6
votes
3answers
800 views

Is concurrent first person / third person usage absolutely unacceptable?

Background: My understanding about first person / third person is this: choose a voice and maintain it throughout the piece. However, when writing marketing-type information, I find myself switching ...
3
votes
3answers
156 views

Copywriting Course

This is my first post, so apologies if I'm posting this in the wrong place. I've been working as a freelance SEO blog/article writer for almost a year and a half. While I enjoy the job, I am getting ...
5
votes
8answers
5k views

Good examples of fear/terror inducing techniques used with enemies

What good examples of fear/terror inducing techniques do you know? Off the top of my head I am thinking of: the Apache Indians scalping of dead enemies and hanging them in their horses/spears/belts ...
9
votes
5answers
627 views

What's “fair use” for borrowing someone else's invented term?

Let's say I'm writing a sci-fi novel. I want to use a word which another writer has coined, which has become well-recognized outside the original book, for the name of an alien species in my story. I ...
6
votes
3answers
394 views

How do I start editing my novel?

I had written the first draft of my book and put it in the freezer almost 6 weeks ago. Yesterday I took it out, and after going through a first read to note my reactions, I have decided to start work ...
2
votes
2answers
268 views

How much outlining should I use in writing my book?

In my writing style, I make an outline of what I'm going to write, and I have fun in between. I was kidding myself in thinking outlining contrasted with "stream of consciousness" in which thoughts ...
2
votes
5answers
489 views

Why should I try to create realistic fantasy characters?

One use for fantasy is wish-fulfillment. With that in mind, why is there a need for realism in creating a character in a fantasy novel?
10
votes
3answers
329 views

Frailties, mistakes, and imperfections

In the past, I've been inclined to believe that god-like characters are fun to write about. They are impossible to kill, cause omnipotent levels of destruction without consequence, and always come out ...
1
vote
6answers
3k views

How can I improve my written communication skills the soonest?

All. The biggest area I am working right now is to improve my written communications skills. It’s a tough skill to learn but a good one to have, since most of what we do is exchange email with our ...
1
vote
3answers
135 views

How can I condense a description of a web designer/developer's work into a one-liner?

How can I condense this sentence into a one-liner? Being alone on the project, this web designer/developer held the responsibility of - communicating with the client and the end-users, - defining ...
8
votes
5answers
2k views

What is a discovery writer?

From an answer to this question: How do I successfully structure a long fiction piece? I think I can infer the meaning from the usage but some elaboration would be helpful.
8
votes
4answers
431 views

How do I successfully structure a long fiction piece?

I’ve ‘completed’ three novels – a thriller, a coming-of-age story, and a mystery. I’ve had expert readers for all three including Sue Grafton who read two of them. All the expert readers have the same ...
2
votes
6answers
656 views

How should I phrase “requests” to a higher-ranked individual in another department?

At work, I lead a small team of programmers. I often have to request equipment and services from our I.T. department, and all of those requests have to go directly to the C.I.O., which is an ...
5
votes
7answers
316 views

What's the most marketable title?

I am writing a novel about someone being chased by the Russian Mafia. A hitman is sent to save her and that's where the books takes off. I have way too many titles floating in my brain - three to be ...
12
votes
2answers
110 views

Notes Placement

Why is it standard for a book's notes to be placed at the very end of the book—book endnotes—while only a small minority of books place each chapter's notes at the end of each respective ...
1
vote
3answers
603 views

How to fix awkward “sufficiently… that…” sentence structure?

I have written the following sentence, but I am dissatisfied with its construction. In particular, the that joining the two parts of the sentence reads somewhat awkwardly. Can anyone suggest a better ...
22
votes
5answers
3k views

So I finished my novel. Now what do I do?

A few days ago I finished the first draft of my current novel project after a few months of work, finishing at 83,212 words. Now what should I do with it? So obviously I need to edit it. Should I ...
3
votes
3answers
15k views

Minimum (realistic) word count of non-fiction book

What is a reasonable estimate for the minimum length, in word count, for a non-fiction book? I'd guesstimate that non-fiction books "generally" (yes, this is very rough) run perhaps 150-450 pages, ...
2
votes
2answers
182 views

Is this blog post clear and coherent?

I wrote a pseudo-technical blog post trying to apply some game theory concepts to s/w startup industry. This is my first serious attempt at tech blog writing. Iwas left feeling disappointed by the ...
6
votes
4answers
3k views

Help with Impersonal Past Tense

'The Report is to be presented in the “impersonal past tense” e.g. Personal – I worked in the Design Department. Impersonal – The work was carried out in the Design Department.' ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

Any experience with Serenity Editor software?

Has anyone had any experience with Serenity Editor editing software? What's the difference between the Standard version or the Word add-in? What kind of results can it get? If nobody has used it, ...
5
votes
4answers
213 views

Incorporating Military Experience into Fantasy Writing?

I was in the Marines from 2000-2004, and I'd say I have a love/hate relationship with my experiences therein. I'm wondering how I could incorporate them into fantasy writing. Could you tell me where I ...
5
votes
4answers
145 views

Bogged Down with Legends of Wind

It's not that I have a lot of writer's block, it's the mash-up of stories I'm compiling that all have to fit together in some way. I have outlines and I have a heap of unfinished stories, all going ...
6
votes
2answers
146 views

What is this writing standard called, and where can I look up the exact details?

My English instructor said that he wants us to submit a heading and a header on our essays, taking the following form. The first page only should have our name, his name, the date, the subject (not ...
9
votes
8answers
1k views

Dialogue writing practices?

First time novelist, long time writer here. I'm looking for creative writing exercises to help with my dialogue. Any ideas?
5
votes
2answers
468 views

How do you introduce terms?

