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Diary Entries & Letters Tutorial by Staff

Format: One-shot
Chapters: 1
Word Count: 773

Rating: 12+
Warnings: No Warnings

Genres: General
Characters: Lupin, Lily, Tonks
Pairings: Bill/Fleur, Harry/Ginny, James/Lily, Remus/Tonks

First Published: 06/15/2006
Last Chapter: 06/15/2006
Last Updated: 03/24/2012

This tutorial was written by staff to assist in complying with the Site Rules related to the inclusion of diary entries and letters in a story. Diary entries/letters may not comprise more than 1/3 of the total word count of any chapter.

Chapter 1: Diary Entries and Letters

Letter and Diary Entry Tutorials

Submissions deemed not to contain enough plotting or content to be considered a story will be rejected. This can include stories that take the form of letter exchanges, diary entries, reality tv series, game shows, etc.

HPFF follows a 1/3 rule. This means that things such as letters, diary entries, poems, newspaper articles, etc., may not comprise more than one-third of the overall word count of any chapter. Karaoke fics (i.e., stories wherein characters sing all or part of a published or self-written song) are not accepted on this site. For more information on the use of song lyrics, please see the songfic tutorial.

The following is an example of a story containing a letter that complies with the 1/3 rule. The same set-up also applies to diary entries, poems, newspaper articles, passages from books, etc. This story is only acceptable for validation because the letter (or letters) does not comprise more than one-third of the overall word count AND the letter is original to the author. Quoted or borrowed material may never exceed 3-4 lines per chapter.

If you have questions regarding your particular story, please contact the staff directly via the forums, email, or our trouble ticket system. Questions posted as reviews to this story will not be answered.

“Tonks, babies cry – I promise. If you leave him be, he’ll tire himself out and fall asleep.”

You were finding it impossible to concentrate. The sounds of screams had long since stopped registering on your auditory range but her frequent cries for help couldn’t be ignored.

“Not like this, they don’t. Help me!”

The last two years and the fall of Voldemort had been cause for more than one marriage and more than one of their resultant children was residing in the spare rooms of headquarters during the insurmountable task of compiling evidence against all 24 captured Death Eaters. For some reason that was, as yet, unknown to you, your beloved but apparently insane wife had agreed to take handle of the latest in this infectious strain – James.

Setting your quill limply on the desk, you pushed a pile of papers atop the book you’d been reading and made your way across the hall. Stubborn and raven-haired as his father, he had been screaming since Ginny dropped him off.

“What do you have to say that is so important - because, unless it is a strategy for implicating Peter in those murders, I really don’t care?” you grumbled, reaching into the bassinette and drawing him out. In three months, you hadn’t really taken the time to look at James and, as you held him now, the unintended “why” surfaced. Aside from the brown eyes, he was a vision of Harry – Harry before the scar adorned his forehead. Harry…before.

He’s getting so big so fast. He’s outgrown his clothes again and James finally got Sirius and Peter to help bring the crib into the house from the garage. Mum, you really wouldn’t believe it if you saw him. I swear he’ll be walking any day now! James is already trying to teach him to play Quidditch but that is another story entirely.

I know you were looking forward to us coming for the holidays this year but I’m not sure we’ll be able to do it. James is taking us away for a few weeks and the vacation will be nice.

I’ve sent along a few of the newer pictures of Harry and I’ll write as soon as I can. Send Petunia and Vernon my love and see if you can persuade them to part with pictures of Dudley in his Halloween costume – it’s a tradition I really do miss.

With Love,
Lily, Harry and James Potter

“So all you have to do is talk to him like that and he quiets down? – Remus?”

You grimaced and shuddered, allowing your line of vision to recalibrate and taking your focus off of the place on the baby’s forehead where Harry’s scar lie. Tonks had collapsed into a dusty armchair, grinning in a sorrowful sort of way.

“I…yes, that’s really all there is to it, sometimes. Would you like to hold him now he’s calmed down some?” The baby suddenly felt awkward and heavy in your arms. He didn’t seem ti fit properly and you wanted nothing more than to hand him off to someone – anyone – else, but Tonks waved you off, holding out a half-eaten bottle and shaking her head.

“I had enough already and Fleur is dropping Zoe off in a few hours. He’s happy there – you keep him. I’m going to go get a sandwich.”