Reviewer: TomBombadil Signed Date: 2017.02.04 - 01:10PM Title: Camulodunum
With each passing chapter I seem to recognize additional aspects of your writing -- not that they haven't always been present, just that I have taken notice -- and this time it is your ability to describe things well enough to grab the imagination, yet vaguely enough to leave open numerous possibilities! Great way to allow yourself room for surprises and complex plot twists! Thanks for sharing your gifts with us!
Thank you for saying that!
I don't always succeed, but in my more recent stories I have indeed sought the balance of detail -- enough to engage readers; not so much as to swamp them. One of my favourite tactics is to divulge many details only through dialogue -- rely on key characters to make just the right comments (in recalling a scene we don't directly experience; in observing background details; etc.) in that it plays upon how many of us form opinions in real life. A friend may chat with us later about a meeting, and relate only one key detail or brief anecdote that, to them, defines the meeting. Sometimes we may ask for clarification, but often it's perfectly satisfying to just absorb that lone shred and imagine everything else.
Different people write in different ways, but personally I think the above tactic is a key difference between a story-teller and a chronicler. I can do both, but I find the former more enjoyable.
And yes, as you astutely point out, the flexibility of ambiguity does indeed give the authour more improvisational control over the unfolding and steering of the plot.
Nice observation -- thanks again!
Reviewer: MisterBlack Signed Date: 2016.03.17 - 01:21PM Title: Camulodunum
My my... If I did not know any better then I would say Hermione was a Slytherin. She is more Slytherin than Draco Malfoy.
Slytherin Hermione... Yes, I can't argue about that. Although in deviousness I admittedly have gone beyond what you'll find in canon, it is ironically from canon that I derived the sense of Hermione's crafty, morally amorphous mien. No question that she is fiercely idealistic and those ideals are morally grounded, but in her pursuit of overarching ideal from CoS onwards, Hermione quietly becomes the most reliably devious of the trio, including her use to polyjuice to infiltrate the Slytherin dungeons, her willingness to flaunt very serious MoM regulations regarding the use of time turners, her embrace of the argument that 'everyone else cheats' to help Harry in GoF, her instrumental role in the Gringotts break-in, etc. In this story, her artful use of half-truths is more blatant than canonical maneuvering, but it's an element of the same thread. Anyway, in these shenanigans and in Splinters you do see a Hermione who is 'more Slytherin than Draco'. The reason she is more Slytherin than Draco is that she's a far sight smarter; it's difficult to be truly cunning if one is a dolt. Anyway, it hardly need be said that this Hermione was damned fun to write and, as a result (and as you have surmised), she gradually strong-armed her way upwards in the authour's graces, rising from a support role to a status almost on par with the two primes.
All that said, however, let me posit to you that Hettie Gravener is Hermione Granger's mirror and foil. I suspect (hope) that, in light of the Slytherin-Hermione concept, you will find the final resolution to be pleasingly ironic ;)
Does Andras have feelings for the princess? Would a beautiful princess inspire feelings in the hearts of her male counterparts, with whom she routinely spars (and frequently trashes) in the tough physical contests of Celtic warrior youths? If Andras had feelings, would he dare act on them, knowing what a battle-axe the queen was? Many questions indeed. I will unquestionably say, though, that it is a bit disconcerting for him to see a Roman (even a rather familiar one like the Publican) walking around their camp in the midst of a fight to the death against Romans.
Speaking of the Publican -- yes indeed, he is a gifted diplomat. He's spent nearly half his life in a diplomatic capacity, and well over a decade embedded in the life and petty disputes of Roman provincials, so there's no question that he's far better suited to dealing with people like the queen than were ponces like Decianus. As to whether or not he will help to guide his beloved away from the perils, or just try to navigate the obligatory storms... this is something you're already beginning to see. And should they be afraid? Absolutely.
Finally, no, not dumb at all but I am happy to confirm that you *are* off track regarding the brooch. Why happy? Because you're getting so many details right, it would be a shame to leave you with no surprises at all :)
Reviewer: lunagranger Signed Date: 2015.12.13 - 08:41PM Title: Camulodunum
I loved hermione's tricky letter.Very good
I must admit that any time a Hermione Granger letter must be written, I approach the task with great anticipation since the young lady always poses wonderful writing challenges. Most gratified that you enjoyed her foray into being a manipulative schemer!
Thank you most kindly for the review, LG!
Reviewer: Aragorn Signed Date: 2015.12.05 - 09:58PM Title: Camulodunum
"Would you like more drama?" she asks.
