I am finally about to catch up with your story. Only a few chapters away now. Thank you for this overview. I love the three sides to Calahdra and wonder which one will eventually take over, if ever at all. This story has captivated me from the beginning. I look forward to more interaction between Calahdra and Legolas, whether it's good or bad. I think those two will have a fiery relationship among any others. Keep this going. You are a very talented writer.
Author's Response: I'm glad you're still following! Thank you very much, L8Bleumr :) -Whisper
Author's Response: Shoot...In an attempt to redo a poorly worded reply to your last review, I deleted the whole thing. My deepest apologies :( Here was the response I was hoping to post: Just because Calahdra's out of Fenmarch doesn't mean that the family drama can't follow. And I don't think that her confrontation with Huor in this chapter will be her last, but we shall see... I think that Eowyn is Huor's foil, at least in this chapter. She is the sibling that Caladhra needed and deserved. And yes. I'm thinking that if I ever wrote another Legolas fic, I'd make him a naughty little tiger ;) Trust me, unfold it shall... As always, thank you -Whisper
Well, I'm finally caught up. Calahdra has a lot of issues; I hope she can let Legolas help her heal. But he seems to have problems of his own too. I hope they can work things out.
Lovely story so far. I'm looking forward to more!
Author's Response: THANK YOU for catching that Legolas isn't perfect. He's no god. And thank you ever so much, as always. -Whisper
Uh!...looks delicious really! (tears off running, but not before swiping a finger through the frosting. Mmmmm chocolate!)
Happy Birthday *EVER AND EVER!!*
Author's Response: It really was incredibly delicious :)
Hey Whisper, do not worry about it. Sometimes authors have RL issues that they have to work through, muses left town unexpectedly or just plain writers block. Don't feel rushed just get your thoughts together and then go with the flow. Awaiting your next chps.
Author's Response: Thank you. You sound like you certainly understand. One of the worst feelings in the world is when you become so caught up in your responsibilities that you have to abandon the things you love. But I've been managing to crank out some updates as of late, and they've really been helping me heal. I hope you continue to enjoy E+E! -Whisper
I have been slowly reading your story as I take a break from writing my own. I could not wait any longer to tell you what a lovely tale this is. I am glad to be reading it now and not have to wait for two weeks as you stated in your comments above. Every chapter leaves me wanting to read more. Very good. Beautiful. Realistic. Exactly the reason I began reading fanfiction and the reason I have begun writing my own. Thank you for sharing your talent.
Author's Response: Thank you ever so much! I hope you continue to enjoy it!
Another thing that I love about your writing is that you make it SO realistic! I can feel the blush on my skin, and my heart beating in my chest. I pretty much stay away from romance, but I am so glad I did not skip over this! Amazing. Amazing.
This is absolutely beautiful. I love your writing style, which is absolutely perfect on all accounts. I especially love this chapter because it is not a typical romance, and yet I love it. If I could write half as well as this, I would consider myself blessed. I normally don't read more than one fanfiction chapter a day, but I am enthralled. Your writing is captivating, and I love your deep pure romance, intertwined with a satirical side, and all in all Calahdra. I love her, her being so much like myself. I am starting to ramble now, but I just wanted to say that you have a gift. This is pure art, and I love it. Thank you for sharing this with the rest of the world, it is what we all need.
Author's Response: Thank you very much! I am glad that Calahdra's tale has captured your attention :)
"“And know that nothing could change my feelings for you. Even if you told me that you had drowned kittens, I would love you yet,”
A smile came to Legolas’ eyes, and as his lips turned upwards, he looked once more at me.
“Do you swear this to me? That no matter what crimes I have committed, even if they are as heinous as suffocating barn cats, you would still hold some regard for me in your heart?”"
LOL. This part is funny, even though it is very serious.
Author's Response: One of my favorite lines, by far :) Thank you, Mia Oria. I'm glad you're enjoying it! -Whisper
just wanted to say i just discovered this story and am really enjoying it; keep going, please!
and a little note: the pronounciation you gave for "aieriel" was incorrect. in elvish, it would be "aye-air-ee-ell". if you wanted it to be "eye-eer-aye-ell"(the pronounciation you gave) it would be "ai-iraiel" or something like that. i'm not saying you need to change it or anything - if you wanted it that way, it's your story and you can do what you want - just wanted to point that out. :)
great story and great writing! *applauds*
Author's Response: I'm glad you're enjoying it. And yes, I agree with you on that point. Even I have trouble pronouncing it now, especially after delving into some studies of Sindarin and Tengwar and such. I often have to remind myself that I am but a baby in the Tolkien world, for many of the great writers on this site are twice my age ;) Thank you very much! -Whisper
Hey, Whisper. I have read a few chapters now and although I have not read all the story, I want to encourage you.
1) You write first person POV very well. It is not a favorite of mine to read or write, but when it is done well it can be superb (like Mary Stewart's Merlin trilogy).
