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Baby Huey PM
Joined Aug '05

I do love a good AU fic. I HATE when people write Ginny or Lily as being another Hermione. I don't like the idea of Horcuxes. If you destroy all of Voldemort's horcruxes then anyone can kill him, rendering the prophecy null and void.

I have a hard time getting into a story if all I want to do is mark it with a red pen.

Tonks is my favorite Character in the HP universe. Love her in the books and fanfiction hate her in the movie. I HATE how JKR killed her. Everyone seems to rave about Natalia Tena playing her. I was a bit dissapointed. The script was crap. Wardrobe did a horrid job, and the FX of her morphing abilities was abysmal. not to mention that i find her to be incredibly average looking.

I am horrible at creative writing. I just do not have the attention span to do it. But here are a few plot bunnies for stories that I would like to to put up for adoption.

1) When Harry arrives at Hogwarts for his first year he finds out that his father had a sister and that his fathers sister has a daughter that is in her third year. His aunt was not able to find him due to the wards around the Dursley home. Dumbledore is not evil but he continuously blocks Harry's aunts attempts to gain custody of Harry until at least the end of his third year.

2) My favorite character in the Harry Potter universe is Tonks. I would like to see a story that starts with her first year at Hogwarts and ends when she first meets Harry in Order of the Phoenix.

this next bit was taken from the help section on SIYE from the Writing Essays, Tips and Recommendations

What To Do and Not To Do with Harry Potter Fiction by AdminQ

even if the fic was 100% bad, it takes skill to come up with a story, and courage to post it. Authors place their fragile hearts in our, the readers’, hands each time they post. For this, even if the fiction was bad, I personally have nothing but love and respect for anyone who has ever written and posted to any fan fiction website.

Items That Annoy

One thing that most hardcore canon readers will dislike are original characters, also known as OC’s, in the place of main characters. Original characters are good, if well-developed and thought out. If they are there simply to fill space, or to just allow the author to use themselves or a friend in the story, it is called a Mary Sue. This can kill a story.

OC’s can work out great if there is depth to the story and if the plot is strong. The first rule is to have an idea and a plot, and then pan it out on paper and write it. Character development is a major point. If the OC is the main focus and the canon characters are left in the background, there is no growth, and because of that, most readers will be turned off.

If you use an OC, keep it tame, maybe one or two, and allow them to grow with the story, as all of the other canon characters should be doing as well.

Review Ransoms and Endless Author Notes
When authors write, most do so for two reasons: because they enjoy it and like to give this pleasure to others, and because they want to make a name for themselves. If you are the latter, this is a bad thing. Writing a good chapter and making the reader review, or else there will be no other chapters, will leave most cold. This is a bad way to get reviews. I personally will review if I like the story, or if the author gives notice that it is their first attempt. Making someone review just to boost your ego as an author, or to make a name for yourself is a bad reason to write fiction.

Another area that should be avoided is endless author notes at the beginning or end of a chapter. One or two lines, maybe a notice at the end, is fine. However, making a whole new story at the end of the chapter that is nothing but A/N’s is not good at all. For the most part, these are skipped by many people. One of the biggest issues I have discovered recently, by reading forums and several fiction groups, is A/N’s in the middle of the story. This should be avoided.

Too many or too little details
Authors will spend lots of time looking through the eyes of the person they write about. But be careful not to overkill the story with too many details. On the other hand, it’s even worse to not give enough detail. Make it a happy medium, and give enough to get the point made, but not so much that a whole new story can be written about the description of number four Privet Drive and the weather.

Killing off of major canon characters, because you can.
If in your story, the plot deals with or will lead up to the killing of a major character—even if it’s one of the trio, or another canon character—then that is ok. To just kill one off only because you can, or to attempt to make your cliffhanger all the better, will ruin it over time. Killing one of these characters off is something you have to be ready to deal with as many fic readers will be turned off by this. Dark fiction is one thing, because it deals in death and dark moods. However, without a good plot, this fiction will not do well. If there is death, make it realistic, and make the cause and effect stand out. If this is done, then the plot will involve it from the beginning.

On the fly fiction
When you write, have the ideas down. Know the story, and have most of it finished. Going chapter by chapter is hard. Most stories are never finished because the author never wrote more than one chapter at a time. When this happens, it hurts everyone: the reader, because they might have liked the story, and are left with an unfinished work; the website, because it takes up space; and most of all, it hurts the author, because most are fiction readers, and they know the feeling to get involved with a story only to see it never finished.

Modern themes, and issues
This area is wide-spanned: teen pregnancy, social issues, world events, and Muggle topics. Remember, the world we are talking about here is totally different. The morals and standards were set by JK Rowling, and most readers do not like to see that changed. Some authors can pull this off well, and make it work. Others lose focus, and most times these things cause a story to fall apart.

There is no way little things like Muggle television sets, DVD players, or any sort of Muggle device will work at school. Remember, wizards do not use electricity; they have other ways to do many of the things Muggles do. Why use what you know, when you can use your imagination and make up ways to improve on the Muggle tech?

Cancer, AIDS, and other Muggle illnesses are things that should not come into contact with HP fan fiction. These are real issues, and they are real problems—but honestly, when would the trio face them?

