If you are interested in participating in the Ranking System, please follow THIS format for your workshop profile.
Link to character workshop topic: Click Click Click
At least two of your recent role play topics:
Love you but I'm going down - Erik Dwight
Running - Kiska Ferdenova
If you knew me from the very start - Idys Ward
How did you? - Quincy Elkins
I included more than two threads - but I feel this is appropriate because they each show a bit of JR's personality that I'm discovering. With Kiska we see that he is struggling with that fact that he walked away from his friendship from her, with Idys we see he wants to be fun and carefree the way he might have been considered when he was younger, with Erik we see his helpful side (even when it might not be wanted) and with Quincy we see that the "helpfulness" start to backfire on him as he tries to get his fellow Gryffindor to see the Prefect badge as an honor.
Commentary: (Why you feel you should move up, any specific concerns you want to address or that you’d like the reviewers to pay special attention to, any special points you’d like to bring to reviewers’ attention)
I'll be honest. I hate profiles. I know I'm not awesome at writing them because I go off on tangents about some characteristics and forget completely about others. So please give me lots of tips and tricks about what to add in, if you can.
Slammer - Beater
|At least 4 posts by your character over 2 threads. Posts must be made within three months of the date of your application.Have your character profile in the workshop with at least one revision of each section posted by you. (If you choose not to include an appearance section at sorting, you must include it when you post your workshop profile, and then provide a subsequent revision for this rank).At the beginner rank, we are focused on building up your character. We will give you suggestions on how to expand your profiles and posts, particularly in regards to content, in order to gain as complete a picture of your character as possible. We're looking for a general grasp of grammar (punctuation, paragraphs, apostrophes, etc.) and spelling, and that you follow the rules by giving us at least five lines per post. Additionally, we'd like to see that you have made an effort to expand all areas of the profile (i.e. not just personality or not just history).|
That looks fine! I’m going to focus on your profile today, so here we go :3
Appearance: You already have a few solid bits of information about JR’s appearance here and definitely some expansions from his initial app, but my first thought was to reorganise these paragraphs a little more. You start with numbers (as in: his height and his weight) and then you seem to slowly zoom in from the great picture to smaller details. I definitely think that this is a good way of working on an appearance section, but you can make it a whole lot clearer. I would add the second paragraph towards the end where you can use it to create a smoother transition to the next section, as it makes sense to go from how JR sees himself to the personality. The order of the other paragraphs works well enough, but for future edits, you should definitely expand some more on it, so I’m going to throw a few more ideas at you what you could do.
When working with the zoom from the whole body to details like his face, scars and the chain around his neck, you could add the way he moves, sits and gestures towards the way he is holding himself. When talking about his face, what does his skin look like? Does he have a bad skin? Is he flawless like he’s doing Clearasil commercials? Work with colours as well to describe the way he looks, the colour of his eyes and his hair to draw a more vivid picture of him. How does his expression change when he is happy, sad or angry? Does he move his hands a lot? What does he wear
I am also a very big fan of talking about voices, as in: does he have an accent, does he have a very low voice, are there phrases he is using a lot? I would work these things off before you talk about he sees himself and how others do see him. I really enjoyed that you gave explanations for his looks already, because this is something I just miss a lot in Beginner profiles, so it was nice to have glimpses at JR’s personality already while reading about his appearance! Which makes me move onto the second section already.
|Smiling and laughter seems to have faded away into a chest that he has lost the key to.|
This is just so nice, I almost want to say I want more of this but what I mean is that I would like to see a more...flowing style? Right now it sounds a bit like a list of his character traits shaped into sentences, but with more transitions you could make it flow nicer. I also think that you can dive deeper into the reasons behind the way he is - when you talk about murder for example, I would love to hear more about it. Just for context, you know.
As for content I always think it’s easiest to start with very basic things such as likes and dislikes - what you already did, and I really like that you already offered examples, because it’s a great way of showing instead of just telling. Just go deeper into the whys behind JR’s traits, and how they are executed. How does his frustration show, how does it make him feel? What I am looking for are mainly just expansions on what you have, elaborate some more on what you have already stated and think of a better order to list them - without making it sound like a list, of course. When you talk about the Quidditch pitch for example, you could connect it towards the execution of sports.
|Nothing except the fact that he was different from all the other kids at school - but he didn't care.|
I think this is a statement you can’t you leave like this because I am waving red flags around with but why? written on it haha. Okay, I think you did a really good job at describing his time at Hogwarts - and while I usually demand more of this, here I will ask for more of what happened before JR went to Hogwarts. Give me sweet childhood memories, give me a bit of family history - for example from his mother’s side as well, because while she just comes into his life
I know it sounds like I am just complaining here, but I think you did really well so far and you wanted to know on how to expand so I hope my rambling is helpful for you ;_;
What also comes to me is that I would like to see more of JR in this last action. He is part of the happenings, but he reads as someone who is just standing there, watching his life happening. Don’t be afraid to get his emotions into this, tell us about his reactions towards the deaths in his family and the treatment of his mother. How did he feel when his Hogwarts letter arrived? I know it often feels as if personality and history blend together, but it’s a part of JR as well so I want
Just some general things before I end this, as I feel I have been writing this review for ages now. I think you have done a good job for Beginner, but there is also plenty to add for the higher ranks that require a profile. I hope what I listed was kind of helpful. As for dynamics of this profile I think you can just give us a little more of JR, as in tone and emotions showing how he feels in the single situations. I haven’t found any scarring mistakes or typos, but I feel like that’s something you need to watch a little more in your posts - but I am leaving this to your second reviewer.
Verdict: I will really stop talking now and APPROVE you and JR for BEGINNER, congrats and good luck with your second review! If you have any questions, you know where to fond me <3
Tine has given you some wonderful advice (especially concerning transitions and flow) but you asked for some extra feedback on your profile so before I get to posts I'm going to linger on it a little. My initial thoughts are that you've definitely made some excellent additions to your sorting app and everything is in the beginning stages of coming together. Moving forward, I believe one of the sections that needs the most work is your appearance. The appearance reads as a bit...stilted. It's also heavy on facts, and lacks the natural ease and flow that I observed in your posts. I think it miiight be because you're stuck describing just JR's appearance, just like in the other parts of the profile you focus on just the personality and just the history. But these areas can, and should, have some overlap. A person's appearance isn't just the physicality -- it tells a story. I want to think about how JR's appearance tells the story of him.
What can be gleaned from looking at him? For example, he has a number of interesting scars (which tells us a bit about the life he's led) but you don't go into how or why he has so many, or why he covers them up (we know he doesn't want people to know, but why? Is it just because he's scared of people discovering more about his life? Is he just a secretive person? Does he struggle to let people in? Does he think they're hideous? Is he self-conscious about this aspect because they're ugly?) The answer tells us about who JR is, and this is something you might want to expand upon in this section. Similarly, what can be learned about his personality from the way he carries himself? From the way he moves? Is he upright and confident, with bold steps, or do his shoulders slouch inward because he is he self-conscious of his size? Delving into this aspect will start to tell us about his personality before we ever get to to that section. This is the kind of substance that I think you can bring out in the rest of the profile too.
You have a lot of broad strokes that do wonders to flesh out his history and personality, and now it's time to dig deeper. Highlight important moments in time and bring them to life the way you bring your posts to life! Tell us the why; let us into JR's head so we know how he feels. Tell us about his insomnia when you talk about his fitness, and the other things that drive him. A profile is like a painting, and once you have the broad strokes, you have the freedom to go back and fill in the details. If you allow yourself to get into JR's head and history in his appearance section the way you might in one of your posts, I think you'll find the words flowing a lot easier.
Moving onto the posts themselves, I really love the range you've given here! You've gone above and beyond for Beginner, and that makes it so much easier to gauge where you are in your writing. You have an excellent balance of the environment, JR's physicality, and he internal monologue in almost every post, which is an incredible accomplishment that you should be really proud of! I was never left confused about where JR was or what he was doing, and all I can really say about the content of your posts is to keep up the good work!
You are also a very responsive writer, driving the scene forward instead of waiting around for your partner to take initiative. You don't just leave them hanging, instead picking up on what they're laying down, and reacting accordingly. You also give really meaty responses, full of things for them to respond to so they're never really left reaching for things to say in their posts. It makes for an excellent back and forth, and I honestly think this is the sort of interaction that is above beginner level!
When it comes to your style, I think you have a very developed voice, but one that you're still playing around with, which is wonderful! Your structures and word choice are varied, and I want you to keep that up as well! My advice to would be to experiment with the semicolon. Your style has a lot of hard stops and fragments (which you often use to great effect!) but I think your flow would really benefit from some semicolon use to connect your sentences and ideas.
Grammar & spellingwise, you don't have any glaring mistakes, although sometimes your wording gets a little awkward and the sentences come out odd. I don't think this is caused by issues with your grammar though, it just seems to be some muddling during the editing process that can be only caught with further proofing. However these moments are few and far between! Though, in the appearance section of your profile I think you might have meant weight lifting instead of weight lighting but...I honestly don't know enough about working out to say for sure, I just googled weight lighting and it said do you mean weight lifting and listed some performance art...so here we are!
Stepping back from the nitty gritty, I love the length and variation of these threads! You show us so many sides to JR, and I love them all! I especially love the threads with Kiska. You and Coco bounce so well off of each other, and I hope we get to see more of them at your next rank up! I also like how JR the protector has different sides of him -- the one we see with Kis, and the one we see with Erik. You push him into uncomfortable, awkward, and emotional circumstances, and all I can say is well done and keep it up! At novice, the next step is to drive your plot with JR forward, and to include all of the connecting threads. The thread with Quincy gave some interesting insight into JR's thoughts and feelings, and this might serve as an excellent hook to push his development forward. I'm partial to seeing more development between Kiska and JR, but I'm a sucker for these types of drawn out romances.
In the end, I think I've said all I can really say about this rank up! The biggest thing I want to leave you with is to bring some of the style from your posts and insert it in your profile. How does his history inform his personality? How does his personality show in his appearance? How does his appearance tell us about his history? Drift in and out of JR's head in all three sections to tell us about his experiences and feelings! Break down some of the walls between those sections to give us the full picture! Don't confine yourself by section; experiment with overlap.
Overall, your profile is in a good place with some room to grow, and I think your posts are absolutely at (if not above) the beginner level, so I happily approve you and JR for beginner. Congratulations! I can't wait to see what you do with him next! If you have any questions about my review, or would like some clarification on anything I've said, don't hesitate to shoot me a PM!
At least three of your recent role play topics:
Maybe I can have a friend(and gain an enemy)
I can't explain why we live this way- Quincy Elkins. So as suggested from Charlie, Stells and I did another thread with Quincy and JR. JR wants to be decent roommates with the Prefect, but it just doesn't seem to working out the way he wants it to.
