Reading Reviews for Come, Sugar
  
51 Reviews Found

Review #1, by MissesWeasley123 I Am Not Saved

4th January 2014:
Shelby, how could you? Again, you seem to have a bit of stories podcasted, so here for 9 of 12 Days of reviewing. Also, I feel terrible for taking this off the nice round 50 reviews and making it 51. Hope that's okay.

I've written something like this before, except it was Lily Luna and definitely not as beautiful. I want to say I loved this but I didn't, if you get what I mean. It was beautiful, but hauntingly so. Not enjoyable but engrossing. There were so many emotions so well played and you did a fabulous job, I am blown away.

It was so poetic, honestly. The come, Sugar bit in between were gripping and so so sad. I'm reeling and goosebumps have erupted because the amount of feels in this is absolutely gripping and brilliant. I am speechless, and therefore excuse the lack of vocabulary in this review. Words like gripping will be used quite a bit.

Everything, from Rose and Scorpius' friendship to his confrontation and her revealing what happened. It was so sad. But so vivid and I am very sorry for her, and you made me feel sorry for her. One of the greatest things an author can do is make someone feel and you, you did just that!

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Review #2, by BluebirdBrigade I Am Not Saved

5th August 2013:
How absolutely despicable of me to not have left a review for this story after I podcasted it?

I like to leave reviews for the stories I podcast so I feel like a right...poohead for having not done so with this one. Well, at least you have proof that I read the story quite thoroughly ahaha. This is by far one of the most beautifully chilling and haunting stories I have ever read. The words were so poetic and incredibly mesmerising that its difficult to not become attached to the story. Blend that with a disturbing and sometimes very puzzling plot line and you have yourself a truly captivating story. I could feel my tongue becoming lead in my mouth as I read the words because I was overcome with the emotion. I'd love to say that it was all acting in the podcast but sometimes I truly just lost myself to the horror and the angst lines of the story.

Those small segments of 'Come, Sugar' that interject like a rather haunting lullaby interested me the entire time as I read. I love Scorpius and Rose as a couple but at times I had to agree with Rose because although it wasn't obvious and it was incredibly difficult for him, he just didn't understand what was going on with Rose. I know I may have made an assumption as I was reading this but I think I might be right...

“Don’t you understand, Scorpius? If I tell you, you are never going to look at me the same way again! I’ve been…” - I think this may have been my favourite line of dialogue merely because its the moment where she breaks and she feels the compelling need to tell someone about the situation but again she can't bring herself at the last second to tell him because of the shame and the fear that things will change between them. I said this line to many times, I could probably recite it from memory ahaha! You know so many big words! It was struggle for me, being rather uneducated and not knowing how certain words were pronounced, but I hope I managed sense. :P

Thank you so much for letting me podcast this, it was truly an honour and I loved every second of it. Have almost finished 'There will come soft rains' - hopefully I have done it justice!

Maz x

Author's Response: Hi Maz, darling! Oh, not despicable at all! I'm just happy you decided to stop by! :)

I don't even know what to say to all of these lovely compliments, I really don't. I'm so completely over the moon and just a puddle of mush. Stream of consciousness was (and sort of still is) where my writing heart lies. It was a way for me to escape the confines that writers often place themselves in and let the words speak for themselves, to let the story unfold through me. I absolutely love it when a reader appreciates the descriptions and imagery that come alive when I write stream of consciousness.

I too love Rose and Scorpius as a couple, but I'd like to think that this story happened before the possibility of that. You haven't made an assumption at all! You're spot on! It's difficult for anyone, man or woman, to understand unless they've been put in that position. So try as he might, Scorpius will never quite understand and that's what isolates Rose, unfortunately.

She does completely break there, at least outwardly. I think she's already so completely broken inwardly, even in her soul, and getting so close to actually saying it - well, that's the icing on the proverbial cake. I'm glad you mentioned that she's afraid because things will change - I believe this can apply to anything that we feel will change a friendship/relationship. Even though we should embrace change because it is inevitable and necessary, we fear and shame things we have said and done. I find things like that fascinating.

Haha, thank you! I do pride myself a bit on my vocabulary! Oh no, you're not uneducated! Not at all! I'm an English teacher and sometimes I don't know how words or how to pronounce them!

Thank you so much for podcasting it! Your voice is gorgeous and you did such a wonderful job! It was PERFECT. Oh yay, I can't wait to hear it! It's going to be wonderful!

Thank you so much for the wonderful review, darling! I really do appreciate it! :)

Shelby


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Review #3, by hedwigs_theme I Am Not Saved

2nd October 2012:
Hi,

Wow this is a great story :)

I love the tension and how you leave the reader hanging on to your every word by keeping them in suspense throughout the whole one-shot.

You have an intriguing plot and I love the little quote-like things in itallics that you made up, a great addition to your story.

Your characterisation of Rose was great and it's different to see a new, more protective side of Scorpius which actually works so well :)

I'm sorry that this review will be quite short but I really can't think of anything to say that isn't wow or well done you're amazing :D

10/10

~ht

Author's Response: Hello my dear! Thank you so much for reading and reviewing!

Oh wow, what a lovely review! I'm so glad that you liked it!

Thank you - I'm glad you picked up on the tension of the story - I love perceptive readers!

I'm so happy you liked my italics. I thought they were a good technique to use in this story. Everyone seems to like my characterizations of Rose and Scorpius - I really wanted to give them something more, you know?

Please don't worry - I appreciate every review, no matter how long! Thank you so much for the absolutely fantastic review! I hope you enjoyed! :)

Shelby


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Review #4, by Aiedail I Am Not Saved

22nd September 2012:
I should also say up front that I think the title of this fic is very--er--fitting--to the creepy tone of it. Calling someone "sugar" is a bit like objectifying them, and then sugar as something very appealing, and something to be consumed. So with those themes in mind I thought that the title added to the whole of the thing well.

Some of the best advice I've received is that poetry and clarity can coexist. I do pick up on the plot points of what's happened in this story, having read it a couple times and paid good attention to the clues you give us. I'm not saying you need to be more forthcoming with details. Rose's mental state is detail enough. Your description is beautiful, vibrant, brilliant in places. Some lines raise goosebumps on me that I rarely feel reading fic. Part of that is because of the theme of this story and part of it is because your phrasing of certain ideas or descritpions is haunting and beautiful. But there are other lines that look--like they are trying to make me think they're beautiful. Part of the wonder and amazement someone would feel reading Woolf, for example, not that any of us can live up to her--but I use her as an example of the s-o-c style--is that we wonder how they've done it, is that we can look back and see reasons for the descriptions, that nothing was done just because it occurred to her.

I took a class last winter and basically the professor's advice was to write on purpose. So many writers have come before us who have already said all that can be said, so we want to do it in our own ways. I think something about this story that I really do appreciate is you take a lot of time to craft descriptions. I rarely felt like you'd written something because it "came into your head" or something like that. The descriptions are unique and interesting. They're a bit grungy in places and then close up in a gloss in others. I like that sort of variation. The only thing I really mean to tell you is that some sentences I felt like, when reading them over, they were a bit random--beautiful, but strange. The imagery here of nature, for example, works well, especially compared to the mundane scene in the present. And considering the trauma in the forest.

