5
votes
1answer
121 views

How long on average does a major house 'consider' a book before rejecting or accepting it

My first two fiction books are with a top publishing house. They have had them for three months. Six weeks ago, they told me they were prioritising looking at them. How long on average does a major ...
1
vote
3answers
92 views

How should I handle this many characters?

I am writing a series of mini-novels based on a group of teenagers who all have different backgrounds and ethnicities. How should I introduce each character? I mean, they are all kind of main ...
1
vote
3answers
470 views

Using quotes for sarcastic text

Are quotes only for spoken text? Can I use quotes to emphasize sarcasm, like when somebody physically makes quote symbols with their fingers while reading?
1
vote
2answers
157 views

What connotations do these character names confer?

I'm currently brooding over good character names for a novel I want to write. I was looking at some of the books I read recently, trying to understand why the authors picked the names they gave their ...
3
votes
4answers
4k views

Where to put counter-examples within a 5-paragraph essay?

I am tutoring some students in the very basics of writing a 5-paragraph essay to present an argument, in preparation for more advanced academic writing. I am instructing them to include: An ...
1
vote
0answers
531 views

A* paragraph on narrative writing and descriptive writing [closed]

I am preparing for an English exam and (although I'm not using your paragraph because I will be given my own title in the exam,) I would like to have an example of the 2 different types of paragraphs ...
7
votes
1answer
221 views

As an new author, how important is to have a personal website?

I'm planning to create a Facebook page where I can (hopefully) build a small fan base. I've seen many authors who have a personal websites. I'm not very sure, though, how important this is, and ...
1
vote
1answer
42 views

Order of references

Suppose I have the following references to literature: Miller, H. (1999): … Referred to as: Miller (1999) Miller, F., & Smith, J. (2002): … Referred to as: ...
2
votes
1answer
168 views

Short story cover: “a story” or “a short story” or not putting anything at all

I'm confused because it seems like very few people put "a short story" in the cover of their short stories (only one short story.) In fact, they don't seem to put anything at all. Another authors just ...
1
vote
4answers
677 views

Capitalized opening lines

I've noticed that novels and short stories nowadays capitalize the first sentence. Example (This is from Joe Hill's Throttle): Two questions: 1) What's the font size of the capitalized text (right ...
4
votes
1answer
91 views

How would an agent approach a debut piece written by two new authors (co-authors)

This is still all in the realm of the hypothetical, but given that it becomes closer to the reality, I'm very curious... Let's say you have two new, previously unpublished and unrepresented authors ...
1
vote
0answers
37 views

What kind of rhythm should I use for these settings? [closed]

I am not particularly experienced with using rhythm in creative writing so please note that I am only a beginner. By "rhythm" I am referring to anything along the lines of syllable count, sentence ...
1
vote
1answer
346 views

What are best practices when writing technical descriptions?

Occasionally, in my job as an engineer, I write process descriptions of the technology we are selling. Those are part of commercial offers, intended to win the customer. Those are bundled with ...
4
votes
3answers
389 views

How to indicate emphasis in plain text manuscripts

Some short story markets (e.g. Daily Science Fiction) request manuscripts in plain text. How do you indicate emphasis in a plain text manuscript?
8
votes
2answers
149 views

What are First Drafts, Second Drafts, etc.?

I've been reading a few questions on this site, and I've seen the terms First, Second or Third Drafts. What does this refer to actually? And could someone give a clear detail of what they are, and why ...
1
vote
1answer
123 views

How to format and where to place the “thanks” section for websites in a book?

I just finished a "long" short story. And I want to include a section where I thanks Writers SE for the writing advice and Scribophile for the critiques and feedback. How is that properly done? ...
1
vote
1answer
77 views

Would this be considered abstract writing?

