Hee I'm quite charmed by the conversation about apparition~
Woops, double negativing! "Alyssa had never ever not got what she wanted" Might want to fix that to something clearer.
I think Alyssa's background is a tad cliche. A bit too plastered-on, like it's trying to explain the most important parts of her with something that happened so long ago; I don't really buy it. I think there should be more complicated reasons why she's like that, or at least explained in a way that seems a little more realistic.
I really like though, how Lauren is insecure and how Holden is really just genuinely curious. I can understand why both of them are the way they are, and there's really not a right or wrong path to choose, except to hope that they understand each other's reasons and work out something.Author's Response: Oops, I really need to have another look at this story and fix all these weirdly worded statements that you're finding and bringing to my attention. *hides* And I'll definitely have to figure out a way to add more insight to Alyssa to make it seem less cliche. But I'm glad there are still parts of it you're enjoying and thanks again for reviewing! (: Report Review
Hmm, I think I'd like more of the conflicts to persist, consistently. Fred seems to be somewhat irritated, but it's mentioned briefly and then doesn't really show up again. I think I'd like to hear of it for a little while, to make it stick out in the reader's mind.
Just as an example for flow improvement, a lot of your sentences have unnecessary explanation. Like "Lauren was one of the Ravenclaws that did not much care for the game of Quidditch because she was more studious over her schoolwork." could simply be "Lauren didn't care much for Quidditch" as it's implied from previous info that she didn't care much for it already.
Ooh I like how it ends. All mysterious and ambiguous. Although I still really don't feel too sympathetic to Alyssa. Holden is a silly goosey boy still though, heh.Author's Response: Ah, I hadn't even realized that I wrote two similar statements so close together at the time (makes mental note to edit this chapter and remove one of those statements). And yes, more on Alyssa later. I know I hadn't gone too in detail with her, but I was trying to be as vague with her as possible while giving tiny glimpses at her. Thanks for the feedback, though, I'm glad for the extra insight and how you view it all. (: Report Review
I think, instead of "And he thought he was doing a great job proving that he still liked Lauren a lot as the two were growing closer with each minute that they spent in each otherís company; like now", more of Lauren and Holden's time together should be explained, specifically.
Some of the dialogue tags could be livened up in the argument too. Sparingly they're quite effective! It'll put more emotion behind their words. I can't quite feel Holden's irritation, although I like how he reacts to it.
Awh their apologies were cute. I like how Holden stood his ground too :)
I think Alyssa's a bit too removed from the story right now. I don't really feel like cheering for her at the mo. I think you should introduce more about her in this chapter to remind the readers why we found her interesting :)Author's Response: Thanks so much, and I'll definitely remember that about dialogue. I always love feedback on my dialogue because it's where I really struggle. I'm getting a bit better at it, but sometimes I still feel awkward while writing it. And I'll definitely have to describe more than tell. I'm glad you're still liking the story, though, despite the silly mistakes and errors in it. (: Report Review
I think the part with the tower is better in showing more of Holden's personality, but I think it can still improve. Things like "No one in the whole school knew that Holden liked to come up here, not even his best friend James" can be more descriptive. There are other descriptions that I feel are irrelevant, like about Quidditch. They feel like they could be used, but that it needs to connect more to Holden. His personality still isn't very clear.
This bit is in present tense, but should be past > If Hufflepuff loses to Slytherin though, it would mean that Gryffindor would still be back in the running for the House Cup, especially if Slytherin beats Ravenclaw.
In this paragraph: "After a while, Holden grew tired..." you use the same sentence structure a lot. "Holden does something..." those kinds.
I liked the little moment with James and Holden :) It was a good touch of friendship.
"himself" perhaps, and also show how instead of just simply that > Holden suddenly felt angry at his self
Onward!Author's Response: Ah, yes, I wrote most of this when I was still struggling with writing tenses and I've been meaning to go back over it and edit it; will most definitely after I've finished Why Not. But, yeah, I'd like to think I've gotten more of a grip on tenses now than I did before. Thanks for pointing out those slips, and odd structuring, though, I'll be sure to watch my writing carefully now for those things.
Aw, yes, I love writing James and Holden together, they're such good friends. Thanks again for another helpful review and I'm glad you're still enjoying it! Report Review
Oh Fred, that's so against the bro code. Tsk tsk.
