Hey there Shortie! It's Ac here coming to review for the improvement challenge. Sorry about the wait for the review, there were quite a lot of entries and I was slightly intimidated by the number of these that I had to do, but I'm here now!
First things first is actually about the title and the summary. I think your title has been cut off so it reads "Turn on the Light (previously titled" so, basically, you should go back and fix that up. You can say what the story used to be called in the summary and that will be smoother (and it will also fit) and then, about the summary - in my experience, summaries that say 'this is not some cliché Mary Sue fic with a happy ending' actually tend to be cliche and have Mary Sues - I am entirely sure that yours doesn't but I don't think it gives a really good, grabbing first impression for the story. And as the summary is the graby bit, I don't know, I think you could make it smoother and more reach-out-of-the-screens-pulling-you-in-can't-get-away. I know that strictly isn't about this chapter, but I think things like that give stories more of professional clean quality to them. Plus, if you have a neater title and summary, you'll likely get more readers too.
I really loved the matter of fact way tone you had with 'annoyingly interrupted by an explosion right outside the window' - that gave that whole first bit a really cool satirical edge which I greatly appreciated :)
There are a couple of phrases here that seem a bit off to me, though, which I don't really understand. I'm not entirely sure what you mean by 'was driven out of my emotional range as the explosion was proven to be nothing but an old barn owl' - I'm just not entirely sure what you mean. More clarity here, perhaps? And, actually, there are a couple of places where things are phrases slightly awkwardly - in most cases I know what you mean but it just sounds a tad off . "All the rays of sunlight available for the day" seems like a really circumlocutory way of putting things. I think if you went through and read your writing out loud as you went through and thought about the actual meaning of the sentences not just how they sound, then you might be able to make the semantics a little tighter. It's only a few phrases, but you don't want to distract your readers from the actual plot of the thing.
On the odd occasion you also swap tenses. This is actually so common and it's really easy to miss that you're doing it, but you have ' I walked' and 'we keep' in the same paragraph. It does almost make sense, but it really should be 'we kept' - I was editing an old piece of my own writing yesterday and it was full of instances like that, so I'm probably feeling particularly sensitive to it today (after hours of changing 'it is' to 'it was'), but your writing will be cleaner and much more pleasing to a gramatarian if you just go back and sort that out. Honestly though, I always feel really stupid when I notice something like switching tenses - as it seems so simply - but it's so easy to do.
So, one last thing as an area for improvement. Well, not exactly improvement, but development. This is obviously quite an emotional moment for Lily and you've shown that really well, but I really think you're capable of digging deeper with these character's emotions. So, before you've told us what's in Lily's letter you say she is 'crying freely' except, then she cries in front of Scorpius, then she cries a lot more - and that's a lot of crying. Crying is a way of showing emotion, but there are also other ways. But people cry differently at different things. So, say at first Lily's eyes just well up a bit because of the shock, before it's actually sank in. So, maybe she tries to blink back the tears? Maybe her vision is slightly blurry because of the tears that are sort of building? Its just that overusing something loses the effect slightly and building up to the moment when she's actually crying makes the tears feel more raw, too.
Then maybe you could talk about how it feels to have cried for hours. I always find that if I cry for that length of time I'm actually sick and after one of my friends boyfriend dumped her and then she found out that her grandad had died, she ended up with a stress related nose bleed. But, either way, your eyes end up aching and your chest hurts. After I lost a family member I found that I'd sort of got a crying-related-cold and. Just scrape further through the superficial of her emotions and really describe them too me - I wanted to really understand her grief. You've made a really good start with her emotional responses, but I just feel that if you push yourself close towards how LIly's feeling then you could do way more.
So, there's your three areas for improvement: the first is the slightly awkward phrases, the second is the tense thing and the third is developing and describing emotions. Just want to be clear that I really did enjoy the story, despite all the CC (improvement is the name of the challenge, after all). I loved the ending to this chapter - a real strength of yours - and you have a great start to a story here! Thanks for entering my challenge and good luck! :)Author's Response: Hey AC :D Thanks for reviewing. Hehe naah no issue. RL can get nasty.
