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Reading Reviews From Member: LunaStellaCat
  
4 Reviews Found

Review #1, by LunaStellaCat Not My Intention: The Date

31st March 2017:
lovegood27

I remember reading the first chapter of this a long time ago. I remember reviewing it because I rather went inappropriate and pulled the ďtripletĒ thing on you. Sorry, any story about multiples just Ö yeah. Oh, yeah, cause I flipped out about the brother.

Sorry.

So, I like the idea that they are pairing off and that Harry is with Luna. I thought that was weird, and then I remembered that Harry attended the Slug Club thing. Yeah, Iím sorry, thatís all youíre getting from me is the ďSlug Club thingĒ. And I thought that was rather cute. So, itís cute that they are together. You know Ö that would be an interesting pairing.

(Lovegood27 needs to write a Harry/Luna pairing thing. Iím trying to be subtle like slipping popcorn and Coca-Cola in the movie ads.:)

So, a legit move? Because this happens all the time in actual relationships? Ginny gets mad. And shoots for a rebounder for revenge after she crafted the plan. Girl, I could hug you righteth now. That happens all the time in romance dramas. That. Itís like she set up the dominos and then she - of her own power or whatever - knocks them down. I know thatís a Muggle reference. We do that to ourselves all the time.

I like the conflict between Smith and the honesty between her and Draco. Draco is for the second time in a piece off fan fiction, my hero. Thank you, miss. The honesty.


So, you asked about characterization. I'm going to be honest here, and I'm not saying this to sound like an old lady. (In fact, Iím not that old.) Cursing has to have a place and a reason. Does Ginny get mad in the books? Yeah. I like that you have her as the ultimate girl character - the gossip girl - but Ginny didn't curse like an old sailor. Sure, Ron had his expletive here and there, but they were a well- mannered lot. I keep thinking, ďGoodness me, what would Molly Weasley think of this sailor?Ē Cursing, too much of it for cursingís sake, sounds like a bad wrap song.

You feel me? You can show anger and emotion another way. Also, Iím a techie who often works in chat support so when you WRITE LIKE THIS I feel as though you are shouting at me or rather saying [insert anger here]. Here's the thing, and youíre a good writer, so Iím telling you this.

If you write and you write well, the reader will feel the emotion without you having to insert the ANGER or use one of these ?!. (That punctuation move is one of my pet peeves, but the way. I don't know whether you want something exclaimed to your questioning something or rather throwing something into question. That doesn't exist. Choose one or the other.

Let your reader infer or decide how he or she feels. Youíre a beautiful, strong enough writer for that to come across in thy prose. Believe in the words that you place on a page. If anything, often writing something plainly speaks volumes in and of itself. If a reader doesn't get it, thatís okay. Someone will. Place faith behind words.

I liked the piece. Thanks for requesting the review. I hope this helped.

LSC 

who apologies that it took ages to get back to you, boo.

Author's Response: Ah hello! Don't worry about time, just glad to see you here ;)

Hmm...I'm not really one to deviate from canon, normally. This was written because I had to write Drinny for a challenge and then I didn't what Harry to be a loner. But I suppose a second Harry/Luna can't hurt... ;D

Aw, I'm glad you liked Draco. I don't think he's that bad really :)

Ooh, about the swearing. I always think that JKR kind of underestimated the amount of swearing that 17 year olds do (based on my personal experience) They do curse quite a bit in the books, it's just not written in, just described (e.g. 'Harry let out a stream of swear words') But you're probably right; I'll make sure not to include as many swear words in the future :)

Omg, I felt so happy when you said I was a good writer thankyouthankyouthankyou! But I was never one for just expressing anger without capitals or ?! I need to work on that :P But thanks for pointing it out because I think it would work so much better :D

I found your review really inspiring (especially the last part) and helpful. Thanks so much for reading, I'm glad you liked it :D


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Review #2, by LunaStellaCat Prophecy Misinterpreted: Prophecy Misinterpreted

7th March 2017:
Dossy

The idea behind this is really interesting, which is why I think you have good bones here. There is something there behind the layers. The introduction, I think, is the most concrete as a foundation, and that's really good. That says something. You have this Auror who's been undercover for three years. Okay. Why? Why is that significant? And don't just tell me, dear, that's not just shock and awe. There's a reason why that character does that other than to stand out and be different as an OC. Illustrate that in your writing. Build that foundation, use those four walls to draw me in.