Most of the time these sentences or remarks that stand out to me are ones where you've diverged from the physical. Of course, part of the loveliness of s-o-c writing is that you get the inside look, but it's easy to forget--and this is something I've worked on very consciously and still struggle with remembering--is that most of what goes on inside our heads does stem from something, however small, outside of our body. Now, in this story, most of Rose's thoughts seem to be going back between what happened to her in the past and what's going on in the present. And for the most part I get it. But some of the metaphors or comparisons--"have the delicacy of a paper lantern," "as sudden as a bolt of lightning," "forget the impact of life," "hear the cry of a hawk," "cloud of cigarette smoke," "a lone gypsy," "the madness," "into the wind"--get a bit too abstract for me personally. I think it's because I can't see how "cigarette smoke," or gypsies, or "wind" come into the story. How are they significant? As someone who can't quite tell it looks like something that might have sounded very beautiful when you wrote it out, and while it sounds lovely, a poetry teacher told me once that every word and phrase and turn has to "do work." In other words, idle phrases don't add much to the story at hand. This is a powerful story regardless, I just thought I'd point out some of the things like this that struck me as a bit random or a wee bit showy when I read through.

There are other things, however, that are beautiful and made me take pause: "the lullaby of desolation," "I'm a ghost," and especially this, "It is broken, it bends and shifts. Unalterable and imperfect, even the stars, they burn and die and plunge to the earth, to the hard soil…" I like the ideas here--of things too good and pure going down, failing in a way, and getting dirty. That sort of drove home the theme of what happened, I think. And that's beautiful construction.

One last thing I'd like to say critically: words like "soul" are dangerous to use in fiction, I think. There's a sort of mood about "soul," and the word itself appears several times in this short piece. There's a vague term that I hear around school often: we say that certain things are so "other," they're so--removed, or spiritual, they're the big things that young authors can handle clumsily and in so doing render the true power of the idea ineffective. To me, "soul" seems like a word that one would use when trying to get spiritual, and deep, when there are other, perhaps more fitting ways to do it. This story is sort of--I don't know, it's so full of earth and skin and sin that words like "soul" are too glossy and too posh, I guess, for me as a reader. And this will sound daft, but not everything can have a soul. Like, maybe the earth does, but can we ever really know it? The term "the sweat of my soul" is a bit odd, to me, too. There are other words I think you mean; however, it could be that this is supposed to be alluring and Rose is attracted to the idea of somebody's soul sweat? I don't really know. There's so much leeway in fic writing that even though I don't like it or get it, it could work. I'd be interested in knowing your thoughts on the word, though.

Overall, I like the structure of this. I like that you've made this event so prevalent in Rose's psyche and that it's transcended time, the way these things do. I like that you don't have to spell out what happened and we understand it. And I'm proud of you as a fellow writer for branching out and doing something different. And I'm really glad that you recognize that you've changed and that you were ready to write this story. Sometimes the experiment is worth it in itself :)

-lily

Author's Response: Thank you - I do my best to give the story a perfect title.

Thank you! I really don't know how to respond, to be honest (and I can usually write a novel!). Oh yes, Woolf is the go-to writer for SOC style. I actually hadn't read her until after I started writing SOC style, so it was lovely to see the similarities. I do take a different route, however, than Woolf. There's quote by Hemingway or about Hemingway (can't recall at the moment) that discusses his writing - it says that 10 percent is above the surface and 90 is below, like an iceberg. This is how I would characterize my writing - a mix between SOC and Hemingway, except he's got a very plain prose. So perhaps this is in response to your comment further into the review about those words or phrases that struck you as out of the ordinary. When we discussed and parse Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway, the professor stressed the idea that many of her words and phrases are strange and sometimes do not seem to fit. Not that I'm Woolf by any means, but this is how I approach writing. I never give readers the entire package. Readers should be able to interpret the piece per their own perceptions of writing, emotions, their life experiences, etc. in order to arrive at some sort of interpretation. Those words and phrases have meaning, but they can mean /anything/ to any reader, it's all up to you as reader of the text. It's not to be showy or arrogant because I have the ability to turn a beautiful phrase, but to allow the writing, style, imagery, and description to create its own meaning without the writer interfering in the raw nature of the text.

Thank you for pointing out that line - it's one of my favorites and seems to be for many readers. It really does drive home the theme(s), doesn't it?

Ah, soul. We've had a rather heated discussion in class about this. I've been taught, and also gathered from my writings, that this word is sometimes necessary. We have no other word that holds the same general connotation for the readers and writer - that's the only explanation I have for you, to be honest. Sometimes, there is no other word or phrase that can elicit the same understanding or emotion out of the text and the reader as the word 'soul.' I've been writing for many years, long before I became an 'official' writer - but this in particular has come up again and again over my years. I've seen two professors argue over this one word and the conclusion is almost always the same - what other choice do we have than to use it? It drives the essence of a sentence, a theme, a story (sometimes) and frankly, it's an essential part of these kinds of stories. When dealing the the mental, emotional, and psychological state, with the heart too, the word 'soul' is inevitable. Personally, I use accordingly depending upon the piece. It comes up so often here because it is an integral part of the text and stands alone as an idea in context of the larger whole.

Thank you for the review! I appreciate it! :)



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Review #5, by Gryffin_Duck I Am Not Saved

12th September 2012:
Hi! I'm here with your requested review. :)

This was hauntingly beautiful! It was definitely very different from your old stuff, but in a good way, I think. The first part, where Rose has her inner monologue, struck me as very poetic. I actually heard it in my head as if Rose was at a poetry reading and she was reading it. I have no idea if that was intentional or not, but I think it worked incredibly well!

I also liked the vagueness of it. Rose never said exactly what happened in the forest, nor do we know for sure what happened in the end, but an astute reader can figure it out from the clues. I do doubt that younger readers would understand exactly what happened (and yes, I am being vague in this review to keep it 12+), but that's more a personal choice than something that needs to be fixed. I personally think the vagueness is good.

I think the emotions were definitely your strong suit in this piece. Rose's fear, both about what happened and about Scorpius finding out, came across very well. The paragraph describing the panic she feels when Scorpius talks to her was done very well.

I didn't find very many grammatical or spelling errors. Just a sentence missing a word- "I rise out of my chair and head for door." You're missing the "the" before "door."

One thing I would've enjoyed having in here was a little more on the nature of Scorpius and Rose's relationship. Obviously they are together, but for how long? Did they just get together? Or have they been together a while? Perhaps even another sentence or two of characterization for Scorpius. That way the reader has a little more invested in their relationship, which would only strengthen your piece.

I think the parts you have in italics are perfect! I read them as poetry rather than lyrics, which helped continue the poetic beat throughout the story. And I think you did the poetry thing very well!

I really loved this story. The style was wonderful and the plot well-executed. You handled a sensitive subject very well! Feel free to re-request for another story! :)

Author's Response: Hi! Thank you so much for reviewing! I'm sorry for the delayed response!

Yes, it is very different from my old stuff, isn't it? After three years, I just had this urge to get back into writing - I needed it, really. I'm so glad you liked that first part! I've had a lot of complaints about it, actually. I suppose that other reviewers didn't really understand the stream of consciousness. Ah well, you're a fabulous reviewer and so perceptive!

I'm also glad you liked the vagueness. I definitely agree with you when you say that younger readers might not understand. But, I think the gravity of the situation holds its own, for sure.

Thank you! I think I've always been sort of strong when it comes to emotions, but I think this is just another testament to my growth as a writer. I'm glad you liked the emotions - it's something I feel strong about - to me, a story is nothing with an emotional element.

Oh, thank you for pointing that out! I really should edit!

You're right, I probably should extend this, but I just can't bring myself to do so! I'm always afraid I will edit and mess up what I've got, but I will definitely consider it! :)

Thank you so much for the wonderful review! I really do appreciate it! :)


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Review #6, by HappyMollyWeasley I Am Not Saved

11th September 2012:
Hi!