Which really leads us to You notice the carpet burns [my stomach drops and churns] where JR finds out the boy he helped in the corridors during my last rank up is dating his roommate and things just kinda slide downhill from there. It ends with JR understanding Quincy slightly better, but it's clear the two boys are not going to get along anytime soon.
So then we have Temptations come in the swiftest ways with Erik and JR questions the budding relationship between the two boys, because after all, it's pretty clear that Erik's boyfriend doesn't like him. The gains that JR makes in this thread is amazing, letting Erik in slightly.
Finally we see that JR is accepting that they are friends when we reach this thread - I told you I was trouble JR finally has a friend, hallelujah. He's also starting to open up to Erik and certainly likes that the eagle doesn't push him into telling him more.
The slow road to our recovery
Adrenaline - Kiska Ferdenova. They're back again! And this time Kiss demands an ultimatum. What is JR to do if he has any hope of gaining the girl that he has been pining away for? He must give in and be vulnerable. This is scary.
Times have changed [can we still be the same] - Kiska Ferdenova. The two must figure out how they're going to handle rekindling their friendship - in the pool was probably not the best way, in hindsight. At least for the friendship part.
Deafienng Whispers - Aki Sei. We see that emotions are swelling as he pines for Kiss even when she's not around, his thoughts on what is going to happen to them. He also feels for this girl that can't seem to fix her skin and go in the sun. Emotions consume and he ends up running away. His thing, right?
Some nights - Clara Subramani. SO after that kiss in the pool with the girl that he loves, JR must face Clara, who has been his friends with benefits buddy for a year or so now and he's turning her down? With hopes high to rekindle with Kiss, he's not risking anything right now.
Stop and Stare - Martín Marzán and Kiska Ferdenova. Jelaousy comes as he finds Kiska in the Room of Requirement with Mars. This was an interesting thread because it brought in some backstory and made the two really focus on what was more important- fighting or rekindling a friendship/start of something more.
Let's stay far away from the world - Aki Sei. Emotions are swelling and he's not sure what to do, but having someone help him just isn't an option right now. Run away.
Midnight Wanderings - Kiska Ferdenova. Yet in the middle of the night, things seem to fall into place and worries go away when we have a moment to be happy and kiss the girl we love, right?
I'll be a miner for a heart of gold - Erik Dwight. At least the happiness can last until we come crashing down. A panic/anxiety attack finally hitting him, JR must face the music that running isn't always going to work.
So I'm just going to throw out this owl: Spam you to the moon and back Where Finlay invited him to joining the Quidditch team. I won't delve into a lot of details into this small plot because you already saw the two threads with Erik where JR was convinced to join the Quidditch team and the younger boy gives JR a broom to use. Beyond this, there isn't much to see yet other than the quidditch game that is 24 pages long as I write this and sure to be longer when you go to search through threads. But I am happy that it's opening doors for JR and wanted to mention it, because my hope is to use more of it in my next rank up.
I won't throw a ton here because I know I've already got you reading tons of threads, but here are a couple more that were just really fun to see for xyz reason.
Two's a Crowd - Kiljan Leander. This was fun because JR just takes the Slytherin with stride and wants to get this project that he must work on over with.
Secrets and Truths - Aidan Del Torro. An elephant in the room - or a thestral, really, JR has to do a dance with the Ravenclaw he's with as they're both facing memories and inevitably, emotions.
P is for Puffin - Emily Brookshire. Interacting with younger students isn't always fun, but sometimes duty calls.
Ability: Wandless Magic
Where will this ability apply? Both
What would you rank your character's skill in this ability? Tentative
What branch of magic does this ability work on? Charms
At what age did your character begin to study this ability? 17
Who was his or her mentor in this ability? Or who will be his or her mentor?
So it's not a mentor, exactly but in Miracles of Mine is where the idea forms that maybe, just maybe, it would be nice to have wandless magic so that it was easier to keep his secrets. So naturally, he'd continue to ask Lien about it and see who is helping her.
How will this ability benefit your character? Or how do you plan to use this ability for development? I don't expect him to develop anything beyond some simple charms. He uses warming charms on others without asking, glamours his back and chest often and thus uses a lot of magic only to aid him helping other people. I can't see him having interest in wanting to develop anything further than that, even if he was capable of it.My hope is that once he can glamour the scars anytime, he won't worry so much about it and thus potentially even forget a time or two.
Anything Else? any other info you think is important for the Review Team to know as justification!
Commentary: (Why you feel you should move up, any specific concerns you want to address or that you’d like the reviewers to pay special attention to, any special points you’d like to bring to reviewers’ attention) So here we have JR, who although I haven't been writing him on wurr all that long, has been a budding thorn in my side, for well, a long time. I feel that I know him well and that we're ready for the next level of fun, if you guys think we are, of course.
Slammer - Beater
First of all I would like to say sorry for the wait! You listed a bunch of threads with a fair amount of replies each, and I really wanted to take my time to read through all of them. You put so much effort into this app, and that gotta be appreciated ofc. But before we do anything, let's check those novice requirements:
This all looks perfect and you’ve waited long enough, so let’s do this.
|It wasn't that JR disliked people. No, in fact, the lion liked people very much. He just didn't like people that wanted to know more about him|
I’m gonna start with this quote, because it tells you so much about JR in just one line? and I applaud you for this. Beautiful. I gotta say, I love reading JR. Even as I’m writing this review, something that usually makes me super focussed, I feel sort of relaxed and laid back. You do a damn awesome job at conveying his easy-going stance, that shrugging kind of mentality of letting nothing bother him like water off of a duck’s back while still showing the insecurities that come with being a magical teenager. JR is such a good dude, man. Like he’s proud of people he isn’t even super good friends with, helps out those in need. It’s why I love seeing that he’s actually making friends. It’s like, I’m the proud mom during a school play atm, no kidding. PLS DO EXPAND ON THIS SOME MORE. Not only with Erik, but other people as well. It also doesn’t have to be all positive, mind you! Someone trying to get closer to JR, but him persisting and not letting the other in also works. Positive threads are encouraged too though. I wanna see the bae happy.
|It was easy to say that JR didn't go very deep into conversation with very many people. Especially not in the last few years. The lion was not one to get close to many people at all, but for whatever reason, Erik seemed safe.|
Give me more of that underlying reasoning. In the thread with Quincy and Erik you mention he doesn’t know why he feels the need to protect Erik, so time to find out! Get your hands dirty in the why’s as JR’s habit of keeping people at a distance is slowly crumbling with each new possible friend he meets. Especially because I keep wondering how he keeps it up, especially with his need to help others out, you know? Where does he find the balance in that? How long will he be able to keep people at a distance? Tune in for the next episode to find out… Where was I again? Oh, right!
Make things more heated, is basically what I am trying to say here. I get the feeling that JR is still very much in his comfort zone in most of these threads. Give me anger, or sadness that goes beyond that residual ache in his chest left by his father. AKA JUST GIVE ME THE DIRT. Move him around some more, so we can see you got a very good grip on his personality once you aim to go for intermediate, but also so you can learn more about him. He does parties, he sneaks out. Surely something goes wrong one time. Maybe the tables turn and he is the one who needs help, instead of him being the father figure to the lost souls of Hogwarts. JR isn’t perfect, nobody is, so show us those less than pretty sides of him next time too.
|There had been a few girls in the last few years that might have fallen under the category friends with benefits but nothing more than that.|
|"I've handed out punches for worse reasons," he admitted, thinking of Oisin flirting with Kiss, especially in fifth year when he had been such an angry person.|
We are all waiting for that Kiska arc too at intermediate, ofc you know this. Gimme gimme. Change that ‘only friends with benefits’ kind of mentality. SLAP YO BOY OUT OF IT x3. I have faith that you and Coco will be able to make this arc and romance very, well, them. If that makes sense. Both of you go create beautiful things, okay. Like I can quote a shitton of lines from your actual threads with Kiska, but for some reason, seeing those little thoughts appear in other threads just makes it so much more real. I love how everything that is happening to him gets referenced back in other threads as well, making this rank feel like one coherent story instead of just loose fragments put together for this rank up only. Not just the mentions of Kiss, but quidditch or Erik as well. Same with all those details I get with every thread about his past. I didn’t read his profile, but I can sort of patch the pieces together and that’s so great!! Keep doing this, as you create a bigger sense of empathy with your reader, even if they are just tuning in to JR’s life. Love love love it, okay.
I do gotta say I am head over heels with how complete this rank is, just fyi. Being able to read through threads from beginning to the end without cliffhangers
As someone who also writes a character who tries to be detached, but actually isn’t...not really, it feels really great to see the same kind of themes coming back:
|"I'll take you to go see the movie sometime," he promised. "It's from a kid's film, but it's great. Lion King is amazing."|
The eagle's words caused JR to snap back into his usual more serious mode.
This is the sort of stuff I like. That moment of losing control and letting their real self shine through because they just cannot help themselves. Pls let your bby open up a bit more, give him more moments of unfiltered joy to experience and bask in before he has to go back to serious momma bear mode. I enjoy the thread with Clara where we actually see him shut down and distant. So ofc opening up isn’t gonna happen with some random person sitting next to him during dinner, but now that he is making friends. Treasure it, don’t let that go.
Next up on my list is something that always gets mentioned: definitely try to expand your descriptions of your surroundings more. In the first thread with Quincy we get such a pretty idea of the grounds at night, but as soon as you write about ‘February’ and ‘JR’s shirt being drenched’ I almost long for that description of a chill, or even cold as he runs back to the castle. As the thread progresses the background sort of disappears, and we’re left with Quincy and JR just talking to each other. It’s difficult to continuously mention your environment when nothing about it actually changes, but do take this as a challenge for Intermediate! JR seems to be someone who immediately picks up details when it comes to people (like the kitten in Erik’s arms), but not when it comes to everything else around him. Idk if this is because writing about surroundings is just so darn hard for most of us, or if this is just a typical JR thing. If it isn’t, try to incorporate bits of his surroundings in replies more, even if it’s as simple as the noise of his feet against stone or how the castle can feel pretty darn chilly in winter. Get creative, as we’re sort of looking through JR’s eyes here, so he might be able to spot things other don’t and visa versa.
With that I also wanna add that I need to see more quirks that make him truly him. I have a might need, Kenz, a very mighty need.Think smaller, smaller than his itch to run every day. (Something I love, by the way.) These kind of consistencies through threads give me life. Like some people always use their thumb to scratch an itchy nose, or roll their shoulders every once in awhile. Not only dialogue is a stamp of personality, but these quirks are too. They cannot be ignored. This doesn’t mean I want him to develop a tick that appears in every thread, of course. keep it subtle, you got the power Kenz! I know you do!
