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#1 Arithmancy_Wiz

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 08:27 PM

After seven years on the site, I think it’s time I took the plunge and posted one of these. Feel free to ask me anything -- writing, reviewing, staffing or otherwise.

 

Author’s Page (15 - M)

 

Completed and WIP Stories:

 

Undertow (M/WIP) - Two years on the run from the law has taken its toll on Rose Weasley, but it’s been worth the sacrifice to be with the man she loves. But when Rose suddenly finds herself separated from Viktor Krum and thrown back into a world she thought she’d left behind forever, Rose must decide if a life without love is a life worth living at all. Rose/Krum

 

Over the Edge (M/Completed) - Viktor Krum, celebrated athlete turned drug-addled has-been, and Rose Weasley, a woman too young to know better than to get involved with him. When their paths cross, something awakens within them. Something powerful enough to drive them both over the edge. Rose/Krum

 

After We Fall (15+/WIP) - When tragedy strikes the Malfoy family, Scorpius looks to Lily Potter for comfort. But when tragedy turns to malice, Lily must seek the help of a man who understands what darkness truly means. A man named Severus Snape. Scorpius/Lily Luna

 

Time of Day (15+/One-shot) - Lily helps a young boy say goodbye. Lily/Snape (unrequited)


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#2 patronus_charm

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 08:36 PM

As I'm working my way through Over the Edge I decided to come and ask you some questions, and I wanted to be the first to post here ;)

 

1. Why did you decide to write Over the Edge?

2. Do you like other non-canon pairings? If so, which ones?

3. What is your favourite era and why?

4. Weirdest plot bunny?

5. Which pairing do you hate the most?

6. If you could bring one person back to life, who would it be and why?

 

I'm done for now :D


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#3 Violet Gryfindor

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 08:50 PM

How do you tend to approach the next generation characters? I've found that your interpretations of those characters is exciting and refreshing, but I'd like to know more about how you avoid the cliches and make these characters your own.

Also, how do you plan your stories? They have complex plots, and I'd love to hear about your methods. :)
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#4 Arithmancy_Wiz

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 12:57 AM

Hooray for questions! Thank you so much to both of you.

 

1. Why did you decide to write Over the Edge? I have this on-going list of very general ideas, and one of them was to write about a "faded celebrity" and his much younger girlfriend -- an idea that came, oddly enough, from watching one of those PBS infomercial/documentaries. I thought it would be an interesting dynamic to explore, dealing with the inherent difficulties in a relationship with a large age gap, plus the added complication of having it all play out in the public eye.

2. Do you like other non-canon pairings? If so, which ones? I'm open to pretty much all pairings, but I hold a special place in my heart for pairings that sort of fall in the no-man's land, neither explicitly canon or definitely AU.

3. What is your favourite era and why? Next-gen. It's my favorite to read and to write. I like the freedom it allows, and there is less need with that era to be overly worried about making characters feel "in character" in terms of how they speak and act in the HP books.

4. Weirdest plot bunny? For fanfic, a HP story written in a Downton Abbey-esk style. For OF, I'm working on a story about magic fruit.

5. Which pairing do you hate the most? Anything with Hagrid. I try to be open-minded, but I'm sorry, I find Hagrid/anyone to be inherently creepy.

6. If you could bring one person back to life, who would it be and why? haha, I'm far too nervous to play God, even hypothetically

 

 

How do you tend to approach the next generation characters? I've found that your interpretations of those characters is exciting and refreshing, but I'd like to know more about how you avoid the cliches and make these characters your own.

 

Thank you so much. I feel like this is a question and a compliment all rolled into one! I tend to approach Next-Gen characters by starting with what I know. For characters like Lily or Rose, most of what we know comes from their parents. For me, it isn’t about making them mini-Ginny or mini-Hermione, but I do try to think about how someone RAISED by Ginny or Hermione might turn out.

 

The rest of the character development (next-gen and otherwise) comes mostly from necessity. I feel like that’s a terribly unglamorous response, but a super fascinating character is no good if they don’t face any tension or drama in a story. So I try and make character choices that make for (I hope) the most interesting and realistic story. For example, in After We Fall, a big portion of the plot focuses on Lily trying to rescue Scorpius. There’s tension in that she’s trying to save someone she cares for, but I thought it would be even more interesting if she struggles with it because of past wounds between the two. Now she has not only a physical journey, but an emotional one too. That, in turn, requires certain traits of Scorpius. To maintain a sense of realism, he has to be both the kind of boy Lily could fall in love with and the kind who could break her heart.

 

I think there is a fine line between bending your characters to serve the plot and creating characters that strengthen the plot. I work hard to maintain internal consistency so I REALLY hope I manage to stay with the former. 

 

Also, how do you plan your stories? They have complex plots, and I'd love to hear about your methods.

