a lot of inspiration from and admiration for Kalina's writing. I thought her writing was so pretty that I more or less wanted to try it myself. In particular, she wrote two one-shots that really struck me with their descriptive beauty -- 'The Lioness' and 'Insidious Deeds'. That was back in the beginning, though. Later on, I really loved 'Nocturne', which I thought was her most emotionally compelling and elegant story, along with 'North'.
With that said, though, I have to say that Elesphyl really impacted me in my early days of writing, back when I was still pondering whether or not to give it a shot myself. To be fair, I can't just pick her though, because my writing's been impacted by so many HPFF authors and so many fics. sixty wrote 'Light Bulb Nudity', which was the most influential thing I'd ever read back when I was like 15. I adored llyralen's 'Honeybees' and GubraithianFire's 'Oeil Pour Oeil'.
3. Bathing in Roses was such a pleasure to read, and I really loved it. Was there any one who inspired the character of Albus?
Aha, thank you! I mentioned that 'Bathing in Roses' is partially inspired by 'It Started With a Kiss', which is a Japanese manga and TV show. So Albus is partially inspired by that original character. Then a lot of him is my own invention. I really wanted to write a hero that my readers couldn't fawn over because he was just that big of a jerk. It's rather depressing to note this, but most stories on HPFF are written by young girls projecting their idea of an ideal guy. But alarmingly enough, the main male protagonist is often rude, torments the girl, is rude, is icy, and etc but more often that not, his behavior is excused because he "secretly" fancies the girl or he's just that good looking. I didn't want to do that with Albus. He is a jerk and I tried my best not to allow my readers to romanticize him. He was also a parody of those icy, angsty males who are icy and angsty because of some deep, dark secret that torments them (and somehow gives them permission to be rude to the girl, right?). I had a lot of reviewers ask me what was up with Albus and what his backstory was. And at the end, I really just wanted to do a ta-da, no backstory, he's just grumpy! So yeah, Albus was a combination of a character and also of several concepts I wanted to try out.
4. What are some things you'd really like to write but haven't had the time for/haven't gotten to write yet? Do you think you'll ever write them?
Many things! I wanted to write a mystery/murder fic because I'm a big fan of the mystery genre (Agatha Christie was my sole source of fiction for a summer), and I'd really like to see how I'd manage with suspense and foreshadowing. It's something I really haven't tried before. But again, I struggle with this just because it requires am immense amount of planning ahead and I suck with planning. So it's seriously in one of those 'we'll see' places. I also have a decent amount of a Narcissa fic written where she's reflecting on her own life. I do think it's some of my better writing and I hope I get to finishing it someday. Lastly, I have a Marauders era short story collection. I really like the Marauders era and its characters, but I think the foursome + Lily are so overwritten that I hesitate to continue it. Though I do have a main OC who is none of the four or Lily, but rather a random Ravenclaw. I looked forward to writing an ensemble again after having so much fun with it in BIR and I'd love to write Ravenclaws, since I've never written them before. I really like the first chapter I've written, so it's a 'maybe someday' sort of thing.
5. Your characterization and development of your characters is so in depth and wonderful. How do you decide how to write character and what they'll be like?
Ha, I actually think that those are my major weaknesses! I have trouble grasping who my characters are and I fumble around a bit. In the end though, they have to be at least one of two things for me to write them. Either a) honest and realistic or b) entertaining. Some times, they're just characters I wish existed (like June) and other times, they're characters that pop out of nowhere (Priscilla).
Thanks so much for your questions! After such a long hiatus from writing, it was nice to start actively thinking about and analyzing my own writing again! Plus, I do recognize your username so thanks for being a long time reader