skjdhflasdfjlasdf aksjdhflaskjdflasdjfh laskdjfhlasd my heart--
I have never, ever, been a Snilly believer until this moment, do you understand? I mean I believed that it could have happened but it never felt so raw and real and honest and it never broke my heart before now.
I have so many things to say about this so I will address your actual areas of concern before I go on a wild rampage because this is an amazing one-shot and I just don't know if I can contain the feels to be coherent for long.
Flow: I love what you have done with the individual sections. These are technically called "crots" which is something I learned in creative writing class and is a word that makes me laugh every time I use it or read it but I have rarely encountered a story that uses them more effectively than this. You've really made Sev's life seem like a string of his encounters with Lily, and you've chosen all the right times, and this is so sparse and so--so complete somehow. I hardly need to say that the circular nature of ending with the same images in the end crot as in the first is stunning and smart, and--this will sound horrible of me as a person, but it makes Lily Evans a real person for the same time. (If you can't tell, I think the flow is fabulous and I basically had to tell myself to slow down because I wanted to read all of it at once but actually slowing down to take it all in in its own time was so, so worth it!)
What I've mentioned about Lily leads me into characterization. I've read so many stories that try so hard to break out of the stereotype of perfect head-girl redhead Lily Evans so that they're more noticeably not this characterization more than they're actually a characterization of their own, but yours doesn't read like that at all, even though we really don't see any of that goody-goody Lily Evans here, either. I think--in a way she's not the canon Lily, not really, but I believe your version more, or like her better. I don't know which.
Severus--well, he's pigheaded and sensitive which somehow, you make go together as if they're not really impossible things, and oh my god what matters to him matters to me, and I can almost forgive him for hating Harry so much when I think about how this could have been what he had and lost, or never really had and always wished he had, or which he had and which he let go.
In a word: original, fascinating characterization. Which is three words, but I am reeling a bit so just forgive me please.
As for never having read a Snilly one-shot before, all I can say is that it must have done you a great amount of good. This reads as completely believable, if I haven't gotten that across already. As for dynamic, I think you must mean lively, because of course their relationship changes over time (which is dynamic as I understand it--), and I think their ups and downs or, rather, twists, turns, somersaults, etc, are well-done and energetic and heartbreaking and aslkdjfhalksjdf.
I think what's missing from this is only explanation of smaller things, but I don't want you to try to add anything, because there's this sort of mystique about it and some amount of drama gained from leaving things beautiful and lofty. It's not necessarily a trade-off, information for style--I think it's just an idiosyncrasy of the style you're writing that not every little thing is explained. BUT I LOVE IT. Don't feel like you need to add at all. This is so--fresh--it's like--the metaphors and descriptions you use are sometimes so striking to me in that, if I saw another author using them, I'd sort of be put off because they wouldn't have used them as well as you. I mean, grass and the field and clouds and flowers? I'd be gagging if it was another story, but somehow you make it work and I believe it and it means something to me. Which I would count as a huge, huge accomplishment. You should really be proud of this piece; it's excellent.
I'm sorry I can't let you know what might seem off about it. The only thing I could say is that sometimes, I don't know whether he's telling the story, even the crots set in the past, from that actual time or from sometime after the last crot. There's a bit of confusion with psychic distance, which refers to how far away in time the narrator is from the events that take place. That could be it, but I don't know, because your feeling could also just be that of a slightly self-aware and perhaps self-conscious writer towards her own work. If that's it, nothing I tell you will probably change that, though I can't stress enough how much I love this one-shot and how glad I am you stopped by my thread!
In summary: I think this is written masterfully, and you've made me believe in the Snilly ship, which is a new experience, but you've made it thrilling, painful, and raw, sparse, meaningful.
I have no idea whether or not this will have been any help to you, because I don't even remember now that I am at the end anything I said because it feels like I was just flailing all over it and I'm sorry if it's just fangirling but I hope that this is, even the tiniest bit, helpful to you. Sometimes it is harder to talk about things I like than things I take issue with, because all I want to say is "I LOVE IT IT IS GREAT NEVER CHANGE" etc.
Do not be surprised if you see me checking out your other fics and leaving just as flail-y reviews, because that is sort of just how I am.
Loved this. Incredibly impressed, and refreshed, and mostly impressed and also jealous.
Author's Response: djnbdfkfb gldlslsaama.
Seriously. Seriously -
You've litterally made my day, week, month? Year?
I'm so happy you know all the fancy words to what I'm doing haha Whenever someone comments on something, I keep on going, 'Oh, so THAT'S what I've been doing?' hahaha Crots. I'll have to remember that one. And sign up for some writing class. Soon.
I have the biggest grin on my face ever. Seriously. I look scary. I'm so pleased that you liked this.
Okay. Off to the things you mentioned.
Lily's characterization: I am so, so, so, so, so, so pleased you liked her. I'm just really tired of the goodie-two-shoes image people keep on giving her. I just. Don't. Believe. It. So her smoking? That was me rebelling. I may be slightly biased, having written this one myself, but I really do see Lily in this one. She's fierce, determined and ambitious. Brave. I just don't think she has to be another version of Hermione. And I never really believed she would be able to cut the ties straight away with Severus. He showed her the world she belonged in and helped her. You don't just walk away from that.
Hahaha and I like flowers and green fields :P hahaha I don't know why, I think it was also me channeling Severus who was in love? And Lily, who's a flower and has green eyes... It was kind of obvious wasn't it? :P hahaha
I'm so so flattered that you liked this and I'm so pleased. As I mentioned before I've been very self-conscious of this one. So this just made me incredibly happy. Thank you so much for fangirling! haha I'm so so happy you liked this and thank you for this uhhh-mazing review.
- Emma xx