Your typos and errors are minor, so keep that up! I found loosing instead of losing in your first thread, or writing his mother was an alcohol when I’m pretty sure that wasn’t what you were trying to say. I know you are a fast replyer, and that’s a wonderful thing here at Wurr. Maybe leaving the reply to rest for half an hour or so before coming back to it will help you finding those subtle mistakes a bit easier? Good brews need time, no rushing required. But hey, none of us are perfect when it comes to errors. Other than those occasional mishaps, I see no glaring mistakes so you deserve a good few thumbs and pats on the back for that.
|It wasn't that JR tried to run around the castle shirtless, to show off his rather toned upper body,or to attract attention to himself. No, the lion didn't exactly like the itchiness of the cotton on his upper body - especially after it was sweat soaked, liked after a run - so it was an inevitable cycle that after a run, the young man would strip off the shirt, often having it around his neck on his way back in from the grounds.|
I see that fanservice, lady. Don’t think I don’t. No but, forreals, i’m a fan of these sort of details. It’s something typically JR, and like I said in my previous paragraph here. IT IS ALL I WANNA SEE. Something I am also always curious about when people don’t resort to polyvore is WHAT DOES THIS PERSON WEAR. I’m sure his fashion choice beyond bare chested glory in his profile -and if not, go ahead and add those things into his profile for intermediate!- but not everyone has read that one, my friend. A piece of clothing can be as much of a habit as any type of quirk, as it’s easy to grab that favourite hoodie from the clothing chair
What else can I say? Your post length is good, you reply to all the things your rp partner throws at you like a champ. You even threw in a very entertaining thread with an ickle. So uhh….maybe an authority person? I’m mainly just launching ideas at you now, because you basically licked the whole plate with every aspect of this ranking app. I didn’t get to comment on each thread, as this review would’ve ended up being a fucking essay ;^;. I hope you don’t mind! So of course it’s no surprise I will APPROVE@JR Zerner for Novice.
On the topic of your special request though, I’m gonna go ahead and already say I’m gonna DENY it. Pls note that I really don’t feel very happy about doing so, and I spent ages going back and forth on my decision ;A;. In the end I consulted some other reviewers, just to be sure bc I really really really wanted to be sure about this. With JR I can see how you want to use it but t doesn't seem intricately connected to his character or his arc, which makes it tricky because wandless magic is a skill that needs to be learned. He wouldn't simply have it after this rank, he'd need to put lots and lots of effort into it, and in that light the means don't seem to add up to the goal. Especially when it comes to him wanting to help people, I don’t see how this would benefit him more than regular wordless magic would. A part of me also wondered how much of it could actually be replaced by wordless magic instead of wandless? It still shows he is using magic, but not what type of spell he used. In my mind that feels more subtle than casting an incantation. Now I'm not saying that you can't do this arc with wandless magic, but I'd suggest to work it out a bit more, and come back to it later. You got your point A with Lien already, that’s a start. If you feel like this request is essential to your arc after all, then I'm sure you can find a way to make it work, and convince me - or your other reviewers next time! But for now, my verdict is to deny ;^; Don't let this get you down, others have been there! I’m also not the only reviewer here, so don’t be discouraged :c.
I hope this review was sort of helpful, as I babbled a lot. If you got any questions whatsoever, just poke me on skype <33.
The first thing I want to comment on is your writing style... you've always had a talent for gripping me from the get-go with nearly any post that you've written. I click on each of these threads and your first post consistently does that. You have my attention solidly as a reader and I'm excited to go on the thread's journey with JR. That's amazing and can be challenging to do for even the most skilled/professional writers. I'm talking published authors and the like. It's also something that's very important for me, personally, as a reader. If the character isn't captivating me in their posts from the beginning, it's going to feel like a long, slow trek to finish the rest of what I need to read, you know? It's not like that with JR at all. I have to compliment you here, too, with how you arranged and explained your threads. It has been very easy for me to follow. I also like the amount and effort you've shown that you've put into this rank. Makes it an easy review!
I love seeing JR struggle internally with Quincy's dislike. You make it a point to say that JR was no stranger to that feeling, but yet it still bothers him. He wants a reason, wants to know why. That's such a human thing to do. Especially if there's no definitive situation that he can think of that would raise the other gryffindor's ire. It's also interesting to me that JR runs so much. He literally runs around the grounds. He runs away from problems that feel insurmountable. Heck, he even runs away from his own feelings in his own mind. But when it comes to helping others, he's willing to endure a good amount of abuse. A lot of people wouldn't say anything to Erik when he's with Quincy, especially with how Quincy behaves toward them, just to avoid the conflict. The nasty words that were inevitably thrown his way. But JR does it anyway. He serves as a shield and he does it, at least in that scenario, without being too nasty himself.
Let me just sit here and fangirl over JR's relationship with Erik! Ahhhhh! I remember when we were playing Quidditch and JR took Erik's criticisms so hard, I was a bit perplexed as to why that would bother him so much. Now it makes complete and total sense. These boys have been through something together and it has made them unlikely friends. His thoughts would obviously mean quite a lot to JR after everything. Gosh, really, I just love this whole dynamic. Erik and JR being friends. JR and Quincy having their tension that makes things a little difficult. It's something special and I can really tell that you're learning a lot about how JR handles these uncomfortable situations. Like getting a hug. Like opening up to someone. Experiencing vulnerability with someone that isn't Kiska. Which made me so happy to see.
Most of the other thoughts I have were touched on by Sammeh, so I'll skip right to saying what I'd love to see with JR. These are all suggestions, of course! But I think they'd be fun. I know that you had JR sort of have an emotional breakdown with Erik, but I'd love to see the ripples from that encounter. Is he tense with Kiska because of it? Does he try to push her away again, relapsing to how he was before? Sort of a... continue knocking him down so you can build him right the heck back up. Which, as you know, I like the feelsy/sad things so it should come as no surprise that I'd suggest such things. I'd also love to see him lose his cool again... he's sort of the dad that just sighs and fixes things/saves people right now. Maybe he gets snappy, maybe he gets jealous but...
Maybe at some point he does something that makes him see his mother in himself even more? That will help to flesh out his character further, to show just how deeply those scars and pains effect him. Though she didn't raise him through his more impressionable years, sometimes biology has a hand in quirks and similarities that we never would have expected.
Interacting with an authority figure would be good. Maybe how he feels about what happened in the quidditch game with the Nundus and how he resolves his guilt from Erik's comment. Gosh, Kenz, you've got such a good foundation built here already... I'm so so so excited to see where you go!!
It should come as no surprise that I approve JR for novice! WAY TO GO! I'd be careful, as Sammeh said above, about typos and weird sentence structure. But no writer is perfect - these were all just mistakes that came naturally with writing. I usually post my replies and then go back and read them the next day with fresh eyes, just to catch anything weird that I might have missed. Beyond that, just keep doing what you're doing. You've already got some hella awesome plot arcs started, so continue them and rock on!
As for your special request, I'm actually going to disagree and say that I approve it. I know that you've been on the site for a long while, Kenz, and have a good idea of what's allowed and what isn't. With something that is this low level, I see no reason not to approve it, personally. I saw JR use his charms in almost every thread that I read and while you're not able to necessarily mention working toward a special request at this stage, it's clear to me that charms is an integral part of his character. One bit of magic that he feels he is actually good at. His way of helping people. And I can see that, with wandless magic, it would make it easier for him to do so. Especially if he intends to cast warming charms for comfort without actually making that known to people - which hey... some people may not like... and that presents an opportunity for plotting and character growth.
To me, wandless magic in and of itself doesn't necessarily have to be connected to your plot arc. Not everyone is going to be vigilantes or bad guys or out in the fray. Healers use wandless magic and that's sort of how I look at this. He's not necessarily healing people per se, but JR just seems so desperate to prove that he's more than his past and for him... and to me... this seems like a good anchor/goal for him to strive for. That is why I'm approving it.
Now, of course, there are conditions. I know you realize that JR shouldn't just automatically be able to cast wandless spells. It's something that he's gotta work toward and when you put him up for intermediate, we really need to see that displayed. A thread where he's studying. Practicing. Failing. Having success. Failing some more. That sort of deal, ya know? I'd also love for you to specify in more detail then what his actual skill level is - I know you said lower level, but perhaps flesh that out some more. Explain why wandless magic is something that he'd strive for - discover that in your threading of this ability practice. Then we can revisit it again for you next rank?
Now as Sammeh and I have disagreed on the special request rank, have no fear, Charlie is going to chime in and serve as the deciding vote on your request only. You've already been approved for Novice so that's all well and good!
As always, if you have any questions, just poke me in PM or on Skype <3333 I just want to say again how much I'm impressed with JR and how excited I am to see you keep moving forward!
@JR Zerner @Charlie Cooper
Hello Kenz! I'm here to break the tie for your special request! This is going to be a little bit longer than you might expect for a special request section, but I want to be clear on the things you should consider moving forward, especially because this is currently a tie. I'm not here to do a full review, but I will say that I'm impressed with what you've put forth for this rank up! You've done a lot of work developing JR, and exploring his relationships further. I also felt your layout for the rank up was well thought out and easy to follow, but your link to the thread with Lien wasn't filled in so I had to do a little digging! Just make sure all your links go where they're meant to next time!
Firstly I'm going to say that I really like that this idea came about organically. It happened in character and it seems like a really natural leap for JR to make. He uses his charms every day in his personal life, and it's referenced quite a lot in your threads. At this point, charms are an integral part of who JR is, whether he's using them to help people, or to hide the parts of himself that he hates.
To me, it doesn't seem like you're asking for something terribly far-fetched or advanced, and none of what you have submitted conflicts with HP canon. Tentative use of charms is well within what is reasonable for a student who puts in the time and effort, and really applies themselves. While he isn't the top student in his year, he's not a slacker either. His dedication to his fitness shows that he is the personality type to pick a plan and then stick to it, and that drive is something I think he could channel into learning difficult magics. I also really like your idea concerning his scars -- slipping up and forgetting to glamour them, because it would be great to see more of him without his "armor". It's very realistic to me that he would forget too, given that he strikes me as a creature of habit, and he would no longer be going through the morning ritual of picking up his wand and swishing it covering his scars.
Wandless magic is one of those requests where practicing and learning how to perform it is part of the journey, and I think it would prove to be an interesting arc for JR. It will foster new relationships and maybe even transform older ones, so I want you to think about how you're going to involve other people! Will people walk in on him studying, or will more of them become his guinea pigs? Is he going to rely on Lien, or approach a Professor? I also want you to give some more thought to just how much you want JR to develop his wandless magic, e.g. will he be tentatively decent at most charms, or are there certain types of charms that will come more easily to him? You have a lot of ways to flavor this, so think about what suits JR best!
In the end, I agree with Alice, and am going to approve your special request of wandless magic. For what you should put forth at intermediate concerning this request, I'm going to echo Alice again. I want to see threads full of his struggles learning this difficult art! The practices, the failures, and the successes! There are so many options for weaving this into your ongoing plots too, such as escaping his Kiss Feels by throwing himself into his studies. The highs of getting it right and the lows of failing might end up being great fodder for you and JR, impacting his overall interactions with others. The moment where wandless magic starts to click for him could be really powerful too, and how you want that to work will say a lot about who JR is, e.g. will it click for him because of months of dedication and hard work, or will it finally click after months of failure when the stakes are high?
