If the answer is "pick a method and be consistent", your question may be one of style.

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1answer
84 views

Writing first person or third person limited for steampunk? YA

I have a phobia of decision making and am asking for your help. I want to write a YA steampunk book with lots of made up stuff. Now, fantasy isn't really written in the first person, but I want to try ...
2
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3answers
81 views

Efficiency or correctness in communication?

The language industry has a long tradition in the pursuit of correctness, based on manually drafted rules. However, the end goal has always been communicative efficiency, which is something that can ...
3
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3answers
84 views

Internal Dialog - First or Second Person

I'm writing a story in third person. When writing internal dialog, should I use first person or second person? Does it matter? Should I be consistent in the entire story? Should I be consistent for a ...
3
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5answers
167 views

Using profanities in novels

I've recently read two quite "hard core" novels, both by famous authors. One was erotic fiction and one was a thriller which was very violent and gory. At the end I realized something: the F*** word ...
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4answers
96 views

Different ways to say “I looked”?

I find myself overusing phrases like "his eyes flickered to (object/person)" and "he shifted his gaze to (object/person)". I use the words 'eyes' and 'gaze' a lot to describe what the character is ...
2
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2answers
150 views

How to convey (screaming) hysterics in dialogue

It happens to most if not all of us. Something extremely emotional happens to us and we're just hysterical. Logic doesn't work. You contemplate punching a wall because that will help . . . somehow. ...
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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 ...
2
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2answers
56 views

where to put the Annex

My teacher asked me to move some part to the Annex of the master thesis. I don't know where should I put this Annex thing, I have index, list of figures, list of appreviatiosn, then many chapters, ...
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0answers
23 views

Can I add Drop Caps to my Manuscript in the Storyist program?

I have a manuscript that I'd like to add Drop Caps to at the beginning of each chapter. I currently have it loaded into my Storyist program on my Mac-book Pro. Does anyone know how I'd go about adding ...
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
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4answers
109 views

Should I worry that my storyline is very similar to another?

I've written a story about anthropomorphic animals in a noirish setting solving murders. I came up with the concept and wrote the first draft about a year ago and am planning on releasing it soon. ...
0
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2answers
79 views

How to start writing short stories

I wish to write short stories based on the experiences I have from my life. Also, I love writing inspirational stories. But somehow, when I start to write them, I could not focus on the subject; also ...
2
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2answers
24 views

If a heading is in roman numerals, is an in-text cross reference also in roman, or arabic, or spelled out

Where in the Chicago Manual of Style is the answer to my subject question? I looked in the CMOS, but could not find the answer to my question. The book is nonfiction, self help divided into parts ...
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2answers
196 views

Describing laughter in dialogue?

I'm having a problem that is not addressed by The Chicago Manual of Style or the AP Style Guide I have access to: How does a writer express laughter in fiction? I have seen no consistent answer. It ...
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2answers
28 views

Format for capitalizing quotes

Do you have to capitalize the second part of a dialogue if the second part is separated from the first. “Behind every great fortune,” he said as he started to zip up his jacket, “is a great crime. Do ...
1
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2answers
243 views

How should I write a height in feet and inches?

I wrote the sentence: From far away, he could easily be mistaken for a ten year-old, at 5’1 he was as thin as a rail and wore a flannel shirt tucked into a brown, leather belt. I wrote 5'1. ...
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3answers
47 views

How can a screenplay writer learn to write a novel?

I am the sort of person that is really great at coming up with amazing ideas, plot-lines, worlds, etc. for stories, but I'm not so good at putting them to paper - at least not in a novel. I'm really ...
1
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1answer
44 views

should I put the reference number after the dot or after a space? [duplicate]

I am writing my thesis. and I need to know the correct way of putting the reference. for example: this is a sentence taken from someone [2]. this is a sentence taken from someone[2]. ...
3
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1answer
117 views

How many names in a book are too many?

It seems to me there is a relative limit for commercial fiction regarding the number of named characters. This makes sense, of course. Readers get confused; lots of people aren't good with names. ...
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3answers
44 views

The difference between two speech formats

I am conflicted about which one is appropriate for a story, or whether it makes a difference at all. A few years ago, god knows where, I've seen speech that was formatted like so: Hello. - Tom said. ...
3
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4answers
98 views

Is there a way to add discovery into a short story?

I'm planning on writing a short story and I'm just wondering if it'd be possible to add an element of discovery into it. I think it'd be interesting if the reader would be able to learn things about ...
6
votes
5answers
417 views

Can anyone think of books that contain two separate stories or two very different perspectives on the same story being told together? [closed]

I fear that the question sounds vague and confusing, but I can't conjure up the words I need to say exactly what I mean without going into detail. I thought it would be interesting to have two ...
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3answers
147 views

How to give written advice in a way that is encouraging, not overbearing

How do we write something to inspire a person which corrects the mistakes they've made until now, but without making them feel like they're getting mocked from the recipient's perspective? I was ...
3
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1answer
39 views

Plural of the scholastic grade A

There's a similar question right now, and I have an issue: How would one write the grade of A in plural? For clarity, my smart device isn't smart enough for italics. I will use bold. In general, I ...
3
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2answers
58 views

Repeating a subject

Can I repeatedly use the same subject to start several sentences in a paragraph that describes a process? Does it build continuity or become redundant? For example: A passenger arrived. He ...
1
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0answers
19 views

What aspects of written dialogue are important when giving characters a unique voice? [duplicate]

I have a project that I am working on in which I need to write quite a few fictional informal email correspondences between pairs of characters. I am not using these characters in any other context. ...
3
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5answers
125 views

What aspects of written dialogue are important when giving characters a unique voice?

