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Reading Reviews for Maybe This Time
8 Reviews Found

Review #1, by marauderfan Maybe This Time

17th July 2016:
For the hot seat :)

Ahh, this is heartbreaking. How are you so good at this? I love the little sections you used in this, snapshots as she grows up - even in such short segments of words, you say so much.

I was so glad to find a story about Eloise Midgen, because minor characters are my favorites and she's a particularly sympathetic one because literally the only thing we hear of her in the books is Ron making fun of her for her appearance. Obviously, there's more to her than that. And here, she has so much other stuff to deal with, her whole childhood under the shadow of abuse.

And the saddest thing about her mother insisting she's happy and that she wants the same happiness for Eloise... it's so sad because I know this is true for a lot of people. Abusive relationships can be hard to get out of, and the mother must know she's being abused, but either doesn't think of it as that, or always comes back around to this ideal she has of her husband, what he used to be before he became abusive, or what he's like when he's not drinking, or whatever it is that makes her put up with him. It's so sad .

Eloise is so strong though. Yeah, she's been through some duds, in terms of dating, but she's strong enough to realize that she absolutely doesn't want what her mother had, but at the same time wants to make her mother proud. So she just interprets her mother's words in a different way. I just hope that she doesn't find "a man who will never let her go" for the wrong reasons. I just want it to all work out okay for her :(

Beautifully written, Sam.

Author's Response: Thank you again ♥

This story was pretty special to write. Parts of it were drawn from my own childhood, which is something that would be too heavy to write super in depth, so the super micro-fiction format really helped make it possible to write this without it getting to heavy to write or read.

I also love minor characters, and I agree with you about Eloise being sympathetic. In the books she isn't really portrayed that way - we only see her made fun of, and that is her entire canon existence. But of course she is so much more than that. Of course she is more than her acne. My first impulse was to give her a great big joyful life, making the acne the least significant thing about her. And I ended up achieving the latter here - her physical appearance and what Ron Weasley say about her really are the least of her problems. And even though I did not give her a very happy life here, she is very strong and driven, and I think she's someone who should be proud to be herself.

Again, thank you for all three of these reviews, and thank you for all of your crossposts to ao3!

♥ ♥ ♥


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Review #2, by adluvshp Maybe This Time

18th May 2016:
Hey there. I came by on MuggleMaybe's recommendation to shower you with a little review fairy sparkle!

Wow, I've never read a story about Eloise before, so kudos for writing a minor character so beautifully. I absolutely loved reading this. You showed her thoughts and the reasons behind her actions very well. It was sad - the household she grew up in, the way her father treated her mother, and yet how her mother's expectations for her daughter remained that she find a man who loved her. I'm glad Eloise stood her ground though, and did not settle for a man who wasn't good enough.

More often than not, our experiences shape who we are and you showed that brilliantly here. Seeing her mother and father the way they were, it'd have had a complex impact on Eloise and her interpretation of relationships. You portrayed that with beautiful descriptions and implications. The short segments were powerful and profound. I really liked reading this! Glad I could stop by.

(Lost Muse from the Forums)

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Review #3, by victoria_anne Maybe This Time

4th April 2016:
Hm, what else can I read while I'm here...

I know, this one! Yay! (I'll be back to the Hannah one soon, I promise).

Oh wow! Eloise! I've never read a fic with her before. How you managed to pack so much into these tiny scenes I will never know. You are amazing.

It's so sad how the expectations of her mother hovered over her all her life, and that her father influenced a lot of decisions she made. But she still seems like a strong person, who knows what she wants (even if it wasn't her decision to start off with).

Highly enjoyed this, and you know I love everything you write ♥

Author's Response: Yay, thanks for picking this one!

This was actually written for Renee's challenge, so even though it's dark and not really happy, it still gives me Power Puffy vibes.

Super extra tiny scenes! With the word limit on each section from this challenge, this really pushed how short I would normally write something, and, if I might say so, made me even more masterful of shortness.

Parents. Amiright?

Thank you for being so amazing. ♥

Much love.


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Review #4, by MrsJaydeMalfoy Maybe This Time

21st December 2015:
Hi there dear! I'm sorry I'm a few hours late with this, but HAPPY HOT SEAT!! *squishes*

When I saw that this story was about Eloise Midgen, I HAD to come and give it a read. I just LOVE reading about minor characters, and authors giving them their own stories, and this did NOT disappoint! Really, the only thing I can remember from the series about her off the top of my head is Ron picking on her in the Goblet of Fire movie, and that makes me really sad.

It makes me even sadder to think that all this might have been going on in her life, but, it's very realistic. You truly never know when someone is suffering, or even HOW they're suffering.

