First, I want to say that I have no intention of becoming an author. I do, however, find myself increasingly invested in the world of fanfiction. I am amazed at the never ending creativity that is manifested in people the world over; one book opens infinite possibilities. I am not gifted in dreaming up those possibilities. I do far better with helping actual authors to develop their ideas and format their spelling, grammar, and word choices and visualize where their own stories can improve. I am writing for the sole purpose of adding enough content to my account so that I may qualify to be a betareader. Very often people seem to be able to come up with incredible plot points and imaginative ideas for new and engaging stories, but they struggle with fluid writing. I am the opposite; I find comfort in the creativity of others, but my use of language and my understanding of how a reader perceives writing is decent. I would love to help empower aspiring writers so that they can see their stories come to life.
That is not to say that I will dispose of constructive criticism on my own stories. Just as I hope to help people to become accomplished in their writing, so I hope to also be able to learn something from this process. Tell me what I am missing, tell me I am unclear in my descriptions, tell me I am completely off the mark, tell me I have no business being an author! All of that is perfectly acceptable, as long as you tell me why! It is in the "why" that I am able to improve, and when my writing improves, I am able to take what I have learned and better help those for whom I will eventually end up betareading.
What you will find in my stories:
I will not post warnings about every little thing. I will not leave excessive author notes. The following will detail how I feel about storylines and characters, and you can expect my plots to follow these patterns. If you find you do not agree, to the point that reading these things will offend, annoy, or inhibit you in some way, or if you find you abhor the type of story I am most inclined to write, you have been warned here so that you will not have to put yourself through the frustration of reading my work. I DO realize that it is frustrating to begin reading a story, only to feel thrown for a loop when an author doesn't meet your expectations.
I often wish Harry could have been raised by Sirius and/or Remus, if not by his own parents. I often wish Harry had something to empower him: training, allies, political power, wealth, abilities. I often wish that Harry had unconditional love of a soulmate to make up for the years of brokenness he had to face.
Harry- Before going to Hogwarts Harry was excited to have a new beginning. He looked forward to his classes and wanted to succeed. In the past he had not had much opportunity to do so. I believe that if he had been given proper attention by an adult who was invested in his best interests, he could have been rather accomplished in his studies and other endeavors. He seems to have bowed under the pressure of having friends for the first time in his life, as well as the pressures of faculty and fighting for his life. He never felt comfortable when Ron made fun of Hermione, but did not stand up to Ron the way he ought to have.
In most of my writing he will have parental support to guide him otherwise, therefore he will be the cliché intellectual Harry. He will also be more prepared or empowered to train and develop skills. That doesn't mean I will make him out to be Super- Harry, but I think that parental support would have greatly changed his learning habits and training.
I believe his best quality is his ability to love. In fact, that is a critical part of the books. His ability to love is ultimately what caused the downfall of Voldemort. His actions will be guided by a sense of love, justice and ultimate fairness. Are there flaws in that? Absolutely. Nevertheless, that was one of his greatest character traits. People portray him as a moody, angsty teenager. Probably, mostly because teenagers are dealing with the development of autonomy, personal identity, and ALLLLLLL of the hormones. I do not, however, discount the fact that the horcrux inside of him led to some of his greatest mood swings.
Hermione- I really love Hermione. You may guess, then, that I also prefer her to be paired with Harry. I think she is driven by her need to succeed, to prove herself. Sometimes she can come off as a bit bossy. Her need to overachieve is her best and her worst quality. But she stands up for her friends powerfully and is a crucial ally.
Ron- I just don’t like him. I’ve tried. At this point I don’t think that I will ever write him as blatantly evil, or even unbelievably obtuse. However, his laziness, his jealous tendencies and his hot and cold friendship will move him to the shadows of my stories. Sure, he’s been written as a typical teenage boy in canon. People are naturally flawed, but the flaws in his character grate on my nerves. He may be a source of contention against Harry or he may have very little development at all, but I will be unlikely to outright bash characters.
Neville- He has always stood with Harry. He was not best friends with Harry from the start. He always stood for what was right, though. By the end of the series I found him to be a better friend than Ron had ever been.