I redid the title. The brackets aren't there anymore, just "Turn on the Light" I know!!! My summaries are horrible. I'll work on that in the reply fic for the challenge. Hopefully it will get better.
Awww thanks :D I think it came off well because I'm always lazy and easily annoyed when I have to get up to answer the door or something :D
The phrases! I know, I get a lot of negative feedback on the owl thing. I should be more careful. I'll make sure to make sense next time :)
Oh dear! I really didn't notice the tense thing. There was an issue though, earlier, when I realised that I've started writing in first person and have jumped to third. Had to edit all that. Maybe this happened while editing. I'm not sure. But yeah this happens a lot. Sometimes I stare at sentences thinking which tense is better. Better get that sorted out.
Oh right!! I get it now. So because of the way I've written it, the actual crying has no impact at all. I'll have to improve a lot on emotions. Dark emotions are easy for me but not this. I'll work hard on that.
Aww I'm really sorry to hear that *hugs* Hope you're okay now :)
So I have to improve on,
-Bringing up emotions
The response fic will be written soon :D I'm really motivated. Thanks a lot for the constructive review AC. Ah don't mention it, thank you for having such a lovely challenge.
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Oh yay! Next-Gen! That's always fun to read! This, though, is my first Lily/Scorpius, but it seems to be really interesting so far!
I loved the opening scene, the whole being lazy state. You've written it so well and it reminded me of myself when I'm like that.
I was the rather surprised by the range of emotions you've included in this chapter, considering that it's the first! You've showed us how varying emotions looked on Lily and you've done so skillfully. I especially liked the way you've described her tone around the end, when she was kicking Scorpius out. I could really hear her say the words in my head!
I'm also eager to see more of your Scorpius, even though I could hate him a little for doing this to Lily. But he doesn't seem to be doing this at will, and I love Scorpius in general, so I can't help but not fully blame him for Lily's sadness.
I'm a little curious about how you'll go on the next chapter, whether you're going to write about how they got together or whether you'll continue on from this point in the story and that makes me want to see more of your story.
So yeah! Great job and keep on writing!
-MannoAuthor's Response: Tsk tsk. never be that lazy. Very bad. Hehehe naah I'm worse ;)
Aww you like the way I've brought out the emotions? I was told that it was too much but YAY you like it :D Ooooh you could? That's amazing! I've never done that before. I mean, bringing out emotions and getting positive feedback, so thank you so very much :D
Yeah screw the Malfoy *angry face* *fist in air* Hehe you have NO idea how I'm going to start next. It's going to surprise you all but hey, that's the point. I've planned this novel out, the first time to do so, and I'm so proud of what I've come up with. Hope you guys like it too.
Thank you for the lovely review :D I'll request one when the next chapter is out. And so sorry for the late reply. HC doesn't let me out :D
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So wow this was rather emotional huh, but I thought you did a really amazing job portraying all of the stuff that was going through Lily's head as this progressed.
The characterization of Lily was great. From the part in the begginning where she was laying on the couch being lazy (that made me smile by the by) to the part where she started sobbing to the part where she sort of got really really mad and flipped out on Scorpius. You showed your reader a lot of different sides to her in a short amount of time, and made her seem really real.
Same thing with Scorpius, although you didn't have as much on him as you did on Lily. But I got the feeling that he was probably getting some pressure from home to break it off with Lily
Anyway I really don't have any complaints about this peice, except for maybe the formatting. It wasn't that bad, but the spaces in between paragrarphs did seem kind of large.
