Questions about planning your work: how much, how far, or whether to.

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Help developing themes - need research for potentially controversial fantasy story [closed]

Just another unassuming prospective author here. I’m stuck on creating my first novel, to this point has not actually been written yet. I have been unable to make progress on my story for years; it’s ...
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1answer
44 views

Structural templates in scholarly writing

I'm interested in the different ways that academic essays can be structured. Of course there is the 5-paragraph style learned by most Americans in secondary school: Introduction Argument 1 Argument ...
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2answers
136 views

How useful are stock characters in fiction?

I am writing a realistic-fiction novel set in the USA during the Great Depression. I intend to use some stock characters to make the story colorful and to flesh out the culture of the period. Stock ...
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3answers
66 views

In a nutshell, how can a friendship become a tragedy? [closed]

The narrator is called Karl who is a sixteen year old pupil at a boarding school. During a summer Sports Day with a rival school, he meets one of the pupils who is both a nuisance and is adorable (and ...
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1answer
48 views

Developing a fictionalised Royal family

In my fictional world which is very much like Earth, I have started the development of a royal family who shall appear in meantioned news reports and dialogue (in the fictional world) throught the ...
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2answers
43 views

Do vampire hybrids inherit powers from male vampires? [closed]

I have looked at the half-human-half-vampires a.k.a Dhampirs in the Wikipedia section to find that most of them had mortal mothers and vampire fathers. In history records in Serbia it was said that ...
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2answers
230 views

Where are the six honest serving men?

A lifetime ago I learned about Rudyard Kipling's 5W1H framework: I have six honest serving men They taught me all I knew I call them What and Where and When And How and Why and Who (...
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6answers
279 views

Hang on - where's the main conflict?

I've recently been struggling with a very strange problem in my writing: I can't find the main conflict in my novels. This has inspired quite a bit of thought and reflection on exactly what a main ...
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1answer
37 views

What is the ideal approach to writing a script for a comic book?

Comic book scripts include panel details, dialogue, captions, SFX... Dark Horse Comics has an example in their submission guidelines, and the format for every panel can look something like this: ...
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0answers
24 views

How do I go about writing and planning my first novel? [duplicate]

I am not a writer nor have ever attempted to write a novel. My english is average, but I love to read and so I have decided to write a novel. I have no experience whatsoever and would love advice. I ...
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1answer
31 views

Where can I publish a book/e-book at a minimal cost?

I have a book I want to publish. The book is in PDF format. I want to sell it on Amazon or somewhere similar for 5 $ each in electronic format (downloadable to Kindle or the Kindle app for smartphones)...
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2answers
56 views

What writing exercices should I schedule for the different parts of my day?

I’d like to try a regimen of short writing exercises for a few weeks, ideally doing at least one every day. I have no problem with waking up early and my lunch breaks are needlessly long, ...
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4answers
161 views

How to convey breeding through character dialogue

I'm trying to write a story based in medieval times. Some of my characters are kings and nobles so I'm trying to make their conversations more... "regal"... or "elegant". But I'm unable to create ...
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3answers
210 views

What existing platforms use crowdsourcing to develop creative writing and editing?

What existing platforms use crowdsourcing to develop creative writing and editing? What are the barriers in developing an active community? Why would this not work? Has it been tried? Was it ...
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2answers
72 views

how to write a sports game scene?

The main character is on a sports team, and I want to describe games, but I don't know how to without having to explain every point or without explaining it enough. I want it to be a page or two long ...
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4answers
186 views

Need guidance on my writing method

I have decided to take up writing as a hobby. First because I have so many ideas and like creating things. Second, because I enjoy it so far and thirdly, I like the idea that if my writing is any good,...
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5answers
149 views

How can I create an inter-connected plot across a series?

I am an aspiring author, and I have recently just begun developing my first novel. It is a series, but I have engineered the first novel to be a standalone in case the series falls through. When I ...
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1answer
168 views

Setting up for writing

I am a work professional and the writer by choice. I have been writing since a long but basically poems, short stories and my reviews on books that I read so far. But since yet I have been writing via ...
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4answers
136 views

How can I tell if a novel idea is made for a series or a stand-alone?

If I have an idea for a novel (consisting, let's say, of a premise and a vague idea of characters), how can I tell if the idea will turn into a series or a stand-alone? I don't want to start ...
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1answer
57 views

Can I use the same message over a series of novels?

This question is slightly less straightforward than the title implies, and requires a little explanation. Firstly, I am an entirely self-taught writer. Because of this, my methods are probably a bit ...
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2answers
423 views

Arch Hero and Arch Nemesis in one book

I am standing before a problem. For my story I largely developed the background and the world for two main characters: the hero of my stories and a villain. I started with the story of my hero, his ...
5
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2answers
103 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 ...
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1answer
51 views

Questions on a plausibility of a Naruto Homage

I've been itching to write a web fiction serial that's also a homage to Naruto since I found out the manga ended and went on a re-reading binge... Anyway it'll loosely have similar ideas i.e. clans. ...
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2answers
105 views

How Can You Include Public Stakes in a Character Novel?

In Donald Maass's book Writing the Breakout Novel, he talks about stakes. He goes over how a breakout novel needs two kinds: personal stakes - what the hero could lose - and public stakes - what the ...
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7answers
347 views

Should I write the actual death scene?