Luna- Definitely one of my favorite characters. Unfortunately, I don’t trust myself to write her well. I cringe when fanfic authors write her as an overly hyperactive, ditzy child who can’t come back from the cliff of insanity. I think she is meant to put off those in her world who are unable to think deeply. I think she has an incredible ability to see the things that others cannot see-both literally and figuratively-what she calls nargles and wrackspurts, others tend to label as psychosis. And yet, she was never wrong. She is a source of wisdom. I do not see her as a love interest for Harry. I do not think they are equally matched. Perhaps Neville, but I value her deeply and imagine her being with a character who can challenge her and accept the challenges she also offers.
Ginny- Ginny grew as a character rather suddenly in canon. Perhaps that is because Harry grew into his maturity and began noticing her, therefore the audience noticed her at the same time. I do not dislike her. I really have no feelings for her. She grew up hearing stories of Harry Potter. She harbored a crush. Every girl has a crush growing up. I wouldn’t say that I particularly agree with the stories that portray her as evil or that make her into an out of control, Harry-obsessed stalker. She had a crush. It most likely grew by leaps and bounds when she actually met him. She was intelligent in her own right, she had a powerful bat-bogey hex at the very least. I always imagined Harry seeing her as a sister. She would have been disappointed in that. Perhaps she would have dared to hope his mind could be changed. It would have hurt her to know that wasn’t going to happen. But I don’t see her as somebody who would turn on Harry or his girlfriend in a fit of jealous rage. I also don’t think that she would be able to get along with the couple very well because of her own desires. I see her in much the same way as Romilda Vane was written in canon-she wants Harry, she tries, she’s rejected, and then she keeps her distance and never becomes a huge part of the plot beyond that.
Sirius- Fiercely loyal to his friends. Fiercely loyal and protective of his Godson. So many authors tend to write him as hyperactive and immature. He gave Harry some of the best advice that Harry had ever gotten. When Harry had questions he turned to Sirius.
Sirius was a bully back when he was a teenager. There is no excuse for bullying. He should have faced disciplinary action. My thoughts: He was raised in a dark and abusive family, I have no doubt that Snape was equally provocative in these fights (we only saw it from Snape’s point of view). Sirius was acting out and needed to be disciplined appropriately, but wasn’t. However, he grew up, as we all do. He spent a dozen years in Azkaban, his mind is probably not as strong as it ought to be-he sometimes expects Harry to act like James, he sometimes desires things that would put himself in danger. But he does so because he never had the opportunity to heal and even in his freedom he was imprisoned. For those reasons, he sometimes seems immature in canon. But he was also the best adult ally that Harry ever had. And further, he loved Harry more than any other seemed to have, eventually dying for Harry just as Lily and James did. That is not immaturity. That is complex, that is deep, that is mature-parental love.
Pairings for Sirius? Maybe, maybe not. His life doesn’t have to revolve completely around Harry. Though, I believe that most parents or guardians will put their children before their desires to date, and certainly most parents will avoid introducing the instability of a revolving door of dates in the lives of their children. I don’t think he would just pick up the first person he meets after escaping Azkaban. I don’t think he would date haphazardly. He might date cautiously for his own sake, and especially for the sake of Harry. As a heterosexual person it is hard for me to fully understand what homosexual people face, it is hard for me to write homosexual relationships. I always imagined, however, that if things had gone differently in canon (Sirius hadn’t been locked up in Azkaban for 12 years, or he didn’t die in book 5) he may have had some kind of relationship with Remus. I think in my mind I view both of them as bisexual. That being said, I may have them together, but will never write overt slash. I don’t need my stories to get bogged down with suggestive scenes, whether heterosexual or homosexual. It’s just unnecessary to me.
I also have no need to make them a couple. There is something to be said about two men being allowed to have a deep friendship that is in no way characterized by their sexuality. As a society we tend to assume that two men cannot be incredibly close without being in a romantic relationship. The 4 marauders shared that type of a deep friendship. Therefore, I may write Remus and Sirius as a couple, or I may not.
Remus- A best friend to James and Sirius. He had a hard life. I believe he genuinely cares for Harry. And yet, where was he all those years? I will never bash Remus. But I do believe there’s some explanation necessary before he can just be allowed to be loved and trusted by Harry. See my pairing under Sirius for more info.