Ha! Well chapter 12 (half-way through drafting) should help with that predilection! This story hasn't really been much of one for frilly flights of frivolity... and the final chapters will be no exception.
Speaking of which, something surprising happened a couple days ago in my emerging chapter 12 draught, in that I wrote a few hundred words that actually sounded to me like the basis for a new distinct (although related) story. I'm trying to avoid new story ideas right now until I finish most of what needs to be completed, but I'll be interested to see if anybody picks up on the seed independently.
Anyway, thank you very much for reading and reviewing, Gene!
Reviewer: RighT3rantZ Signed Date: 2015.12.04 - 12:47AM Title: Camulodunum
Oooh a freaking Clifford at the end, how nice. Lanossëa seems to hold a Key that repeats itself throughout time. Although it was almost a foreshadowing of Horcrux descriptors Ginny was discussing with Harry at the end, odd. HerMione was there when she woke up before Harry was summoned. The meat of the story has arrived! Like Hormel chili......or something....gross in that context, not this one.
Well I can now say with some confidence that most readers will be glad I left off where I did, rather than spinning you all along for another 1000 words. Yes indeed, the story is reaching a slippery stage where things begin to judder a bit faster than expected.Speaking of Hermione, things are now (in chapter 12) continuing to slide around disconcertingly for her. Is she fractionated? Absolutely. Even in canon, she is at her best when circumstances do not exactly follow her carefully specified plans :) In any case, your disappointment will hopefully begin to lift, as you will soon get your first glimpse of the path that you have set her upon.
Ah, although you claim to be a mere student, I may indeed seek your guidance on The Secret Light. Maybe beta a chapter in Trix, once that story moves to the sultry heat of summer.
Reviewer: LysCsuri Signed Date: 2015.12.02 - 09:27AM Title: Camulodunum
I re-read your 'ruffled ducklings' like you suggested to WolfScream. Love it! Who hasn't experienced something like that??
Oh good -- the first version was a little disjointed. There are times when it can be quite useful to have things deliberately disjointed (the cleaning scene in chapter 10 for example) but in this case the humour can only emerge if you can really trace the personal interactions.
Do the splinters relate to power? I refuse to answer that. Which is my way of saying 'yes' but I don't want to give any more away yet. Cantankerous, aren't I?
But yes, I shall soon start leaking answers like a moth-eaten bagpipe... or something...
Thank you most kindly for attempting to keep me honest, Lys!
Reviewer: Shalli Signed Date: 2015.12.02 - 08:58AM Title: Camulodunum
Brilliant. I love the effortless way this story flows. Harry and Ginny are awesome, Hermione really seems to have come into her own... I'm just a bit disappointed in Ron. That boy needs to pull his socks up and work out what his priorities are.
Ah yes, thank you for bringing up the Colosseum -- I should have thought that through more carefully! So, from your prompting I've determined that the archaeological remains are technically that of a theatre which (as I have now ascertained) is 'half' of an amphitheatre. Learn something new every day!
Regarding Ron, the trajectory that Rowling seemed to propel him onto most often seemed akin to a boomerang -- send him whipping off along some useless path, only to have him eventually come swooping back at just the right time. In this, I shall say no more for the time being.
I'm tremendously heartened by your kind words about the story's flow. There is a major element of stream-of-consciousness in this story - intentional yet experimental. Some readers found it a bit disorienting to begin with, but it's wonderful to hear that many of you are being swept along!
Thank you very much for your thoughts Shalli!
Reviewer: Wolfs_Scream Signed Date: 2015.12.01 - 11:07PM Title: Camulodunum
Hermione seems to have found her inner Slytherin. :-}
Many thanks, Beta David! Tout cela a été corrigé.
If you have time to re-read the ruffled duckling scene, please do. Your emoticon suggests that you did indeed grasp the act of brutality, but in case it was a bit too subtle for some, I tweaked the exchange a little, trying to find the right balance between being too obscure vs. going over the top. If you (or anyone else) has thoughts on how it's turned out, that would be great. After all, I need to practise my comedic writing for when I go back to complete the Fuddle Fog trilogy.
Yes, the question of the staff will be rejoined very soon -- glad you picked up on that! Also gratified that you found the final scene to be a suitable 'setup', rather than a shameless cliffhanger :)
So many fine comments, that I feel compelled to say thank you a second time!
Reviewer: nesciamema Signed Date: 2015.12.01 - 10:00PM Title: Camulodunum
Time to see what they do together and figure out what's going on with Ginny's magic.