You have plenty of routes to get to where you want to go, and what you ultimately decide has the potential to amount to a very exciting plot! My only word of caution is don't jump to him forgetting to cover up his scars too quickly! Take your time getting there! I think that's something you might even consider saving for an advanced rank up if your focus at Intermediate is JR learning and honing this technique.
Congratulations on your rank up and your special request! If you have any questions or comments about anything I've said, please send me a PM or give me a poke on skype!
Link to character workshop topic: Click me for hardships and turmoils
At least four of your recent role play topics:
Why does this life have such pain
Work hard, rest hard - Rode Connors
I liked this thread because it gave me details that I hadn’t known before about his childhood and even though he ends up running away from the conversation, it told me a lot about him.
I will always find you - Erik Dwight
JR learns a little of the demons that Erik faces - and tries to help his friend by unmasking some of his own viewpoints in order to help.
Healing is hard - Leona Santos || What I feel is what makes me weak - Natia Steinberg
Pain, pain, go away. We see that JR struggles internally in both threads, but the difference of reactions around him make him willing to shy away from one and for the other let in a little.
Seek and you shall find - Tori Carroll
In this thread, JR tries to fight emotions in a different way - by going to the maze that is at the carnival. He ends up finding Tori to help her through the maze but also reflects on the fact that he really ought to talk to Liam sometimes soon.
Spiraling out of control (mini-arc)
So in my last rank up, Alice requested that we see a moment of JR seeing himself as his mother. Well, in the following, we see a little of this. And then we see why he doesn’t want to be like his mother. I’ve also included the train thread with Lulu because he has such anger and memories flicker.
And when the vultures sing tonight I'm going to join right in - Erik Dwight
Unknown to JR, Quincy’s little brother is causing trouble. It means a lot to JR that Erik comes to him for help when Erik needs it and JR starts to feel a bit of anger towards this younger Elkins’ boy that hurt his friend. He might stay calm and collected around his friend but later, I’m not so sure he does.
The perfect catch - Anora Chevalier
JR gets caught in a trap that his set by his peer and he compares both himself and her to his mother. Anger is fun.
Crash course - Lulu Flowers
In this event thread, JR is headed to London to do some shopping rather than home- because Hogwarts is his home at this point. He and his compartment mate are trying to get out of the situation that the trolley witch has put them in.
Amidst the strife, our friends keep us whole
Hakuna Matata - Erik Dwight
This is a cute thread to solidify the relationship that JR has with Erik. It becomes very clear that Erik is going to stay a very big part of JR’s life. We see a happier side of JR, that he has finally found someone that he can just be himself with. You’ll see that JR has the thought for a tattoo here, the same rune symbol that Erik put on his arm at the end of my last rank up with him, but as it hasn’t happened just yet, I haven’t put this into his profile or any other threads just yet.
Magic in the air - Kiska Ferdenova
They are going to the opening night of the gala together, what could be better than that? We did have plans for JR to ask Kiss to be his girlfriend at this point in time, but when Coco is able to return, we will decide to either scrap this thread all together or to continue it. Either way, I thought I’d include it for some feelings of fun and joy. Not everything is awful in his life.
A tastiness we must find - Madeline Poe
In this thread, JR is recreating smells - foods - that might’ve been found at one point at his father’s restaurant. He revisits memories of cooking for Liam and Kiss in earlier years, as well as gets a surprise visit from a girl. Madeline eventually will be asking about the cat that is with JR in the kitchens and when discovering that it’s actually Erik’s kitten with him, JR will be asked if he wants his own - this part has not happened just yet though.
Running partner - Eveleen Ó Faoláin
Obligatory shirtless JR running thread where ultimately, the goal is that he will have a running partner.
Overcoming means opening more doors
Nightmares and omens - Helene Aquila
This thread opened up a couple of different things for our friend, JR. We’re going to see that wandless magic is a futile attempt here, that thoughts of his brother surface, and that he wants to reconcile with his friend from years past. Not to mention an unexpected night of emotions and actually facing things.
It was the perfect opportunity to write a reconciling one shot for these two here. JR nudged Helene to do it tell Liam about her demons, with the promise that he would as well.
One and the same - Elias Deveaux
I think that this nicely ties up why exactly JR didn’t go find Andre the way that we were led to believe was going to happen at the end of the tower thread with Erik or the beginning of the thread with Anora. It also sees us glimpses into JR’s thoughts about Mason, who will become very important later on. It was also personally fun for me to be able to link it back to my last app where I featured Aidan Del Torro in one of my threads as an unexpected bonus because of thestrals.
At this point, I have plans to make JR fail and fail lots with wandless magic. We see in a couple different threads here that JR is thinking about it, working on it and even consults a professor to see if he can get help in this area. We saw with Helene that he tried nearly without thinking, to summon his wand to him and failed. That was what kicked the thinking of wandless magic off. In some of my other threads, it can be seen that he ordered books and is researching about the topic of wandless magic and the theory behind it, but the following two really hit him practicing it or seeking help.
Practice makes perfect, they say - Shiori Seija
This was a neat thread not only because JR is squirming about sharing what he is doing, but also because communicating with Shiori is different and interesting to begin with.
A lending hand - Jacian Turner
This is just a beginning start of our thread, but JR has gone to visit the school counselor without an appointment in hopes to ask questions about wandless magic. He is very nervous about approaching an adult, we quickly find.
Commentary: (Why you feel you should move up, any specific concerns you want to address or that you’d like the reviewers to pay special attention to, any special points you’d like to bring to reviewers’ attention)
--- Hi again. I've gotten to that point where I think that JR is at a good point to be seen again. He has expanded relationships, faced memories, dealt with new situations and anger, gotten a new hobby as well as found new people to call friends. I've learned a lot about him in the above threads, from his childhood to his years with his mother, to his feelings about Kilsha, or his brother's death, as well as his quirks. He's become a solid voice in my head where I don't have to think quite so much on how he's going to react in different situations because it just seems to happen more naturally now. I have a good idea where he's going to end up at this point as well as some arcs that are coming for him that he will struggle with. I've pushed him to his limits and gave him some happy moments - things that we all have to deal with in life.
As a writer, I think that I have improved - not only because I've spent so much time figuring out who JR is and where he might be going later on, but because I have learned to slow down and spend more time in the editing process - something that has always annoyed me to no end. I have worked on trying to get rid of those awkward sentences and will continue to do so. I've tried to throw in more environment into posts, even though JR is very prone to noticing things about people, these are things that affect us all - like the fact that the refrigerator kicking in just now made me pause. As always, I appreciate any and all comments about where to go from here as well as how to expand him as a character. I worked to revise his profile in ways that both Tine and Charlie mentioned in his beginner app, so please help me on where it is still lacking and could improve. <333
Slammer - Beater
Thank you for participating in the Ranking System! Your application has been added to the review queue. You can expect your reviews sometime within the next two weeks.
Let’s look at the requirements for Intermediate:
*-- While we are looking at a cumulative number of posts, we will take into account how far each thread has progressed, so offering up 9 posts in one thread and three starters probably isn’t the best way to go. Please also note that oneshots will not count towards this total, as oneshots do not highlight interaction with other characters.
†-- If your character previously achieved Novice rank when profile rewrites were still required--that is, if you provided a profile revision at Novice--you do not need to complete a profile revision at this stage.
You’ve certainly fulfilled the post requirements, so my review will see if you fulfilled the other requirements!
First, I’ll take a look at your profile. I’ll give you some general feedback for improvement and then I’ll focus on the finer details.
My overall impression of your profile:
I can tell you spent a significant amount of time on JR’s intermediate profile. There’s a good balance between the finer details, such as the color of his eyes, his preference not to wear a shirt, and the scars he obtained from his mother and the overall details, like how he’s the spitting image of his father and how he just looks and feels like a teenage boy. Your description is convincing and by the end of it, I could imagine JR running shirtless and sporting a tan. This section supports the idea that JR is very down-to-earth and has a preference towards the simpler things in life. In addition, he comes across as potentially intimidating because (1) he’s acts older than his age and (2) he has a commanding voice/presence, but he’s also a protector and very gentle to those he cares about. I think that is very apparent (so if that was what you intended kudos!)
After reading your personality section, I do have to ask: why exactly does JR choose to focus on personality over appearances? I understand that JR might find it troublesome to maintain his own appearance, but he could still admire how other people look, so why doesn’t he? I don’t think that was answered in either the personality or appearance section, so you might want to expand on that if you choose to rank JR further. I do love what you did with this section though. I see mentions of people JR threaded with all over the place. I can see you placed a lot of thought into how these people impacted JR.
Okay, I’m not going to lie. The history section is lovely and my favorite part of your entire profile. It flows like a story, which demonstrates how amazing your skills are as a writer. As I read it, I found myself wondering “what’s going to happen next? I really want to know.” I loved the depiction of JR’s relationship with his father. It’s bittersweet and most importantly, it feels down-to-earth. It makes me think “oh, hey, I can totally see why JR would grow up to be like *insert personality section traits*”. In addition, the way you write it makes JR relatable so when I finally found out about the untimely death of his father, I was like : (. JR’s tale is heartbreaking and when his life goes from normal to traumatic, I found myself in the feels. I love that you sprinkle bits and pieces of hope and happiness so that it’s not all dreary to read. At the end of the day, I’m reassured that JR is going to be fine because he hasn’t given up no matter how bleak the situation is for him. I love protagonists like these, the ones that struggle because life has given them a lot of trouble and instead of staying on the floor, JR picks himself off the ground. Even without reading his threads, I’m already excited about what kind of story exists outside of his profile.