Why should I care about this character? I do like Aaron as and the sleeping figure of the child, but you need to hook me in. How? Backstory. Build that scene and forge those vital connections. Lead me to the water, not that I am a horse, or nothing, but there has to be a reason I want to drink. I like that the Auror is undercover. My question is why. This Auror, as an officer, as a human, has feelings. Even though he's undercover and is essentially doing his job, does he not have qualms? If he doesn't have qualms, is this because he's hardened and desensitized, as it were, like Mad-Eye Moody? Especially to the child. I have a soft spot for children and grandfathers, me. Would he not be bothered by the child?

You say a lot of stuff in one sentence and then you move on and I'm sitting here thinking, "Dossy, I wish you would elaborate on that because that's a minefield for character development." You do that a lot here, which I'm going to show you and then elaborate. We're going crack a few eggs and scramble. (I actually dropped an egg on the floor yesterday, so this egg stuff is in clumsy hands.)

Keep in mind that I am not attacking you. I'm merely trying to point this out. Your small pieces of prose don't really add to the piece. You remind me of a camera person shooting a scene. As the director, you're not choosing an angle.

I think you're the exact same person I pointed this out to earlier. You have to choose a POV and show your readers the world through his or her eyes. You HAVE to. Why? If you don't do that, you don't set the scene. Let me ask you a question, okay? Who is the most important character is this story and why do you as the writer want to tell it? The snippets that follow the scene about Aaron seem almost like they can be cut. I'd hate to say that, but there you are.

I got lost as to why we're going here and then there with Iesha and the apparent grabbing. It's fan fiction, and I know we all know the original story, but don't just drop names like Eileen Prince or Remus Lupin (Remus Lupin!) and not blend them into the mix without giving us story or reasoning behind it. It's ... okay, it's like baking, say, a cake. You gotta blend all these ingredients together to make it one yummy thing. See?

It's the latter part of this piece that gives it strength. In writing, you need to look for the soul and the meaning. I stole that from Celine Dion. (Yes, she did.). In fact, if you can, I want you to listen to "Then You Look At Me" by Celine. You don't have to like her - I ask you to listen to the first few lyrics to get when I'm trying to say here. You have to peel back those layers. It is interesting that you have a Lyall and Remus here. Art comes in many, many forms.

So, here's my issue. There are two. Mainly. One. You make an Unbreakable Vow with a child? A child who, is essentially, cut off from the world because his father shelters him as a werewolf? Unbreakable Vows, I would think, would be rare. I don't see that flying in the Ministry of Magic. First of all, that is a child. So, you're basically telling a child (without telling the child, really), if they break the vow, they die. Remus grew up wanting friends. I am not saying that Remus would have been one of those loose lips sink ships people, but a child, for the sake of being a child, should not be held by the same standards as an adult. If I were a witch or a wizard, you wouldn't be pulling that on me or mine.

I get that you're trying to illustrate the seriousness of the situation. I do. However, taking it to that level seems like a violation. A child does not hold the same reasoning as an adult and should not be held to the same standards. Period .A Ministry official wouldn't do that. Just have the clever little boy promise because that seems a tad, way more than a tad to this law student, excessive. You see that?

The prophecy itself needs to be separated from the writing to have a greater impact. It needs to be written out as lyrical poetry. It needs to be it's own separate paragraph.

This has been mentioned it but I'm going to offer myself up as help for you. If you need a beta, a second pair of eyes to look over your writing, I would be willing to do that for you. One of the greatest stairs that you make in your writing is that in your dialogue you were not putting a comma before your closed quotation mark or. Or any punctuation at all. That needs to be there, and if you don't know that that's OK.

We are all learning as writers and as part of a community we should help each other. You have a lot of good bones in the story. I know that it seems like I am attacking you, and I swear to God that I am not. A lot of times my error, and I don't know if you had the same problem, is that I have this idea in my head but I don't get it on paper. I know that my characters should feel this way. They should do this thing in this is why. This matters because. but it simply doesn't get there. For whatever reason.

