4
votes
3answers
322 views

How often to cite sources?

I'm writing a 3700-word essay, consisting of two case studies and some explanatory material. I'll be referencing a number of documents as sources for the case studies. There will be a full list of ...
4
votes
5answers
161 views

Is starting a story with dialogue bad?

(Apologies if this question has already been asked. I've looked around but can't find this specific question, only related ones.) The general advice seems to be "don't start your story with dialogue."...
4
votes
3answers
494 views

How to make a dumb decision as a character and still not let the reader to think same about him

My character is a police detective. But not the best one. I'm trying to stay away from idealizations in this book. Characters will make normal, human, mistakes; they'll change their minds and be more ...
4
votes
5answers
194 views

How to write a death scene without making it overdramatic?

Okay. In the story there's a flashback where one of the main protagonists who lost his best friend in a battle where he was the only survivor. His best friend is a important character and because of ...
4
votes
4answers
122 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 ...
4
votes
5answers
119 views

How practical and feasible is it to work on more than one novel / story at one time?

Lets say you are working on one novel / short story. As you work you suddenly get an inspiration for another piece of fiction. You feel it's a brilliant idea and you should start working on it right ...
4
votes
5answers
189 views

Is mathematical poetry a form of poetry?

One author considers this mathematical statement by LeRoy Gorman entitled “The Birth of Tragedy” as a form of minimalist poetry: (!+?)^2 Is this ...
4
votes
3answers
233 views

Are there times when delayed character development is acceptable in fiction?

In my screenplay, I have my female protagonist wear Prada, and perhaps drop other hints of her character, but not act like Miranda Priestly for the first two acts, until she gets a promotion at the ...
4
votes
5answers
398 views

Is it possible to practice the craft of creative writing in isolation?

Is it possible to practice the craft of creative writing in isolation? I am not directly affiliated with a writing community, at least a community willing to read small practice creative pieces. I do ...
4
votes
2answers
68 views

How to release a heavy revision to a series without upsetting readers?

I am writing a course book series with 4-5 workbooks. Each subsequent chapter is highly dependent on material in previous sections. Few readers using the workbooks will be able to skip sections. At a ...
4
votes
3answers
124 views

Should I specify the time/date at the beginning of a scene?

Example: That's when the thought hit me: I had to find out. I had to solve this mystery. And so, I decided to call off my suicide plan. At least for the time being. (Next chapter) ...
4
votes
1answer
914 views

Sex: How much is too much?

Regardless of genre, at what point does sex stop becoming art and become the erotic blubbering of a perverse mind? Ever since middleschool my writing has had a sensual twist, and it has become more ...
4
votes
2answers
489 views

How to write in a VERY thick notebook

You have probably seen it in fantasy movies or games - a mage or a paladin with a massive grimoire or spellbook or whatever strapped to his side, which he would in times of need open and recite a ...
4
votes
5answers
409 views

Indicating a word choice you're unsure of

I've often had situations where I'm unsure of the correct word to be used, either when writing or proofreading. How can this sense be indicated in writing? Someone mentioned adding a question mark ...
4
votes
3answers
141 views

Marking a chart that is not based on real data

I want to include a chart in my thesis to visualize an idea but the chart is not based on real data, it just helps me to explain a concept. How can I label it so it's not confused for actual data. It ...
4
votes
5answers
1k views

How do I overcome my anxiety of writing again?

You would note the use of the word 'again' in the title of my question. I wrote a number of short stories many years ago. This was when I was doing my first degree (in literature) just after high ...
4
votes
5answers
389 views

What is the proper way to use the pronoun “I” without too much repetition?

I found a new job in London and while emailing with my soon-to-be boss, I noticed something that drove me off: the constant repetition of the pronoun I. This is very different from my native language (...
4
votes
2answers
298 views

How does joint authorship work?

I'm in the middle of reading Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, and it occurred to me that I'd finally found a good place to ask a question I'd been wondering about for years. How do ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

What is the best way to learn technical writing?

I have a moderate level of skills in technical writing (TW) having gone through graduation in engineering. I was wondering what would be the best way to sharpen my knowledge. I am also interested in ...
4
votes
3answers
218 views

Adding more characters as the story moves forwards

I'm 20 and have been writing a lot of fiction since I was 11, and there is a story that I keep rewriting as I get older and learn more about writing and storytelling. Strangely I haven't done that ...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

Single character POV vs. two POVs - how to decide?

I'm starting to look at my next novel, and I'm trying to decide whether I should tell it from one POV or two. I've used both techniques in the past, so I'm aware of the basic advantages/disadvantages,...
4
votes
3answers
2k views

How could I share my lyrics?

I've been writing lyrics for quite sometime now (at-least five years). Although there have been several of those moments when I've thought I'd have an act for music making.. I'm just not sure I'll ...
4
votes
3answers
150 views

Feedback on technical blog post

I've recently composed a blog post about World of Warcraft Authenticators and would love for some feedback as per the quality of writing. Obviously no matter how many times I read it there's no ...
4
votes
2answers
180 views

Is where I live going to have a positive/negative effect on getting a novel published?

I live in Australia (or some place that is not the UK or the USA). I wonder if the same percentage of QUALITY scripts get published in any place, but that in the big places, like the UK and the USA, ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

Is there an accepted (or 'correct') way to write translations/subtitles for different materials (videos, articles, books, etc)?

There are many ways to go about translating various materials. For example, while subtitling videos from a different language into english, is it better to (or more acceptable) to do a literal ...
4
votes
1answer
75 views

What to avoid when writing a happy end?