There's a few different styles for technical (academic) papers. Which is the preferred style to introducing new technical terms? For example, here is a paragraph I have that I don't like, because I ...
0
votes
2answers
56 views

What are the potential platforms for floating chapters of a business book?

I am in the process of working with a client on the development of a business book to support the development of a consulting business. The book will be comprised of multiple sections -- each which ...
2
votes
3answers
18k views

What is the other way to say “stay in touch”? [closed]

In one of the statements that I'm writing, I wanted to express the idea that the Internet has helped one to stay in touch with friends. I wrote it this way: It is undeniable that the Internet has ...
7
votes
4answers
897 views

Should I care if my short story has the same title as someone else's book?

It appears to be a pretty obscure book. It's on Amazon, but there are no descriptions or reviews. From the cover, I'd say it was a kids book, which would put it in a different market. Let's assume ...
5
votes
3answers
883 views

On copyright laws and plots

I was pondering a lot on the issue with copyrights on plots. Is having an identical plot infringing someone else's copyrighted work? I am fully aware that the character names are copyrighted and ...
16
votes
4answers
3k views

What is a beat?

I keep hearing the word "beat" in Writers.SE, as in "... break your scene into beats" from this question. What is a beat? How is it different from a scene?
6
votes
6answers
312 views

Book recommendations for writing better technical papers

My employer has presented me with two books to read to help me write better technical papers and emails. Essentials of English Grammar and Handbook of English Grammar and Usage. I have read through ...
6
votes
2answers
142 views

Has anyone tried “pair writing” before and been published?

Most of the time when two people write a book, one person is doing the majority of the writing and the other is critiquing or helping with the plot or providing technical information that the real ...
7
votes
5answers
994 views

The importance of monitor size/distance for writing productivity?

I've been thinking today that my writing station's monitor screen set-up is much worse than I had previously thought, and can be partly blamed for productivity problems. I write on a 2004 laptop with ...
4
votes
4answers
748 views

Proper attribution of copyrighted lyrics in a story

If I put several lines of a copyrighted song in my text, and mention the band name, how can I be certain that my attribution is sufficient and guarantees against legal action? From what I've been ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the best way to introduce myself in a letter to a prospective graduate adviser?

I'm applying for graduate school, and I'm considering writing to Professors whose research areas match with what I intend to pursue. I've a Masters' degree and 2 years working experience in a renowned ...
2
votes
2answers
325 views

Substitutions for 'which' and 'for which' that maintain the sentence's meaning

I am having a bit of a problem trying to substitute the words which and for without changing too much the meaning/flow of the sentence. I have tried the thesaurus, synonyms, etc with no luck. I ...
3
votes
5answers
2k views

How can this technical message be made clearer?

How could this technical sentenced be improved for better clarity? Cannot translate the ‘name1’ concept1 to the ‘name2’ concept2 because the higher precedence ‘name3’ concept3 also exists, which ...
8
votes
6answers
704 views

What to do if I can't meet my chapter word count?

I usually set a word count goal for each of my chapters, say 2000 words. But sometimes I can't meet that goal, for any number of reasons. What should I do: A. Continue anyway, and hope to increase ...
3
votes
2answers
372 views

How do you manage all the different aspects of writing poetry?

Every time I try to write a poem I find myself incredibly stuck. It feels to me like poetry has so many different aspects- meter, structure, rhyming, lingual aesthetics (not to mention semantics), all ...
7
votes
4answers
256 views

How to give the readers breathing space, without putting them to sleep?

I remember reading somewhere that while plots should have tension, too much tension will tire the readers out, so there should be some breathing place, where the reader can get a chance to catch their ...
0
votes
0answers
56 views

Site for free author reviews [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What are good places to post your work where it will be read by others? What are some good sites to have your written works reviewed? I'm not necessarily talking about ...
4
votes
1answer
140 views

What is the new Google Author markup?

What is the new Google Author markup, and how can I use it to build up a reputation as an online writer? How could it possibly work? Using self-declared information has been tried before and of ...
2
votes
6answers
291 views

Is it acceptable for a book to not have a dominant lead character?

I saw this question posted in another forum, and it didn't have any responses, so naturally I decided to bring it over here. :) I realized, 80% of the way through my first draft, that I don't have ...
3
votes
6answers
496 views

Can a likeable character be unsympathetic?

I believe an unlikable character can be sympathetic, although that's tricky. But can you go the other way? Can your character be likable but at the same time unsympathetic? I've been trying and ...
1
vote
4answers
142 views

How can I express this more clearly or concisely?

I'm documenting a block of computer code and would like to make it clear and concise. I'm describing a function that populates a field on a user input screen. Here's my best shot but it still seems ...
3
votes
1answer
6k views

What counts as a word when dealing with a word limit?

I am trying to determine if it will be feasible to revise a manuscript for a journal that has a 6500 word limit. Currently, the manuscript is between 7500 and 8000 words long, depending on how I count ...
6
votes
10answers
822 views

How do I keep the plot interesting in a humorous book?

I am about to start writing a fantasy-comedy novel. A problem I found in 1-2 books of this genre is that the plot becomes weak, and the story starts to slow down. The reason I believe this happens is ...
2
votes
2answers
101 views

Improving Ad Script

I am looking for some advice on how to improve a short script that I have for an advertisement/introduction video. I have been revising this for two months now. I have below two different versions. ...
12
votes
8answers
454 views

I'm not a great pantser; what kind of preparation do I need for NaNoWriMo?

I'm very appreciative of NaNoWriMo's "your first step is writing a crappy first draft" credo, and I like the motivation that NaNoWriMo encourages. I'm precisely at the point where what I feel I need ...

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