James and Lily- Died for their child. They would NEVER abandon him. There are so many stories where it turns out that James and Lily are alive, but they either abused or abandoned Harry. It never would have happened. The basis of the entire series is ultimate love against ultimate evil. Most people and spells fall into grey areas, but Voldemort is depicted as a psychopath with extremely violent tendencies from the time he is very young- an evil that is ingrained into his very being to the point that he cannot feel, understand, or even be around love. In direct contradiction, James loved his wife and son so desperately that he sacrificed himself for them. Lily did the same for Harry. And those loving sacrifices end up being absolutely critical to the downfall of Voldemort. Whether I write them as alive or dead, I believe they will be nothing but loving and supportive. Of course, as with all families, they will still have trying moments, but that will never negate the love they have for each other.
Dumbledore- I can go either way-these days in fanfiction I tend to see him as dark. I once fell in love with the whimsical, benevolent, grandfatherly character of Dumbledore, and when reading JK Rowlings original series, and canon material, I would have it no other way. But there are so many questions. The first time I read him as evil and manipulative my heart actually broke, because it wasn’t really a stretch of the imagination at all. He does things and allows things that would land any real person in prison. Why DID he trap Harry with abusive relatives, why DID he allow his school to house a dangerous object, protected by dangerous traps, why DID he fail to realize that Voldemort kept getting into his school, why DID he hire Lockhart, and the list goes on and on. Often, because the rest of the characters in my stories are so fluffy, I will tend to write Dumbledore as a bad guy now. But there is part of me that will never want to let go of Dumbledore as the ultimately wise and loving man that he was written to be in canon.
Snape- I agree that Snape did something redemptive in the end. I agree that Snape was in a terribly precarious position that could have gotten him killed in a most horrific way. I agree, therefore, that he was brave for his role as a spy.
I also think that he is a terrible person. Yes, he was abused as a child and he was bullied as a teenager, but based on the person he was as an adult, even the little we know about him as a teen, I am assume that he also bullied back. Even if he was a completely innocent bystander and was bullied by the Marauders without cause, he’s still an unacceptably horrible person as an adult. In real life if a teacher were to pull even one of the many stunts that he pulls, that teacher would be fired faster than you could say “lawsuit.”
He fell in love with a woman, and any right choice he ever made was based on that. But nevertheless, he was inexcusably cruel. I do believe that there is redemption. But redemption is a process. I will not automatically write Snape as a good guy. At the same time, I will depict him as aligned with the light.
The Weasleys- The family opened their home to Harry. They welcomed him. They had their faults. Percy is a redeemable character, but he struggled with power-hungry desires before he reached that point. Ron is obnoxious in my eyes-aligned with the light, but still obnoxious. Molly is rather overbearing. It is meant to appear motherly. I will read stories where she is depicted as dark, or where she is just unknowingly an overwhelming person who essentially means well. However, I will most likely write her as an antagonist. I seem to best relate to the stories where Molly and Ron have less than honorable intentions. The rest of the family, however, are good standing people who seem like solid allies for Harry. I don't like character bashing. I may not include very much of Molly, Ron, even Ginny in my stories, I may make them slightly antagonistic, but I won't excessively bash them. I'm more likely to give them very minimal roles.
The Dursleys- They are abusive. I have read discussions about whether or not this is true, and it boggled my mind. Some people argue that they were good people who took Harry in because they were given no choice, and it was kind of them to share their food and give him a roof over his head. No. Just no. Maybe they never laid a hand on him. But they locked him inside a cupboard for the first 10 years that he lived with them. If you don’t believe that this act alone is abusive, then please, please, please NEVER HAVE CHILDREN! Further, they repeatedly belittled him in public and in private, called him freak, deliberately made a point to differentiate between him and Dudley in terms of love, household chores, gifts, clothing, etc, they told him he was a worthless product of worthless people, they fed him (barely) through a cat flap, denied him free access to the toilet (only allowing it once in the morning and once at night). How somebody can see those things and still claim that he was not abused makes me want to pull my hair out.
Did they get stuck in a situation they didn’t want to be in? Sure. That is not an excuse.
Did Petunia possibly care about him? Maybe. Abusive parents still have the ability to love. Many times those who are abused the worst are those whom the abuser loves dearly. It is still deplorable.
Dudley redeemed himself in the end. I will concede to the fact that a child is often defined by the way a parent raises them. As an older teenager, Dudley recognized that he had been wrong in his treatment of Harry. I would argue that Dudley was equally abused in their overindulgence of him. He is still responsible for his actions in bullying Harry as they grew up, but out of the others, he has the best chance at redemption in my stories.