I have been toying around with the idea of writing an abstract Novel. I was thinking about what it would be like if I were to write a book that did not follow standard plot devices, nor the norm in ...
5
votes
1answer
18k views

Using P.S. in a formal email

I had a quick question in regards to using P.S. I just finished writing up a formal follow-up email for an interview. I touched over a lot of information and brought up some new topics. Anyway, I ...
2
votes
3answers
143 views

Worried that my opening is not gripping enough

This is the beginning of a novel I'm writing (not the final draft): The hiking trail consisted of pairs of uneven stone steps. On both sides, tall coniferous trees extended tall into the sky, ...
5
votes
2answers
275 views

Outlining Structures for Romance Novels

I'm familiar with the 12 step outline process for heroic fantasy novels, but is there an equivalent outline structure for Romance novels? By this I mean novels like those produced by Nicholas Sparks, ...
6
votes
6answers
1k views

Can I use real presidents (past and present) and real companies in a fictional story?

I'm not sure if I want to use real people and companies or make up an entirely different world with different people, presidents, and companies than our real world. If I did the latter I would offer ...
1
vote
3answers
119 views

Is it a bad practice to end sentences with phrases like: “…and went over to it” or “…and did X to it?”

I often find myself writing stuff like this: Eri's eyes scanned the room, stopping at the bookshelf. She went over to it and, as if she were searching for a secret passage, she examined each ...
1
vote
1answer
121 views

What does one call author blurbs at the bottom of journalistic articles?

Sometimes journalistic articles have a brief about-the-author sort of blurb at the end, frequently italicized, of a general form resembling: J. Random Hacker is a dog groomer for the United States ...
5
votes
5answers
434 views

What are the pros and cons of building the setting before the characters and story

I have a science-fiction setting I have been kicking around for sometime, but I am not sure how to go about fleshing out events or characters that would make for stories within this setting. What are ...
1
vote
4answers
505 views

Cutting down the length of a short story

I'm writing a short story for an assignment at school - but I'm having trouble keep it short. I have a habit to go off on a tangent quite a bit, and this ends up making it a lot longer than it should ...
1
vote
1answer
816 views

Writing simple short sentences first and connecting them later

Recently, I've been experimenting with new ways to write sentences, and I came out with the following: I'll write very short and simple ones describing what's happening in the scene. After I'm done, ...
6
votes
1answer
203 views

Is it acceptable to use many footnotes to share additional ideas?

I teach a course in remedial academic writing. The students should learn to write at the graduate level. Some of the students are ELLs. They tend to include many extraneous thoughts and ideas in ...
5
votes
2answers
199 views

Publishing an illustrated book- Self-Publishing or Corporate Publishing?

My friend and I have fully-fleshed out a comedic idea for a book, in a similar format to Jack Handy's "Deep Thoughts" (in that each page is a sentence or two). We would like accompanying ...
3
votes
4answers
203 views

Should I edit the first draft until I'm totally satisfied or should I leave that to the third draft?

After having waited for three months for the first draft of my novel to "cool off," I've finally decided to work on the second one. But now I'm presented with who options: 1) edit the this first ...
5
votes
2answers
310 views

How can I prevent, or work around, unfortunate hyphenation in critical words?

In technical documentation, sometimes the tool's automatic hyphenation makes a bad break in the middle of a term, like the name of an environment variable or function. In these cases I would rather ...
4
votes
2answers
162 views

Visualizing multiple word-based changes among many text files

I've written a piece of fiction with GitHub, which means I have access to many version of my writing. I'm curious to see how my writing adapted over time. Did I keep eliminating then re-adding a word? ...
6
votes
3answers
203 views

What steps to follow in thinking through the writing of a conclusion?