I have a project that I am working on in which I need to write quite a few fictional informal email correspondences between pairs of characters. I am not using these characters in any other context. ...
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9answers
352 views

Swearing in a book, within a context. Too offensive?

I am currently writing a science fiction novel. The characters are almost uniformly pirates and/or miners in the asteroid belt. Having worked in the mining industry, and grown up around mining towns ...
1
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1answer
54 views

Use of ellipses at the end of a passage [duplicate]

My actual passage is a bit involved, but I've had this come up a few times over the years, and I've never resolved the issue. So I'll give a generic passage. I posted this question on ELU but didn't ...
1
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3answers
56 views

Should you emphasise text within quotation marks?

e.g. Bold: Click "Setting" then click "Options". Italic: Click "Setting" then click "Options". Or even underline? Or none quotation marks? Click Setting then click Options. Which ...
1
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1answer
10 views

APA Headings- Frequency

How often should you use a heading? Are there any guidelines or limitations to using headings too often (i.e., every paragraph, every other paragraph, etc.)?
2
votes
2answers
80 views

How to write about paternal and maternal grandparents?

What are some practices to write about paternal, maternal grandparents, especially when their names are not used? In my case, the names are not given. One method I am considering is "p-grandfather", "...
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
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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 ...
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 ...
0
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1answer
73 views

How to format neural actions in a story

I'm writing a short story with androids and cybernetically enhanced humans who have access to neural interfaces. Essentially, they open up some kind of computer terminal, but it's via internal sensors ...
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2answers
84 views

Is there a name for the **writing** tic/technique in which the **writer** inserts an aside beginning with “well”?

Is there a name for this writing tic/technique (which I find very annoying, by the way): Please note: these examples are in the form of dialogue which belies the context in which my question was ...
1
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3answers
195 views

Using acronyms in fiction writing

I'm wondering whether I can use acronyms without the period between each letter in fiction writing. Adding the period seems kind of clunky and stops the flow of the sentence a little but I don't want ...
2
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2answers
115 views

When not to use commas before dialogue (and capitals)

I'm struggling with when to omit the comma before dialogue (as well as when to use capitals) in fiction writing. My understanding is that you would omit the comma before/after something like "he says" ...
1
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1answer
116 views

Playwriting: What is the difference between parentheticals and stage directions?

Coming from the World of Screenwriting, it proves difficult for me to discern the usage of parentheticals from the usage of stage directions in a play I'm writing. I need to know which is for what and ...
5
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4answers
428 views

In present-tense narrative, does “I spend the NEXT few hours…” make sense?

I was directed to the writers stackexchange from the English/grammar forums. I'm writing a novel in present-tense. If all the actions are in the present-tense, e.g. as the character is experiencing ...
1
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1answer
223 views

Having a character quote an entire stanza of a poem

I am working on a long form fiction item.In this one of the characters will quote the first Stanza from a poem. Normally with speech one opens quotes, adds the text, and closes quotes. However I do ...
1
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2answers
50 views

Acronym issue transitioning from prose to dialogue

Fiction. There is a group called the Mental Health Access and Referral Team. In prose, I can either use M-HART or MHART. In dialogue, I'm a bit stumped. (I use THE CHICAGO MANUAL OF STYLE.) I think ...
6
votes
4answers
160 views

How can I convey something without going into details?

I am considering writing a novel in which society has fallen into a perverse pit of debauchery. This is necessary to the novel, but it also presents some problems. I want the reader to know just how ...
4
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4answers
121 views

I like to write but I keep stopping myself

I have this problem where I always just can't seem to be satisfied by my choice of words resulting it me never getting far in writing. Almost every sentence I would think "This isn't the kind of ...
1
vote
3answers
110 views

In a formal writing, does having a paragraph rewritten by another person make the style change noticablely?

I am writing a personal statement to apply to a grad school. At first, I thought that because the role of this statement is to show an image of me as a person, using the tone I usually use when ...
0
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2answers
63 views

Where to insert chapter breaks

I've recently written something about the length of in-between a short story and a novel. I've had a bunch of friends edit it, and all of them say that I should insert chapter breaks. I wrote the ...
3
votes
1answer
69 views

What is the fine line between “confidence” and “presumption”?

I am about to apply to a grad school, and I have prepare the SOP for it (think it like a cover letter to apply to a job). I know the rule: show what I've got, not tell how I think I'm cool. I've tried,...
5
votes
1answer
91 views

Format keyboard keys in documents

I'm writing a guide to give step-by-step instructions to complete some tasks on the computer. At some points, I need to indicate pressing keys on the keyboard; how may I format the letter/symbol to ...
3
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2answers
118 views

Using comma splices in dialogue

At university, it was drilled into us to avoid comma splices like the plague, but I keep seeing them in all different types of famous, best-selling novels. I read things (all in dialogue, in inverted ...