Alyssa! That's her name. I suppose she was in the previous story as well? Humph her friends seem to be giving bad ideas, but she seems sensible enough. Was she spreading rumors about Marisol and James then?
I noticed some typos. "gapping" should be "gaping" and ďI suppose your right.Ē should be "you're".
"Marisol and Evelyn then took turns explaining that they had found the Masquerade Girl and about Marisol and the Masquerade Girlís argument. They left out the girlís identity as Jazzy had a big mouth and the truth would be spread throughout the whole school by the next morning in no time if they told her." I thought this was an odd way to end the section, a little anticlimatic an awkwardly worded. I'd also think they wouldn't tell Jazzy at all, just in my own opinion. Those kinds of girls always have ways of getting the whole truth if they're given a little bit. Or that they'd be offended her friends wouldn't trust her.
And the plot thickens!Author's Response: Aww, thanks for another fabulous review, Gina! And thanks for pointing out those typos, I'll have to go back over that when I dust this story back off and update it; it'll probably be after I've finished Why Not though as that story seems to be taking the front seat to everything else at the moment.
But nonetheless, I appreciate all the feedback you've given me on this story as it really has helped and I'm glad you're enjoying it. (: Report Review
Oh Holden, you're so silly. You shouldn't get either girl; they're both too interesting for you, you silly silly dopey boy.
Well, now the whole school has an expectation that Lauren is the girl! That certainly makes the actual reveal a lot tougher for both girls. I can certainly see why Lauren would be hesitant about Holden's feelings about her and her feelings about his; I'm glad you addressed that! :)
I also like how you set up your girls as totally okay without a guy. I like that, especially. Sensible girls. Certainly no sensible boys, it seems xD
I think that you have a great plot set up. There's certainly a lot to like about both girls and there's so much mystery and possibilities to explore. I think if you just move things a long a bit and focus more on personalizing the narrative more, fleshing out the characters with descriptions and livened dialogue, you've got something really good here :)Author's Response: Thanks again for another CC filled review, Gina. It's great to get another opinion on this story in what needs to be improved and what works. I'm glad you like how I've made the girls sensible, while the blokes on the other hand are completely stupid and silly. I'll definitely see about what I can do to liven the story up some more. Report Review
Oooh and the plot thickens. I like Lauren! She's so well-meaning and sweet. She certainly didn't mean anything bad. I like her better than masquerade girl at this point :D But poor clueless Holden. He does seem to like her quite a bit though, so that's nice, although I still don't feel particularly attached to the characters. I kind of want more so I can cheer for people.
Marisol, I like how you use her as someone who sees a different side. It'll be interesting to see how she deals with knowing that as well. I love meddlers, clearly hehehehe. I'm a meddler myself. I try to make plot in real life. Or Annie's life. Heee.Author's Response: Hahah, I love writing Marisol as the meddler, perhaps because she was the main female character in 'More Than Meets the Eyes' and I grew a soft spot for her. And Holden is clueless, but what bloke isn't? :P Thanks again for another great review! (: Report Review
More plotty things!
Oh meddling friends. The best kinds of friends. And I could never see James and Fred as anything but meddling xD
Heheh, Holden's so sweet and silly. Doesn't even know his own popularity. I'd love it if James went all "LILY WHY ARE YOU HERE?" like a frowny older brother trying to shoo her away.
I'm not sure how I feel about suddenly mentioning the actual masquerade girl right then and there. I almost feel like there should a small section on its own or if it were put at the end of a section. I think it would flow better that way, give it more impact and give it a little more time to characterize her.
Right now, it also feels like Holden could have a stronger voice. A lot of what he's doing is being dragged around by James and stuff and I see a lot of reluctance and I see that he's also a friendly type of guy, but there's not much more about Holden that sticks out to me. I think there needs to be more of his personality in the narration.
Onwards! :DAuthor's Response: Thanks again for another awesome-filled review, Gina! Yes, I love writing James and Fred because they are very nosy blokes (I love that word :P). And Lily turning up like that just seemed amusing to me... also, it's pretty natural for a kid sister to like her big brother's best mate. ;)
Hmmm, she shows up occasionally, but maybe I should go back and see if there's anyway I can slip her in if it doesn't flow well in this chapter. I don't want anything to read awkwardly.
