2
votes
2answers
1k views

When to use semicolons and when to use em dashes?

Sometimes I can't decide whether to use a semicolon or a em dash. Usually, I start with semicolons and once I noticed there are too many of them, I start replacing a few with em dashes (as I read ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

First person pov with more than one main chars

I really love -- and most of time write in -- first person point of view. The novel I'm writing is somewhat different from what I'm used to. I have four main characters -- I don't see any of them as ...
3
votes
2answers
227 views

At what point can a story be considered “erotic”?

I would like to ask for any guidelines that could help to determine when a story can be considered "erotic". Is it based on the words, the number of scenes or on how detailed they are? Shortly, if I ...
1
vote
4answers
463 views

Is it common for flashbacks to not to follow a chronological order?

I'm writing a short story with the following structure: Scene 1: Deshi and Yuqi are in a mountain searching for an abandoned amusement park (Present) Scene 2: Deshi talks about how he felt ...
6
votes
5answers
2k views

I want to write a Choose Your Own Adventure styled e-book, what's a good approach?

If you don't remember, Choose Your Own Adventure books had bits of a story, then options for the reader to give them more of a feeling of control in their adventure: "If you want to walk through the ...
2
votes
1answer
198 views

Tips for analysing character's role against the novel's general theme?

I'm answering a few questions based on Atlas Shrugged in the form of an essay, wherein I am required to discuss a particular character and relate his role to the theme of the story. Kind of clueless. ...
1
vote
1answer
69 views

Which sections to cover for my graduation thesis on BSS?

I'm not sure if I'm on right place to ask a simple suggestion, so please be kind and don't downvote my question. I'm not asking someone to do it for me, I just need short guidance how should I proceed....
1
vote
3answers
259 views

When to use contractions and when to use complete words?

These are some passages from Man-Eating Cats by Haruki Murakami. He'd been dead set against out marriage from the start, and his tone of voice said he'd finally been proved right. He had ...
1
vote
1answer
186 views

Spanish writing website?

I am looking for a website that is community based for reviews in spanish. Does someone know anything? The website is to publish stories, narrative, novels, poems and such, that would be reviewed ...
2
votes
3answers
740 views

Resources on Minimalist Style of Creative Writing

I recently found out (see here) that my writing style can be described as minimalist. I am fascinated by this 'revelation' because it has helped me understand why I write the way I do. (I have no ...
3
votes
2answers
361 views

API reference doc: best practices for describing opaque parameters?

The reference documentation for an application programming interface (API) is, in modern systems, usually generated from the code itself automatically. For example, for Java interfaces a typical tool ...
2
votes
2answers
79 views

From Journal to first draft - most effective route to take? [closed]

Whilst travelling, I kept a journal and I have since written one part of my travels up as a book: http://www.weaveoftheride.com. However, I am now writing the second book, and I am looking for new ...
0
votes
2answers
63 views

What format should I use for this project?

Through the last 6 years working as a designer and studying an MA Design, I have collected a library of 'design thinking methods'. I have them on a first edit in an evernote notebook presently. ...
3
votes
2answers
129 views

Citing lecture notes

I am writing my thesis and using notes from different lectures on the topic as a source of sources. These notes cite other papers and present briefly the ideas, and I do use the lecture notes to find ...
6
votes
6answers
188 views

How can I dig conflict out of an optimistic SF-nal premise?

I frequently have ideas for what could be called "optimistic" science-fiction premises - imaginary technological or social changes which I think would create an unusual and interesting setting, and "...
1
vote
3answers
215 views

Is it necessary to make clear “when” an event occur in a flashback?

Few examples: Saki first became aware of her sixth finger at the age of five. Her aunt had come to visit the house that afternoon, bringing Rika (Saki's favorite cousin). (...) ...
2
votes
2answers
101 views

Is it possible to publish stories with experimental spacing technique? (aka, blank pages, etc.)

I've got a few stories that employ experimental stylistics. The piece that is giving me the most trouble, though, is split up into five sections-- each section begins on its own page. It's hard to ...
2
votes
3answers
441 views

How to decide whether or not to accept publishing offer for short story?