Some finer details:
|This being stated, JR knows that appearance is everything to a lot of people; it means a lot to the world around him. His piercing green eyes seem to see beyond the physical realm that most teenagers dwell in, rather keen to focus on the personality of who someone might be rather than how they look, unless they are displaying an emotion. Even then, it is hard, because anyone is able to hold a stony gaze the way that JR is able to and can pretend or fake a smile. Eyes though - they tell a story like no other. They can sparkle a lighter shade of green when they are happy, turning darker when they are worried or concerned - which if you’ve met this young man, is often. He cares too much for the world around him sometimes.|
I’ll focus on this paragraph since it’s the first thing we read about JR. In the first sentence, there’s some redundancy. “Appearance is everything to a lot of people” and “it means a lot to the world around him” tell us the same thing. The phrase “a lot” shows up twice as well. Now, I’m not saying that redundancy isn’t a useful literary technique, but I don’t get the sense that you’re doing it purposefully here. If you want to encapsulate the same meaning, then I would suggest rewriting it to something like:
|This being stated, JR knows that appearance is everything to the world around him.|
Then we go onto the eyes which see “beyond the physical realm that most teenagers dwell in.” It’s very pretty and sets up the image that JR is older beyond his years. However, I have to ask, don’t all teenagers dwell in the physical realm (unless they’re dead)? This is also similar to the beginning quote we see (not quoted here), so there’s more redundancy here. Maybe you could combine them?
|rather keen to focus on the personality of who someone might be rather than how they look, unless they are displaying an emotion|
The grammar is perfect here, but the wording is a bit awkward. The phrase “focus on the personality of who someone might be rather than how they look” could be simplified to something like “focus on the inside rather than outward appearances.” Then there’s “unless they are displaying an emotion.” I feel like emotion should be plural here because people can feel many emotions at once. However, I do love this paragraph. There are some good things in here.
|Even then, it is hard, because anyone is able to hold a stony gaze the way that JR is able to and |
In addition to describing JR’s expressions, this paragraph implies that he’s humble. Despite JR’s attempts to look past appearances, you go onto say that “yeah, he does try to do that, but he still finds it pretty hard.”
|Eyes though - they tell a story like no other. They can sparkle a lighter shade of green when they are happy, turning darker when they are worried or concerned - which if you’ve met this young man, is often.|
You start with a generalization about all eyes and then immediately jump to talking about JR’s eyes, which might be disorienting to some readers. Instead, rewriting to something like might make it easier to understand.
|Eyes though - they tell a story like no other. His can sparkle a lighter shade of green when he is happy, turning darker when he is worried or concerned - which if you’ve met this young man, is often.|
I noticed these things in other areas of your profile too. I highly suggest finding them and polishing these sentences because your profile is already so beautifully written. I just want it to be even better, you know?
Now, onwards to posts! Before I talk about your specific arcs, I’d like to say that you’re doing a wonderful job of responding to your rp partner. You give them a lot to go on for their next post, whether it’s JR asking a simple question or JR doing something to move the story along. There are also references to past threads, which tell me you’ve given thought about timelines and continuity. In this section, I’ll give specific commentary about your threads and at the end, I’ll give my overall feedback. (I swapped the order around this time, hah!)
Why does this life have such pain
Your decision to list Rode’s thread first was a good one. It’s an easy way for the reader to ease into the life of JR. It’s very light-hearted and brings back some warm memories of JR’s past. You did an amazing job of responding to Puzzle (who is also an equally awesome writer) by providing details about JR’s dog when Rode interacts with her cat.
Onto the next thread, which is the flower maze with JR and Erik.
|The young man started in the maze, running his fingers over the petals that made up the walls. He wasn't sure if he was allowed to touch the flowers or not, but there wasn't any alarms going off because he had, nor was there any people around to tell on him at the moment, either.|
Ooo, I like dis because it’s a clever way to describe JR’s puzzlement over these flowers, how he goes from can i touch them? to ooo, doesn’t seem like there’s anyone stopping me. It solidifies what you’ve been saying since his profile, that he doesn’t care too much for appearances and because of that, touching flowers on this maze-thing? No big deal.
|You don't want the scars," the young man replied firmly. "With the scars, you can't beat the memories." Before JR realized what he was doing he was dragging Erik from the flowery maze, zigzaging through the walls of the enchanted hedges.|
I like these words from JR because it emphasizes how his scars are a constant reminder of the ordeal he had to go through for many summers. While the thread mostly focuses on the scars obtained from both boys, what I really liked about it was how true JR stayed to his character. I got the sense that he wishes people would stop caring about appearances so much and that his scars shouldn’t be what defines him as a person. As I stated earlier, that wasn’t really clear in your profile, but it’s here.
The next two threads highlight the fact that JR is possibly looking for more stability in his life. Leona is more delicate with her words than Nalia in the sense that she’s not openly asking for information that JR might not be comfortable with sharing. She’s less nervous and takes the initiative to hug JR when she realizes what’s going through his mind (as an empath). Since you asked me to look at these two threads together, my impression of JR is that he wants to protect people, but at the same time, he’s very fragile himself. At the end of the day, he has a lot of demons he has to face, so the slightest change can cause him to close up.
Spiraling out of control
I do love me some JR and Erik interactions. It’s clear that the two trust and confide in each other. However, I didn’t really see signs of JR wanting to hurt Andre in this particular thread. He’s displeased, but his focus is on comforting Erik and reassuring him that Andre had no right in hurting him. I’m not sure if that was what you were aiming for, but I think it makes sense for him to be more concerned than angry because at this point, he’s still talking to Erik. It’s more apparent with JR’s encounter with Anora, who completely catches him off-guard with the net. He’s angry now and it shows in your choice of words--the fact that he knows she’s lying about the thestrals as opposed to thinking maybe she *insert reason for why she didn’t intend to hurt him* or that it’s “none of her business.” Eventually, his frustrations cause him to slip up in his exchange with Anora, but eventually, he forces himself to calm down.
|Anger flared like an old friend as he was in the face of danger and he shifted his footing, waiting for the moment that he could cast a spell at whoever it was that had sent something to burn his skin - but he found that he still could not see.|
This is a good use of personification. Calling Anger an “old friend” implies that JR is more than happy to embrace his darker emotions in order to lash out at whoever had hurt him. JR is a fight or flight kind of guy. For the most part, he chooses to run away and even uses running as a mechanism to cope. However, this is one of the rare times that he’s choosing to stand up and fight. Now, that’s definitely a welcoming change, and I expect a lot of good things in this thread with you and Cec.
Amidst the strife, our friends keep us whole
Ooo, in Hakuna Matata, I got excited for JR and Erik when I read the words “he had successfully gone through the service and steps required to get two tickets” because that already hints at an easygoing thread. After all the two have been through, they definitely deserve some fun!
JR, you’re so suave in Magic in the air~ There’s a nice change in how he treats Kiss verus all the other people he’s met so far. He feels at ease and even his language is a bit flirty when it comes to the lioness.
|The meeting with Liam had gone smoothly, as far as the lion could tell and it had reminded the young man of the days in the kitchens where Kiss had spent a lot of time begging him to teach her the secret spaghetti sauce recipe that his father used at the restaurant that the older man owned. Liam would sit on the stool and laugh|
Dis is a good description of a small moment that JR clearly cherished enough to be able to recall. His mention of Liam also suggests that the Ravenclaw isn’t too much of a stigma to talk about, now that the two met and talked things out. Another thing I noticed is that there’s a noticeable difference in your quality of writing (since this thread is fairly recent compared to the others). Kudos to that for improving so fast in such a short amount of time.
Overcoming means opening more doors
This is a good arc title. I love that you’re pushing JR to do uncomfortable things. In his earlier threads, he’s been running away, but for these threads, he’s (as you so nicely worded it) overcoming his hardships. Sure, he had a panic attack in Helene’s thread, but hey, he’s trying!
As promised, you’ve shown us JR’s struggle with learning wandless magic. I love that he takes the initiative to seek out an adult--it shows the extent at which he’s willing to work to master this skill.
One of the things I loved reading about JR is his relationship to Erik. You and Tine are doing an excellent job here, so I don’t have a lot of criticism here. Despite how broken Erik is and his low opinion about himself, Erik is clearly invoking positive changes in JR. I love that JR steps up and becomes a better person for Erik. There’s no doubt that JR’s struggling with his owns demons, but I love that he pushes his own troubles aside in order to help Erik. That goes the same for Erik too, who also steps up his game to help out his Gryffindor friend. In the end, this creates a really balanced relationship. The two have their hearts in the right place. I know that Erik’s struggle with alcoholism might become problematic in the future, but I hope everything goes well for them! I enjoy reading about them!
Okay, so, some bad stuff, but I promise it’s nothing too severe. I don’t want to continue harping on you about this, but I noticed in general there was a lot of words that could be trimmed off. Like, in one thread, you’ll reference the same event twice in different posts (I...might be struggling with this issue too.). I understand that some events are important and hold a special place in JR’s heart (for better or worse), but you need to trust the reader to remember. Since I’m reading a lot of your threads all at once, it sometimes feels like I’m constantly reading about the same event over and over. Try and mix things up a bit. Bring in new memories from the past for JR; explore the world around him. In fact, if other people are interested, I’d making a thread before the death of JR’s father and a thread before the death of JR’s mother. Just to see how JR would be like. This might be a bit mean, but I want to see what might happen if JR couldn’t run for a while. It doesn’t have to be that he broke his leg. You can be creative with the reasons. Maybe he has to work some event and he can’t afford to leave. I just want to see what would happen if he doesn’t have his coping mechanism.
Finally, I want to applaud you for crafting JR into such a relatable character. He makes mistakes, such as pushing away Liam and Kiss. He runs away from people because he’s scared and/or uncomfortable and sometimes, when he gets too stressed out, he might even lash out. JR is far from perfect, but at the same time, he is perfect because his story is one that many people have gone through. Scars don’t necessarily have to be physical. JR’s treatment of his scars and his desire to be treated normally is compellingly realistic. I also love that JR chooses to focus on his relationship with Erik and not Liam. At some point, we’ve all gone through the phase of pushing away a friend for whatever reason (and perhaps grew to regret it). It’s not always possible to rekindle a relationship at the snap of one’s fingers. It makes sense that JR wants to focus on his current friendship with Erik more because that’s who is in his life now. He made a mistake before with Liam, and even if he can’t exactly fix it immediately, he’s ensuring that he doesn’t make the same mistake with Erik.
With all that said, I happily APPROVE @JR Zerner for Intermediate. I wish you all the best in your next two reviews. If you have any questions, you know where to find me. : )
Send Inquiries to Lifen Huang
Credits to myself and Nicole from CTTW
Anyway, please interrupt my babbling. Let’s start off with your profile: My first impression here is holy hell she did some expanding, and that is already very good. I have to admit I had to refresh myself on the advice I gave you for Beginner because I have poo brain, but let’s keep that in mind when starting with your appearance.
I am going to drop a phrase here because while I won’t start correcting your grammar, I have this point here:
|Maybe it is the crinkled lines that he gets in his brow giving away that fact that he worries even when it’s his eyes that don’t.|
It made me pause for a moment because I wondered why would his eyes worry so I think I am echoing what Jynx said here that the wording appears a little awkward at times, while being correct in theory. But that is not a major point, just something I stumbled upon while reading. I am genuinely impressed by the amount of information and the detail you offered in this section, and for the last, big edit - if you want to take the step to Elite - I think you do not necessarily add content, but focus on the mechanics of your flow more as well as the wording. I’m not against the question and answer system and have seen it in profiles before, and I tend to use it myself - but make sure always to give the right answers to the questions you are rhetorically asking within a profile. I think you did very well here, and the only question I happen to be left with is why JR cares about personality more than looks.