I am writing a novel, and in one part, a boy falls off the building. I feel like it would be very gory. Most people said to write in great detail, but then some people say to write what I know. I feel ...
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12answers
935 views

How much planning should go on before beginning writing?

I really want to begin my first novel, but I'm just not sure how clear of an outline I should have before I start. Is a detailed synopsis of each chapter really necessary, or is it enough to just go ...
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3answers
108 views

Continue working it through or start over?

I'm writing a novel, but due to lack of time because these years for me are very important for my academic future, it hasn't progressed that much. However, I like it very much and would like to finish ...
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3answers
138 views

Thinking as a character

Months after starting my first novel (which hasn't made any progress and is still in its first draft) I feel I can only react to a given situation rather than create one. The same seems to apply to my ...
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3answers
117 views

Building new species. How deep and how complex?

In my latest project i developed new species not far different from humanoids. I am making whole history, gender interaction, abilities, their psychology and trying to discribe their life and ...
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3answers
419 views

How do you visualize plot structure?

I want to visualize the internal structure of my plot. I noticed several contradictions, and want to better understand what's going on in my tale. I'm not talking about differnt characters doing ...
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2answers
35 views

Scene order: is this order of scenes confusing?

Okay so say is my story scene order is in this order in the book. Future scene (insight) --> past scene (flashback) --> present day. What do you think? Will this order be confusing for my readers?
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3answers
241 views

How to Develop a Theme Before Writing a Novel

I've given some thought to this, and I decided that I want to either make or find a theme to my fantasy novel before I really get into it (as I have started a couple pages already). I did some ...
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7answers
289 views

Visual methods of plot development?

My 9 to 5 job is in an office, which has made me very adept at using flow charts and graphs to plan out my projects. Are there any writing methods which employ charts, graphs, or other visual ...
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3answers
138 views

At what point disappointment and frustration within the story makes the reader abandon it?

Does Game of Thrones get any unpleasant when a whole bunch of characters die every season, for example? Leaving hooking elements aside, at what point does exploration of uncomfortable aspects from ...
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7answers
426 views

Story development: Multiple characters premises

I am used to stories which have one premise which through sequential events is proven by the character. A few stories like war stories can have several premises each linked to a specific character, ...
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1answer
50 views

What are some best practices/dos and don'ts of managing an online editorial calendar?

The aspects I am interested in are: How do I set up an editorial calendar? What should I track in it? Are there better options than a spreadsheet? (software/app) How many days/weeks in advance ...
4
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3answers
115 views

How to write when thinking in multiple languages?

When writing, scenes come to my mind in different languages mixed together. For example in a single scene a description will be in French, some dialogues in English, with a few words of Spanish and ...
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5answers
351 views

Every idea for a story I come up with seems excessively long

I already had practice with very short stories, like with 1-3k words, writing literally first things that came to my head. The next logical step would be to write something about 8-12k words, because ...
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3answers
301 views

Non-human protagonist - Good, bad, or up to the writing?

In a novel I plan on writing soon, the main protagonist (and indeed nearly everyone else in the story as well) is an elf. Humans are present, but they are far in the mountains, living in disorganized ...
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7answers
246 views

Three Act Structure - How do I include it?

I've been writing for four years without knowledge of the three act structure. When I discovered it about a year ago, I therefore had no room for it in my writing process, mainly because I had ...
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6answers
790 views

World Building vs Story Writing

Note, this might be off topic and belong on World Building SE? I have always been far more interested with building the world my stories take place in than the stories themselves. I will spend large ...
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3answers
251 views

How do you avoid the problem of a collaborative work having separate voices?

I've not done collaborative writing before, but I've read several works, and sometimes the text strikes me as having a split personality: some parts were clearly written by one author, while others ...
3
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6answers
104 views

Where does the power granted by a theme come from?

A novel that has a theme - that is, something to say, a message - has a weight to it that a novel without a theme cannot achieve. I'm sure there are those that might disagree with this, but I believe ...
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2answers
122 views

Any helpful tips on how to, better use description in my writing?

I feel as if, the novel I am writing will have a great plot and I have some creative ideas on where to go with it. My only concern is my ability to develop description through out my story. Any tips ...
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3answers
42 views

Pieces missing from my narrative

I have this (IMHO) cool idea for a general storyline I want to write about, and one or two ideas for characters. However, I'm really struggling to go about fleshing it out. It's like having a string ...
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2answers
244 views

How/When to include twists when developing plot.

Disclaimer: This is a new question, not an extension of my other questions concerning twists. When I develop fiction, I start with a premise and a theme. I have a general idea of where I'm headed, ...
26
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9answers
728 views

What are the first things I should do with an idea?

I have a lot of ideas for things I want to write, but I usually end up getting lost in a stream-of-consciousness and either lose interest in the idea, or suddenly feel overwhelmed by the breadth of ...
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4answers
93 views

Getting help and/or mentoring, later in life

For context, I am a forty-something male from the Great Lakes region of the United States. I work full-time as something other than a writer. About 25 years ago in high school, I was an almost-...
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1answer
364 views

Being a non-native English writer how can i improve my English Writing style? [duplicate]

I'm an Indian and trying to write a novel based on 2 sisters. My problem is that i don't feel very comfortable with my english sometimes. How can i improve my english? And sometimes i use the same ...
23
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7answers
2k views

Decide on a theme/overarching meaning before writing a short story?

When writing a short-story, is it typically a better practice to construct a point to exemplify through the short-story when writing to highlight a certain truth? In other words, construct the ...