Fiction is a form of prose writing that deals with at least partly artificial or imagined events and characters. This tag should be used for any questions relating to fiction, including fiction formatting and technique, fiction critiques, and the publishing of fiction.

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Introducing the hero first?

In the book I'm writing, the first character I introduce dies before the end of the chapter. She is the girlfriend of my hero and is setting up their date before her untimely end. The hero is also ...
2
votes
5answers
118 views

How do I avoid tradeoffs with showing vs. telling? [closed]

I learned early on (as most writers have) "show, don't tell," which I agree with for the most part. However, I've found many situations in writing when I'd start to write a statement in tell, catch ...
0
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0answers
73 views

Challenges in switching tense [duplicate]

I am writing fiction and considering using past tense by default but then switching to present tense for action scenes. This answer leads me to believe switching tense can be done. I assume that ...
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2answers
121 views

Good writing software for tracking information/facts (for Man vs Nature plot)

I have been looking for a writing software, but while I have seen a number of mentions about how this or that program helps you keep track of characters, I haven't seen any mentions of ones that are ...
2
votes
1answer
103 views

Tips on writing grit

I'm writing up a new story (which I've asked for help on in a few other places) which is a little outside my forte. The majority of my current work is saturday-morning cartoon stuff, light fantasy or ...
0
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2answers
52 views

Broken Hearted Man [closed]

What word suggests the phenomenon of a man who has a broken heart? He feels like he has nothing to lose. This man will take unnecessary risks for the reward because death doesn't mean much to this ...
2
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5answers
135 views

How to know whether to write in 3rd person or 1st person?

How do I know, when I'm writing, which perspective I should write in? I almost always write with a 1st person narrative because it makes it easy to get great immersion in with the characters. Is it ...
0
votes
1answer
98 views

How to hack Scrivener's appearance or add binder to full screen composition mode?

I really enjoy using Scrivener to write. I don't actually use all of its features -- in truth, I would be satisfied if the program only offered its full screen composition mode plus the binder on the ...
0
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1answer
34 views

Avoiding repeating “I” and “you” in an epistolary piece

I've had two recent ideas for short stories that I feel would be best written as epistolary pieces where the main character is basically giving a monologue. I know that there will be a lot of 'I's and ...
4
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5answers
242 views

How to write a good prison scene

I'm attempting to write one or two chapters with one of my main characters in a jail cell. It's important to the character development that he is isolated for an extended period of time, antagonized ...
-5
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1answer
48 views

Re-write needed [closed]

Joshua heard himself say, “I’m heading over to Jason’s.” He felt his footsteps leading towards the door. Joshua opened and shut the door in a daze, not knowing where his steps would lead him.
3
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6answers
160 views

How many meaningful names can I put in my story?

I'm naming characters for my fantasy story, and so far many of them have nmes that mean something. Characters from different regions have names from different cultures, several names represent their ...
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2answers
98 views

How can I develop a whole personality for my characters in my fictional story from personality traits

How can I give the 4 children in my fictional story personality traits? One is a bossy 12 year old girl, one is a 11 year old girl that thinks that life is unfair, one is a 12 year old problem solving ...
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vote
2answers
73 views

Who should I use for my POV character?

I'm in the early stages of a story with a large number of characters, a complex backstory and a long history. This is mostly because I crafted the world myself for months before deciding to write it ...
0
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2answers
61 views

Coming up with names for 4 children [closed]

I am looking for character names to design a personality for 4 children in my story.
3
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3answers
103 views

Should a villain have redeeming qualities

I know it is important for main characters to have flaws to make them believable and real. But should an antagonist have redeeming or good qualities, to make him more real?
4
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4answers
190 views

Struggling to define a character without giving him viewpoint status

I am a novice working on a historical novel with four viewpoint characters. Three of them will be involved in subplots connected to the main plot, and each character will have a character arc and will ...
0
votes
2answers
28 views

A ballad or prose? [closed]