This is HappyMollyWeasley here with your review.

This is a story that is truely different from most of the stories here. I was a little bit surprised by it, but I think it is great to find that not all next-gen stories are of that typical "sweet seventeen, not a worry in the world except for the boy to like me" sort. ;-)

I like the poetic language you use, and the rather abrupt (intentionally, I think?) change to everyday language. By those changes you describe how mixed up an confused Rose really is. She is torn between her inner chaos and horror and the ordinary world around her.

It is hard to grasp what have happened to her, and how she ended up like this, but it is easy to understand how she is feeling at this point.

I like the suggestive parts in italics. Creepy, but well-written.

Overall I have to say that this is a story that I will remember, and that you have done a great job with it. :-)

Author's Response: Hello! Thank you so much for reviewing!

I'm glad it was different! You know, I do like those well-written "sweet seventeen, last year at Hogwarts" stories, but I like to do something different, something artsy.

Yes, that is definitely intentional - it's to show the dichotomy between Rose's situation and emotional turmoil and the fact that everyone else's lives go on. I'm so glad you caught onto the inner chaos and horror of her life - such a wonderfully perceptive reviewer! I love it!

Yes, it is hard to grasp and intentionally so - victims don't just tell you what happened to them, not most, anyway. They are so utterly confused and desperate - that's what I was trying to convey.

Thank you so much! I do hope you enjoyed the read, and I really appreciate the lovely review! :)


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Review #7, by ScorpiusRose17 I Am Not Saved

11th September 2012:
Hi there!

First of all I want to apologize for taking as long as I have to review this story. Real Life has been getting in the way of my reviewing habits and now I am back to it.

Anyways, onto the review.

I really thought that the descriptions and imagery were wonderful. You were able to catch a tragic, emotionly packed moment and really make it come to life. I LOVE the wording and the way it all flows together so smoothly. I also thought that this was an interesting take on a Rose/Scorpius story. I don't really read a lot of stories where they are just friends and not something more.

This has really left me near speechless. It was a very WOW moment when I reached the end thinking that this was simply amazing. I have never read anything quite like this style wise, so I wasn't exactly sure as to what to expect.

Keep up the brilliant writing! =)

-SR17

Author's Response: Hello! Oh, don't worry about any sort of delay - I totally understand, and besides, I'm an extremely patient woman!

I'm really glad you enjoyed this! I'm also really glad you liked my diction - I've had several reviewers tell me that my vocabulary is too complicated and so I've been worrying that I'm overly loquacious or something! Yes, they never are just friends are they? I personally like the friend dynamic when it comes to them.

I like speechless reviewers! It means that my writing left an impact (I hope!). Thank you so much for the wonderful review! I really appreciate it! :)


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Review #8, by Calypso  I Am Not Saved

10th September 2012:
Hello, this is CalypsoJenna from the forums with your requested review!

I was intrgued by this when I saw in your Author's Note that it was stream of consciousness. I've never read anything written this way before but I'm glad to say I wasn't disappointed!

The sense I got when I started reading was one of unease and insecurity. The contradiction of the first two sentences made for an interesting beginning and I loved the build up of imagery- it really seemed to reflect Rose's emotions at that time.
"Time floats over me like a mellow, damp cloud of cigarette smoke" was one of my favourite phrases.

I found the passages in italics rather poetically written but very spooky! I liked the sense that they recurred throughout the story, as if invading everything, as it seemed to feel to Rose. It was a very good device.

Her relationship with Scorpius is interesting. She seems to be relying on him a lot in this, although it's sad that he seems to be the only person who has either noticed or cares about her ordeal. He seems like a good guy though, not giving up on her even when she seems to give up on herself.

There were a few places where the sentences seemed a bit disjointed- I noticed it in the first couple of paragraphs. I might think about connecting some of them together to make the flow a little more natural. There was one grammar error I picked up on- you added an "of" in where you said "shattered into a hundred thousand of miniscule pieces."

I found the ending really dramatic. I was genuinely worried about what was going to happen to Rose! I liked that the ending still left questions unanswered- about the nature of the hooded figure and what happened to Rose. I originally thought the hooded figure was a character, but now I'm starting to wonder if it wasn't a personification of Rose's fears and insecurities...

So all in all, well done! I found this really insightful. I loved your use of imagery, and of the italic text.

-Bethany

Author's Response: Hello! Thank you for stopping by to review!

You really should look up stream of consciousness - it's a fabulous technique and one that has been around for over a century!

Yes, stream of consciousness often leads to contradictions in general because it's just pure, raw writing. Oh, I love that line - it's one of my favorites too! I'm glad you pointed it out!

They are a bit haunting, aren't they? Even though I wrote it, I look back and wonder where it came from!

You know, I never actually thought of her relationship with Scorpius. Like everything else in this story, it just sort of came naturally.

I understand how you would feel about the disjointedness of the sentences, but that is the nature of stream of consciousness - there are no set rules, and you really don't have to abide by any of the normal writing conventions. I'm sorry that didn't come across. Oh yes, that "of" is intentional. Stream of consciousness is unconventional and experimental, so I can understand any confusion.

You're very perceptive! It's quite possible, according to your own interpretation, that the dark figure IS a manifestation of her fears and insecurities.

Thank you so much for the review! I really appreciate it!


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Review #9, by Violet Gryfindor I Am Not Saved

8th September 2012:
I've seen this story come up on the forums and once I saw that it was written in stream of consciousness, I knew I had to read it. There was a challenge with that style a few years ago, and I'm always eager for another taste of it in fanfiction. :D

Before reviewing, I took a look at the previous reviews to see what those readers had found (and to gain some further insight from your responses), and I realized that I'd read and made sense of the story rather differently. This interpretation came to me when Rose said "If I tell you, you are never going to look at me the same way again!" - after that point, the pieces of the story fit together perfectly. I saw the figure as someone who had attacked Rose near the woods, and she was left filled with guilt, disgust, self-loathing. She feels tainted, and cannot ever go back to what she was before. The "come, Sugar" voice was the man's, luring her in, the words running through her memory again and again, driving her mad. He need not be real at the end, only a figment of her nightmare come to haunt her. He is real to her at that moment, and that blurring of real/unreal is what makes the story work so well. Rose is lost within a nightmare, and it transforms all the world around her - she truly cannot be saved.

One stylistic feature that stood out to me was your inclusion of very banal details because they were in sharp contrast - but perfect balance - with the abstraction of Rose's thoughts. The image of Scorpius brandishing that chicken wing fit oddly well, it and other such details demonstrating the ways in which Rose has become disconnected to the world around her. She cannot even eat - she is no longer grounded, hardly human, only a drifting mind, unravelling toward insanity. It's horrible that no one but Scorpius reaches out to help, and even he is too late. She is so much alone in her mind and her heart - but is that something of her own making, or caused by the thing she can't name, the nightmare that dogs her steps? She can't be okay, but does that mean that she can't be saved? She never asks herself this, and that's what is the tragedy for me as a reader, that she is convinced that she's doomed and there's nothing anyone can do to help her.

There's a lot I could analyze in this story, and I love coming across stories like this, the ones that offer so much rich material to dig through without providing any set answers. To me, at least, this story is very much open to interpretation - the stream of consciousness style does that because it's so abstract, so rooted in the mind and the imagination. These kind of stories play with both mind and heart, making you think and making you feel, and you've definitely achieved that here with fantastic results.