I think (could be wrong, 'course I'm biased) Holden's voice and characterization sharpen the further into the story I get. I suppose I just started small with him to show more character development. I like to steadily work up from the ground with my characters. Of course, I suppose I could go back and flesh out his character a bit more to make him easier to relate to. Thanks again! (: Report Review
And the plot arrives! I always personally loved masquerades, even though they can sometimes be cliche. I like how there wasn't a too big of an emphasis on it, just a chance encounter. I think that helps set it apart from other masquerade type stories, where people dance with someone and then fall in love.
Hehe, James is all pestery. Er, I mean -- proactive! ;D Oh the ones in relationships always want to play matchmaker.
I think moving the plot along definitely helped bring in more interest. The mystery is set! The girl is quite interesting (who doesn't like a little bite?). For now I'll just say to also take care that your dialogue isn't too stiff. Talking in full sentences is sometimes kind of odd and adding too many dialogue tags also makes it seem slow sometimes.
Now lets see how this mystery will pan out! :DAuthor's Response: You have no idea how happy that makes me that you find this story more original than other masquerade stories because I was trying to make it different. I always try to stay away from cliches, but if I have to write one then I want to write it my own way that is different than how others have written it.
Yes, I quite like writing James, he's very fun to write. The first story is mainly in his perspective, altering at times to Marisol, and I had fun playing around with him. He is quite the character.
Hmmm, I definitely agree about dialogue being too stiff, and can say that it has vastly improved in later chapters and my other stories that came after this one. I mean, I still struggle with dialogue, but now I feel I can write it a bit more natural than I used to. I just haven't had the chance to go back through and edit the dialogue (because I'm lazy). However, some day I may very well decide to go back and revise the earlier chapters of this story.
Anyway, I'm glad you find the plot to be picking up and are enjoying it. Thanks again, Gina! (: Report Review
More characters! There's a lot shown on their home life, not often one really gets to see the whole family like that. I love Potter/Weasley Christmases. So fun. It's like, fun guaranteed 8D
Holden was introduced pretty quickly -- is he from the other story as well? Or is he completely new? Guy PoVs are a tricksy thing, props on writing them 8D I kind of like rotating perspectives. And I always appreciate third person! I adore third person, though I know it takes longer to set up than first.
The chapter did seem a little long though, I think because not a lot of things happened and sometimes the descriptions were a little bland. I think leaving some of the more mundane to be imagined and to focus on the more interesting bits, I think that will move things a long better :)Author's Response: Yes, I tend to get a bit wordy when describing everything in the first few chapters, feeling the need to explain everything when I should just learn to cool it and reveal bit by bit. I'm still learning to be clear and concise, yet vague, leaving the reader guessing.
Yes, of course, the Potter-Weasleys are quite the fun family. And yes, Holden is an OC from the other story, he played more of a minor role in that but in this one he is the main character. This is his story. And I'm so glad that you think I pull off writing from his perspective well as guys are very tricky to write from.
Thanks again for reviewing, I really do appreciate the feedback and your input on the flow of the chapter. Report Review
Hiii Leslie! :) Now, unfortunately, I haven't read the original story, but I'll try to keep up :D Marisol is such a pretty name! ^__^ Just wanted to get that out of the way first.
Nina eyed her daughter curiously before asking in her sharp Spanish accent, ďAnd you didnít tell me?Ē / ďMama, I meant to, but I just forgot,Ē Of course you did, Marisol. Of course. I love her family and their dynamic :D
And speaking of family, I adore the Potter family as well. Hee, Albus and his chess skills. James, don't be a sore loser!
Sometimes I feel like there's a bit too much explaining so it's a ta slow and some unnecessary bits of preposition. Like "she headed downstairs to where her father was waiting impatiently for her", the "for her" isn't really necessary so it would read a bit better without it. And there's are five eye rolls in this chapter! Be careful about overusing that too xD
Anyhow, great chapter! :)Author's Response: Thanks so much, Gina! I really appreciated this feedback, it was much needed. Yeah, the earlier chapters of this story, I will admit, are a bit on the slow side but I was afraid of jumping right into the plot with this. I felt I needed to reintroduce the characters from 'More Than Meets the Eyes' first before I delved in. However, the main character in this one is an OC from the first that will be searching for his Masquerade Girl.