Other than that the spelling, grammar, flow, and pacing were all great. So good job and keep up the good work :)
-LizAuthor's Response: Hey Lizzie :D
Phew. I'm so glad you like it. In the beginning when people started to say that this is too fast I started to panic but now you guys like it :D So yay me :D
Ooo the lazy part. Story of our life isn't it? I thing I'm the laziest person in the world so that worked out well ;) Ah her character IS real. In that part at least. As I've mentioned in the summary, this is a VERY true story (This chapter) so every single emotion is true. I think that's what made this story realistic as you said, the actual reality of it. I was scared that I would ruin it with my writing but again, yay me :D
Ahh the formatting. I finally found out how to get that done. The spacing in my computer is horrible. I've redone it so now all the spacing should be fine. And yeah after my other story is validated, I'll repost this one with the correct format.
Ah the spellings and grammar is all thanks to my lovely beta Maybe. She's an angel.
Thank you so much for the lovely review Liz :D And so sorry for the late reply. HC held me up :)
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Here for pass the parcel (my head is kind of spinning now... too much reading).
This was a nicely written piece. It wasn't very intense, and it wasn't very superficial either. It was just... normal, and I like normality sometimes. Um, well what I am trying to say is, this was sort of realistic, so good job there =)
I like Lily's characterization, and like the sort of mystery you create around Scorpius. He reminds me of Draco (not sure if canon or fiction) quite a lot. I think your scene flowed quite well too and Lily's reaction was well placed. If this had been a one-shot, I would have perhaps advised you to add in a flashback or two touching on Scorpius and Lily's relationship (a moment of love between them or something) but since its a WIP, I think there's plenty time for you to "touch" upon their relationship.
All in all, I liked the narrative, it was very straightforward. Lily and Scorpius, and their interaction, was written well too. I can see the story heading in a nice direction. Keep writing =)
(AditiDraco95)Author's Response: So sorry for the late reply. You know how fuzzy the HC got. Was hung up there all this time.
Ahh yes. OMG my head was about to burst. Lovely stories but reading so fast and then posting there and reading again was like WHOA. Hehe but it was fun ;) Got to read some VERY nice stories.
I was so focused on making this realistic. I didn't want the crying part to get all cliche and fluffy. I sometimes tend to do that so I took extra care. I'm so glad I didn't overdo it :D And even glad that you like it :D
ah that is definitely fictional Draco. I've read so many Dramiones so I can tell you that ;) Oh yeah there's loads of time and loads of descriptions and explanations coming. naah don't worry it won't be a typical family pressure thing. I have a better idea (I REALLY hope so)
Thanks Ad for the lovely review. Again, sorry for the delay :(
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Hey! Pass the parcel~
This was really great. I really loved how different this was - especially with the Lily/Scorpius pairing that I was not expecting! The first thing that comes into my head is that Scorpius is a jerk. I don't understand why he'd send her an owl and then apparate after she had just gotten in (hypothetically he wouldn't know exactly when she would receive the note right?) And that note was harsh. You made me feel really sorry for Lily, since she's so heartbroken, especially because of what she gave up (quidditch and family) and what was going to happen (week at the manor). The way Scorpius was talking to Lily.. well it made me think that Draco might've played a part in his sudden change of heart.
I thought the story started really suddenly, without much of an introduction but it still works as a first chapter. There's some great writing here, and it'll be interesting to see where you take this. I did enjoy reading it though :)
- CharlotteAuthor's Response: Hehe I know right! The letter thing was a bit stupid. But you'll see why ;) Hehe Draco *shakes* Oh dear Draco. Seems like him doesn't it? I love to see the way you interpret present and predict the future parts. really gives me ideas :D And hmm... Is it Draco? We'll see ;)
Thanks Charlotte. I know, as a single chapter this says nothing. But there's a huge story coming. I'm working on it. So the next chapters should clear out all doubts :D Hopefully.
Thank you so much for reading and reviewing. It gives me so much energy to carry on :D
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Hey, aww poor Lilly! :'(
You really make the reader feel for her, especially because at the start she is laid back and relaxed and then she just breaks down!