I am now planning to start with the third chapter of my novel. I got an interesting idea to write it as a ballad. But I am much better with prose. Will I better off if I continue writing prose or ...
4
votes
1answer
163 views

Reasonable income expectations from fiction book sales only

I have been considering writing as a fiction novelist. However, the impression of difficulty in making a reasonable living as a fiction author is quite pervasive. So much so, that I am constantly ...
4
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2answers
150 views

Writing a Platonic Relationship

I'm writing a story, however I just can't seem to form a platonic relationship between my characters. Whenever I am writing my characters (Eric and Abigail), it feels they should just kiss and make ...
1
vote
4answers
98 views

How do I describe the effects of extreme psychological trauma on my protagonist?

I am working on a novel where my young protagonist has certain character flaws/issues which are the result of having survived a horrific incident as a child. The incident occured during a time when ...
6
votes
6answers
259 views

What defines a Fairy Tale versus typical Fantasy?

My second-grader has been asked to write a "fairy tale." We are both clueless about what makes a story a "fairy tale" different from a fantasy story. Is there some special, defining element to a fairy ...
2
votes
3answers
132 views

Third person multiple pov in a crime mystery

Fellow writers, I am plotting a crime mystery novel. I have the story and gist in place. It should have the "whodunit" element. I want to use Third person multiple pov narrative(more than 6+ povs). I'...
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3answers
80 views

Is the Concept of “Machine of Death” Copyrighted?

I am a fan of the book "Machine of Death"; http://machineofdeath.net/pdf/MachineofDeath_FINAL.pdf PDF Page 452 of the above link details the copyright for the material contained within the book. ...
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2answers
99 views

Inciting incident in Fantasy

In my fantasy story, there is about 10,000 words before the inciting incident. I originally intended to land the end of my story at about 40,000 words. This is partially due to the fact that a lot of ...
2
votes
1answer
175 views

How is “A song of ice and fire” not in violation of amazon's policies?

So amazon has been delisting and removing works of small publishers for a while now, as it seems some of them are in violation with its terms, such as "incest", " under age", and "graphical depiction"....
16
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6answers
2k views

Title already taken

I'm writing a novel, and I think I've come up with a very good title (The Power of the Powerless). It convey's the moral question of the story well, and gives a good sense of the style of the story. ...
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3answers
92 views

Is it plagiarism to use something from a nonfiction work and put it into fiction?

I was reading about this Japanese dance style written by a man who taught it. He said that the style was uniquely Japanese and few outsiders could really dance in the style properly. He said that he ...
4
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5answers
138 views

If I use a real location for the setting of my book - Do I have to use existing schools or can I make them up?

I'm writing a book and want to set the story in an existing location, such as Manchester, England. Does that mean that I have to use an existing school from Manchester, or can I make the school up? ...
1
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1answer
22 views

Blog recommendations for children's book writers [closed]

Any suggestions for blog websites for picture book writers. I am new in the field and I would like to find websites for writers of children's books. Thank you.
2
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2answers
73 views

Not resolving the main / significant conflict

I am occasionally slightly frustrated by how neatly stories wrap up the major storylines. Mostly because life rarely ties things up in a bow for us! I have a story I've been considering, where the ...
4
votes
4answers
268 views

How to determine if a story would benefit from multiple first-person POVs?

Originally I asked this question: What is a "methodology" I can I use/follow to determine the ideal set of protagonists for my story?, but found that it was too vague. Specifically, I'm ...
4
votes
3answers
253 views

Will changing a protagonist into an antagonist alienate readers?

It's really hard for me to write questions here without giving a complete info dump on my story. Every time I start to explain my problem, I find myself writing an entire synopsis. This is my third ...
2
votes
6answers
282 views

Building empathy with a character and interest in a story

I've written several chapters of a (fiction) story. I wasn't happy so I spent some time reading about fiction, and trying to figure out what was wrong with it. I came to the conclusion that, while ...
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0answers
27 views

Is it a Bad Idea to Publish in Multiple Genres? [duplicate]

In his book How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy, Orson Scott Card mentioned that you should stick with one or the other (either sci-fi or fantasy). While I think his reason was primarily based on ...
9
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6answers
220 views

Why is having too many symbols a bad idea?