But I felt I still needed to include James and Marisol because they do still play key roles in this novel and help Holden, too. Anyway, thanks again, love! (: Report Review
I have to say I'm disappointed that Holden chose Lauren because I've always been hoping that he would choose Alyssa. Is this the official end to the relationship triangle between Holden/Alyssa/Lauren or will Alyssa come back into the picture at some point? Anyways, I can't fault Holden for making the choice he did since Lauren does seem to be the safer choice, I just don't feel that settling for the safe choice is the best strategy to take when it comes to who you want to love.Author's Response: I completely agree with you and this is by no means the end of Alyssa/Holden/Lauren. I just felt Holden was suffering enough in these past couple chapters and decided to give him some sympathy since school is out and summer is starting. But expect more drama, far more drama, to come. While Alyssa may not outright demand Holden's company, she'll still get fussy when he doesn't hang out with her since they are supposed to be "friends" now. This is only going to complicate things further.
But I've said far too much and am going to zip my mouth right now.
Thanks for reviewing and I really appreciate the feedback! :) Report Review
awesome story! :D
really well written too, i totally understand what holden is going through though i dont have that experience myself:)
ps. please write more soon ;)Author's Response: Thanks so much! And don't worry, I'm almost finished with the next chapter, more 3/4 through writing it, and it should be up in the next week as I want to post it before spring semester begins in January. :) Glad you're enjoying the story so far. Report Review
I absolutely love these last couple of chapters and I really feel for Holden being torn between two girls and not knowing which one he wants to be with, I'm sure every guy will relate to that atleast once in their lifetime. I just wish he had more supportive friends than James and Fred who both seem to follow in Ron's footsteps when it comes to being dense about situations such as the one Holden is in right now. Honestly, I want to see Holden and Alyssa together because I feel as if they would have much better chemistry than Holden and Lauren but thats just my opinion. I hope you can update soon because I really want to know what happens next.Author's Response: Thank you so much! I was worried how this chapter might come across to readers and it makes me happy that you enjoyed it, and that you also enjoyed the last chapter. This story is definitely in the home stretch, but still has quite a few chapters left to write out. I'm working on writing the next chapter... which it shouldn't take me all that long as I can pump out the words fast when I sit down to write a chapter for this story because it's so much fun to write. Not to mention I have everything planned out and know what I want to happen... except the ending might change as it's never concrete as I leave the ending flexible where it could either way. I should be able to get more writing done this summer, but I am interning and taking two classes, so we shall see as I don't want to make any promises. Thanks again so much for reviewing, I really do appreciate any and all feedback that I receive! XD Report Review
Hi, Leslie. Iím stopping here to add a review. Iíll make sure to finish reading and comment on the remaining chapters but wanted to post something for now as Iím falling a bit behind on my review list.
You mentioned a few specific things in your review request so Iíll start with those. First, characterization. Thus far, I think this is one of your stronger areas. No one is larger than life or too over the top, but everyone has distinctive traits and behaviors that stay consistent from chapter to chapter. Youíve got a pretty large cast here Ė most of who are non-canon, or at least not fully depicted in the books Ė and I think your working them well. Iíd add to this though that after seven chapters, Iím really not sure whose story this is. Starting the story by introducing James and Marisol makes me feel as if it ought to be their story. But then Holden appears and in chapter three, he seems to take the reign. But from there we meet even more characters and jump points of view even more. Multiple POVs is obviously a totally valid story tactic but what brings them all together is their influence on some penultimate moment or goal. It feels like Holden is the only one with a strong point-of-the-story goal and therefore the strongest story to tell.
Moving on to two other areas you mentioned: plot and flow. I think these are pretty tied up into what I said above. The chapters are long and well written for sure, easy to read and follow, constructed solidly. But jumping around POVs not only from chapter to chapter but within the chapters and occasionally within the scenes themselves makes me as the reader feel like Iím loosing sight of the main plot: Holdenís search for his mystery girl. I like this plot. I think itís a strong concept. And I really enjoy the idea of multiple characters being the possible girl, people trying to help solve the mystery, or intentionally withholding relevant information. But if youíre going to move around so much, I might consider having really strong, really specific reasons for doing so. Make sure that each time we switch we see something important and can really compare and contrast what each character/POV is bringing to the story.