Yes indeed! The time always comes in such a story for investigation and experimentation. In line with some of the other discussions that have arisen, I'm going to add something new here that fits with your astute comment. What indeed can Harry and Ginny "do together"? What was the greatest power in JKR's canon? I will offer one practical hint -- there will be no more holes blown through walls.
Thank you very much for your thoughts and loyal reading, nesciamema!
Reviewer: MollyandArthur Signed Date: 2015.12.01 - 09:30PM Title: Camulodunum
Harry and Ginny are putting the pieces of this puzzle together quicker than I am. The queen is such a force to be reckoned with that I cannot decide how safe they really are. Glad that Hermione has the job of watching over them. That really could not have worked out better. I am definitely curious to see what Dumbledore will do if and when he learns what is going on.
Ah, now just because Harry and Ginny are putting pieces of the puzzle together does not necessarily mean that all are assembled in the right orientation and order...
Your comment about the queen is remarkably well timed. If there were cannons in the wizarding world, then she would be a loose one!
Regarding Hermione and Dumbledore, I think it is safe to say that she will adequately distract him for a while, but although I do know how the final steps of the dance must play out, I have to admit that there are some progressions between here and there that are actually still a bit vague even to me. So perhaps we both have our curiosities piqued :)
Thank you most kindly for provoking my thoughts, MollyandArthur!
Reviewer: Gin110881 Signed Date: 2015.12.01 - 03:23PM Title: Camulodunum
I followed your recommendation and enjoyed the new chapter with a glass of Laphroaig. Actually, it's a good hour's walk from Lagavulin to Laphroaig, but fortunately those bottles are standing next to each other in my closet.
Ach, you may drive me to drink! In a good way, I mean. So I've never tried Caol Ila -- I shall have to get your tasting notes!
Yes, I do have to admit that Hermione has stepped a bit outside of anything I've ever seen written for her. I do maintain that I formulated Hermione's inclinations from canonical evidence (e.g., her espousal of rather nutty ventures such as the time turner shenanigan in PoA, as well as her key roles in planning insane stuff like the Ministry and Gringotts break-ins in DH) but the sheer deviousness is not easily matched elsewhere. But what the hey -- it's fun to write!
Grimmauld Place is indeed tense, and the aftermath of Dumbledore's session with Ginny is quite unpleasant. You have indeed read between the lines (and likely caught my subtle inference in another recent review), though, to inquire about Sirius. I had honestly intended for him to appear in chapter 11, but the chapter got too long so he now must wait until 12. Why has he been so quiet for so long? What will he contribute in the atmosphere of festering stress? I shall not ask you to wait too long to find out.
And of course there is the question of why I left you with a cliff hanger? Not intending it as a psychological baiting of my poor readers -- more an issue of keeping track of multiple plot lines (as they being to head toward convergence) and convince my readers that I am trying not to drop the ball on any of them.
Sorry, what was that? Good luck, you say? :)
Thank you most kindly for your solicitous interest, Martin!
Reviewer: mdauben Signed Date: 2015.12.01 - 11:27AM Title: Camulodunum
More exciting and mysterious events this chapter! I love the way Harry and Ginny are working together to try and figure out what's going on and what they need to do. I wonder what this latest cliff hanger portends, though? Can't wait for the next update!
Sincere thanks for reading and offering your ever-astute thought, mdauben!
So what does the cliff hanger portend? I won't answer in any clarity, of course, but things are moving toward the touch-and-go tango leading up to the final crisis. Not long ago, Martin (Gin110881) asked when we would ever actually see some 'splinters' in this story. Not yet... but the pieces are lining up for some shattering.
And yes indeed, when that happens, it will be a very good thing that Harry and Ginny have been so selflessly weaving together their strengths and talents!
Reviewer: ginnyweasley777 Signed Date: 2015.12.01 - 10:11AM Title: Camulodunum
what a damned fine chapter that was!
Ah! Great to see you enjoyed that! It was immensely fun (and mostly quite straightforward) to write now that I hopefully have cleared those darned introspectives out of my system.
Thanks to encouragement from a number of readers such as yourself, Hermione has decided to write her way into a bigger and bigger role. I've never been particularly kind to her in prior stories; I suspect she must be paying off the audience behind my back to write favourable reviews.
All kidding aside, her character has been a bit of a revelation to me, and we have certainly not seen the last of Miss Granger.
Thank you for your kind words on my quest to become the greatest archivist since GinnyWeasley777. Now, if I could only cast more than a flickery little light next to your writing! Two challenge torches in 12 words?? We are humbled! Even your sheep deserve our exultant praise!