I've finally decided to give a protagonist a happy end, but what is there to avoid? What makes a happy end too cheesy? For example, if the story is about a anti hero, who destroys his enemies, what ...
4
votes
3answers
136 views

Should I write out numbers or use the actual numbers (ordinals)?

Born late in the year, Adam was the only kid in his small 4th grade class that had already turned 11. Every morning he got up at exactly 4:56, the latest he could rouse in the morning with ...
4
votes
5answers
216 views

Can I use already used fictional language?

When creating a world where there are either aliens or fantasy races, you know that they should speak their own language. But the truth is, that for story purposes, such races will speak their ...
4
votes
4answers
196 views

How do writers differentiate personal beliefs from the messages of their writing in public discourse?

Hypothetically speaking, of course... Let's say I write a work of fiction. It could be construed as highly disparaging to one or more demographics especially if you stop reading within the first few ...
4
votes
3answers
65 views

Using Pronoun 'It' repetitvely for emphasis?

I'd like to know if using "It" repetitvely (for emphasis) in this context is okay grammtically. TV has become the modern day baby sitter. It is raising our children. It is dictating the cultural ...
4
votes
3answers
144 views

Commas at the beginning of a sentence: should I follow convention or intuition?

An example from my own writing (Mother and daughter are burying their deceased dog): As planned that Friday, Mom and I underwent Choco’s burial at my home in __ (yes, she kept him in a garbage ...
4
votes
5answers
4k views

Why am I getting so many words per page?

(Note that I use OpenOffice but this question should apply to MS Word as well) It's common knowledge that the average word count for a page is around 250. I understand that this is heavily dependent ...
4
votes
4answers
481 views

Is there such a thing as the “master copy” of a book?

The process for movies and music is pretty well-known and thoroughly documented on Wikipedia. You shoot a movie, edit it and then you produce a "master copy" from which all later copies of the movie ...
4
votes
2answers
89 views

Does submitting multiple pieces to professional magazines (and being turned down) hurt chances of later stories that may be better-written?

When I first started focusing on short stories, I submitted to a range of top professional magazines (Clarkesworld, Strange Horizons, etc.). I wasn't surprised to be rejected, but now I wonder if ...
4
votes
4answers
384 views

How to minimize language mistakes while writing

While it's true that: Editors do proof reading for you, and word processors have spell checking and grammar checking you do not always have an editor available, and software tools aren't perfect ("...
4
votes
2answers
6k views

How to Create Barcode from ISBN Number

I have published some story books for kids and I have already bought the ISBN numbers for the same. But I am confused on how to get those ISBN numbers as barcodes on covers of books. What is the ...
4
votes
2answers
378 views

Are TOC and appendix part of total word count for books?

Do table of contents, appendix, and chapter titles count toward the total word count for a book? For example, if a book is 50,000 words, what is not included in the count? This is for a nonfiction ...
4
votes
3answers
297 views

Can you reprint screen shots of a game application or program without permission?

It seems pretty normal to see screenshots of MS Word, steps for "this is how you generate a template". I don't think Microsoft would object. But I'm not sure about reprinting images from in-game ...
4
votes
2answers
203 views

How does one break into the field of professional writing?

First, some background that may help explain the question. I have recently realized that most of my life has been spent pursuing technical-creative hybrid projects. As a professional software ...
4
votes
3answers
108 views

Floating vs Float

I was writing a short story piece where one person drops something in the water. I got puzzled by the following two choices. Google books seem to be using both of them. Jena and Mike went outside ...
4
votes
5answers
4k views

Why are some words in screenplays set in all caps?

I believe I understand this and I'm looking for confirmation. Examples: It has become a tugging match with the Weird Man shouting, "I'll take you to a taxi... I'll take you." Ahead, a group is ...
4
votes
2answers
306 views

State of the art proof reading tools/methods

While my skills of expression are okay, being able to observe errors within my own writing is truly lacking. The only methods I've found to be of real use are long-time periods in between reviews, if ...
4
votes
5answers
1k views

I have too much dialogue, how do I add more description?

I was looking at the last book I wrote. In it, I failed to meet the word count I had set for myself by a big margin, like 40,000 words instead of 60-70,000. Doing a post mortem, I found that most of ...
4
votes
2answers
4k views

Should a flashback be in past tense or past perfect?

Assuming the story itself is in past tense, normally when I go further into the past I'd use past perfect: He had first met her at the grocery store, six months prior. However, which is more ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

A letter of recommendation

I am a programmer/engineer who has been asked to write a letter of recommendation for a colleague, who wishes it to help him pursue higher education. Since I feel it necessary, to be very ...
4
votes
3answers
897 views

Is there anything like 99designs for text writing?

I'm not a writer, but a technical oriented entrepreneur.. One of the barriers I always run into is that I'm also the lead guy for providing the content for marketing gigs, speaker bio's and website ...
4
votes
3answers
285 views

Designing a book

A friend of mine writes lots of poems and some of them have even got published in local magazines here. His birthday is coming up and I am thinking of putting all those poems in a book form and giving ...
4
votes
2answers
184 views

How should I approach possibly unfamiliar pop culture in fiction?

So sometimes I get an idea that forms specifically around some aspect of pop culture. They're often song lyrics. If the reader knows the song, they appreciate the symbolism and allegory or whatever ...
4
votes
4answers
116 views

How would a source be referenced in the typical paper/book?

Let's say I have at my disposal some kind of searchable content with all the references from many books and papers. How would a source reference would be typically written/formatted? Is it dependent ...
4
votes
5answers
285 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 ...

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