Iíll definitely be back to review more (if you want me to). Please poke me on the forums if I donít post more soon. Thank you for sharing your story. I think itís obvious you put a lot of thought into it, and it really shows. Hope Iíve been able to offer a helpful comment or two.Author's Response: First of all, thank you so much for the really detailed review as I really do appreciate. And I'm glad that my characters are well fleshed out and written as that's always an area I worry most about when it comes to writing characters that I hope will be likable (or love to hate). As for the multiple perspectives, in the later chapters I stop moving around so much and focus mostly on the three main people (Lauren/Holden/Alyssa) so hopefully that'll make the plot stand out more clearly. I suppose the reason why I was jumping around so much is because I wanted to show more than one character, but I wasn't really thinking it in terms of the plot like I should have and I will definitely work on that for the rest of the story and future stories. Thanks again for reviewing! Report Review
Leslie dear :) I'm sorry it's taken me so long to get around to reviewing. :( Things have been hectic around here. This was a lovely chapter dear! You really know your characters well and it shows in how you write them. So well done you!
One thing, the fourth paragraph, beginning with He did not have to come up with a solution is a bit awkward in wording. I had to read it twice for it to make sense. Well, the first sentence really. It just doesn't quite flow as one, cohesive, thought.
Other than that it's lovely! Great job hun
ShilohAuthor's Response: Thanks so much, Shiloh! I really appreciate it and I will definitely take a look at that sentence. Thanks for pointing it out! Report Review
Hello Leslie! I'm here for the review exchange! I'm so sorry for the delay! First off, I'd like to say that I think your characterizations seem really solid at this point. It seems like you've got a good grasp on your characters. I see a real confidence in your writing and that shines through. I wish I had had the time to read the prequel to this story. I believe that this is a great start to a great novel! Good job! 10/10 Shelby :]]Author's Response: Thanks so much, I'm glad to hear (or rather read ;]) that you are liking the characterizations. And don't worry about not reviewing fast enough, you're here now aren't you?! I'm glad you liked the first chapter, thanks again!
xox, Leslie Report Review
Oh, I am very interested as to what happens next!
Okay, I'll talk about the three leads for my last review until the update (which I will read, because I like this story :D):
Holden: I like Holden, but I have a feeling he is biting off a bit more than he can chew with being friends with Alyssa. As a character he is very solid - you write him very consistently, which is great. I like that he gets angry, but he's nice as well. But no unreasonably so :)
Lauren: I lovelovelove Lauren. Her insecurities are so realistic! She's lovely and sweet and charming and - ugh, I'll stop before I get too into it.
Alyssa: as I said in my last review, I think she is the most interesting. She's very double sided - I'm not sure whether she is hell-bent on breaking them up or not. We'll have to see.
Anyway, brilliant work so far! I love it and am looking forward to the update :)Author's Response: Yes, I quite enjoy writing Holden too. I think I've actually from my niche at writing male characters well, though I'm still not completely confident at times because guys are complicated. But I pretty much have mastered just how I want Holden to be characterized and can write him and his actions as well as ever I try my hardest. I'm glad that his character is consistent, that's always wonderful to hear.
As for Lauren, like I already said, she's the easiest for me to write because she's somewhat based on me. I'm kind of insecure when it comes to some things and I can totally see how she might feel threatened of someone stealing away Holden. Any girl would feel the same way, actually.
Yes, Alyssa is by far the most difficult for me to write, no matter how well I have her character down pat to a T. She's two-faced, one thing she wants Holden and another she hates him. Her actions could really go either way depending on how she's feeling and it sometimes confuses me when I'm thinking of what to write as her next move. But I still like writing her because she challenges me to write her character well.
Thank you so much for reviewing, Georgia! I really appreciate all of the feedback and constructive criticism!
xox, Leslie Report Review
Alyssa is probably the most interesting character at the moment - she seems to be manaipulated by her friends into this "wanting Holden" thing, but then you can tell she wants to be with him, even just a little bit. I find her really curious and I'm wondering who she'll really be :)Author's Response: Alyssa is quite the conflicting character, isn't she? I still haven't figured her all out yet myself. hahah, I'm only joking. I know where she stands in all this, but I'm not going to say a word. Thanks again for reviewing! Report Review
And he was dreaming, but of which girl?