There was one little typo to point you toward, and that's "sooth" instead of "soothe". That was the only thing I noticed. Amazing work with this story! I'm looking forward to your new story, too - you take risks and experiment with style, which makes each story of yours that I read refreshing and exciting. :D

Author's Response: You're an absolute doll, you know that, Susan? Your review has absolutely made my week! Everything I write is stream of consciousness - I can't seem to write with any sort of outline or plan. That was actually my challenge! I love the style so much!

You're such a perceptive reader/review, Susan! It's something I really appreciate as a writer! I also love that you've taken a different route with this story! As you probably saw from my long, and slightly repetitive, responses, I am an advocate of giving the reader the freedom to interpret for themselves. Your interpretation is fabulous, I might add! I like how you saw the "come, Sugar" sections as her attacker's voice. This was my original, rather fleeting, intention, but I didn't linger on it and let it evolve on it's own. I'm also really glad you observed the blurring of reality. Tragedies, big and small, all distort our perceptions and leave us a bit more fragmented than we already are (oh, how postmodern is that! :D). Yes, you are definitely right, she cannot be saved. She is too far gone - her reality has been too altered. Even if Rose, in time, could overcome this, the experience itself leaves her identity fragmented and distorted.

Gosh, I'm just over the moon! A lot of my readers haven't liked the stark contrast between Rose's emotional turmoil and everyday happenings. See, I too, think that Scorpius waving about that chicken wing is oddly fitting. It's so normal. It's not abstract like emotions, but it's concrete and observable. You know, that's a good question you bring up. I would say, as the writer, I believe it's a bit of both. We tend to over analyze, make things melodramatic, or repress them so that it takes the tragedy or nightmare into this subliminal state where we just don't even really know anymore - that make sense?

That's such a huge compliment, I can't even tell you! I'm always worried that my writing isn't going to offer readers the chance to dig through the story, to make their own meaning - I'm always very nervous about that sort of thing. Yes, interpretation - my greatest love! :P

Thank you for pointing that out - I really don't ever edit/revise, which is probably bad, eh! Thank you so much for the wonderful and unexpected review! (I do experiment with time and perception and chronology in the new one, so perhaps it will be fairly good!)

Thank you, again, for the review! You're a gem, you are! :)



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Review #10, by SnitchSnatcher I Am Not Saved

3rd September 2012:
Hey Shelby! It's Molly from TGS with your requested review! Now, I must apologize if this gets a little long-winded because I've got a lot to say about this piece.

First off, I really enjoyed the introductory paragraph. I felt that it set the mood for the entire piece, which is dreamy- not in a fluffy, lighthearted way, but in that terrible nightmarish way where you don't even realize that it's a nightmare until that prick of fear starts to slowly spread over your skin. It gave the rest of the piece a heightened sense of tension, and it really made me want to figure out exactly what had happened to Rose to make her get so lost in this world where she was so convinced that she couldn't be saved.

I will admit, the first use of the italicized text was a bit confusing to me. It was difficult for me to determine if I was supposed to assume that the italics were one of the characters speaking or if it was just a narrative effect. I'm still a little confused about that aspect, but the actual language contained within them is stunning. Very poetic, almost hauntingly, jarringly, so. If that was your desired outcome then congratulations, you achieved it. At any rate, even if I was a little thrown off at first, they, too, helped contribute to the overall dark tone of the story.

Another thing that threw me for a loop initially was the change of scenery. We went from this atmospheric dream-like scape to the Great Hall, without much of a transition; it felt a little too abrupt for me, but I was able to get over it when I read the interaction between Rose and Scorpius. First of all, good on you for making Scorpius a Gryffindor! It rarely happens in fics and when it does, I can't help smiling ridiculously, even when reading a piece as dark as this. Secondly, I felt you wrote their relationship very well. His worry and concern for his best friend is just the right amount - he knows there's something wrong and presses her for it, but he doesn't bully her; he comforts her, tries to take her pain away. Perfect reaction to me, really. And beautifully written, too!

This may sound a little strange, but the ending is probably my favorite part of the entire piece if only because it is so ambiguous. To me, her fall from the Astronomy Tower is her "fall from grace", at least in Rose's eyes. I know you said that it's really all up to the interpretation of the reader and that's the way I read it, which is by far more intriguing and satisfying as an ending than Rose actually dying. At least it is for me, so that's how I'm going to interpret the story because honestly? I don't want her to actually die because you've done something that very few writers have been able to do in the past: you made me like Rose. I really, truly cared for her well being and wanted her to be put back together, to be whole again. The fact you achieved in that in such a small amount of words is truly impressive.

All in all, this was a beautifully written piece, nicely crafted. I might suggest giving this another read through as there are a few moments where there is a little too much description and other points where there's not enough. It doesn't deter from the meat of the story by any means, but I'm a fan of balancing out the amount of description - either give it all and describe everything or just go with the bare minimum. As I said, it's just a suggestion and it by no means takes away from the content of the story.

This is a really stunning job, Shelby! You're such a fantastic writer! Color me green with envy.

- Molly

Author's Response: Hello Molly! Thank you for reviewing! Don't worry about being long-winded - I think it's awesome!

Gosh, I am just so glad you like the introductory paragraph! I've been having a lot of problems with readers not understanding it, yet forgetting that it's stream of consciousness. You're very right about the mood being this dreamy, nightmarish sort of thing. I wanted to paint this picture of surreality, so I hope that came off well!

It's not one of the characters speaking, the italicized portions are more narrative effect. I put them in to symbolize something deeper, something more metaphorical. Honestly, I can't even pinpoint exactly who/what says them or what - I like to leave that up to the reader to decide that those pieces mean to them in the context of the story. I know that when I reread the story, I feel differently about them. I'm sorry they were so confusing!

Yes, a few people have mentioned that to me. My intention was to contrast the normalcy of everyday life with what Rose is going through emotionally, physically, and mentally. It's a bit jarring - I should probably work on smoothing that transition out. You're the second reviewer to have mentioned the house I placed Scorpius in! You know, I don't think I was even cognizant of the placement, it just seemed very natural. I'm really glad you liked his reaction! One of my biggest weaknesses is dialogue and so I'm really trying to work on that.

Oh my goodness, you're after my own heart, you are! I'm such a huge fan of ambiguity because it gives the reader so, so many options for interpretation! Your interpretation is one of many from reviewers and it is every bit as valid as anyone else's - that was one of my goals in this piece. I'm just so over the moon! It can be so difficult sometimes to get readers to connect with a story - I can see that I accomplished that with you!

Yes, I think it's time I push my pride back and do a bit of editing. I'm a fan of balance too, but I like to mix and match - maybe it's not working and I need to do some adjusting!

Thank you so much for your wonderful review! I really appreciate it! :)


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Review #11, by Moondanser83 I Am Not Saved

2nd September 2012:
Wow.

The flow of this story is beautiful, the anxiety tangible.

I had to keep slowing myself down, and making myself focus on the sentence I was reading because I wanted to jump ahead... I was dying to know what was going on!

So here we have Rose and Scorpius in the same common room... I'm going to take a leap here and say that Scorpius was sorted into Gryffindor... A concept that absolutely LOVE!

I was surprised what I got near that end, I wasn't expecting that twist... or the ending for that matter.

So sad. :(

You did an excellent job here and I look forward to reading more of your work!

~Moon~

Author's Response: Hello! Thank you so much for reading and reviewing! :)

I'm really glad that you liked this - it makes the effort of writing worth it when readers and reviewers like the story!

Haha, I've had several people tell me that! They had to make themselves slow down - I'd say that makes me very happy as a writer!

You know, I honestly never thought of that! It was kind of an unconscious decision, you know? But it seems like it was a good decision!

