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 Lilith Woodland - Beginner, Ranking App!
Lone Fox · 18 · 7 · · · 5'10
Ravenclaw Beginner
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May 5 2018, 11:35 PM   Link Quote
Rank Applying For: Beginner
Link to character workshop topic: Here!
At least two of your recent role play topics:
Don't take this the wrong way
Lilith visits Borgin and Burkes with the intent of discovering aspects of her past she had thought forgotten, chasing after snippets of memory that were not removed from her mind. One of the most stark forms of memory... a black skull that had resided in the house she was raised in, a gift given to her ward. Perhaps if she can find the skull's origin, she can find her family and discover why they abandoned her...

Saphire and Faded Jeans
A rare time when Lilith sees someone and doesn't feel the need to distance herself. A sign of trust she seldom feels, and even more seldom acts on. Perhaps in this new girl, she can find a fragment of the caring nature she had thought long vanished from her persona.

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 like to think I write at least a beginner level! I want to use this as a chance to address my writing and evaluate how I can improve moving forward smile.gif Nothing in particular to bring to attention, as far as I know <3 Thank you!

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Profile drawing credits to the wonderfully talented Mioree. Love your work <3
Robin · 15 · 5th Year · Viridian Guild Leader · Pureblood · 5'
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May 6 2018, 04:44 AM   Link Quote


Application Accepted!

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.

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Exh · 16 · 6th · None yet · pureblood · 5"5
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May 21 2018, 10:51 PM   Link Quote
Hey there Fox, I’m Exh & I’ll be your first reviewer for Lilith! As you’re new to the ranking process, and WURR in general, I’m going to stat out this review by listing off the requirements for beginner:

QUOTE

what we’re looking for at beginner

  • At least 4 posts by your character over 2 threads. Your most recent post 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).


Everything seems to be in order here, so I’m going to go right ahead and jump into this review! For the sake of keeping things as concise as possible, I’m going to be focusing on your posts, while your second reviewer will be looking more in depth at your profile revision. From what I can see, it looks to me like you’ve expanded quite a bit on the personality and history sections, but haven’t really added much in the form of an appearance section. I will caution you that, in future, more is more when it comes to revisions! The more information you can give us on your character, the better we get to know them. I understand that at first glance the appearance section of your profile may seem a little redundant (given the fact we use avatars here on WR)… but, there is so much more to a character’s appearance than just their physical characteristics. I urge you to explore more than just the basics next time you go through the ranking process. Sometimes, looking at other member’s profiles can help give you a feel for the types of things we expect to see in an appearance section!

Now, onto your posts- the star of this review!

Don't take this the wrong way

I absolutely adored this thread; it really captivated me and kept my attention! I love how you are able to maintain an air of mystery about Lilith’s family and backstory, while still giving the reader enough information to follow along with the thread. Oftentimes threads like these can fall into the trap of being overly reliant on a readers familiarity with a character. I didn’t feel like this was the case here! Not once did I feel the need to refer back to Lilith’s profile or backstory, all the information I needed was right there in front of me!

Your writing, as a whole, is incredibly beautiful. There were several times throughout this thread that I found myself marvelling at your word choice. For instance:

QUOTE
It was like searching for a needle in a haystack of larger, sharper needles... a game testing her patience against her will to dig up a past that did not want to be remembered.


this sentence in particular took my breath away. I love how you were able to turn such a common phrase on it’s head, and make it your own. Not only was it beautiful, but extremely clever!

QUOTE
You weren't wanted. Freak. The other, final certainty creeping into her mind like it always did, causing a flicker to pass her tired eyes.


These sentences also captured my attention- not only do I find them representative of Lilith as a character, but you as a writer. I’ve noticed you using italics to distinguish between Lilith’s inner monologue and the rest of your writing quite a few times throughout this thread (and many of your others), it’s obviously a technique you are very comfortable and accustomed to at this point. It really shows! The transition between Lilith’s innermost thoughts and the rest of the text is seamless… effortless even.