There was only one thing I noticed, it says "sobbing uncontrollably" and then it also says "I burst out crying." I just think these mean the same thing so it doesn't make much sense.
Apart from that, it's a great start to what looks to be a great story! :)Author's Response: Ahh right. So that was confusing. So sorry. Sobbing as in, you know, when you're trying to not cry out loud, and your body shakes from the effort? That's what I meant when I said "Sobbing uncontrollably" and when I said "Burst out crying" I meant that she actually broke down, unable to control herself anymore.
Sorry about the confusion. :( Thank you for reviewing shaza :D
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In all honesty, I really, really liked this! :) I love the way you've written Lily - she's not like anyone else's, not your regular fireball, all sassy and snappy and such, she still might get into some trouble - as evidenced by the fact that she lied to her family about going to the World Cup - but she's more careful about it, and I did like Scorpius, too. You have a good plot set up already, I can tell, and I seriously can't wait to see where this is going - I loved everything. The TV and the explosion - why would there be an explosion, though? That bit I don't get - just, ah. This was a lovely read :)
--LinnAuthor's Response: Aww thank you so much Linn. I'm really glad you like it. Yeah the explosion was supposed to be the owl hitting the window (Like Errol?) Yeah I have to redo that bit. I've used it metaphorically. Didn't think about it much but I'll correct it.
Thank you for pointing that out :) I hope you follow this :D
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I really liked this! You plunged us straight into Lily's mind and set her mood immediately, which I really liked because I could get into the atmosphere really quickly. It made her a lot more real and easy to relate to.
I thought you described the shock when she read the letter really well, too; it was just a complete change from the lazy atmosphere you had built up before, and the way you used her tears to illustrate the memories of how angry she was at the fact they'd broken up.
Ooh, I'm definitely feeling that something other's at work here with Scorpius though! Is it his Dad? Work? Eep it's all just very addictive and I already want to know so much more! :3 Plus, what is this mysterious test Lily has to sit - and how will she cope with going to Scorpius'?
I loved how you used her tears to illustrate her pain at the end, too, because it was all happening quite fast and hard to take in, but the main emotion - pain - was coming through as the most obvious emotion, and it really made me empathise with her.
I'm really interested to read more of this and see where it goes next! All your grammar and sentence structure was good, which was refreshing, and I want to see more characters introduced already :D
Overall, great job! Hope to read more soon :)
~TGK (Ravenclaw)Author's Response: Oooo Lottie you have no idea. So many surprises are already planned for all you lovely readers ;) You'll never guess. Nah ah don't try :P Hehe the only hint I can give you is, you'll see what you want to see :P Nothing more for now ;)
Grammar and all is thanks to my lovely beta Maybe. She's amazing. And like I keep boasting (Which I shouldn't. this is very grave) this is a true story. This chapter at least. So all the emotions and all the expressions really REALLY happened. Nah don't ask me who. Can't tell you :P
Thank you so much for the lovely review. As soon as I'm done with exams I'm going to start submitting the chapters at a stretch so be ready ;)
I promise not to disappoint you. Thank you so very much for reviewing love.
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Hey Shortie!! This is xximaginairexx from the forums... I'm too lazy to sign in right now, sorry.
So, I think you have a really good start here! Lily's already a consistant character. I love how you're keeping emotions on a human scale, because some people make it seem like the world is ending, but you can see that Lily still cares about other things, because of the aptitude test and everything.
Scorpius was an interesting character. It seemed odd that he was suddenly cold and then defensive, and then cold again. I think he either needs to be cold or defensive. One or the other. Because when he's cold, it's like he doesn't care what he's doing, but when he's defensive, clearly he cares what Lily thinks of him and what he's doing.
Your descriptions are awesome. I love the way you phrase things :)
All in all, a great beginning.