I loved this as a closing line ^_^
I actually thought this was your strongest chapter so far! I'm loving the character development of Alyssa, Lauren and Holden - they're pretty intriguing characters! You're writing has improved considerably too since the first chapter! Great work :)Author's Response: Heh, thanks. I like closing lines like that. It leaves he reader coming back for more, not to mention imagining all kinds of things that could happen. And thanks so much! I'm so happy to hear that you can see an improvement because I feel like I've improved since I started writing this story. -huggles- Report Review
I just adore Lauren's insecurities! Sounds mean, but it's true ;) I'm also totally concerned about this mystery girl - I'm all for Lauren/Holden, personally.
Okay, as for my critique for the last bit, I've noticed it's not very consistent so never mind. Most of the dialogue is very good, the formality is very rare - sorry for jumping to conclusions!Author's Response: Ooh, I'm so glad to hear that my dialogue is mostly good rather than formal. It is my rough spot when it comes to writing and I'm working on improving it. Especially since it's so very important to move the story along with character interactions and such.
As for Lauren's insecurities, well I kind of characterized her a bit like me and that's why I can relate to her so much when I'm writing her. Thanks so much for reviewing and all the feedback so far! Report Review
I really like the innocence of these two - Lauren seems really sweet. Much nicer than some mystery girl! And this whole thing, actually, is really intriguing. I like it :)
One thing I noticed about this chapter, was a bit of over formality in the dialogue. Maybe just tone it down a notch - think about how you would speak to your friends. Sometimes a bit of mystery/confusion wouldn't go astray if it adds to realism. The reader doesn't have to know every little detail of what is going and sometimes letting the scene be up to the readers imagination is a good thing :)
That isn't quite coming out like I want it to - let me know if you want me to explain better :)Author's Response: I think I understand what you mean... less description when it comes to dialogue while keeping it open enough for the readers to imagine how the characters would react based on how I've characterized them already. Thanks so much for the feedback, and I really definitely remember to write it more causually than formally. Report Review
I know I said I would review every second one, but I had to make a note that the dialogue in this chapter was exactly what I meant in the first review! Well done, it really picked up the pace of the chapter :) The case in point was the discussion between Holden, Fred and James about the Masquerade Girl - nice work!Author's Response: Yay! I'm so happy to hear that my dialogue as improved since the first chapter. Thanks so much! Report Review
Hi again! So I think a review every second chapter would be better, seeing as I would run out of things to talk about otherwise :)
So the last two chapters have been good! I like the reunion between James and Marisol, and the Cinderella-esque girl at the Masquerade was wonderfully written!
My one problem with the last two chapters would be the voices of the male leads. They seem to be very eager to lay their emotions on a sliver platter for all to see - in my experience, I find guys to be much more frustrating when it comes to their emotions. It's not a major problem, just something I have noticed in these three chapters :)
Otherwise, great work! I really, really want to know who this girl is!Author's Response: Yeah, I'm still working on finding my male voice... it's somewhere up in my head buried beneath all the frilly pink tutus and girly things. But I will continue to work on it. And I'm glad that you enjoyed ch. 2 & 3 overall. Thanks again for reviewing! Report Review
Hi! Georgia here for the Review Exchange at TGS :)
Okay, so I haven't read the prequel for this, but I hoping to enjoy it none the less :) This was a very good start - I'm going to assume the road to getting Marisol and James together was tough, and it's always lovely to see scenes like this where everything is calm and relaxing.
As for the characterisations, I can't really comment on them yet, but they seem to be pretty solid. I think I'll wait a while before I comment on them :)
My one problem with this chapter would be that it went a bit slow. Parts of the dialogue which could have been snappy were broken up by "Harry said, smiling" and "Lily whined" (those were made up) - I think you should consider just leaving them out and letting the reader make up the picture in their minds :) The tone in the dialogue was strong enough for it to stand alone, without direction. It slowed down the chapter in some parts, and I feel this could speed it up a fraction.
Anyway, that was just a suggestion! Overall the chapter was great and I'm looking forward to seeing what the plot will be like :)Author's Response: That's okay, you don't have to read the prequel for this as they can be read separately since they focus on different couples. And I appreciate the feedback on my dialogue, I'll have to remember that, thanks! Report Review
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