On a slightly different, but somewhat related note: while I personally have never had any issue using bolded text in my own posts, I know that this is not a universally held opinion. It has been said to me in the past that using bold fonts within a post can often draw the attention away from your writing. These fonts instantly draw our eye and attention, which can be distracting for some readers. Obviously, this all boils down to personal preference. While I myself don’t see any issue with making use of different font styles for dramatic effect, I feel like I would be doing you an injustice if I didn’t pass on this knowledge.

Sapphire & faded jeans

It’s always a bit of a risk to use such a short thread in your ranking application- while it’s not really a pressing issue at beginner, it’s something you should keep in mind as you move further up in the ranks! Perhaps in the future, if you are planning on using a short thread like this in your application, it might be worthwhile including one or two extra ‘bonus threads’ for your reviewers to pursue. The more content you provide us with, the better!

Speaking of content: I noticed a slight inconsistency within yours. In your first paragraph of your post, you reference Isidora… which led me, as a reader, to believe that Lilith had already noticed/aknowleged Isidora’s presence. This was obviously not the case, as you go on to describe Lilith’s initial reaction to Isidora later on in your post. For reference:

QUOTE
Where Isidora had a harmonious, sharing relationship with the copper cauldron, Lilith's was more prone to a catfight in which she occasionally managed to wrestle the results she had hoped for... but more often was left battered, bruised and none the happier for it.


QUOTE
The room wasn't empty.

Lilith's eyes alighted on the girl that struck some vague and distant level of recognition in her mind, a frown curling the corner of her lips as she grasped and scrabbled for a name at the edge of her thinking.


As a general rule of thumb, you should try to avoid commenting on things your characters themselves do not have knowledge of. While at times, it might be necessary to break this rule, I don’t personally believe this was one of those occasions! On that same note, I would also advise against using another characters first name in your prose, if your character does not yet know their name themselves! For sometimes, this separation between the narrator and the character can make it easy to slip into ‘god-modding’ territory. For instance:

QUOTE
The look of someone finding solace in an endeavour, seeking escape from the world around them in something simple, something well known and familiar. For Lilith, it was the room of requirement or the rain... for this girl, it seemed, it was potions.


While we as readers know that Isidora is using potions as an escape, Lilith most likely does not. This is why, in my opinion, it’s important to consider exactly what your character is seeing, feeling and experience at any given point in time… and reference only these things. There shouldn’t be such a stark separation between the ‘narrator’ and your character, as it makes slip ups like these harder to pick up on. Third person limited perspective can be tricky sometimes, but with enough trial and error it will become easier!

Verdict

I feel like I didn’t take the time to truly commend you on your spelling and grammar throughout my review, so I figured I would take a moment to applaud you for that now (before I wrap everything up). Your grammar and spelling far surpass our expectations for beginner!

Moving forward, I would really like to see you build on Lilith’s appearance section in her profile! I would also suggest that you proof read your work before posting it (just to ensure that you remain in third person limited perspective throughout). I think that this will help you avoid toeing the ‘godmodding’ line in the future. If you are ever unsure about whether Lilith’s assumptions about or reaction to another character crosses that line, it’s always best to ask. A lot of people in the WURR community have been into forum rp-ing for quite some time, and are more than willing to answer any questions you might have (myself included)!

Overall, I think that you have a beautiful, very distinctive writing style. I love Lilith as a character, and think you’ve done a fantastic job at conveying her voice- both through her inner monologue and the rest of your writing. I think it goes without saying that I APPROVE both you and @Lilith Woodland for BEGINNER. Congratulations lovely! <3 If you have any questions about my review, or need any clarification, feel free to hmu on skype or over pm!