~ElleAuthor's Response: Awww thanks :D I'm so glad that this was realistic. Like I said this chapter is a true story, so everything written here is true and original (Except for the owl and all. You know that don't you? :P)
Yeah I don't get him either. Hehe I'm working on it. We'll see what he turns out to be ;)
I love descriptions. And yeah, I tried doing one story without much of that and it went horribly wrong so description it is :D
Thank you so much for reading and reviewing. :D
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Hey there! I'm here from Pass the Parcel :)
So I really like the concept of this story. I can definitely sympathize with having to balance career or school-related problems while still dealing with personal issues, like boyfriend trouble. I think a lot of readers would be able to feel Lily's pain and understand where she's coming from. She just feels very real in her confusion, and she's pitiable.
I was a little confused by this first chapter, though, to be honest. I wasn't sure why Scorpius would send a letter and then show up at her home - usually when someone breaks up with you in a non-face to face way, it implies that they want to keep their distance from you, but here it was almost like he sensed her pain and came running. I was also a little thrown off by the timeline - you mentioned something about her plans to go spend a week at Malfoy Manor, which I'm assuming she's not going to do now, and earlier in the chapter you alluded to the fact that she's on summer holiday, but then she's got this aptitude test in there during a time when she supposedly had plans and wasn't in school. I'm just having trouble understanding it.
I think you've got a good start here, though I would consider polishing it a little by fixing the title where it gets cut off (and maybe taking the little hint about the ending out of the story summary - no need to explain the whole thing this early). Overall, I would say that I'm definitely interested to see where Lily and Scorpius will be going next.
Nice job :)
-AmandaAuthor's Response: OMG Amanda you're a genius! I've never thought of that before, the timeline issue. I can't believe I let that happen. I really didn't find that mistake so I love you for pointing that out.
What was I thinking? So ashamed right now *Shies away*
I'm still in shock. I'll fix that immediately.
I do have great plans for this story, but first I have to get this chapter fixed. Immediately.
And I'm not good at summaries either. Have to get that sorted out.
thank you so much Amanda. You were so very helpful :)
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EM here with the pass the parcel review ^_^
Grammar/ Spelling: I think you are pretty much set on this part! I didn't spot anything that may raise on concern. Nope! The wonders of having a beta!
Characterization: Awww poor Lily! 2 hours before an important exam even! I' really like to see how she does throughout the story! As well as for Scorpius. This is only the prologue so I can't really say much on how they're developing. However, I think you have a good start here for both character ^_^
Plot: Interesting! Drama on the prologue chapter already. It's obvious that Scorpius is hiding his main reason for breaking up with her. I'm excited to see the reason why ^_^
I can't wait to read more of this. I'm not really a fan of the Next-Gen but your story is starting to change my mind about them ^_^
Please feel free to drop in another request on my review thread at the forums!
Happy Writing!Author's Response: Awww thank you so much Em *hugs* I know right? My beta is the best :D This makes all the difference to the story.
Aww I made you love Next Gen? *Squishes* I'm new to the category too and I'm loving it already. There's so much space to create.
And yeah I have big plans for this Novel. this is going to be the first ever planned story of mine, so hope it turns out well :)
I'll let you know when the rest is up. Thank you so much for the lovely review.
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Hi there! It's Aether from the forums here with your review. :) I've actually never read a Lily II/Scorpius fanfic, so I was excited to open this story.
This was a short chapter, though, and I was left wondering about certain aspects of this story. This may just be a matter of personal preference, but I like knowing where in the canon-verse this story is set. I like references to the Harry Potter series.
For instance, details like how Lily's relationship with Scorpius is perceived by the Potter family are important to me. Or, what are Harry Potter and Ginny Weasley doing these days? What year are they in at Hogwarts (and how much younger is Lily II)?
I feel that you've set up the main focus of your story in this first chapter very well, but you didn't give me a great feel of how this story is set. I feel that detail could only enhance your story, at this point. In fact, the argument between Lily and Scorpius could be even more powerful if you gave more of a context to their relationship. When did they meet? First kiss? Funny anecdote? Etc...