I've got this thing for leaving the reader utterly confused or speechless or whatever because I like that jaw-drop ending!

Thank you so much! I'm glad you enjoyed and I very much appreciate your review! :)


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Review #12, by kjp I Am Not Saved

1st September 2012:
wowo! This story had me gripped from beginning to end, I couldn't take me eyes off it.
I'm Kelsey (Kjp) you asked me to review your story. I think this one-shot is amazing, I got the sense of fear when the hooded man appeared. Rose's and Scorpius's reaction was also believable and seemed real to me.
I'm useless at finding any punctuation, grammar, spelling mistakes so even if there are some I wouldn't notice them.
Your choice of words were excellent, that's what really gripped me how you used such powerful sentences and words, your very first paragraph was just wow "They say I will be okay. I am not saved. Beneath the willows as they moan and whisper, begging for redemption, I am lost. There are the sounds of laughter in the distance. It is a wonder that I can breathe, that I can move my chest up down up down, up and down." That is what I call amazing writing.
I'm going to put this on my favorites right away because this has got to be one of my top five one-shots that I've ever read. 10/10 from me :D
- kjp :D

Author's Response: Hello Kelsey! Thank you so much for reading and reviewing!

Oh wow, thank you! I'm really glad you liked it!

Don't worry, I'm a pretty good hand at grammar and things like that, so it's all good!

I'm really, really glad you liked my diction. I've actually had a reviewer or two tell me to simplify my vocabulary. And thank you so much for mentioning my first paragraph! You're such a perceptive reader and as a writer, I really appreciate that! I'm just over the moon!

Thank you so much for your amazing review - reviewers like you make it all worth it! I really appreciate it! :)


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Review #13, by Serendipitous_love I Am Not Saved

31st August 2012:
The first paragraph is full of short sentences. All being either slow actions or thoughts(for want of a better word) or quick actions that seem to need to be rushed, helped on by the short sentences. The thoughts, like ‘they say I will be okay.’ It can be sort of confusing. I love the first sentence and if it were just all action for a start then that would be brilliant. I hope I’m making sense.

The sudden change of scenery is a bit... confusing aswell. I mean, after a few sentences we can understand. Yet, nothing is made clear. All in all, I do think this could honestly do with a go through. It’s good, you have a great idea and I’m not trying to say different but there is a lot left hanging- what happened before? Who? Why? Even simple stuff like what the weather is like give it a good basis, even for a small one-shot.

I do like your Scorpius. From the small amount he says and does I can comprehend how much has changed that he is now friends with Weasleys and such. It shows a comprehension and so well done. Your vocabulary is good. Very smart! However, it might do to simplify in some places. Just so as not to over explain or work. In other places, like when she describes herself, it works so well. It gives us a deep understanding not many can do! Your italic sentences are great too. Could be lyrics! To me they’re like luring words from this hooded figure and I liked that fresh imagery!

I hope this review helps! You did do an amazing piece, well done.

Author's Response: I understand your confusion with the first paragraph. However, this is a stream of consciousness story, so technically, anything can or cannot make sense - it's all in the actual technique. It's meant to be that way.

Like I said, this is stream of consciousness and so, you're really not supposed to know. It's all about what's on the page for you to interpret. I'm an advocate of the notion that readers shouldn't have everything handed to them on a silver platter - they should have to interpret things for themselves and make their own conclusions about the text (like in literature class and what JKR did).

I'm glad you liked my Scorpius. Yes, my vocabulary is elevated, but again, I'm not a fan of simplification so that the reader can have everything they need to understand for the story. It's about art for art's sake - the beauty of the piece, the metaphors, the multiple interpretations, the similes, the willingness of a reader to look beyond the words and see the meaning.

Thank you for your review. I appreciate your time and response.


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Review #14, by megthechef43 I Am Not Saved

31st August 2012:
WeasleyTwins,

Um, Wow. I'm going to need a few minutes to come back from that. (In a good way) It was so emotional and strong. I LOVED the imagery in this one-shot. "Time floats over me like a mellow, damp cloud of cigarette smoke." was one of my favorite lines in this story. I can feel her pain and agony in this story. I can literally feel the inner turmoil she is feeling from whatever was going on in her life. It was great.

I am confused as to what was actually going on. Who was the dark figure from the forbidden forest? Was it a vampire? That is what I first thought when Scorp mentioned she wouldn't eat and then she was afraid he won't look at her the same if she voiced her true problems. But then after I had read the entire story I started to think that maybe the dark figure was Death. The way she was not saved and how he kept calling to her. Hmmm???

Was Scorp just her best friend or did they have thing going on??? And last but not least did she actually die in the end??

These were few questions I had as I read the story. I not sure if you meant for it to be as mind bending as it is. I think it is a wonderful bit of writing but maybe it was your intention to have your readers interpret their own means into the story.

I think this was a great story. I think it would be interesting to know more about what happened or maybe a sequel one-shot in Scorp's point of view.

10/10 from me. It is Great!

Megthechef43 aka Meg

Author's Response: Hello Meg! (May I call you that?).

I've had a lot of readers tell me that - it's sort of like a time warp and when you come out, you're like, "Woah!" Maybe that's a good thing? I love that line and I'm so glad it stuck with you! I'm glad that you felt Rose's inner turmoil since that's really what I wanted to convey in this story!

The dark figure is supposed to represent many things (it's a metaphor). It can be a metaphor for her rapist, for the mental effects of the victimization, and yes, for Death - there are many possibilities depending up how you interpret the story.

I'd like to think that, at this point, they were only friends, well, best friends. Well, as for her death, it depends on how you interpret the story - literal or figurative or both. Some of my readers have said yes, she died and others have said that her mental capacities have sort of died.

Oh yes, you're very right! I definitely meant for the readers to interpret the story. I believe that good writing allows you to make your own meaning in the story.

Thank you so much for your wonderful review! I really appreciate it! :)


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Review #15, by Elphaba and Boyfriends I Am Not Saved

30th August 2012:
Hi, Elphaba here with your requested review!

I ended up reading this story three times; I found that my understanding of it changed with each reading. I see that as a good thing. :)

Much of your writing here is ambiguous in that it could be describing literal or figurative sensations and events. For instance, at the beginning, "They" are "begging for redemption." Are they the willows (figurative) or Rose's attacker/s (literal)? Time moves over her like a "damp cloud of cigarette smoke." Is this just a figurative description of time, or did her attacker leave the smell of cigarette smoke behind? I tend to go with a more literal interpretation, but I really like that you leave it open to your readers.

The emotions and sense of what has happened remain constant through each reading, and that, to me, is what makes this piece successful. :)

I'm not sure what to make of the italicized portions. The first one, with phrases like "don't you want it" make me think of a threatening come on from her attacker. The others seem like they could be voices in her head; memories or conscience or even her sub-conscience, I just don't know, and get the feeling that I'm not meant to.

This line: "Things like this aren't supposed to happen to good girls, to nice girls, to girls who are caring and loving and spunky" stands out. I see it as a false belief that Rose is just beginning to question. How much easier would it be for Rose to talk to Scorpius if she could accept that sometimes bad things happen not because of our actions, but because they are beyond our control?

The only grammatical thing that bothered me is the use of "they" in this situation: "We both look at the entrance to the stairs and see a hooded figure. They are large and imposing, filling the doorway with a deeper blackness." Unless you want to keep the gender and number of her attackers ambiguous, I might change "they" to "he." It seemed to me like there is only supposed to be one male attacker because earlier she said "he" to Scorpius, and later she stares, "at my assailant." This is a minor thing, it just struck me as a little weird.