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I Can't Escape
the way that I don't fit in with any of this


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Avatars by the wonderful Evan <3

evan · 18 · 7th year · 🔪 · pureblood-ish · 6'0"
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May 22 2018, 04:38 AM   Link Quote
Hi Fox! I'm Evan, you know me, and I'm gonna be one of your reviewers for Lilith + I’ll be looking at your profile! The ever-so-lovely Exh already outlined our requirements, although I would like to make a quick comment:

While it’s all a-okay based on your posts, I would like to mention that your Character History has very little change despite being added to, and your appearance section is untouched from Lilith’s original sorting application. I do find this a little disappointing, as obviously profile revisions are a large part of our ranking processes – I would really recommend revising on a deeper level in the future, especially considering that this revision is able to, technically, carry you through to a novice rank! Profile revisions don’t necessarily mean re-writing the entire thing by scratch (unless that’s what you want to do!), but we do like to see a little bit of revision, but I’ll mention this and some little issue it created while I was reading Lilith’s profile as we get to the relevant sections. For now, let’s roll!

Appearance:
So, as I mentioned up above, Lilith’s appearance is entirely unchanged from her original application. Honestly, I find it quite hard to picture her aside from your avatar – I worry a little bit that you use an awful lot of words that aren’t particularly needed.

QUOTE
To compare Lilith to a shadow, a forgotten remnant of a bygone era long since passed, would not be a vain linkage. Willowy and often hidden beneath swathes of monotone and lacklustre cloth, Lilith’s figure was ectomorphic whilst hesitantly stepping a toe in the pool that is malnourishment.


This whole section just seems to read rather awkwardly, as though some words that don’t quite fit have been awkwardly squeezed in. “Vain linkage”, “swathes of monotone and lacklustre cloth”: it all just seems a of a mouthful for things that can be a little more concise, and then given further explanation in a more clear way. If she surrounds herself in “monotone and lacklustre cloth”, forgive me for being so literal; does she literally wander around draped in a grey piece of fabric? Tell me more about what she wears, what makes it so monotone and lacklustre, why she chooses to wear these things – Fashion, especially for teenagers at school, surrounded by hundreds of their peers, can be a really personal and important thing. You mention that it makes sense to compare Lilith to a shadow, but then never really explain why. Is it about the way she carries herself, her posture, her gestures and articulation? Your appearance section really just leaves me wanting more: it’s very short, and I don’t feel like I’ve learnt much about Lilith in it. Try sticking to the same 600 word limit as for History and Personality: give us all the details! Appearance isn’t just “these are her features”, try and write how she looks in entirety to people who see her: her body language, the way she likes to wear her clothes or style her hair, does she stand up tall or fold in on herself?

The lack of any kind of revision here was disappointing: I’d really be excited to see you put a lot more into Lilith’s appearance.

Personality:
I like Lilith’s personality section a lot, although I think it also suffers in the same way your appearance does from wordiness and mouthfuls of text.

QUOTE
A jumble of rioting emotions hidden behind a staggeringly thick wall added to piece by piece for over a decade and seldom chipped away by the rare few willing to peer at the girl beyond.


This is a really long sentence! And I found a few other similar ones throughout your personality and history sections, so I would very much recommend reading through Lilith’s profile out-loud to yourself, or even having someone else read it out. Obviously, all of us at WURR don’t sit around reading posts and whatnot out-loud (I assume?!), but if you get out-of-breath reading a sentence it means it’s too long, even for reading in your head. I will also mention that you seem to swap tenses a lot – maybe just a quick read through and making sure everything is all the same would benefit you.

I really like Lilith’s personality section otherwise from the above, though: it’s a good insight into her character and I like that you placed it after her history! Shuffling around the profile is absolutely fine: some even ditch the template completely during their revisions and opt for a free-form or otherwise differing style of profile, and it’s nice to see that – even in a small way – you’re putting your own spin on the template in a way to explain Lilith better. Again, I’m just itching to know more – You mention her violin as a gift, and that she loves it ever-so-much… Did she ever struggle with it? A violin is tricky to learn: did her learning journey only cause her to love it more, has she ever disliked or been frustrated at this thing that makes her so happy? I like that you mention it as very personal to her, I think that’s a very nice touch, and it feels very realistic regarding Lilith’s introverted character.