You are really talented with ideas and thinking with the strong mind. I see that which is why I come back to your pieces. In fact I almost left a review for this piece. This idea is extraordinary. If you put the work into it, if you build the world around it. Look for the soul and the meaning.

Author's Response: Hi LunaStellaCat,

Thank you so much for this in depth review, I really appreciate it!
I will gladly accept your beta/second eye help, so you can expect a pm from me on HPFT :)
(I'm a positive person, so I'm happy about the complement hints you have in your review, and will do my best to use your suggestions to improve.)

I think most of what you say are really good points, so I'm not going to try "defend" myself, just answer a few things.

About the Unbreakable Vow I disagree. But it's more of a theoretical debate, as we do not really see in canon how the Ministry works. As cruel as it sounds muggle governments would sacrifice children for the "greater good" if there is no other option. And based on how the Ministry treats Harry, Ron and Hermione while they are just school-aged, I have no problem believing that they would make a child do the Unbreakable Vow in desperate times. (BTW the Unbreakable Vow cannot be that rare if Ron's brothers knew about it while they were just children.) Also, normally I would agree that a parent wouldn't let that happen to his child, but then again this is not a normal situation.

I'm a little lost about your backstory comment - but it will probably come clear if we chat about it. For example. Aaron does have a backstory. Him being undercover illustrates the chaos of the situation. That the ministry has found a Hungarian connection, but they don't know how to handle it. So the best they can come up with, is to send an auror to Hungary. No specific instructions, no clear plan. And of course Aaron has feelings. I don't go into details, but he is pictured as doing more than necessary on the personal side, trying to be a good husband, and that he hated what he was doing.

OK, so about the POV. I don't have a main character. What I want to show is a situation. We are in times when Lort Voldemort is about to raise to power. And one might ask, did nobody realize what was going on? Did they not have aurors at those times, trying to fight dark magic? These are the questions I want to answer. Yes, they did have aurors and they were desperate to prevent the rise of a dark lord. But they misinterpreted the information they had and this led to a national tragedy and war. And why do I need my characters to show that? Because it's not just a chapter in a history book, because the people involved are all human, and they have their personal stories. You say the "snippets" after Aaron could be cut, but I say that they all tell something - e.g. Iesha being pregnant shows, just how common and everyday problems might interfere with a mission. And why do I also need characters we know from the HP series (like Eileen Prince or Remus Lupin)? Because those are the ones where we know how their life will turn out to be. One might reconsider everything these characters do later in light of what happened to them in this story (this does not work with OCs). I also tired to specify the connections. Remus Lupin was mentioned in the prophecy. And Eileen Prince is also meant to show how little prepared the Ministry was - she had some Hungarian connections (through her gobstone contacts) and that was enough to drag her into this, as there was noone better. (And that she accepted also tells a lot about her, she left home a small child - OK I know in order to get most of my hints, you have to be super-familiar with canon.)

I only tell this so that you see my reasons for writing the way I did. But I still think you have made good points, and I would be happy to accept your help and open a dialogue on how to improve this. (After all if most fanfic readers do not like this style, than it would be no good for me to write like this.)

Writing the prophecy as a lyrical poetry sound a great idea, I will look into it. (Although the prophecies that were in the HP books, are not poetry, but still I think this one could be. Or at least a separate paragraph. Right.)


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Review #3, by LunaStellaCat Play harmless: Play harmless

22nd February 2017:
Dossy

Hello, Iím here with your review before I go to fetch my cat.

Youíre an eye-opener, make no mistake. I tried to go through and see if I had indeed left a review, and it turns out, I had not. So I went snooping.

Okay, so I like Neville Longbottom as a character. My reasoning? He was the almost Harry Potter. In my opinion, his parents were stronger, more grounded, more fit for the fight as it were. Thereís a writer out there called Northumberian who actually switches Harry Potter for Neville Longbottom. If you have never read that author, you need to if you enjoy HP fan fiction. Nís a gift. He is.

I tend to go off on tangents. Stay with me, if you want.

Confession time? I am not a romance writer, either. Iím an analytical thinker, me. And Iím rather a cynic. I laughed out loud when you said that, so thank you. (I died. :)) That's me.