The ambiguous ending is a frustrating because I DO become emotionally invested in Rose and her outcome. I'm okay with this, though. :) It ends as ambiguously as it begins, leaving readers to decide what has just happened and what will happen next.

I think this is a story that is meant to be read and discussed with a group; it's the type of story that can produce very interesting discussions. Great story!

Author's Response: Hello my dear! Thank you so much for reading and reviewing! :)

When I first read that, I didn't know whether to be hesitant or excited that you read it 3 times! :P I do hope it got better with every read!

I'm really glad that you like that I leave the interpretation up to the readers! That makes me smile. I've actually had a few reviewers tell me that I need to be more straightforward and that they don't like I left the interpretation up to them. So thank you for the vote of confidence!

Successful? Oh goodness, I am just over the moon with that comment!

Gosh, you're such a fabulous reviewer! Truly amazing. You've picked up on the fact that you're not meant to necessarily understand the italicized portions. They're an integral part of the story, but the reasoning behind them isn't spelled out. It's one of the things I like about this story - it gives the readers a chance to really dig deep and figure it out for themselves.

Yes, yes, you're very right about that - but Rose can't talk to Scorpius. She feels totally alienated from him, from society, from even her former self.

I see how that would strike you as a bit odd. However, I did that on purpose. If you see the ambiguity of the last part with the attacker, you'll see that even the attacker himself could only be a metaphor. It's all very intertwined with metaphors and such, you know.

I know how frustrating such ambiguity can be, but I really, really like for readers to work for the meaning. I was always taught that you don't hand everything to the readers on a silver platter, you know?

Oh, I never considered that! There's no telling what kinds of conversations would arise!

Thank you so much for your spectacular review! I really do appreciate it! :)


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Review #16, by AlAndAl I Am Not Saved

30th August 2012:
That was intense. You have a way with words that is almost hynotizing. The way you describe Rose's emotions are so vivid and the imagery is jawdropping. The is truly a beautifully written story.

It was extremely captivating and deep. Amazing amazing amazing work.

-Allie

Author's Response: Oh wow, I don't even know what to say to your amazing review! I do hope that you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it!

Thank you so very much! I really appreciate it! :)


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Review #17, by FallenAmaranth I Am Not Saved

30th August 2012:
Well. Wow. This just...blew me away. In all honesty, I don't believe I have ever been so utterly and entirely consumed by a piece of writing as I was with this. You asked for reader reaction? That was it. It was just so captivating. I'm pretty tired right now, and had to re-read the first bit because I realised I wasn't paying enough attention - I read one line as 'Time floats over me like a marshmallow', thinking, that's an odd simile - but once I got to the second paragraph I definitely woke up, and by the end my nose was almost touching the screen(terrible on the eyes!)

It flows amazingly well, save for the first paragraph. It's a little hard to understand when it's right at the beginning of the story, although as I read on it made more sense. It did, however, give me an introduction into Rose's head and how detached she seemed to be from any form of reality. Especially when she makes comments like, 'My feet lead me to the Astronomy tower,' from which we would deduce that she has no control over anything anymore, and she is surprised she can even manage to breathe. From the very beginning it was obvious that something awful had happened to her, to make her head so muddled and distant.

Imagery & Emotion - These two are together, because I feel a lot of the imagery was mixed with the emotions, and both were done exceptionally well. You used so much description, with similes, metaphors and a very wide and varied vocabulary. For a piece as with as much angst and mystery as this one, that's exactly what it needed to bring it from great, to beyond transcendent. We see so much of Rose's pain, no, we feel so much of Rose's pain.

The ending was fabulously mysterious. It's difficult to tell what is reality anymore, and what is Rose's version. I loved that she stopped being able to breathe near the end - I'm not sure if it was intentional - but at the beginning she comments that she is shocked to be able to do so. The reader is left with so much to think about even once they've finished reading, since the ending itself gives few answers, or indeed, if gives variations. It's not closure, but at the same time, it is. So much is left up to the reader to decide, and I think it's amazing that you managed to create that effect, you truly have an exceptionally unique style and I am so envious! The intensity of this story was just...just...wow.

For the first time ever - if it's cool with you - I'm going to show this to my mum, so the next time she comments - as mums do - 'But you're amazing at writing, Emily', I can shove this in her face and tell her that this is the sort of inspirational and moving writing ability that I'm aiming for. :')

I barely think I managed to criticize this, I tried my best, but it was just so fabulous. I loved the 'Come, sugar, come' lyric-things, I think they added something different to the story, and made me wonder what they were - were they voices in her head? - again, up to the reader's interpretations ;)

This was my favourite line, Aimless and roaming, a lone gypsy amongst the throngs of human teeth and toes and life.
I'm not sure why, it was just brilliant.

- Em (P.S, this is the longest review I've ever written, be proud :P )

Author's Response: Hello! Thank you so much for reading and reviewing! :)

I am honestly astounded by your review and don't know if my response will be adequate enough, but I will try my best!

Consumed and captivated by a piece of writing? Oh wow, that is such a wonderful compliment! It warms my heart that my writing elicited such a reaction! I do love my odd similes - I think they really bring a writer into the story, you know?

I understand how confusing that first paragraph can be, but it is stream of consciousness - and when it's SoC, you never really know what's going to hit you! I'm glad the flow worked for you - a few of my reviewers have said that they don't like it, so that it worked for you makes me feel like maybe I did my job well! ;) You've picked up on so many things (such a perceptive reader) and I really appreciate it!

Yes, you've hit the nail on the head with that one! I love to mix imagery and emotion. I think it's a very powerful way to convey what I want without really overloading the reader, you know? Gosh, I'm just so over the moon! Another reviewer actually mentioned that my vocabulary is too varied and that I should simplify it :( So thank you so much - it makes me feel good about my writing!

Oh. My. Goodness. I don't even know what to say! I would be perfectly fine with you showing someone else - but that you aspire to my moving writing? Oh wow, that's one of the best compliments I've ever received!


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Review #18, by AdeleShare I Am Not Saved

30th August 2012:
Hi AdeleShare here with your requested review.
In technique, I can't think of anything to say against it. I think it was powerful and beautifully written. I think you covered (what I think is a taboo topic, I hopebim thinking the right thing here) well. I know it was purposeful to have it quite vague, and I do like that. But I just hope that I am on te same page as to what it was about. That's my only concern, is that it is left a little too much to the readers imagination. And without a definite tell from the author, the reader won't know of they've imagined the right thing ( like me).
The poem bits were also composed magically, I love poetry and the " come,sugar, come" poem throughout is great.

This is my first officially requested review, I hope this is what you were hoping for. Thanks for asking my opinion.
Oh, and there weren't any grammatical errors that I could see! Which pleases me greatly!

As always,
AdeleShare

Author's Response: Hello AdeleShare! Thank you so much for reading and reviewing!

I'm really glad you liked the technique - I think it's different from what many writers do here on HPFF, you know? I'm so glad you liked that it was vague! I don't believe in handing everything to a reader on a silver platter - I want readers to dig deep, eventually having some sort of connection with the story. I understand that perhaps it is too vague, but it's something I really enjoy doing - making readers come to their own interpretations!

Thank you so much for your review! I appreciate it! :)


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Review #19, by Cassie Whitmann I Am Not Saved

30th August 2012:
wow.

This is quite a powerful piece when the full meaning is taken in. I must admit though, there are parts which, without the warnings at the start (ie. sexual nature, sensitive topic etc.) I would have been left in a little confusion, unsure if what I was thinking was what was meant or not.