You mention that growing up alone made her bad at social interaction – explain this further! Socially awkward characters are everywhere nowadays, and I love them but I also want to see more of this behind-the-scenes. How has her inability to understand things affected her self-confidence, her ability to make friends? Explain a little bit more how she came to understand sarcasm, as opposed to just “She got used to it because of Sim” – sarcasm is tricky for those who’ve never encountered it! I want to know more about Lilith’s struggle with the world and people around her, and the way she interacts with people who are so wildly, socially different to her.

History:
I like that you start us out immediately with some action, it’s a nice sudden drop-in and I love that we’re straight in there with no beating around the bush. I also really, really love the fact that you put

QUOTE
”This was home”


and

QUOTE
”The place felt simply wrong


each on their own separate lines. I don’t know if you did this on purpose, but the similarities in the theme of those lines – regarding the feeling of a place as natural or unnatural – is really nice, and also emphasised nicely by putting them in separate lines. You do really well with your variety in sentence length, which just generally makes everything nicer to read, so yay!

Again, though, I feel like things are being over-described by a little bit, to the point where added words make a sentence just sound awkward, such as:

QUOTE
Rough hands help her stand, dusting her off roughly


Here you’ve used rough twice, and just makes the sentence a little bit off-kilter when reading it. Similarly to my feelings on your personality and appearance sections, I can’t help but feel like the whole thing would read a lot better and easier with a lot of the extra descriptions just gone, honestly. As I mentioned earlier, as well, Lilith’s history wasn’t changed so much as it was added to, which is fine – I just would’ve liked to see extra changes, additions, subtractions, whatever, to the bits of her history outside of the added flashbacks. Oh, and again, just watch out for tense changes – I see you swap from past to present tense a few times.

Okay, so, I absolutely adore the way you intro and outro Lilith’s flashbacks: the sections on their own are a really nice look into not just Lilith’s history, but also her history as seen by her, and I think that’s a really fun way to learn about her; because obviously, who’s going to know more about Lilith’s past than… well… Lilith? But the twist there is that, actually, potentially Lilith isn’t the best or most reliable narrator considering her repressed memories and suchforth, so I really really like the dynamic here.

I like that you’ve taken a very realistic approach to the abuse in her history, looking at aftereffects such as potentially not developing her literacy skills, but I’d like to know more about her choice to learn by herself. Learning reading and writing, especially on your own, is mega hard; give me more about that drive she has to learn. Tell me more about how it affects her later in life: Does she constantly worry that she’ll not be able to read a word, or pronounce it incorrectly? If she does slip up, does she fear a nasty reaction from her peers, or is it more about doing it for herself, so as to not “hinder her future” like you said?

I also think the flashback with Sim could benefit from being after the paragraph that describes him, or honestly, even cut altogether. We don’t have to literally see Sim and Lilith acting friendly to one another to see that their friends, and if he’s really had such a big impact on her life as described then why is the poor boy only relegated to 94 words? ;-;
I’d like to see a lot more on Sim: Lilith is a victim of abuse who’s very rarely been treated neutrally, let alone nicely. Does she accept Sim’s kindness right away, does she mistrust him as trying to get close for the wrong reasons? Does he terrify her, does he intrigue her, does she adore him? I want to know mooooooore, because I think this relationship is potentially a really interesting one for Lilith and her character.

Overall, I think Lilith’s profile is really getting there, but it could definitely benefit from some extra time spent over ironing out the fine details and re-reading; especially in terms of some really common and easy-to-fix mistakes like tense changes, or using a bit too much description to the point where the narrative can sometimes get a little lost. Use that wordcount for describing awesome stuff about Lilith! We love her and we want to know more, more, more!

So…! I absolutely, positively, 100% APPROVE Lilith for BEGINNER, congratulations on your ~cool new rank~ and as always, you’ve got me on skype and discord, hit me up if you have any questions or whatnot.


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