You also said that he does not enjoy being judged by his appearance because it pains him, but does he like the way he look? It seems to filter through that he does not run to maintain a certain body ideal but to cope, so I am wondering if he thinks he’s attractive? I guess there has to be a certain confidence within him given he’s shirtless so much - or does he just not care enough to be like fckn hell everyone sees my perfectly toned abs now -manly shriek- if you know what I mean. But honestly, I think this is a very wholesome and well-flowing appearance and I am so happy you offered all these details <3 I have to leave some of these points for reviewer no. 3 as well, so let’s swiftly move on to
|If JR cared about appearances, he might spend more than ten minutes a day in the shower and getting ready, but this is not so for the seventeen year old. Sure, there are those few things about himself that he makes sure are done - brushing his teeth, combing his hair and even shaving are pieces that are important to the lion. This doesn’t mean that when there are occasions that the the young man knows how to play the part to look nice. It just means that his style is simple, probably even plain to most standards, but it fits JR to the core.|
This paragraph is for example something I would have expected to hear about in the first section, and if you want to, you could consider re-ordering paragraphs and eventually moving it. At the same time it is definitely more preference than a rule, and often all three sections intertwine, so please do not feel forced to do so :_; But while I am at the topic of organising things, a little remark on how things transit from one paragraph to another: You have such a nice and almost epic tone in this section, and it already showed in the appearance, and I would love to see you follow a red line in the personality as well so one points melt into the other. Because here, you tell me about the shit JR has been through and then you smack me in the face with his morning routine and I am like but why? Metaphorical smacking, of course. I think you can get a smoother transition here so you do not have the sudden change of topic that might come along as irritating for the reader that wasn’t prepared for JR brushing his teeth.
I am really screaming about this because there is so much information and I don’t even know what to comment on because once more I am faced with a rather wholesome section right here. Either way, Tine has to complain and make you write even better than you already do, so here we go. Much like in the first section, I advise against adding information - although you are for sure supposed to do so if you find out more about JR, but I mean in a way of not forcing something you definitely do not need - and suggest reorganising these paragraphs. You keep coming back to his athletic nature and Quidditch, but with several paragraphs in between. Think of how topics fit together thematically and try to follow a certain line, which will automatically help you have your transitions become way smoother and your reader can follow these points easier as well. I didn’t get confused, but I think it makes understanding JR’s complex personality even easier - for yourself, and for everyone who reads this.
I love how you tie every relationship JR has in this, and how you reference all these events and actually explain why he acts the way he does - this is something I often miss so I am happy when people explain the traits and give examples. Much like writing an essay, right? Once more there are so many details and so many different aspects that I am really happy with this. Your last reviewer might have more to add, but I personally will now move onto your history, which always happens to be my favourite part.
|All stories must start with a beginning. Some people have histories with bloodlines that clearly define a part of who a person is before they are even born.|
At this point I am going to repeat myself and praise the tone you have chosen for this profile, because it is so pretty and I enjoy reading it a lot. I think the questions do really fit the epic theme - and I will speak about themes and motifs later on if I don’t forget - and you did a beautiful job on this. But talking about the atmosphere and the tone, I am wondering why you often say that when you could use who to sound even more epic. I cannot remember where but I know that I have read it before and paused, so here is another example:
|His father’s parents, that were Americans that moved to London sometime when his father, Joe Zerner, was in his teen years, were simple folk that worked in offices.|
I would almost go as far and split a phrase like these because dude, those are a lot of details and pieces of information in one sentence. I am not going to tell you how to write so I will leave out an example and simply leave you with the advice instead <3
For the third time today, you baffle me with an amount of details, and I love how detailed you describe his Hogwarts years and give somewhat of an outlook for the future. Well done here as well! I would like to see a bit more of JR reflecting in the history though, by which I mean the ever-troubling question of How does that make him feel? The same question I wanted to ask when I read how JR was unceremoniously handed to Joe - my oh my, how did Joe feel? Trust me that if someone handed me a child right now I wouldn’t react so chill.
Generally I get the vibe that this is a very Intermediate-worthy profile edit, and that you put a lot of effort into all of this. I see you pick up several themes at times, for example how athletic JR is, as well as calling him things like a bear cub. I said I was going to come back to this topic and you could consider choosing certain themes for JR if you see it fit and build up metaphors on these. For example I use the sea for Severin, and back in the days I had some odd honey-and-bee imagery for Florentin that somehow worked and reflected in both profile and posts. Of course this does not work for everyone, and once more I am not going to tell you how to write, but try and offer you food for thought for future rankings. Content-wise I have nothing more to say because I am very satisfied, therefore we move onto your posts now.
Why does this life have such pain:
What I really like about these threads you chose for this arc is that JR’s history and the world of his emotions filters through in every single one of your posts, that he is so deeply rooted and established that everything he does makes sense. I have written a lot of threads with you already and these others show me as well that you always pull in your environment, past events, recent happenings and even sensations like scents and sounds into your writing, which is simply awesome. A little criticism because I can’t love on you only: Don’t push JR into the role of a side character in his own story. He has a lot of thoughts about Kiska and Erik and his mother, but don’t let it distract you from how JR feels and how he experiences things.
Spiraling out of control:
This arcs leaves me hungry for more JR, and do you want to know why? Because it’s a perfect contrast to the usual calm he seems to radiate. Now we have JR caught in a net in The Perfect Catch, but I want you to show us more of JR on the edge. He is a character that always struggles in one way or another, but I think you can really work with his anger and involve everything here - not just the physical reactions of kicking and punching and breathing heavily, but also what happens inside: the blur of emotions, the way he can feel his blood rushing through his veins, the ponding of his own heart. I like the variety you offer for each arc and I want to demand more of angry JR when you are going to rank further. You see I am just touching up on your arcs and will have some general things to say later in case you were wondering what I am doing here <3
Amidst the strife, our friends keep us whole
I really enjoy how comfortable JR is with both Kiska and Erik, especially because these are two very different relationships - and I therefore like how you touch up on different parts of JR’s life while he was always staying so true to himself. He is just adorable and a little shy with Kiska, and protective and more mature with Erik. I also like how he always seems to be making more friends, no matter in which arc - almost as if he desperately tries to never make any enemies. The thread with Madeline is a nice change of situation because he seems to be running a lot, and here’s my little annotation that you should keep an eye on situations not repeating themselves too often in the future.
Overcoming means opening more doors
I have read the Nightmares and omens thread before and I really adore the tension in this and how JR misunderstood the situation at first and they somehow end up in reversed roles. It shows once more the variety of situations and people you chose to throw your boy at, and I also like the small hints of wandless magic - especially while they are unsuccessful.
It was a good idea to take the advice of somehow making Liam and JR reconcile and write a oneshot, because I know it is hard when threads include your own characters. But I think you did really well and I like how at least some lines are already coming to peace for JR at this point, because the poor boy has been suffering enough.
I’m a sucker for returning motifs and linking back to the thestrals from your Beginner rank is simply awesome. On the flipside it was this thread with Elias where I found some crooked sentences that I will just copy here. It has to be said that you have barely any typos or other mistakes that jumped in my face, but I think this is why I see them when they happen all of the sudden.
|His sneakers will caked with the dirt of the path because of a recent rain, he had running shorts that were tied tightly to his hips and now that it was June, the lion didn't even have to pretend to wear a shirt, something that the young man was very glad about.|
→ I think you meant were.
|It was not unlike when JR had hurt himself sometime in fifth year, using the same blasting spell because he was angry at his mother for hurting him.|
→ This is not an actual mistake but I figured I had to reread it twice because for me, the beginning sounds a little crooked? The It was not unlike when… feels like you used a bit too many words to describe something that could be smoothed down, but this is just something minor again and nothing another quick check couldn’t fix.
First of all I really like you have been approved and still took in Sammeh’s advice she has given you, as I personally read over it as well at the time you went up for Novice. Now I really like when people make a genuine attempt of approaching their request, and by having JR fail first and struggle, I think you are doing a wonderful job on it.
|t smelled of a book store because of the newness - JR had recently had it purchased and sent to him when the lion had become interested in wandless magic.|
→ This is exactly what I meant by including all senses, and I had to drop in an example of what I gushed about earlier.
I also like how in the thread with Shiori, he tries a rather simple spell instead of immediately starting big, and this humbleness is just really so JR, which is awesome.
Now that I read all these posts and your profile as well, I can say some general things as well. You do an awesome job at post matching and even when your partner offers you less, you can still work with it. There are so many different situations and different people here - IC and OOC-wise - that I am really, really impressed. You have a good balance on your posts and I do not have much to complain about apart from the bits I threw in earlier. Keep doing what you are doing, keep pushing JR out of his comfort zone and let him have some happiness at the end of a long and painful journey <3
Verdict: I can therefore proudly say that I APPROVE you and @JR Zerner for INTERMEDIATE, congrats and good luck with your last review <3 If you have any questions, you know where to find me.
Ok enough joking around, let’s dive right in! XD
Let me start by saying that I love all the details you’ve given us in the appearance section. JR is clearly very present in your mind, and now he can be in ours as well. My absolute favourite paragraph has to be this:
|Of course, there are other marks on his body, other imperfections, what active boy does not have these? His baseball days might have given him the crooked nose, but days of being out fishing and on a boat gave him the small white scar, barely visible on the inside of his right thumb. What child does not walk away from their youth without one or two pesky little scars on their legs or arms because they could not stop itching no matter how many times they were asked to stop? Along with these marks, the young man has one or two spots under the hair on his jawline, telling the tale that JR was not a teenager that escaped puberty with smooth skin everywhere.|
I love this – I love being able to picture his hands, nose, and all the imperfections on them. I also love how faithful you are to JR being a teenager - I feel like sometimes our playbys allow us to forget, but I love the fuzzy facial hair that doesn’t need to be shaved every day yet, the acne scars, and all the subtle signs of childhood being right around the corner. The comparison to his dad was also very touching, and the way you describe it, sounding like a memory that didn’t get the chance to exist, is bittersweet and beautiful.
You’ve already received two great reviews so -wipes beads of sweats away- the pressure is on to still find something useful to say that hasn’t been said already! XD Ok one thing that I haven’t seen mentioned yet is that you can pin-point his accent a lot more. Great Britain is very accent-rich terrain, and it can be super fun to just go through databases and listen to voices until you find the type of accent JR has. A Brits’ accent often has both a regional and a class connotation, so these are also things you can use to describe it. Lots of people keep this vague, and you definitely can too, it’s just an idea c:
I agree with Tine that restructuring and making your profile flow better will probably be the goal of your next revision, but I’ll try to give you some things to think about anyway, because it’s always fun to discover even more about our characters. What are his hands like? I can picture the small scar on his thumb, but are his hands rough, soft, clean, calloused? How does he walk (slow, fast, determined, with a clear goal, sauntering?), or sit (does he take in a lot of space or not at all? Is his back straight, are his legs parted?)? You mention that he doesn’t stand straight and tall – does he make himself smaller, or is he simply relaxed? Or making an effort to not look intimidating? This is all just food for thought =3
“The woman that had changed his life forever” – this gave me the chills. I love how there are already signs in his appearance, and then you throw us this bone in the personality section. It’s a great way to both 1) demonstrate how all of your sections are connected, and that one part is influenced by all the others, and 2) MAKE US KEEP READING bc this suspense.