I was a bit confused about why the Floo Network was turned off, but then I understood only a second later and my heart was just broken for the two of them. I found it SO heartbreaking when her Mom said that her father was the love of her life, and that she'd never let go, that she's a winner for having him. And then, to say she hopes Eloise finds someone like that, well.. it's just mind-boggling.

I'm slightly worried that I misunderstood what was happening at the end - My interpretation of the ending was that Eloise won't stand for someone like her father, since you said that she stands her ground and won't let someone talk down to her, and if that's what happened, I'm so happy for her that, in spite of everything, she realized that wasn't what she wanted out of her life and I'm so glad for that!

However, if I DID misunderstand the ending, (which the summary makes me think I did) and Eloise is still just looking for someone to treat her the way her father treated her mother - first off, I'm very happy that she hasn't found that someone yet. And I also think it's very sad that she got the idea that love was supposed to hurt like that from her parents. It's true that our parents really have a BIG influence on us, but in this case, that's NOT a good thing.

I think all of this flowed wonderfully, and you did a great job of breaking up the different scenes so everything didn't get confusing. And even though her story is heartbreaking, I love how you've taken a minor character and fleshed her out and given her a story and made her more real.

Well done!

Author's Response: I'm glad you like minor characters so much! Minor characters are my absolute favorite to write. In the books and movies, Eloise is definitely used just as someone to be picked on or joked about, and I wanted to take a closer look at her considering that.

I actually used that to come up with the abuse backstory for her. It makes sense to me that someone who is used to seeing abuse in the home isn't able to stand up to bullying, and is an easier target. Plus, I think of her as someone with bigger things to worry about than acne treatment.

The sad part about this, is that it is not fiction. The patterns here of both the parents are drawn from my observations of real people, and I can totally understand how it can have such a complicated effect on Eloise. So yes, I agree that it's mind-boggling, but it's also gut-wrenching in its truth.

I think you interpreted the ending correctly (sorry, it's late and brain isn't working properly)? Yes, she stands up for herself. Essentially, she is able to see the sentiment behind her mother's desire for her to be a winner, but adjusts the definition to only being with someone who truly deserves her.

I can see how the summary could through you off in that respect. What I was trying to imply with that was how strongly she has been influenced by her mother's choices and mistakes, both for better and worse.

Thank you for all your wonderful feedback!


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Review #5, by MuggleMaybe Maybe This Time

4th December 2015:
Hello! I'm here to review your entry for the Microfiction Challenge. :)

Sam, this is really heartbreaking. You've done a spectacular job showing us glimpses of Eloise's life and who she is.

The idea of being a winner at life is inherently upsetting to me, because it implies that there are losers and life is a competition. Her mother thinks 'winning' means this one specific thing, even though that thing hasn't brought her happiness. In fact it's brought her a lot of suffering at the hands of a cruel person. The way you wrote this shows how hurtful all of this can be, and also how much it gets into Eloise's head and makes her doubt herself and struggle to trust others.

This line:
“Give it time, and we’ll catch you a man who’ll never let go.”
Holy moly, Sam, it's brilliant! The underlying reference to abuse is so powerful.

The hardest thing about this story is that, even later in her life, when her mother is gone, Eloise is still trapped inside of these expectations and it just breaks my heart.

Really well done! I loved it! Thanks so much for entering the challenge. :)

xx Renee

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Review #6, by 800 words of heaven Maybe This Time

22nd September 2015:

This. Was. Wonderful. Obviously not because it was happy, but it still left me with this feeling of hope. I really liked the way you tackled the micro-fiction challenge. I don't think I could ever do it, but the brevity of each section was just perfect and really suited the tone of the story. Nothing felt forced, as if you were trying to shove one aspect into place for the sake of another.

I also really liked the way you wrote Eloise. She reads as a very complex character, even with so few words, and I'd love to read things where you've written her elsewhere. She clearly loves her mother, and her parents' relationship has affected her profoundly. I particularly liked how you sort of left it unclear as to whether she wasn't settling for anyone other than the best fit for her, or if she was self-sabotaging her relationships. And I really liked the part where she defended her choice to keep her last name. You go girl!

I loved loved loved the way the first and last sections echo each other! Really cleverly written, and very emotionally poignant. This story really pulled on my heartstrings. Thanks for the lovely read :)

Author's Response: Thank you so much for choosing this story to read! It has a weird feeling of being unfinished to me so I feel kind of odd about having it p even though I haven't been able to figure out what else I think it needs. But to hear your positive feedback is so encouraging.

I love writing micro! This is my first time doing it to this extent with such strong limits on each scene, but I'm really happy with how it flows.

Yay for complex ladies!

I like how you said "her parent's relationship has affected her profoundly." I think that's a very god way to put it, as it does not judge that effect as overall positive or negative, but still a hue part of who she is as a person. Your comment on the ambiguity of why her relationships aren't working out is also very astute.