Mainly, though, I want to say, that unlike the majority of fanfiction writers you obviously have a born gift for writing. Don't worry about people pointing out canon errors. While I do think the best stories are written by people who know the source material extremely well, those are often the people who write the most phenomenal AU's (my favorite stories are all AU. If I wanted more canon, I would read Tolkien, but 20 years is enough, I think.)
You said: My greatest reason for this is fear. For some reason, my writing embarrasses me. It is a struggle to let anyone so much as glance at my notebooks or binders.
I was and am exactly the same. I obsessively hid my work for many, many years. Like you writing is my greatest joy - and reading, I have to say. :)
The Mary Sue thing? That's old now. It's also I have come to realize with some horror and embarrassment (as I have snapped at certain stories) misogynistic. (Remember that, because that is an appalling trend in fanfic). I know authors who write magnificent original females, and the fact that some received MEFA awards this year seems to show the tide is slowly turning. People are seeing that OFC's can be as faceted as deep as real as canon characters. There's no reason why they should not be. A good writer can write *anything*. So keep going.
I admit I rarely read het romance any-more, as I read a great deal long before fanfic. I tend to go for epic AU's (with some het romance within them.) and slash, but I do recognize good writing and both OFC authors and slash authors always start at a disadvantage because unfortunately, the Tolkien fandom is the most difficult one in the world to write in. If you think outside the canon box, you may as well paint a target on your chest. I started thinking outside the box when I was about 18, even a box as big as Arda just was not big enough :D.
Keep writing, and keep reading, both go together and we improve the more we read and the more we subconsciously absorb from other excellent writers.
It is unusual to find any-one with a natural talent for writing; it's elusive, it cannot be taught, it can only be polished like a rough gem. Even many published authors don't have it. Some in the Tolkien fandom could out-write most *Bestselling* authors without trying, which is why for me fanfiction was an undiscovered and very rich load of mithril waiting for me to mine it.
Good luck and happy writing. Fanfic writing is an enormous learning curve, but each time you write, each time you post, you are growing as a writer and you already have the talent. Enjoy it!
Author's Response: Thank you very much, Spiced Wine! I am glad that you have enjoyed Calahdra's story thus far and hope that you continue on in her story. I would like to agree with you in that the whole 'let's catch the Mary-Sue writers and burn them like witches' is old. There are far too many incredibly talented writers in this community for such a stereotype to be made. I have always been frustrated by the lack in confidence many readers seem to have in the women of such stories. Hopefully, a new dawn will bring about a more OFC-friendly fan base. Thank you! -Whisper
thank you again for a well-written, satisfying chapter. Your intricately imagined bits of description-- of cool water on skin, of scents that paint in the nighttime landscape, and so on-- bring your readers into the story vividly. The return to small, nuanced interactions between characters is delightful and refreshing; a necessary counterbalance to the big sweeping action scenes of the war. I also think your dialogue and depiction of the canon characters has become deliciously authentic. Which enriches Calahdra and her experience all the more. Nice cliffhanger by the way!
One suggestion; let your character falter and dwell in uncertainty sometimes... while she is eloquent, she is also young and troubled... she will feel more real to us if she doesn't always know the right thing to say, or say it so beautifully every time. It is inspiring to watch this story deepen its roots and blossom, as you obviously are as a writer.
As for the previous reviewer, who saw fit to denounce your story after having read only the first chapter:
Steinbeck wrote about "fine print men", who focus their zealous concern on enforcing the letter of the law, the exact, literal interpretations of rules, and have no understanding of or sympathy for the spirit the rule was written in to begin with. Your critic reminded me of one of those.
I think I'd take this review more seriously if the reviewer had written anything else besides this one dissatisfied review in the three months he or she has been a member here. In particular, I mistrust critics whose feedback is mostly negative; it speaks to their own internal issues.
Clearly most people have not been hitting the 'back' button as evidenced by all the enthusiastic reviews Ever and Ever has been getting.
As it is, with all due respect, Malfinnien seems to be thinking as if he/she is the 'canon police' ; those who read a story with an inflexible template in mind, almost looking for any small (real or imagined) infraction of the rules, a fingerprint match to the Marysue profile. This is no way to read literary works! As with Steinbeck's fine print men, you miss the whole point and miss out on the meaning of the story.
We have all read obnoxious Mary Sue stories which revolve around a self-obsessed character for whom all the canon characters are a cardboard backdrop; fanfiction that could have been set anywhere. This is not one of those fiascos.
As for not fitting within the borders of Tolkien's original depictions of hair color, and other pointless minutiae, that is a clear example of not seeing the forest for the trees. Key word here is fiction. The fun in it is that you get creative liscence, to create something of beauty and meaning. In school we cross our t's and dot our i's. In fanfiction, we make up our own new alphabets if we want to. No one wants to read the same old, same old time and again. Except maybe those fine print men ! : )
NOTE TO REVIEWERS IN GENERAL:
What we have here is a young writer who is putting her heart out there in this story, admitting freely in the process her own fears, her story's flaws, and still going forward to craft a story for our enjoyment (no one's getting paid here) that has matured and deepened each successive chapter. That takes a lot of courage and I respect her for it. Those who actually write know this.