 

I’m not a much of a pre-plotter, but prior to writing anything I do try and nail down the major conflict. I also like to have a strong sense of where it all will end. If I know how it ends, that lets me know how far from their goal the characters need to be at the start. But I think real trick for me is knowing the climax of the story as early on as possible. That allows me to start weaving in various elements right from the start. I love that moment in a story when something that seemed so trivial at the start turns out to be the key to the whole mystery.

 

The rest tends to unfold organically. I throw as much at my characters as possible early on and than scramble to pull it all together by the end. After every scene, I’m always asking myself what I can I do to raise the stakes more -- never let the characters get comfortable. I don’t worry right away how it will play out, as long as it feels true to what’s come before and can make what comes next just a bit more interesting.

 

Oh man, this was so much fun! Thanks again to you both!!


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#5 AditiDraco95

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 06:47 AM

Hello! I have a few questions :)

 

1. How did you come up with the idea of "The Time of Day"?

2. I noticed you have two stories with Rose Weasley/Viktor Krum pairing. How did you "discover" this pairing, or what made you write it?

3. Do you face writer's block? If so, how do you deal with it?


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#6 Arithmancy_Wiz

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 03:59 PM

Hi, AD! Thank you so much for the questions!

 

1. How did you come up with the idea of "The Time of Day"? I can't remember where the exact idea came from, but I've always had a soft spot for Snape/Lily -- not so much having them live happily ever after, but stories that explore their somewhat tragic relationship. I guess ToD was my attempt to put some closure on the relationship. The decision to depict Snape as a child was meant to sort of reflect how emotionally immature he was -- his obsessive love, the way he sort of bullied Harry and couldn't let go of childhood grudges. He was sort of stuck in this pathetic, pitiable place, and he couldn't really be at peace until he had the chance to apologize to Lily and let it all go.

 

2. I noticed you have two stories with Rose Weasley/Viktor Krum pairing. How did you "discover" this pairing, or what made you write it? I've never actually seen the pairing anywhere else, though I'm sure it's out there. For me, I sort of came upon it through process of elimination. I knew I wanted to write a story about a has-been celebrity, and I knew I wanted to use a canon character (as opposed to writing about an OC). I was also looking for someone who was troubled, but whose problems were primarily self-inflicted -- so I didn't want to use someone who was famous for having fought in the war or something like that. Krum seemed a good fit, and the fact that he came into fame so young seemed like a good set-up for someone who might fall prey to the pitfalls of celebrity. Once I had Viktor picked, Rose was pretty much a no-brainier. She was just about the right age for what I needed, but there was also the inherent complication of how distasteful Ron and Hermione would likely find the relationship.

 

Yikes! It sounds kind of cold and calculated now that lay it all out like that, but I really have grown to love writing the pairing.

 

3. Do you face writer's block? If so, how do you deal with it? Oh yes, all the time! I don't usually struggle with knowing what I want to write next, but I will spend days, sometimes even weeks, writing and re-writing the same scene over and over again. Like a lot of writers, I'm a perfectionist and the fact that my writing isn't and never will be perfect can drive me a bit loopy sometimes. The only thing that snaps me out of it is refusing to allow myself to read over what I've already written and just move on -- sort of NaNoWriMo style. I usually find that once I've written a couple more scenes, I'm no longer so obsessed with fixing the ones that came before.


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#7 Jchrissy

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Posted 07 April 2013 - 08:38 PM

Yay you finally have one of these! Let's dig in, then ;).

 

So I have to ask some OtE questions!

1)

Spoiler
?

2) What is your favorite part about exploring Rose and Krum's relationship? Is it the sort of chemistry they have? their contradicting personalities? The way they've seemed to really come to rely on one another? Or anything else?

3) When you first started Over the Edge, did you have an idea of all the characters that would be involved or did they sort of push themselves into it?

4) What do you think was the most rewarding part about this?

5) We've talked a lot about plot and pacing, do you think OtE helped you really find a good balance between too fast and too slow?

6) And a staffer question: You balance writing, reviewing, answering reviews, your work, your RL, and staffering. That's a lot. What usually slips first? What gets the most attention and what's the first you let sort of... dwindle.. when something else comes up?

 

Okay, interrogation over!


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#8 Arithmancy_Wiz

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Posted 08 April 2013 - 07:07 PM

I know, I'm such a slacker! And I probably should have put in my response on how I combat writer's block "...whining to Jchrissy about it."

 

1) I always knew it would end the way it did. I didn't have the location or the smaller details worked out until very near the end, but I knew pretty much right after the prologue was written that it would turn out the way it did. Well... one exception. I didn't decide that the "other author" mentioned in chapter one would turn out to be the ex-wife. That just sort of happened in Chapter 11.