Dances and balls
It is okay to have this in a story. It is okay to use it more than once. But to revolve the whole plot around this is something that is becoming overused. Be it a ball or a simple dance, remember, they have only had one so far in the books. It was a special occasion, and they did not have one for each season.

This leads into another topic of clothes. Descriptions of outfits are good for the story and setting. Going into them like it is a fashion show takes up plot and loses most readers. My advice is to tone it down.

Character pitfalls
Character development is important. Make them your own, and grow them, no matter who it is. Below is a list of common gripes and clichés about fiction characters.
Making him super rich
Making him evil, because it’s his true nature
Making him a twin
Making him super powerful, so much so he is next to god-like. It’s okay to supe him up, but he is not all-knowing and all-powerful

Making her a slut
Making her a goddess, and seductress overnight
Making her depressed all the time with worry over Harry noticing her

Making her an evil witch
Making her a slut
Making her an obsessive-compulsive woman.

Making him stupid
Making him evil or dead
Making him angry at every little thing
Making him suddenly _ (huge, confident, rich, powerful, genius-level smart)


Try not to go overboard on established characters, making them into something they are not. For example, Abusive Molly.

Magic or not

The books, and 99% of all HP fan fiction is about wizards, and witches. If this is a true statement, why remove the magic? Suddenly losing powers, for the sake of plot development in a weak plot will not work. If they lose powers because of a sacrifice, or a spell to save someone, that is a cause that is believable.

Word flow

Most betas will come in here on this one. American slang or terms will never be uttered by a British wizard. For example: “dude,” “mom,” “biznitch,” and the like. Other unlikely things are the playing of American music and the use of American cars. None of this will be good for a story if your goal is to remain canon.

I will stop the list here. I covered several points, and I hope I didn’t offend anyone.

Eye Halve a Spelling Chequer

I have a spelling checker.
It came with my pea sea.
It plane lee marks four my revue
Miss steaks aye can knot sea.

Eye ran this poem threw it,
Your sure reel glad two no.
Its vary polished in it's weigh.
My checker tolled me sew.

A checker is a bless sing,
It freeze yew lodes of thyme.
It helps me right awl stiles two reed,
And aides me when I rime.

Each frays come posed up on my screen
eye trussed too bee a joule.
The checker pours o'er every word
To cheque sum spelling rule.
Bee fore a veiling checker's Hour
spelling mite decline,
And if we're lacks oar have a laps,
We wood bee maid too wine.

Butt now bee cause my spelling
Is checked with such grate flair,
Their are no fault's with in my cite,
Of nun eye am a ware.

Now spelling does knot phase me,
It does knot bring a tier.
My pay purrs awl due glad den
With wrapped word's fare as hear.
To rite with care is quite a feet
Of witch won should be proud,
And wee mussed dew the best wee can,
Sew flaw's are knot aloud.
Sow ewe can sea why aye dew prays,
Such soft wear four pea seas,
And why eye brake in two averse
Buy righting too pleas.

The following is taken from the profile page of DukeBrymin, I think it sums up everything nicely.

Some conclusions I've drawn from reading fanfiction:

1) Any time a summary says "Better than it sounds!" it isn't.

2) Any time a summary says "First fic, please be gentle!" it's because the writer, deep inside, knows it's not very good.

3) Any summary starting with "What if. . ." describes a story that is mediocre at best.

4) Any author that posts a new chapter that consists of an apology that a new chapter isn't ready yet, deserves to be flogged with a wet noodle.

5) Any author that promises to never abandon a(ny) story, and then does, should be covered in honey and feathers.

6) Any author that feels the need to label a flashback as FLASHBACK, desperately needs to work on their writing skills. If it's not obvious, then there's a problem.

7) Any author that feels the need to insert author's notes in the middle of their chapter to explain or excuse things, should have to wear a sign saying "Look at me! I want to be an author when I grow up!" because they obviously crave attention.

8) If the author can't be bothered to spell-check the summary, then the story will be so filled with bad spelling, grammar, and punctuation that you'll want to stab yourself in the eyes with a sharpened pencil.

9) Authors who feel the need to "update" Harry Potter by using netspeak (e.g. LOL, N-E-Way) and its ilk have completely missed the feel and characterization of Harry and his friends.

10) Authors who can't even capitalize the name of their story correctly have a better-than-average chance of writing just as poorly.

11) "Free verse" translates as "I can't be bothered to use proper grammar and punctuation."

12) Authors who beg for reviews but never bother responding to them probably don't worry about other things like plot holes.

13) Authors who spend inordinate amounts of time detailing things that have no bearing on the plot (verbose descriptions of a house that we never see again, extensive listings of inheritances that play no part in the plot) are either: A) trying to inflate their word-count for NaNoWriMo, B) way too enamored of their perfect descriptions, or C) trying to cover up a lack of plot.

14) If the story isn't finished, and the author has decided to go back and edit the previous chapters, it's almost a sure bet that the story will never get finished.

15) If the author feels the need to specify that Harry (or any other male character) did something in a "manly way", e.g. "He gave Ron a manly hug", or "He said 'I love you guys' in a manly way," then the author isn't very sure of their characters. It's as if they're afraid Harry might stand up in the middle of their story and announce his (apparently latent) homosexual tendencies.

16) All general statements have exceptions. Even this one.

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