I am an unpublished writer straight out of college. After graduation, I sent out a few stories to a handful of places-- no more than five or six. It is now about 1.5 months later and I just received a ...
0
votes
1answer
217 views

Does it sound more natural to use the character's way of speaking while describing his/her inner thoughts?

In the following example, the character is a five-year-old: Saki stared at her side. Her cousin was right: she had indeed an extra digit on one hand. How come she hadn't notice it before? ...
8
votes
2answers
190 views

Expectation of privacy using a pseudonym?

I'm wondering how possible anonymity is when using a pen name. I have no idea how that works with modern publishers. Your real name must be public information somewhere in that transaction. So is ...
8
votes
3answers
24k views

Attributing quotes to fictional characters

Let's say, for example, that I want to post my favourite quote from Babylon 5 somewhere: "I'm not saying what I'm saying. I'm not saying what I'm thinking. As a matter of fact, I'm not thinking ...
2
votes
3answers
105 views

How much can I talk about other people's works?

Let's say I'm writing a novel set in the future, clearly on Earth, with all the history that has happened through today. Obviously in the real world, there are numerous works of fiction that are ...
3
votes
1answer
113 views

How to find a British agency that will publish a book in Russia?

How can I find a British agency to represent me as a writer in Russia in order to publish a book there (a book written originally in Russian)? Do such agencies exist? I understand that it does sound ...
7
votes
5answers
528 views

Swearing - Censor, allude, or include?

I was reading this thread, but it didn't quite the answer a question I had about creative writing and whether profanity should be used or not, in a way that is best for creative storytelling. Here's ...
-1
votes
1answer
63 views

Re-phrasing help [closed]

'The glass filled with water slipped from Kekibhoys's hand while he was lost in his thoughts.' This is the opening sentence to a short story that three of us are collaborating on. I feel this ...
3
votes
2answers
983 views

How do I improve my knowledge of English well enough to write in it?

I have a long-term goal to write a non-fiction book: a critical book about the current state of humanity's moral methodologies and how humanity is better off dead. Much like Friedrich Nietzsche but ...
2
votes
5answers
704 views

Techniques for creating variety in prose

When I write my short stories, I usually end up using a direct style as follows: Tim remembered the day he had to say goodbye to Cathy. He did not really have a choice. He had to let go of Cathy, ...
-1
votes
0answers
66 views

How can I say “Facebook will not get you anywhere”? [closed]

For a sticker I need to express this idea in the best way possible: Facebook will not get you anywhere. It is in a motivational way, trying to convince people that Facebook will not give ...
0
votes
1answer
103 views

How to maintain an unchanging tone to the narrative while writing collaborative fiction? [duplicate]

Three of us have just finished the first complete draft of our first attempt at collaborative fiction. While the plot and the story are tightly knit, we have are facing trouble in maintaining the tone ...
3
votes
1answer
83 views

Citing in a Magazine Article

I write a ton of magazine articles online. My editor tells me you do not need a works cited as you do in academic work. I am wondering what kind of citing you do need and what I should be doing for ...
3
votes
2answers
302 views

Should a piece of fiction be made of 100% concise writing?

I recently finished reading William Strunk's Elements of Style. The book mostly teaches how to write concise paragraphs (e.g. by removing, changing, and rearranging words). So I decided to apply that ...
1
vote
3answers
564 views

Why do authors start a paragraph in an indirect way?

I found that many writers of magazines or novels say something in a way that is not straightforward and to the point. Like this: Dressed like a latter-day Steve Jobs in a tight black long-sleeve ...
2
votes
4answers
264 views

Who is the perfect rival to the right-person-wrong-time character in a love triangle?