I'm writing a speech on using symbols, and I've just made the statement that you should generally stick with one, maybe two, symbols that span the story (smaller symbols that arise and fade quickly ...
10
votes
5answers
223 views

How do I find flaws in a character I'm building?

I have a particular character in my story who I feel is great. He's a retired monster hunter who settled down with his wife for his later years. He's all-around friendly, respectful, empathetic, wise, ...
1
vote
2answers
114 views

What is the story structure called when someone doesn't know they have the solution to their problem in hand?

Perhaps the "classic" example is Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz. Early in her journey through the land of Oz, she acquires the slippers that she needs to take her back to Kansas. But she doesn't realize ...
5
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2answers
97 views

Can Extensive Outlining Take the Place of the First Draft?

Background: I've been writing fan fiction for five years now. I began when I didn't have a clue what I was doing, so my methods have evolved during those years. By now I have a solid process that I ...
6
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5answers
226 views

Acquiring vocabulary to write fiction

I am a non-native speaker, learning the English language, and I am already fairly good in reading and writing technical texts. I also enjoy reading fiction books much, but there's one thing that hits ...
2
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4answers
130 views

Where can I find a professional publisher who will accept my book?

I started writing a book at the end of my 5th grade year. My 6th grade teacher is totally against teen authors, so I stopped for a while. Then my 7th grade teacher inspired me to start again. I'm 13 ...
2
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4answers
595 views

Can I write a Hero's Journey without them leaving an Ordinary World? (Monomyth template)

I was recently taught about the Hero-Journey template Instead of the Hero leaving the Ordinary World, can they remain and the Ordinary World changes and/or warps (possibly along with the Hero)? And ...
6
votes
3answers
169 views

How to replace overuse of “I” in a short story, fiction, written in the first person

I am trying to edit a short story, written in the first person. I have used "I" way too many times, it stands out too much at the beginning of a sentence, but I can't seen to change it without ...
6
votes
3answers
133 views

Is it good/bad/neutral to introduce a character's day to day life if it's immediately going to be drastically changed?

So I'm writing a science fantasy WiP and I'm unsure how to introduce the characters and their background, day-to-day life if that's all going to change after the inciting incident. So in question ...
10
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4answers
427 views

What are potential pitfalls for a young writer?

Though I'm by no means perfect, I generally consider myself a good writer. The issue is that most older writers I know look back on their writing at my age and cringe at the sentences their artless ...
7
votes
4answers
126 views

Is it possible for characters to get stuck reacting the same way to everything?

Alright so I am new here so I'm not sure if it's okay to ask this type of question, but I am wondering if it is possible for characters to get stuck in a sort of 'rut' where they react to things with ...
1
vote
3answers
58 views

How would I keep using past tense with resulting actions

I'm having trouble figuring out which form is the past tense for sentences like these. For each example, which would be correct? Or have I completely missed something? Thanks. John stepped on the ...
3
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2answers
68 views

Maintaining readers over time with serialized fiction?

I am one of several authors on a fairly new shared blog. The blog has a mix of serialized and one-shot posts. Because it's a new blog (2.5 months, ~30 posts so far), there is quite a variety of ...
4
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3answers
100 views

Writing figures in novels

I believe that most of the time, it is advised to write out figures as words in novels, rather than writing the actual figure. E.g. He's twenty years old. He lives on the fourth floor. However, are ...
3
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4answers
178 views

Gratuitous use of magic: poor writing and/or unenjoyable?

Many of my characters, main, side, and recurring all have a suite of magic abilities. So will them constantly using magic be annoying? Will it make the magic stale? What tips should I follow and what ...