Okay, so the symbolism. Let's start there shall we? The fact that the ring plays the role of carrying the weight of this marriage? That - that in itself - is a masterstroke. Well done, madam or sir, or neither, should you choose not to identify. (Sorry. Iíve got a dark sense of humor.) Okay, the fact that Hannah lets the child play with the ring? Thatís not so unnatural. Iím not disagreeing with you - I wanted to point this out. I once lost the ring I was given at my godson's baptism because I dropped the thing down the drain. (Yes, she did.) Talk about panic. Jesus. But I like that the spinning ring shows the instability and whatís thrown into question.

Okay, hears where Gavin gets a little Ö strange? Again, this isnít bad The child is hard to place as far as his age. Here, Iím thinking of a toddler, but then Hannah does or says this thing, and that toddler suddenly has a high, high level of intellectual reasoning that wouldn't actually be normal. Does that make sense? Think about that.

Hannahís characterization is fine. The only thing that I want to say here is that running a bar in not a layabout job. Speaking from my sisterís experience, who has worked in kitchens since she was fifteen and later as a barmaid. Being a barmaid is hard work. You have to get people drunk, keep a hundred conversations going at once, know when to cut folks off and split the till at the end of the night. And that's the bar - not the tables or the outside crew - just the bar. Or the stocking or the cleaning. And youíre lucky not to be robbed at the end of the night after collecting your shares. I used to watch my sister do this at a nearby bar - and the recipes for the drinks made my head spin.

Whenever I place a barmaid or a barman in my work, I think of my sister. I place a barman or a barmaid in a lot of my HP works. Someone who runs a bar is a workhorse if they do it right. Want a hint as a writer? Write about what you know. And if you donít know, do research to build that said world around you. It makes you and your writing more believable. If Hannah isnít a proper barmaid, Rosmerta, I imagine, would be quite displeased. The Three Broomsticks has been round for a minute.

I agree with Hannah on the naming thing. The names of Harry Potter children make me cringe. Itís a pet peeve. Lily Luna. Really, really, Jo? Not every child is named after their father or mother. Thank you, Hannah, for pointing that out. Like, seriously.

Okay, I would hope that Hannah for Hannahís sake doesn't layabout and is a stronger character. I mean, outside of the barmaid thing, I would hope that she grows as a person or a wife. I canít imagine Neville, chubby, adorable teddy bear, being just the scientist. I mean, poor Nev was raised by old people. His uncle, and I can't remember dudeís name for the life of me, but he was the one cool old guy. Hung him out the window and gave him a toad? Algae?

I can't imagine Neville just being Newt Scamander. I mean, the poor guy watched his filks grow up in a mental hospital. Or the long-term residentsí ward Ö you gather what Iím saying here. By the way, I don't know if you know this, but Neville Longbottom, as told by JKR, is also blonde. He was a chubby, short blonde kid in teddy bear pajamas. See why I wanted to hug that kid?

Really well done here, Dossy. I talk too much. This review is probably the length of your piece. Damn.

LunaStellaCat

Author's Response: Hello LunaStellaCat,

Thank you so much for leaving this review, it is indeed like the length of my story, so wow, thanks! I'm relatively new to HP fanfic (not only as a writer, but also as a reader, so I will consider all your suggestions, including whom to read).

I agree with you: Hannah letting the child play with the ring is nothing unnatural, as a matter of fact I do let my child play with my wedding ring, actually the idea for this story partly came from my own life (I agree most with your "write about what you know" rule).

The child (Gavin) is two years old (I say that at the very beginning), so he is indeed a toddler. I'm not sure if by 'strange' you mean that he obeyed and gave the ring back when asked (?) and that he had expectation about her mother proposing some more fun (?). (Too bad that this review forum does not allow you to reply to my reply...) I know not all two-year-olds would do it, and most importantly no two-year-old would always do it, but it is 'normal' for children of this age to understand these kind of things and comply with their mother when they are in the mood (I hope I make myself understand). I have a 2.5-year-old son, and of course we meet a lot of his peers, so of this part I'm pretty sure (but I also agree with you this is not necessarily typical behaviour).