Without the history, it’s a bit confusing to the reader to suddenly mention his friends without explanation, the suspense doesn’t work as well here. Personally, I would give us more information about JR’s personality first, and then start talking about how certain traits influenced his relationships. You do use that order to introduce his relationship with Erik – and this is a beautiful description of them by the way.
I like the recurring theme of JR being a caring person, but one who is also unable to connect to others. It’s a wonderful paradox, and I think something that a lot of people can relate to. It has already been said, but I also love how you mention his relationships everywhere, or even just interactions he’s had with other characters, and as such give us concrete examples of what his personality traits look like in practise – and how different any trait can manifest itself with a different person.
Your personality section is honestly very complete content-wise – oho and I love details like the allergy – so kudos! I love how this section ends with his dreams. There’s just something so wistful about it. I have to agree with Tine that I like the tone that you used for this profile. It is both lofty and melancholic, a story that could be both a tragedy or a fairy-tale. In other words, the tone of the profile beautifully reflects JR’s potential imo - will he run forever, or finally move in a direction he actually wants to go in?
Ah, and here we are, reading the history section after the bits and pieces that we already received is very satisfying. I love the backstory – actually, I got really attached to this dad in the span of a few paragraphs, why did he have to die ;_; I also like that JR’s trademark running makes such an early introduction in his life, and that it’s only later that it became a coping mechanism.
You might want to proofread the latter part of the profile a bit more, but again, for content, I think you’re all set when it comes to his history! From here on, you can add the journeys you take him on – how he keeps developing, how his relationships turn out, and the road to wandless magic.
I’d like to add one thing though. I think you should add a trigger warning to the background section of the profile to warn readers of its content. I think the content isn’t unlike the things in the Harry Potter and (especially) the Fantastic Beasts series, so I wouldn’t consider it an issue for wurr – I just want you to let readers know of this type of content beforehand, so they can decide themselves whether they want to read it or not. Some people have good reason to avoid reading about topics like this, and we have to give them that chance.
Why does this life have such pain:
Something that stuck out to me in the first thread was how JR takes his prefecting duties serious and even wants to make sure he comes off as friendly to his housemates. It’s a small thing, but it speaks volumes of who JR is. Other details that I love is how, in the second thread, he’s whistling a Disney tune – it’s just such a relatable, everyday thing to do – and that it’s probably stuck in his head because he’s thinking of Kiss, and it’s her favourite, only makes it better. I love when characters have loved ones on their mind even in threads when they’re not in, it’s only realistic that they occupy our minds and influence how we look at the world. That’s also why I was charmed by JR’s thought process when he spots Erik: That hair reminds me of Erik. Oh hey it is Erik. Again, it’s something small but I loved this - how he sees the details first and only then recognises the whole XD Jynx already mentioned that JR is a relatable character, and I definitely agree. This makes him a lot stronger as a character, especially considering the tragic events that happened to him. Many heroic characters fail to connect with the audience because they are too larger than life, too much Superman and not enough Clark Kent. Not JR, because as much as he endured, he’s also a person who whistles Disney songs and absentmindedly touches flowers. This is important, not just so the audience can connect with him, but also to show that the awful things that happen to people don’t define them, and that it is possible to stay human even after inhumane things have happened to you.
|His brain screamed that this was the answer; yet his legs did not move, for his heart knew that it wasn't really.|
I want to quote this because I feel like this could be the tagline for the arc and for JR’s development here. How he finds less and less solace in running – a coping mechanism that in the end never solved anything but only distracted, kept memories and pain at bay just long enough to function. Now it’s time for him to really heal, even if it means facing the memories and pain, and letting people in.
The previous reviewers have already mentioned this, but I’ll echo that you want to watch how often you repeat something in the same thread. For example, in the thread with Leona, three of JR’s consecutive replies mention how often he’s been running that month and how it isn’t the answer anymore. I’m sure this happens in my threads sometimes too – there can be a lot of time between replies, so sometimes you forget that it has already been mentioned. It’s just something to be aware of ^^
I love the variety of people who aid JR through this arc, but I think more than anything I like how Leona makes him see a different perspective: “At one point had he become that friend that would up and leave? Was that how Kiss and Liam saw him?” I also like that, as mentioned in the thread with Nalia, not everyone is grateful for JR’s protectiveness. Like in the profile, JR’s different relationships also demonstrate how a single personality trait has its strength and weaknesses, and will be experienced differently by different people and in different settings. That’s really nice to see. I also think the thread with Nalia has some of your best writing, for example I love the opening paragraph in your first post, with the description of what running is to him.
Ok you already have to listen to me blabbing way too often so I’m gonna try to keep my next comments shorter xD
Spiraling out of control:
JR and Erik’s relationship is really precious okay ;_; I also like how references to wandless magic are starting to show up here and there – it’s good that you take your time with it, finding it a good place in JR’s plots first, instead of just giving him the ability immediately. I dig that.
|JR knew that fighting wasn't the answer, knew that he should not go find Andre and punch him; yet the idea dangled there, flooding him, taunting him. It was like it had an invisible hook and was reeling him in slowly.|
This is something I was looking forward to – seeing JR get angry, seeing a side of him that wasn’t the caring Gryffindor prefect. For a moment I was disappointed, I thought he was just going to let it go that Anora got him trapped in that net, but then the anger quickly flared again. That he runs instead of engaging is understandable, as running is very much part of his character. Which makes me wonder – now that he is starting to let people in, now that he’s metaphorically running away less, perhaps there might come a time where he doesn’t run from negative emotions, or conflict, either. Perhaps dealing with the dark sides is also a part of healing. Could be food for thought, maybe for future threads =)
Something that I noticed in the train thread is that one of the reason that he’s riding the train home is so fellow students wouldn’t know that he doesn’t have a home anymore. This reminded me of what you mentioned in your profile, that JR is aware how obsessed his peers are with appearances and gossip. This is also a thread where I can clearly see his anxiety (Why was he so tense and why did he feel like something bad was about to happen?), which is something I’ve been missing in other threads, since you spoke of it in the profile. You tell us about these things often, but you don’t show us enough. I’d like to see more of this, and more prominent, as he’ll be struggling through his healing process. I know such intense feelings can be daunting to write, but it definitely pays off because it’s in those moments that we learn even more about our characters.
Amidst the strife, our friends keep us whole:
Ok first of all, I love this tattoo idea! JR already has marks on his body that he’s gonna have to live with – but this one he can choose himself, a good memory to counter all the bad ones. This thread between Erik & JR is also just so nice, it’s good to see JR having some casual fun. The same goes for the thread with Kiss, it’s so nice to actually see them together. I also gotta say that I like the idea of JR getting a kitten for himself, it seems like another step in his healing process – finding things to love and care for. Helping himself by helping others. Running partner strikes me as another great piece of writing, with the descriptions being on point. I can picture the sunlight and the dew drops, and I loooove it.
Something that I want to mention at this point is that the structure of your application confuses me a bit. You seem to have organised it by moods, but I think it’d be more beneficial to organise it chronologically – for example, the date with Kiss was mentioned in a few threads already before we finally arrived at it here. We want to see JR’s development, how all his interactions and relationships tie together and influence him – for that, it would be easier to read events in the right order. As Tine has already mentioned, a better description of the arcs, what we can expect from it, and what their effect on JR will be in the long run, would also be welcome.
Overcoming means opening more doors:
Nightmares and omens is another great piece of writing. I want to quote this because I think it tells us a lot about JR:
|but it didn't seem to be that Helene was prying; but that she really wanted to know. It was as if his answer could help her somehow and for one of the first times, in a long time, JR was considering opening to someone other than the lioness or the eagle that he had grown so fond of in the last few months.|
He allows himself to open up because he thinks it might help the other person too. This is also something we see in his relationship with Erik – they help each other, they heal together, and that is why opening up to Erik was easier, bc then JR doesn’t have to feel like he is selfishly asking for someone’s emotional labour. He is much more comfortable helping himself when it is an exchange of some sort. He puts others well-being and comfort over his own, even to the point of self-destruction. In this thread, you are also showing us his fear and anxiety clearly, so now we can truly understand the emotions he’s running from. This thread is very, very strong – both writing-wise as characterization-wise.
I think it’s funny and appropriate how JR’s arcs and development really all are “intermediate” too – I feel like he’s very much in the middle of an arc, at the part where things are starting to turn around. He’s dealing with the past and moving towards the future. Reconciling with Liam truly marks this imo, and doing this as a one-shot was a good idea.
As I already mentioned, I like that you’re making him struggle through this XD It’s also nice that we saw the idea of wandless magic sprouting in his threads, so we can follow his thought process behind wanting to learn it. Oh, and comparing it to a language in the thread with Shiori was really neat.
Now to the thread with Jacian… I really like how JR struggles to speak to an adult, and why. It’s really interesting that there’s anger there, deep down, because no adult noticed JR’s troubles and offered help when he needed it. I want to see more of this, I love seeing the negative emotions that people don’t want to experience, but are there anyway. JR also seems like a calm person most of the time, being able to control his demons in favour of caring for and helping others – but around Jacian, he is nervous, his anxieties are more noticeable. JR is mature for his age, but around an actual adult he is allowed to be just a teenager, asking for guidance. This is a double-edged sword because it also brings a certain feeling of helplessness, of dependence, while JR is usually the one who guides himself. His experiences with adults haven’t been very great in the past years, and having to place trust in someone after all that, asking for guidance when a helping hand was never offered before, can be hard. I really really hope that I’m not overinterpreting here, I just love that adults have such an effect on him. X3
The last time I reviewed you was Andre Elkins at Beginner, and I can see that you took my concerns regarding proofreading to heart XD In all seriousness, you improved a lot. There is still some sloppiness here and there however, so watch out for that. You clearly have it in you, as I’ve already mentioned in this review there is some great writing in this app – but I think you should be a bit more patient with yourself. Read, re-read, toy a bit with sentences and words, play with your writing and let it do its thing – because it’s a good thing, but some times you come off as a bit careless, with words that repeat themselves and verbs in the wrong conjugation, things like that. Grammatically, you’re sound, so I know it’s just a matter of ironing some things out. I think something you’ll need to work on going forward, as already mentioned by the reviewers before me, is the flow of your writing. This is a slow process, and something you’ll only improve by writing – so keep doing what you’re doing, you’re doing it well, but you’ll only get better.
I’m actually supposed to give you some advice too instead of just happily read and comment on your threads woops 8’D Okay, I will try to do that!