You asked mostly for reader reaction and such, so that's what I plan to focus on here.

What I said above is a big contributing factor, I think. There's two ways I really look at this, one is from a readers standpoint and another is from shall we say an 'artist's' standpoint.

From the reader's standpoint:

The descriptions and actions are really quite vague, we don't really know what's going on, past or present. Everything in kind of in snippets and the picture really doesn't come completely to light until the very end of the story. The reader is forced to think deeper into the story, past just surface reading to gain the full effects of the story, which I think is true to most good pieces of writing.

From the 'artist's' point of view:

Very deep and powerful. The passages of what essentially becomes a very powerful poem are very striking and their distribution throughout the story is brilliant. The emotions that your characters are displaying are enforced by that poem so much and it really helps bring them out even more.

The way you write like the character would (I imagine) be experiencing, kind of gliding through everyday life really reflects the characters emotions and their feeling of worth.

Overall, I think what you have here is great. I do think it could be improved with a little more description here or there, but I feel like that's what you were going for- part of the gliding through everyday life, what the character is actually experiencing as opposed to what is physically going on around them.

I think a little more prodding in the direction you intended for this story to go would probably be helpful. I really think what you have here is great though.

Reader Reaction: wow, once overall picture has sunk in.
Emotions: bang on.
Imagery: Slight improvement could be used, overall though fairly good.
Descriptions: Also, I think certain things could use a little more description, but overall, well done.

I Hope this was helpful to you! And I really think you do have a wonderful piece, which many of the readers here would/ will enjoy! :)

Keep it up!

Author's Response: Yeah, it is a pretty loaded topic, isn't it? You see, you said you were unsure if what you were thinking was actually meant - that's the beauty of most of my pieces, especially this one - it's all up to you as the reader to define what the story means to you. :)

I sort of like that it's vague, you know? Like you said, it makes the reader think deeper into the story. It gives the reader a chance to exercise his/her awesome brainpower and really dig into /any/ piece!

I like that you've gauged this from a reader/artist standpoint, so thank you for that! Wow, like a powerful poem? Oh, what a wonderful compliment, thank you!

I understand what you mean about a little more descriptions here and there - I guess it's just that I don't want to take away from what you mentioned about the character "gliding" through everyday life. This event is supposed to have negated everything she has known up to this point about everyday life and the world around her, does that make sense?

Thank you so much for the wonderful review! I really appreciate it! :)


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Review #20, by classicblack I Am Not Saved

27th August 2012:
Hi there, it's Ali here with your review!

May I just say: wow. Really, what a powerful story.

I have to admit I was a bit apprehensive at first because I've read many authors that have attempted this kind of delicate topic and failed to accomplish it. However, you really did a great job. I applaud you for your use of that phrase "Come, Sugar, come..." Wherever did you come up with it?

I really felt for Rose and what she was going through. I connected to her in a way that, although I have not the slightest inkling of what she was going through, I could still feel her pain, which is very difficult to write. You did it in such a way, as well, that made the situation that Rose was in one that a reader wants to reach out to rather than shrink away from. Well done!

The way you describe clearly shows how in pain Rose is and how she feels broken. She feels as if no one can help her. You managed to let me know what was going on and what happened to Rose without directly saying it. If you had came out and said it I think it might have ruined some of the powerful nature of this piece.

I could certainly picture Rose's surroundings, especially on the Astronomy Tower- your description of the stars was fanastic. It felt a bit like you were describing Vincent van Gogh's painting 'Starry Night.' I would have liked a bit more description of the other settings, such as the Great Hall and the common room. Not as detailed as on the tower, but perhaps the normality of the other students in comparison to Rose.

I liked how the 'figure' and doer of wrong to Rose remained unamed. I feel like he represents all the other people like him in the world.

I wonder, though, why Scorpius stepped aside. Why did he allow the man to even go near Rose? Even though Rose wanted Scorpius to step aside, why didn't he immediately stop the man from touching Rose?

I'd like to clear up one thing about the end: it was just symbolizing that Rose's spirit was crushed on that she had given up hope, right? She didn't actually die? Perhaps it's just me over-thinking things again.

I did like the feeling of slow moition in the last few paragraphs. I could literally picture the slow motion scene in my head as I read it.

Superb one-shot. I really enjoyed reading it!
Happy writing,
classicblack from the forums

Author's Response: Hello Ali! Thank you so much for stopping by! :)

Powerful? Oh wow, what a wonderful compliment!

I totally understand your apprehension. It's a sensitive topic in general because it's so taboo to discuss it in our society today. I wanted to analyze the issue, in a way, without being vulgar (which is against ToS anyway) and treating the topic with respect. I'm really glad you liked my "come, Sugar, come" parts. Honestly, I have no idea where that came from. I just started writing and my writer's intuition told me to take it up a notch and give the story something more, something innovative and so, there you have it! :D

I like that you mention I "made the situation That was in one that a reader wants to reach out to rather than shrink away from." I think that's exactly what I wanted to accomplish, in a sense. I didn't want the descriptions and such to be so utterly painful for not only Rose, but the reader - I wanted it to be accessible and understandable, even though it's not necessarily a universally understood topic.

Thank you for pointing that out for me. I did consider a bit more description with the Great Hall and that, but didn't know if I should approach it or just leave it be. I will definitely look over that and see what I can tweak a bit.

Oh yes, I'm glad you recognized the unnamed figure as more of a metaphor rather than an actual person.

You know, I honestly can't answer that question definitively. In a sense, it was always Rose's battle to fight and no matter how much Scorpius wanted to help, literally, emotionally, and metaphorically, it just wasn't in the cards, you know? It's not an issue that you can have what I call an "understanding partner" - no is truly going to recognize and sympathize with your situation - and an extension of that is that they /can't/ help.

You know, that bit at the end is really up to you. It can go either way - it's up to the interpretation of the reader. I'd like to think both yes and no. As a writer, I'm all about the subtle and mysterious and whatnot :) I used a lot of metaphor - the piece as a metaphor itself, the figure as metaphorical - so really, it's all up to you as reader.

I really do hope you liked my oneshot! I really appreciate all of your wonderful feedback! Thank you so much for the great review! :)

Shelby


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Review #21, by adluvshp I Am Not Saved

26th August 2012:
Hey! AditiDraco95 here with your much delayed review! I am so sorry for the long wait!

Wow, I must say this was a hauntingly beautiful story. The imagery was impeccable, I was really drawn in entirely while reading this. At first, I couldn't quite understand what was happening, but I got the hang of it as we moved on.

Your writing style is quite unique here, but very captivating. The emotions were quite tangible throughout as well and I could feel what Rose was going through. The "come sugar" lines were a cool addition. I think this story would be great if made into a podcast too!

All in all, I really enjoyed reading this - a different and amazing piece of writing. My only little piece of advice is to revise your opening/introductory paragraph. It does not make that much sense, and I think if it flowed better, the readers would be more inclined to delve further into the story. Apart from that, great work!

9/10

Cheers!
AD

Author's Response: Hi AD! Don't worry about the delay - I'm a very patient woman! Thank you for reading and reviewing! :)

Wow, thank you for the wonderful compliments! I like that you called it "hauntingly beautiful" because it's definitely not butterflies and rainbows, but I think it has some redeeming qualities.

I'm over the moon that you thought my style was captivating! Maybe I've taken way too many English classes, but now I worry about my style and all that literary business when it comes to my stories. Maybe I will request it to be podcasted! (I'm Southern, you see, so I don't really like to podcast my voice).