Here's a quote to put it in perspective:
Ken Robinson, one of the world's leading thinkers on creativity and innovation wrote,
"what is true, is that if you are not prepared to be wrong, you'll never come up with anything original,"
And thus, as any true scientist knows, "mistakes" become valuable lessons that clear the way and appreciated stepping stones to amazing discoveries. Mucking around is necessary to excavate the great works we are capable of. I highly encourage it.
Whisper, at the risk of sounding like a mother, or a teacher (both of which I am!), don't give this reviewer any more credit than is due, or any more power over your will to write.
Get back in the saddle and finish this fabulous story, "see it through" as you said. Do it for yourself, foremost. Do it for your admiring fans (might be a good time to write a review if you're one of those, Hmmm?). Threshold guardians like Malfinnien rear their heads from time to time on any Hero's Journey... it's part of what makes us strong and know our own hearts .... nod in appreciation (I'd say you've more than done that already), take whatever grains of wisdom are somewhere embedded in their naysaying, and keep on down the road!
Life is learning, and to enter a public arena with something as personal as your writing and bare that process to everyone realtime, open to critique, is a brave and audacious undertaking. Whisper, I honor your glorious, and yes , sometimes human, efforts which have resulted in a moving story that you have told with integrity and beauty.
I look forward to the next chapter in the journey -- yours and Calahdra's.
Author's Response: Thank you very, very much for your review. It amped up my motivation tenfold and I am deeply grateful for it. Everything you said was so eloquently put and touching that I jumped straight off of my desk chair and wrangled up my withering and well-loved copy of The Two Towers in order to get cracking on the next few chapters. In regards to your comment about allowing Calahdra to wander in uncertainty, that will certain come in to play in the next few chapters ;) I will remember to tone down her eloquence, though. I don't think she's carrying a pocket thesaurus around with her, nor is she a philospher. She is, after all, a very confused and young individual. Thank You! -Whisper
I have just read the preface and the first chapter. I love the description and eloquence of your writing, you have great potential to be an excellent fanfiction writer. I like your OFC's feistiness and strength.
However, as a longtime reader of Tolkien fanfiction (eight years), I was bitterly dissapointed to find major characteristics of a Mary-sue story that I know for a fact will have many readers instantly hitting the 'back' button.
1) You spend way too much of the chapter describing her physical appearence. The very best fanfiction writers do not describe their characters at all, rather leaving it to the readers imagination.
2) She is half-elven; if you do not want to write a Mary-sue novel, then this is a major no no. There have only been three cases of marriage between Elf and mortal; Beren and Luthien, Imrazor and Mithrellas and Aragorn and Arwen.
3) She is too unique in her physical appearence. Hair colour is an important theme in Tolkien's work; every race has a specific colour assigned with very few deviances, save in exceptional circumstances. Red hair is almost unknown in Middle-earth, save those of the Line of Mahtan of which the last were Feanor's sons. More information on hair colour can be found in volume twelve of The History of Middle-earth- The People of Middle-earth. Or you can just PM me for a more detailed lowdown.
I'm not telling you this to be nasty, more friendly advice from a long time, avid Tolkien fanfiction devotee.
To summarise- try not to go into too much description of your OFC's physical appearence. Don't go over the top with the personality traits and make her too obnoxious/fiery/disrespectful. This is a trap many writers fall into when desperately trying not to write a too perfect Mary-sue. And most importantly- don't let her steal the canon characters thunder!
Author's Response: First and foremost, thank you for your constructive review. I deeply appreciate it. Secondly, please trust me when I tell you that while writing Calahdra's story over the past few months, I have realized that there are deep flaws in the plot that are irrevocable and cannot be corrected without completely reworking the story. There are many times when I read over my work, or Tolkien's, that I simply want to slap myself in the head for some of the mistakes I've made. But Calahdra's story had wound itself deeply into my heart and I see it fit to see the story through to its conclusion regardless. In the meantime, I am working out other projects that will certainly be more Tolkien-friendly and express the wisdom that writing fanfiction has bestowed upon me these last few months. Thank you once more-Whisper
I have been following this since the beginning. Right now I just finished this chapter along side my dinner. Meatloaf w/ mashed potatoes and gravy..yumm. So is this story. I wish for it to continue. I am getting so caught up in the characters. Please...continue. I await the next chapter.
Author's Response: Thank you for following my story. And I'm glad you find it as delicious as meatloaf and mashed potatoes. It was one of my life goals to have my work compared to a dinner entree ;). I guess I can cross that off my list. Happy Holidays-Whisper
What the? who's she?!?!
Author's Response: It's a mystery ;) And I'd like to thank you for all of your reviews. It's clear that you are thoroughly enjoying Ever and Ever and I appreciate it greatly :) Happy Holidays-Whisper