As for the barmaid thing, I did not want to imply in any way that it was a "layabout job". Maybe I should reword this part, but what it says is that Hannah is a stay-home with the child (their flat is at The Leaky Cauldron) and a substitute is running the bar. So Hannah is home 'doing nothing' (as it is usually perceived by society if someone is on maternity leave - only few admit that it is a 7/24 'job'), while Neville is working hard to make money for the family.
(Fun fact: my brother used to work nigh shifts in a bar while at university, so we have that in common :-) But I did not intend to write anything about bar work, Hannah's role in this story is as a mother.)

I do not want to make this reply too long, but just to say, both Neville and Hannah are complex characters in my eyes, it's not 'just' being a scientist or 'just' being a mother, it's a very hard time in their lives that they do their best to adapt to.

And thanks for pointing out Neville's hair colour - I did know about that info, and I was struggling about the part when Hannah was wondering about his son's hair (I guess that's your point that two blond parents would always have a blond child), but then I decided that the info from JKR referred to Neville as a kid so his hair might have turned darker by the time he had grown to be an adult (thus making this line plausible), and also hair colour is a polygenetic trait so its inheritance is not as simple as e.g. eye colour. (In my family many children had blond hair when little or even up to puberty, but then it turned dark.)

Thank you again so much for this in depth review, and for putting so much thought into my story and for all the positive things and encouragements (and also for putting me before your cat)!

Dossy Vilja

(btw it's a madam - no secrets, Vilja is a female name ;-) in Hungarian family name goes first)


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Review #4, by LunaStellaCat First Words: First Words

30th December 2016:
Hey. The idea behind this story is a good one. I'd thought I'd leave you some CC so you can consider a rewrite or, at the very least, an edit.

Ginny's characterization is good. It is Thankfully, she's not just Molly Weasley reincarnated or something. You might want to employ some of of her mannerisms, though. The idea behind the story is a good one. If you're going to take a realistic snapshot of life, make sure it is indeed that. Realistic. I write quite a few pieces of fanfiction with small children. I am not a mother, so I am deathly careful.

Okay, here's a few things. One. Hermione. Her entrance sedms rather abrupt and needs more explanation and narration to set tne scene. It sounds like you drafted her as the epitome of knowledge handmade for a plot to weave itself. While Hermione is smart, she is not wizened. She's NOT Dumbledore. I am sure Hermione was learning as a parent herself here, and it's a learning process. It is.

I told you earlier I am not a mother. I am a godmother to two small children. It is a learning process. It is. You fail, you mess up, you might fix it, you do it again. Also, and this comes from a writing professor. You may have children. I don't know, yet this sounds off. Write what you know. Draw from hour experiences, don't copy them, but people want to read a slice of everyday life with a bit of magic built in. I made this mistake once.

Okay, here's why I say what I said. I have cerebral palsy. The reason my father found this out - and he thought he was wrong - is because I was age two and not walking. I am a triplet - my other two sisters were walking snd going about. He didn't know, yet he knew something was off. It terrified him. The fact that Ginny seems angry is all right for a minute. After that, she seems a touch . I don't know.

I'm not saying you're wrong. Please don't misunderstand me. The place where you are wrong in Broca's area, the language center. I studied linguistics and language.you probably didn't want me to read this thing:) A young child does not simply say one word - that's normal - so good job there - and then simply start spouting complete sentences or fragments of sentences eith correct, flawless grammar. Nope. Not gonna happen.

Like I say, there is grammatical stuff I don't care about. The story behind this is a good one. Little James seems cute. I hope you take this as CC and respond to the review. I rewrite my stuff ALL the time. I do. Ask my betas. I do.

LSC

Author's Response: First of all, thank you for the review; it was much more than what I was expecting.

About Hermione, I tried to portray her as a friend to Ginny. I'd always felt that Ginny, to a point, labeled her as 'the smart one.' This skewed her views of her. But you are right on the front that Hermione isn't the equivalent of Dumbledore nor will she ever be, as she is her own person.

As for the magic, you are also right. Magic, unfortunately, is not the world we live in and I took that to heart a bit. I forgot that, of course, magic is naturally a part of their world and that it will weave into their everyday life.

I do draw from my experiences, as I have taken care of babies before. I've had plenty of time to observe their behavior and how they speak and how they learn as well as what they like.

I hope this was a satisfactory answer for you, as I had a bit of trouble understanding what you said. I hope that's not a problem.

Thank you again for the review!


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