This probably isn’t advice that you hear a lot, in fact you might’ve heard the opposite, but I strongly believe that you can simply use pronouns and names more. Descriptive nouns – such as boy, lion, etc. – are useful for mixing things up, for avoiding that you use he/JR too often. However, they also pull attention to themselves, every single time, while pronouns are largely invisible to the reader – usually only becoming noticeable when used excessively or without variety. Finding a balance between this is hard, and it’s often something that you can judge best during proofreading, because that’s when you start noticing if something is repetitive or being used excessively. Personally, I spend a lot of my proofreading just switching out pronouns, descriptive nouns and names, just to see what makes the text flow best, so it’s of course something you’ll need to see for yourself ^^ In general, I can give the advice that a descriptive noun instead of a simple pronoun works best when you want to pull attention to the description that you’re using – for example, if you want to remind the reader that JR is older than Erik, to solidify the scene, then calling him “the older boy” accomplishes that. Otherwise, a simple pronoun might actually be just fine. But in the end it’s mostly about rhythm and flow, and finding a good balance ^^
I noticed some mix-ups with effect and affect:
“the calming affect that came from putting one foot in front of the other.”
“The Hufflepuff was definitely feeling the affects of her own words;”
“The spells affects seemed to have died when she had,”
While affect can be used as a noun to mean an emotion, it isn’t common and it’s usually meant as an emotional response and how it is expressed. Affect is more commonly used as a verb, and in the above sentences, you actually want to use the noun effect. The reason why these two get mixed up is because “to affect” is used to denote an effect… which makes it seem like they mean the same thing, but there is a slight difference. Here’s an example:
“These words had an effect on him.” = “These words affected him.”
So when something has an effect (n.), it is affecting (v.). It depends on the sentence’s structure which one you use. Leona’s words are affecting JR, she is seeing and feeling those effects. Running has a calming effect, the spell had effects – effects that affected JR.
My last piece of advice is actually similar to Tine’s comment about “that” and “who”. I think you might use function words too often, and that this might be what’s impeding the flow of your writing. While your use of them isn’t incorrect, they’re like little obstacles that a reader’s eye gets caught on. Let’s take a few sentences and restructure them without the “that” and see what happens ^^
|It was a dance that the two boys had started a month or so ago now, helping each other when one of them needed it the most.|
“It was a dance the two boys had started a month or so ago now, helping each other when one of them needed it the most.”
In this sentence, the “that” becomes unnecessary, because the meaning is clear without it. You can omit it if you wish, but only if you think it might improve the flow of your text – there’s nothing wrong with what you’re doing, so if you think this doesn’t sound better at all, you certainly don’t need to follow this advice.
|His father’s parents, that were Americans that moved to London sometime when his father, Joe Zerner, was in his teen years, were simple folk that worked in offices.|
“His father’s parents, Americans that moved to London sometime when his father, Joe Zerner, was in his teen years, were simple folk that (who) worked in offices.”
You don’t really need a function word there because what follows is a direct description of what is before the comma. Again, the meaning is clear without a function word: you are describing his parents. Now, given the more lofty tone of the profile, I can understand why you’d rather not omit it here. (Though as Tine has pointed out, it’d be ‘who’ here then c:)
|JR could see Erik more clearly now - how pale he was, even in the moonlight, how he was trying not to shake - they were signs that the lion had come to recognize on the younger boy's face.|
“JR could see Erik more clearly now - how pale he was, even in the moonlight, how he was trying not to shake - signs the lion had come to recognize on the younger boy's face.”
That dash there helps, as one of the uses of a dash it to mark an introduction or a conclusion. I personally think your sentences sound more dynamic without these function words, but maybe that’s just a style I like, and you can do with this what you want ^^
Phew! We’re through it all! I made it! Er, I mean, you made it. C: Haha, okay really though: I APPROVE you and JR for INTERMEDIATE! Congratulations, Kenzie. I can tell you put a lot of effort into this, and the sheer amount of different people you plot with is already amazing. You obviously know where to find me if you want to talk about anything in this review <3
At least FIVE of your recent role play topics, including a group thread:
→ Hi everyone! While the following threads are grouped into arcs, I want to mention this was very hard to do. JR is a character who overlaps threads all the time and therefore, whatever other threads I'm writing at the moment are also on his mind. For example, there's one point in a thread with Kiss where he is thinking about how Erik Dwight is his cousin - this is no longer going to be a valid plot for JR. It's also important because it means that as you get to the second arc, you will be pushed backwards in time. I hope this isn't extra confusing and if there is anything I can do better about it next time, please tell me. The threads within the arc are chronological the best they can be, when some of them are being written simultaneously.
When we feel the love tonight
→ A very big part of JR's life is Kiska Ferdenova. She's been his best friend for a very long time, even when he was not actually with her. Their journey has been one of my plots with JR from the very beginning. She's easily the part of his life that he feels keeps him grounded and it's fun to have happiness when so much to the time we write hard emotions. This arc continues their pathway into something beyond friendship, while JR and Kiss both find comfort relying on each other.
Thread Качелей ft. Kiska Ferdenvova
→ Emotions run high and Kiska is a beautiful young woman who JR loves, what can he say? [complete] R
Thread How to cope?
→ 1 of 3 shorts for JR/Kiss [complete]
→ 2/3 shorts for JR/Kiss [complete]
Thread: A figment of imagination
→ 3/3 shorts for JR/Kiss [complete]
→ This is an owl and I know JR didn't actually respond to it, but it's the bridge between the shorts and JR/Kiss' reunion thread, so I decided to include it here.
→ Reunion for the two and it is amazing. This thread gives them a chance to talk to each other - amongst other things - and they are actually official. [complete] R
Thread: Патруль - patrol
→ These two have been named Head Students and suddenly need to actually be responsible?
Owl Cause I miss you when you're gone
→ Owl to bridge to the next thread
Thread: Nightly adventures
→ A night shared between these two is always a good night. R
To become the very best that no one ever was
→ A once very happy child is no longer a child, but a young man with scars, demons and nightmares. When the tough comes, JR usually has a hard time dealing with his emotions. As time goes on, we find he also has the strength to not become like his mother, the person who destroyed his childhood and along the way, gain someone who could be absolutely invaluable to his healing. He wants so badly to use wandless magic to help himself and others... Will he ever succeed?
Thread Memories both dark and light ft. Gretchen Kirke-Faust
→ Sometimes, being caught with a pensive can be very, very interesting. And nerve wracking.
Thread: To a muddy death ft. Erik Dwight
→ And it all came down to a dice roll for JR to successfully complete the spell....
Thread In the dead of the night R || Can we withstand the boundaries [that separates us] R ft. Samantha Vanstone
→These threads show JR interacting with Samantha Vanstone, a ghost. While there won't be any further threads with the two of them, these threads kept JR very emotional and showed a lot of important pieces to the puzzle of his past. They also reference Mason, who will enter in and be important very soon.
Thread Better late than never, they always say ft. Erik Dwight
→JR receives a very amazing Christmas present than will eventually lead him into being able to preform wandless magic.
Thread Run, run, as fast as you can ft. YB Yoo
→ Heightened emotions make it clear JR is not as healed as he might wish to be. [complete] R
Thread:When we fight to outrun our past [it hits us with a bang]ft. Mason Iversen
→ JR really does want to forget the past and focus on Kiska and other nice things, but when someone in his past steps directly into his life, can he do this? [complete] R
Thread Interferance ft. Jacian Turner
→ This is short and older, but JR is very nervous around teachers. Or counselors. It could probably fit into the refusal arc, but I decided to put it here because it wasn't very long.
Thread Why couldn't it be follow the butterflies?
→ This is older, but it's a group thread and it's one where JR meets Erik and Kiana (whom previously punched him on a different run long ago) and now he feels compelled to join them on their journey in the forbidden forest.
This plot line will probably become invalid at some point in time, but since JR uses wandless magic as an adult in Clash, I felt it relevant to show you what is eventually intended with it, being a firefighter and trying to protect people the best he can, even though it could have terrible consequences at some point.
Thread Shoe drops and panic settles ft. Erik Dwight
→ JR goes to an everyday house fire. Or not.
Thread The sea of tears too wide to cross ft. Erik Dwight
→ Immediately after the last thread, where Erik is in the hospital with JR. While JR hides some things, Erik opens up.
Thread Beautiful things don't always stay that way ft. Erik Dwight
→ I enjoyed this thread because it allowed me to think of some things that JR and Kiss do in order to live together and survive, while at the same time, not going into too much detail because we haven't seem them together in clash yet.
What are your three biggest RPing tips for any member?
→ Take a deep breath, let go, and write. Some days, it sounds like the worst thing in the world to do, but if we don't write, how will we ever grow as a writer? I've scrapped so much of my stuff or have stared at a blank screen for ages, but in the end, if you can push through one paragraph, things tend to fall into place. Find something in your partner’s last post that might trigger a memory, describe the surroundings first - getting started tends to be the hardest part to writing a post and once you are a paragraph or so in, suddenly you feel invested and it’s a whole new ball game.
→ Write about what excites you Sometimes, okay, all the time, we're our own biggest critics. None of us are here to judge, we're all here to write and have plots, threads and relationships together, both out of character and in character. Making plotlines that are exciting is part of the key to being able to write well. If you are invested in the plotline, the character and the thread, writing is going to become so much easier. This doesn’t mean only keep threads that you see advancing a plot - it means if you’re excited about one thread, it tends to carry into another. Remember this is your character’s life and story, which means emotions carry across threads and other events, the same way it does in real life. Emotions and relationships with people are real in our minds even when that person is not physically present in front of us. The same is true for our characters. Memories, feelings, referencing other threads, thoughts and events are powerful writing tools. When the writer is excited about the character, it shows.
→ Read other people's writing Part of the reason that I love ART so much is that it has allowed me to get to know even more characters than I knew previously. Not only that, I have read different styles of writing and along the way, picked up hints, tricks and tips from reading other people's characters right here on wurr. It amazes me how different each and every character is on this site, but it's even more amazing that behind each character is a writer who can change their style based on the character they are writing. Relax and find your own little niche with your character and you will be golden. Each character is different and are changing as we learn more about them, letting themselves become discovered by us. Reading other people’s writing gives us new inspiration and life about our own characters at times.
Commentary: (Why you feel you should move up, any specific concerns you want to address or that you’d like the reviewers to pay special attention to, any special points you’d like to bring to reviewers’ attention)
→ I want to make a small note that while Erik Dwight will slowly fade from JR's life, he's been there for a long time now - as you can see from previous ranking applications - and he is very much a part of JR's story. JR will not weep the loss of Erik as a true friend and that may or may not be wrong - but dwelling on that won't work for me. So he'll continue to view Erik as a friend who was once very close to him, but never fully experience the loss of Erik the way someone in real life might.
→ Samantha Vanstone was going to become a part of JR's story, but this avenue is also dead. She probably won't mentioned in other threads other than to maybe reference JR's kitten. I added in those threads because they are powerful for emotions, background and JR struggling through healing.
→ I want to thank you in advanced for all the time and effort that is going to go into your reviews because I know I have a lot of threads and information here to absorb and digest. I really appreciate everything you all have done and continue to do for me <3
Slammer - Beater
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