Aw, yay! This review was really wonderful an I'm so glad you chose to read this story and enjoyed it so much. Thanks lots!


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Review #7, by Frankie05 Maybe This Time

20th September 2015:
Hey Sam,

I should have headed your warning but I didn't and I thought promising things from the start of the story with the rounded belly (I have a bit of baby fever and you fed right into that from the get go). And then it started to get dark. The whispers, the disconnected floo, I didn't like that at all.

You have written - "Do you get lost a lost?" I think it should be "Do you get lost a lot?" Anyway. You displayed the innocence of a child so wonderfully in that segment. She is unaware of her mothers fear and just asks such an innocent thing. Bravo that is well done.

But then it gets darker- her dad , the fighting, it so very sad. You made a background story of a background character and made us want to fight for her. But her mom said she loved her father and he was the only one who would stick by her. I think that is twisted thoughts because a man should never treat a woman like that no matter if he "loves" her or not. (Really a human should never treat a human like that). And I'm SURE there are other guys who would have stood by Eleanor.

You brought me back to my insecure high school days where I was just like Eloise and the person that no one asked to a dance. It's hard, so I can understand her surprise that someone has asked her out. I hate though that she has set these unrealistic expectations that her mother put on her since she was a child and saying that a man would love her the way her father did. Well he wasn't a great example and it seems like these boys - from the snippets of conversations you've shown- are interests and care about her. It's just a very twisted mind set and I hate that it a reality in the real world. that women feel this way. I wish I could empower women and say you are strong, beautiful, independent, and your life is your own! (Now I'm rambling but you've made me passionate with this story).

The end was devastating. I hope her mother would be proud of all her accomplishments and not just the fact that she hasn't found a guy to settle down with yet. But such is life and you described it very well.

I definitely want to read more of your stories so I'll be back :) great job!

Oh and good kick in the challenge- I've never heard that song before but I'm sure it goes well with this story!

Author's Response: Hello Frankie,

Thank you very much for your generous review.

Sorry for the darkness, I guess. But I'm lad you still enjoyed reading it.

Thank you for pointing out the typo I hadn't noticed! And I'm glad that moment worked out and the combination of Eloise's innocence and the gravity of the situation read well.

I love writing minor characters, and I'm glad that I got you reading for her so quickly.

I agree that this story is sad and twisted, but I wish i wasn't realistic, but sadly I know otherwise due to experience.

While it is kind of a devastating story like you said, I like to see hope in Eloise's pride and determination.

The song is from Cabaret, but I hadn't heard it before either. When I first heard the song it definitely made me think of an woman stuck in a cycle of abuse in which she chooses to believe that the man she is with is capable of changing. Wanting to not write THAT heavy of a story, I kept listening and came up with the idea of Eloise as the daughter dealing with the aftereffects of her mother's way of thinking and trying to find a romantic partner at all.

I'm flattered to hear that this got you interested in reading more of my writing!

Thanks again so much for the review.


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Review #8, by Dirigible_Plums Maybe This Time

15th September 2015:

It's Plums here with your requested review. Can I first say that I think you deserve a congratulations for being able to write microfiction? It's a really good skill to have and I envy you for it.

Honestly, I don't think there's much you can improve on because I thoroughly enjoyed reading the one shot. Something that I love about minor characters is the fact that they're so unexplored. You forget that they have their own stories to tell and the fact that you can give them one is incredible. Of course, Eloise's story is heartbreaking. In the books, she's only known for having bad acne, but people never really consider anything beyond that.

I particularly like the imagery at the beginning and the end. The difference between "Eleanor Midgen sits alone in front of the fireplace, her hand resting tenderly over her rounded stomach" and "Eloise Midgen sits alone in the cemetery, her hand resting tenderly over the rounded top of her mother’s grave" is very powerful. The contrasting atmospheres of love and loneliness, life and death is rather poetic.

One thing I spotted was the change in tense at "She had known that he wasn’t for her, and she was proud to have stood her ground. She wasn’t one to let someone say such offensive things and expect her to be silent." I stumble over the whole knew/had known thing a lot myself, but it's just a thing to perhaps look out for.


Plums xo

Author's Response: Hello Plums!

Thanks so much for the lovely review (and kudos for starting your own review thread)

I have been writing a lot of short fiction lately, and I really enjoy it. I like writing one shots that really intensely focus on one scene with 500 words. This was a bit more of a challenge, to focus on several different scenes, and in even less words! I think it worked really well though as a way of telling this story - I wouldn't want to stay with any individual scene too long.

Thank you for your compliments on the parallel of the beginning and the end! I actually didn't think of that until I got to the last section, and it just came to me. What you say about the contrasts of love/loneliness and life/death is really fabulous. I'll pretend it was totally intentional!

Thanks for the note about the shift in tense. I've just submitted that and a few other edits =)

Thanks so much!


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