I'm looking for a well balanced love triangle. The thought of a wrong-person-right-time rival seems to be weak because readers are most likely not to root for the him/her if the wrongness is obvious.
3
votes
1answer
154 views

permission to use emails from famous deceased person

I finished a creative non-fiction memoir about my secret life as a miracle worker. I am using three emails to me from a now deceased wildly popular tech icon. Our phone conversation as well as the ...
3
votes
3answers
129 views

Units to use in travelogue-book (time, weight, temperature, distance, etc)

I'm writing a book (travelogue) about Japan in English, detailing my walk across the country a few years ago. My target audience is English speaking countries, and I'm trying to write in American ...
0
votes
1answer
59 views

Looking for source material on large, long-lived criminal blackmail rings

I'm writing a story where the main character is trying to take down a very successful, established blackmail ring. I'm looking for some existing good stories about large-scale blackmail to get some ...
2
votes
1answer
179 views

Metrics for assessing the persuasiveness of a paper?

Are there any known variables to measure, or questions to ask in survey, in order to asses the persuasiveness of a paper? For example, I'm not sure if omitting a section from my paper might actually ...
0
votes
4answers
1k views

Does my title/opening paragraph grab your attention?

Saki's Sixth Finger Saki gripped her extra finger as she peered down at the beach. The plane was reaching Phuket, finally. Watching the crystalline turquoise water and shiny white sand had ...
3
votes
2answers
180 views

Looking for writer's platform

I'm looking for a platform (web app, saas application) to manage writers and articles for a large blog. I'm looking for the following features: I enter topics, writers can claim subjects and write ...
4
votes
2answers
108 views

Referring to people in a book

I'm writing a book (travelogue) about Japan, comparing it to Sweden, where I'm from. During my travels I communicated mostly in Japanese but occasionally in English and Swedish. The book is in English ...
1
vote
2answers
210 views

Using hyphen points

I read that bullet points have to be consistent when it comes to content and punctuation. For example, you can't mix full sentence bullet points with fragments. Is this true for hyphen points (if ...
2
votes
2answers
102 views

Is there an alternative to the common genre-system for classifying books?

When fiction is marketed, I often see them listed by genre, for e.g.: "fantasy", "science fiction", "mystery", "poetry", etc. Most bookstores and Web sites use essentially the same categories to ...
3
votes
3answers
401 views

How to become a productive/accomplished writer?

I prefer writing short stories. Over the years, I have learnt many essential skills that I employ in my work. I believe (and this is my personal assessment) that my stories are of good quality (i.e ...
5
votes
1answer
216 views

What's a minimum recommendable word-count to generate sales in Amazon Direct Publishing (ADP)?

I entered a contest where authors are required to write a story of 3000+ words. The winners will be those who make the most sales in Amazon Direct Publishing (ADP). I already have the plot, but I'm ...
4
votes
3answers
110 views

Books for children: complexity

I am wondering how complex the story can be so that small children can understand it (younger than eight). Are there any rules of thumb of how many characters can be introduced before the child looses ...
5
votes
2answers
168 views

Affordable way to translate sentences?

I'm writing a story in English but I want to have a character in there that speaks German in which I'm not fluent. Are they any online translation services for artistic pieces? All I see on Google ...
1
vote
2answers
15k views

Describing a character's panic and confusion

I wrote the following: When I opened my eyes, it was still dark. Half asleep, I got out of bed, and entered the bathroom. As I emptied my bladder, I checked my face in the mirror. For an instant,...
1
vote
1answer
440 views

A short story, any comments? [closed]

I am new to this forum and would like to share one of my short novel here. I would love to hear any comments and thoughts (e.g., how the story flows, any better way to describe the atmosphere? and so ...
7
votes
4answers
587 views

What factors in fiction arouse readers' expectations?

Feedback from my writer's group tells me that my recent stories leave promises unfulfilled and important questions unanswered. So I've become interested in how stories make promises and raise ...
1
vote
4answers
12k views

Does this sound like a good description of someone falling asleep due exhaustion? Anything I can do to make it sound better? [closed]

I'm trying to describe somebody falling asleep from exhaustion, in first person. I'm currently using a longer, detailed description, but is that the best way? Never had a few moments deliberation ...

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