 

2) What is your favorite part about exploring Rose and Krum's relationship? Is it the sort of chemistry they have? their contradicting personalities? The way they've seemed to really come to rely on one another? Or anything else? Oooh, that's a tough one. I guess the thing I most enjoy is the sort of back-and-forth banter they have. It shows (I hope) that they are a good intellectual match, and how that can be sort of fun and sexy. Mixing that with those few hard truth, cards-on-the-table moments they seem to stumble into just makes them really enjoyable to write.

 

3) When you first started Over the Edge, did you have an idea of all the characters that would be involved or did they sort of push themselves into it? Aside from Rose and Krum, almost everyone else came out in the process of writing. I knew a few small bits from the start, like that Ron and Hermione would eventually make an appearance, and that we'd meet at least one ex-wife along the way, but that was about it. Everyone else just sort of fell into it as I went. Rose needed a boss, so I gave her one. She needed a friend, so I plunked Albus into the story early on. I just always tried to make sure that if I brought a new character in they (1) served a purpose, and (2) didn't just melt into thin air.

 

4) What do you think was the most rewarding part about this? Finishing it!! No matter what else I do or don't write, I can always say I finished a novel!

 

5) We've talked a lot about plot and pacing, do you think OtE helped you really find a good balance between too fast and too slow? I think I'm still very much a work in progress in both areas, but OtE definitely helped me realize that I enjoy telling face-paced stories. They don't have to have a lot of action, but I like to finish a chapter and really feel like I'm moving forward in the story -- like a dominoes sort of feeling where each event pushes you right into the next.

 

6) And a staffer question: You balance writing, reviewing, answering reviews, your work, your RL, and staffering. That's a lot. What usually slips first? What gets the most attention and what's the first you let sort of... dwindle.. when something else comes up? Real life...what's that?! Truthfully, I've been far more consistent over the years when it comes to staffing than to writing or reviewing. I try to not let any of it slip, but if I have to put something aside for a few days, it's usually the writing.


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#9 WeasleyTwins

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Posted 17 July 2013 - 02:24 PM

Hello! Figured I'd stop by and bother you here :bye:

 

1. We've been discussing "readable" fiction as opposed to "Literature."  What are your favorite OF authors who you think really exemplify this trait?

2. How long have you been writing?

3. What is your favorite part of the HPFF community?

4. Over the Edge is finished (I'm behind! :whistling: ).  How did it feel to finish a novel?  How did you accomplish such an extraordinary goal?

5. What gives you the most problems when writing, if any (description, plot, pace, etc.)?

 

Can't wait to read your responses :good:


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#10 Arithmancy_Wiz

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Posted 19 July 2013 - 06:54 PM

Questions and a review all in one week?! You are so spoiling me!!

 

1. We've been discussing "readable" fiction as opposed to "Literature."  What are your favorite OF authors who you think really exemplify this trait? Sue Grafton, for sure. Her books are easy to read, have great plot twists, and her characters all feel like people you either know or wish you knew. She isn't trying to change the world with her novels, but her prose are still very solid and I think she's got a great corner on the "popular fiction" market.

 

2. How long have you been writing? Since March of 2006. It's easy to remember since it's when I joined the site. Aside from a few creative writing assignments in school, I'd honestly never written fiction before then.

 

3. What is your favorite part of the HPFF community? I love being a staffer. It's the best of both worlds. I get to enjoy what the site has to offer, plus I get to try and contribute to making it better for everyone else!

 

4. Over the Edge is finished (I'm behind! whistling.gif ).  How did it feel to finish a novel?  How did you accomplish such an extraordinary goal? It felt crazy! After more than six years on the site, it was a LONG time coming, so there was a mix of elation and sadness that I hadn't done it years ago. I'd say the one thing that really made this story different from all the others that I'd started but never finished was that I was writing as myself. For a long time, I thought I was supposed to try and emulate JKR's style. I guess that was the byproduct of discovering writing and fanfiction all at the same time. But once I realized that I neither could nor should try to write like anyone else, the writing itself became much easier and much more satisfying. OtE is FAR from perfect, but it's 100% my voice, and that feels amazing!

 

5. What gives you the most problems when writing, if any (description, plot, pace, etc.)? Everything gives me a problem, just in different ways :p I'm very slow when it comes to description. I don't mind writing it, but it takes me a long time to pick out the most important details and find just that right word or phrase to bring it to life. I'm a horrible pre-plotter. I pick an ending early on, but I do a lot of plotting as I go, so I have been known to write myself into corners on occasion. Pacing I'm getting a better feel for, but it's still a work in progress. I try to use a pace similar to what might be found in OF, which I think is a lot slower than in most FF, since a lot of people may feel more free to jump in early with so much of the groundwork of characters and setting already being common knowledge. The only think that isn't a HUGE problem is dialog... or maybe it is and I just don't know it yet. Though even with that, I still struggle with the old standards of when to identify the speaker, including action and physical movements in the dialog, etc.

 

Thank you so much for the questions!!!

 


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