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SongFic Tutorial by Staff

Format: Song fic
Chapters: 3
Word Count: 3,262

Rating: 12+
Warnings: Contains profanity, Sensitive topic/issue/theme

Genres: General
Characters: Dumbledore, Snape

First Published: 08/21/2006
Last Chapter: 08/21/2006
Last Updated: 02/08/2014

This tutorial was written by staff to assist in complying with the Site Rules related to the use of song lyrics in stories. It demonstrates the difference between songfics (which are permitted on the archive) and karaoke-style or paraphrased stories (which are not permitted).

Chapter 2: SongFic Tutorial: Unacceptable (Karaoke-Style) Fic

Karaoke-Style (Unacceptable) Songfic Tutorial

The following is an example of a songfic that would NOT be validated. Characters may not sing more than 4 lines of song lyrics per chapter – No Exceptions. Also, this chapter would not meet the 500 word count rule. Song lyrics do not count toward the minimum word count needed per chapter.

Again, this is an example of a chapter that would be REJECTED.

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.

Man in Black
Lyrics by Johnny Cash

End of term exams were approaching and the students are Hogwarts were bored, stressed, and tired of their schoolwork. Their minds were on the approaching holidays, shopping for presents, vacation plans . . . in short, anything other than their studies.

Professor Dumbledore eyed the Great Hall with a twinkle in his eye. He beamed and swung his wand across the room. “Karaokus!!” he boomed, and the room was instantly transformed into the spitting image of a muggle karaoke bar, complete with a dangling disco ball. He waved his wand once more, and a juke-box karaoke machine appeared next to the staff table, which had become a stage.

“Honestly,” protested Professor McGonagall. “What is the meaning of this nonsense, Albus?”

Dumbledore grinned. “We need to blow off some steam. KARAOKE PARTY!!!” He waved his wand yet again, and a quarter shot out of his pocket and floated across the room, into the juke box.

Am enchanted microphone floated in the air, slowly hovering over the crowd until it stopped suddenly, over Professor Snape. He scowled, but the music began to play, and as he recognized the powerful chords, his face brightened and he grabbed the microphone and began to sing:

Well, you wonder why I always dress in black,
Why you never see bright colors on my back,
And why does my appearance seem to have a somber tone.
Well, there's a reason for the things that I have on.

Everyone gasped, they had never known that their Potions professor possessed such a deep, rich, silky voice. Why, with that voice, he could have been famous!

Snape had their attention now, and he wanted to tell them how he really felt:

I wear the black for the poor and the beaten down,
Livin' in the hopeless, hungry side of town,
I wear it for the prisoner who has long paid for his crime,
But is there because he's a victim of the times.

Professor Flitwick gasped with horror, but Snape continued singing and shimmying to the music:

I wear the black for those who never read,
Or listened to the words that Jesus said,
About the road to happiness through love and charity,
Why, you'd think He's talking straight to you and me.

Now they were starting to understand him. “Tell us more,” cried Professor Vector, who was waving her arms in the air and dancing along with the music.

Happy to oblige, Snape jumped on top of the table and began singing at the top of his lungs, stomping his black cowboy boots in rhythm with the song:

Well, we're doin' mighty fine, I do suppose,
In our streak of lightnin' cars and fancy clothes,
But just so we're reminded of the ones who are held back,
Up front there ought 'a be a Man In Black.

The students began cheering, for they had never know that Professor Snape could sing.
Albus smiled happily. He had known that Professor Snape needed a break more than anyone. It brightened his heart, to see Snape acting like the rock star he could have been, had he not joined the Death Eaters.

Voldemort’s most angelic-voiced Death Eater had a firm grip on the microphone and he was singing to the crowd, giving them all his energy, doing the show of his lifetime:

I wear it for the sick and lonely old,
For the reckless ones whose bad trip left them cold.
I wear the black in mournin' for the lives that could have been,
Each week we lose a hundred fine young men..

And, I wear it for the thousands who have died,
Believen’ that the Lord was on their side,
I wear it for another hundred thousand who have died,
Believen’ that we all were on their side.

Several female students began to dance in a circle, and several boys from Slytherin House started a mosh pit up front, by the stage.

Snape smiled at their enthusiasm and continued to sing, directing the next verse at Professor Dumbledore:

Well, there's things that never will be right I know,
And things need changin' everywhere you go,
But 'til we start to make a move to make a few things right,
You'll never see me wear a suit of white.

Ah, I'd love to wear a rainbow every day,
And tell the world that everything's OK,
But I'll try to carry off a little darkness on my back,
'Till things are brighter, I'm the Man In Black.

The students were cheering wildly, and Minerva wiped a tear from her eye. It was the perfect song for Severus, and Albus Dumbledore magical karaoke jukebox had known it.