I'm sorry that paragraph didn't make much sense. The story in its entirety is stream of consciousness, so it doesn't necessarily have to/need to make sense even if I want it to, you know? I try to keep it raw because I believe that it's 'art for art's sake.' The first paragraph was meant to me a reaction/reflection to the terrible incident - it's a testament to the idea that the past is always intertwined with the present.

Thank you so much for your lovely review! I really appreciate it! :)

Shelby


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Review #22, by True Author I Am Not Saved

26th August 2012:
Hello! I am True Author with your requested review! =]
Beautiful. This was really amazing. Simply great! I have no words to explain how much i loved this.
Well, you asked me to review about reader's reaction, emotions, imagery and descriptions. so let me clear them one by one.
Whatever i wrote in the starting was my reaction! ;) I think this story leaves the reader stunned. This story successfully makes a sensitive person cry. as i am not very sensitive,i didn't cry but i felt really bad for Rose and when readers feel bad or happy for a character the story is certainly good!
I liked the way you created the atmosphere for your story. i was rather impressed by perfect use of words and phrases. This is really good at emotions. but i have a doubt. do you want to say that Scorpius secretly loved Rose? it's just a doubt.
Just one suggestion! Please try to make the summary interesting. A nice summary attracts the reader! for example, you can just mention the theme of your story. "Dinner was the same; the common room was too the same. Laughter and childish antics. Scorpius sat across the table like he always does. I tried to act interested in new spells, our essay of potions, the goblins' wars, but my mind continued to wander. I wanted to be alone. Physically and emotionally."
I hope this was helpful not harsh!
Your Friend
Ashwini =]

Author's Response: Hello! Thank you so much for reading and reviewing!

I'm really glad you thought this was amazing! I'd like to think I've grown as a writer and it shows through in the actual writing.

"Perfect use of words and phrases"? Oh wow, that's a wonderful compliment! I write stream of consciousness, so there's never really any telling what is going to end up on the paper - I rarely edit, so I'm really over the moon that you think the words and phrases were good!

That's a good suggestion, actually. I've always been an advocate of a quick, short, attention-grabbing summary. I think perhaps I should see what I can come up with.

Thanks so much for the review! I do appreciate it! :)

Shelby


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Review #23, by slytherinchica08 I Am Not Saved

24th August 2012:
I'm so sorry that it has taken me this long to leave your review but alas I am here!

What a wonderful oneshot! I loved the whole idea of this and the thought that Rose and Scorpius are best friends was nice to see as well. I feel bad for Rose in this piece that she has been hurt so badly that all she wishes for is death and in the end she falls to it. I also can't help but feel bad for Scorpius in that he had to watch his best friend lose her life. How horrible that feeling must be and to know that he could have done something to stop it. I loved the description in this chapter, it was really wonderful and the added bits of your come, sugar parts are really well placed too! Altogether, this was a wonderful oneshot and just very nice and sad at the same time! Great Job!

~Slytherinchica08~

Author's Response: Don't worry about it! I'm a very patient person - besides, I'm just glad you stopped by to review! :)

I'm really glad that you liked it! You know, it's actually kind of difficult to write a story like this because, as the writer, I felt such unending sadness for Rose. This is going to sound crazy, but I'm glad you felt sorry for them both - I always want to elicit emotions out of my readers, you know? It means that I'm getting somewhere as an author and the readers are somehow connecting with the story. I'm really glad you liked the description - if there's one thing I'm confident about in my writing, it's my description. I feel blessed to have been given a gift that allows me to bring it to life.

Thank you so much for reading and reviewing! I really appreciate it! :)


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Review #24, by VampireMaidenPhoenix I Am Not Saved

14th August 2012:
What? Just... what? ... WHAT?!

You can't... I don't... Just. what?

I don't know what to say. Um... It was written beautifully, definitely. I felt sort of detached, reading, but not because I didn't like or understand what I was reading, but I kind of felt like Rose was detached from everything. And even though I am not convinced that I totally understood just what happened, I sort of like it like that, I think. It's hard to say whether adding more concrete details would improve the story or take away from the emotion... Anyway, I'm favoriting this.

Author's Response: My thoughts exactly. I wrote it and I still can't believe what I composed!

Thank you - I'm glad you thought it was beautifully written. It's interesting that you say you felt detached because Rose did - that's definitely a reaction/interpretation that I haven't heard and I like it! (If you read some of my review responses to previous reviews, I think it will give you some insight into the happenings of the piece without me giving you a 20,000 word explanation - I'm wordy, you know). I write stream of consciousness and I rarely, if ever, edit, so I haven't considered concrete details - I'm don't normally give concrete details in such a raw, emotional piece like this, but it's definitely something to consider next go-round. Thanks so much for the fabulous review! I definitely appreciate it! I hope you enjoyed the read! :)

Shelby



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Review #25, by marissa lily potter I Am Not Saved

31st July 2012:
Hey there, marissa lily potter here with the review you requested.

I'm a big fan of next generation, especially Rose and Scorpius so to see them in a setting where I've never seen them before is very intriguing for me. I love this story. Everything from the way the chapter started, to the italics in between and the attention to detail!

Your characterizations were very good. In a matter of a little bit, I felt like I had known Rose and Scorpius forever. They're both extremely well developed and I felt very much a part of the story. I love that feeling, where I feel like I'm not just reading someone else's story but that I'm part of the story, kind of watching from a third party perspective like a pensieve of a sorts.

I think the descriptions were amazing. They really created the mood for the story and set everything up so nicely. Even with a lot left up for interpretation, the descriptions were great and I'm pretty sure that you wanted to leave things open so the descriptions did a great job doing that! Along with the descriptions, the imagery was fantastic.

The setting was so vivid thanks to all the imagery and I could actually picture the scene happening before my eyes which was extremely nice to picture. As far as evoked emotions go, I think you did a wonderful job letting the readers connect with the story. This connection made it possible to feel every emotion that the characters felt.

I really liked this story. I'm usually not a horror/dark kind of person although I will read it but I was quite surprised to find myself liking this story a lot! It was well executed, the characters were developed extremely well, it was perfectly relatable and overall, well written! You're a fantastic writer and I love your work! Great job with this story :)

Thank you so much for requesting a review. It was a pleasure to read this!

-Marissa

Author's Response: Hi! Thank you so much!

I'm such a sap for NextGen too and I'm always looking for something different, you know - maybe that's why I wrote this. I'm really glad that you liked it!

Thank you for that compliment about my characterizations! They're usually pretty solid now that I've been writing for several years, but sometimes they get a little wonky, you know. I'm so super glad you felt like you were a part of the story - that is definitely one of my biggest things when it comes to writing. I felt like JKR made me a part of her magical world, so I think that readers should connect with my story and get wrapped up in it. I think it interesting that you called it a pensieve - I believe that's how a reader should feel (perhaps Rose felt the same herself because of the trauma).

Oh, I'm just over the moon! Descriptions are my strong point and I always, always, always want to make sure that they're what most readers find pleasing or good or intriguing. Yes, I definitely left a lot to interpretation - I was taught that you should make the reader work for it, per se, and that readers are not stupid, so making them think/interpret/analyze will help others to connect with the story.

I'm really glad you found that the emotions really helped to connect the reader. I'm an advocate of the idea that as individuals, we all perceive, think, feel, in our own unique ways and no one can truly understand what we're going through - therefore, that's why we write - we write so that we can try to convey what's going on, to get that human connection.

I'm really glad you liked this even though horror/dark isn't your thing. That puts some readers off, you know, so I'm really excited that you liked it!

Thank you so much for your lovely review! I really appreciate it! :)

Shelby


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