However, I absolutely love how you describe Lily's uncertainty and grief about Scorpius breaking up with her. You really do a great job of capturing her heart and emotions in this scene. I felt that everything from the third person narration to her dialogue made perfect sense.
A few things were confusing to me in this scene. As a writer, I know I'm guilty of this all the time. I write things that make perfect sense to me, but don't get through to the readers. First, I was confused about the 'explosion' in the beginning? How did the owl explode when it delivered the letter? Sorry, if that sounds like a stupid question, but I read over it a few times and couldn't figure it out. Also, what are "thick" tears? Maybe more description of how the tears were thick would make it more obvious to readers like me. Were they thick with emotions? Thick on the parchment? Sorry, I'm probably thinking too literal. Hah, hah.
Anyway, excellent first chapter, and I'd be very excited to see how this story goes. I think you have a great idea here, and I'd love to read a Lily/Scorpius fanfic. This has some great potential! I hope some of my comments were helpful. :) 10/10
AetherAuthor's Response: Thanks Aether :D I love long reviews.
First of all, thick tear... *Oops* They're just... Thick on parchment. Sorry about that. The owl actually, smashed on the window. Again sorry if it was confusing *Blush*
Oh the details are in the first chapter. Sorry about the wait but it's actually more fitting there (You'll see) All the spicy details will follow :P Hehe I wanted to make this mysterious... And ended up making it confusing. Sorry about that.
Thank you for all your insight love. I really appreciate it :D
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You know I find the idea of Lily the witch watching a Muggle reality TV show really funny - something that I think adds to her characterisation. I still disagree with her red hair and tanned skin because that's just something that doesn't happen but other than that, I like this story - I DON'T like Scorpius and I'm obviously not supposed to - and I'm excited to see what else is going to happen. (Also, I've got to see more of this best friend who shares my name ;)) Interesting beginning!
-MaybeAuthor's Response: Hehehe you will because she's the main female character :P Not Lily ;) Yeah I plotted the whole thing (For once) Hehe so you will get to see her more and more. Oh and you'll love her ;) Thanks for the review Em :D You're the best.
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This is a very interesting, sort of confusing prologue/one shot shall I say.
A lot happens in a very short space of time with Lily first reading the letter, then realising what it says to her in tears, yelling at scorpius, breaking down in tears again then realising and checking the calendar, so I agree that you probably will have to make this whole chapter longer with probably a lot more description to break up a lot of the action.
That said I think Lily and Scorpius is a very interesting couple and it can either work or not work but in this story i think you wrote them not working very well, explaining their relationship of 18 months, showing the reader the letter and Scorpius's harsh remarks.
I liked the bit where it said about Scorpius ruining her career by messing up her aptitude test.
Well doneAuthor's Response: Awww thanks Summer. Like I said this is a VERY true story so I didn't change any details. didn't feel like. But I guess I'll have to. Yeah it needs a lot more details. Thanks love :D
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Why do all your fics make me SPEECHLESS?!? :OAuthor's Response: ;) Awww thanks love. Keep on reading and reviewing please :) Report Review
I...I LOVE IT! it was good, you should seriously continue at least one chapter, please! The way it ended.wow! i mean it was, in my mind like it was written with feeling, but i don't know :P but continue please! :DAuthor's Response: Aw thanks love. I'm getting a lot of positive reviews so I'll definitely continue ;) I have a plot already forming in my head :D Thanks for reading and reviewing. Bear with me to the end ;)
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I really liked this! I think with the way you've ended it, this should definitely be continued into an actual story :) I honestly didn't want it to end there :) if you decide not to extend this one-shot into a story then I suggest making a sequel? :)Author's Response: No I'm going to make this a novel :D I'm so happy to get such a positive feedback as my first review :D Thank you for reading love. Please bear with me to the end :D
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