I am teaching some students how to write a 5-paragraph essay. Their writing is coming together, but when it comes to conclusions, they get lost. They have difficulty assembling the ideas for a ...
3
votes
1answer
449 views

Structure of a good summary

OK, I admit I suck at writing summaries, but based on those I've checked on Amazon, I've realized the following pattern: The first part starts with a brief introduction of the plot The second part ...
6
votes
1answer
112 views

Assessing what writing skills are missing

I recently wrote an answer on Parenting.SE about the process of learning how to read. There are distinct sets of skills that need to be mastered before people become proficient readers, and often ...
0
votes
1answer
39 views

Removing an allocated task from someone [closed]

In the software we're developing, the user can 'allocate' a task to a person or group. Correspondingly he may also take a task away from them. What word should we use: unallocate the task or ...
1
vote
3answers
196 views

How can I avoid word repetition in the following paragraph?

Eri knelt down slowly and thought about her world. The one with the solid ground in which she had stood all her life. Would that surface break apart one day? And when it did, what would happen ...
1
vote
1answer
123 views

young age, youthful age? [closed]

It would be great if you could help me phrase this sentence: Many primary schools students also fail to recognise the importance of consuming breakfast due to their age . Any suggestions for the ...
6
votes
2answers
124 views

Standards for representing user interaction

I am responsible for developing internal IT documentation but have only begun my scratching the surface on technical documentation. Is there a standard or best practice for the following: Example ...
6
votes
6answers
335 views

Is it possible to write a novel completely devoid of dialogue?

I am in the process of writing a novel, and I'm just trying to get some ideas and thought on this. I am not sure yet if I want to completely remove all dialogue, but at this point I feel that dialogue ...
1
vote
1answer
85 views

Rhythm in a list

I think I don't have problems establishing a rhythm in a "normal" paragraph. I usually just go: short, long, long, long, short, long or something like that. But when it comes to lists, I always get ...
5
votes
1answer
480 views

Mixing dialogue and action tags

In my case, I never use dialogue and action tags in the same unit of dialogue (sorry, I just call them units because I had no idea what they are called). So I would never write something like this: ...
6
votes
8answers
2k views

How should I organize my journal as plain-text files?

I want to keep a digital journal on my computer. I keep a physical journal in notebooks and on pieces of sheets, but I now want to back up my journal on the computer and if needed maintain the journal ...
9
votes
4answers
157 views

When is it acceptable to refer to an undefined group of people in academic writing?

Within my students' college writing, I found much writing referring to essentially imaginary, or not well-defined groups of people. Here are some examples: These days, more and more people carpool ...
2
votes
1answer
84 views

Trouble with punctuation and style of a sentence [closed]

I'm having so much trouble figuring this out for some reason: He raised his hands in mock surrender, warranting a raised eyebrow from Simon who proceeded to bid again anyway, setting off another ...
1
vote
3answers
217 views

Am I adding too many unnecessary “actions/descriptions”?

I common critique I receive is that I add too many unnecessary actions/descriptions to a scene. Most of the time I just add them to make things "flow" more smoothly. This is a piece from a short ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

How to depict Australian characters

In my working novel, a character encounters an Aussie. Having nigh-zero knowledge of how to make dialogues in an Australian accent, I just opted to describe that he talks without any hints of an ...
5
votes
1answer
107 views

For Sci-Fi books, what is the purchasing split between regular and ebooks?

I can get the data for ALL books. But can anyone direct me to regular/ebook purchasing data broken down by genre (specifically sci-fi)?
5
votes
5answers
491 views

How to make a debate/discussion between characters less dry?

I've asked questions in the past about dialogue and I've read some questions about balancing dialogue with plot, however I have discovered yet another corner case in my writing. In my story Cured, the ...
3
votes
5answers
502 views

Are collection of short stories more likely to sell than single short stories?

I'm about to finish a short story (9000 words). But since I already have another two (7000 words and 6000 words), I was wondering whether I should publish the work as a mini collection of short ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

In script writing, how to denote laughter in unison

I'm writing a TV spec script for fun, and was just wondering how I would denote laughter in unison from a bunch of sailors on a boat. Would it just be something like: SAILORS IN BOAT (in unison) ...

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