5
votes
4answers
486 views

Writing about extreme trauma

I've just written a chapter in which one of my protags witnesses her entire family massacred during an invasion of her home city. This is obviously an extremely traumatic and horrifying event, and in ...
7
votes
5answers
1k views

How Do you Stave Off Boredom While Writing?

I have about 20 half-finish novels sitting on my computer, in my filing cabinet, or under my bed. The story with each is the same - I start out with a full head of steam and great ideas, but about ...
0
votes
4answers
322 views

Why zero sales? [closed]

I thought this religious book would be a bestseller. But when I tried to sell it through CreateSpace during a few months it has lead to zero sales. After this I put it freely available on the Web, ...
9
votes
5answers
4k views

how many books by new authors get published every year?

I have heard figures like 100,000 - 250,000 books are published every year, but this probably includes already established authors. Are there any numbers for how many 1st time authors books are ...
1
vote
0answers
843 views

Which Pen Is Best For Writing/Signing Important Documents? [closed]

Regular pens or gel ink pens? What do you say?
1
vote
1answer
930 views

Do I need to send an email to say thank you? [closed]

I'm not very familiar with English world, and I want to ask a question about Email etiquette. Sometimes I sent an email to someone for help, and got a very helpful reply which completely solved my ...
6
votes
5answers
266 views

Vision/dream as an effective opening?

I'm looking for opinions on the effectiveness of this opening scene. It's a vision, not that he knows that at first. He thinks it a dream and won't quite act on it straight away. The vision was given ...
4
votes
3answers
219 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 ...
12
votes
7answers
2k views

Technical Writing Software

I'm interested in newer software/software stack to use in writing technical papers. For the longest time I have been use LaTeX to handle this but in looking at getting longer pieces published, such as ...
6
votes
4answers
251 views

Least possible editing effort if a text is for multiple media?

I want to write a text with some basic styles and images. I plan to use it on a blog, maybe later in a wiki. And there should be a pdf version. I am writing about a software. So there will be ...
16
votes
4answers
2k views

Is there any point in learning to write in cursive?

I remember learning it as a child, and I remember I was told it was important and every kid in the class had to learn it. But now that I think about it, I haven't used cursive for years. What was ...
6
votes
1answer
137 views

Is there a good textbook for understanding literary techniques?

I want to really understand literary techniques. I want to be able to say "Ah, I see this writer is making use of assonance," or "I think I will use a simile here instead of a metaphor." There are ...
1
vote
2answers
187 views

What free tools are there to help me improve my English?

I am in the process of writing a research paper in Computer Science. Are there any free tools/browser plugins/web sites/latex plugins that would help me improve my English? I am looking for some nice ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

What sites can I use to crowdsource my writing project?

I have a writing project I'd like to crowdsource. I imagine opening the project definition to an open call, and awarding the work to the most creative writer / thinker based on a sample of their work ...
3
votes
1answer
808 views

How much should I expect to charge someone for translation services?

I have been approached by someone to translate a foreign language into (written) English. What is an acceptable rate (preferably in UK currency, but US would be fine) per thousand words that I could ...
2
votes
2answers
372 views

Best way to Write a Table of Contents for Awkward Pagination

I have a piccadilly journal that I use for taking notes on self-taught subjects and I have an awkward structure for pagination and page structure: Page numbers only exist on the right hand side of ...
1
vote
2answers
219 views

Why is this ‘loved’ italicized?

I’m interested in italics in novels. Italic writings in novels have a wide variety of feelings, for example surprise, delight, anger, irony, humor, etc. However, consulting reference books, I only ...
1
vote
3answers
107 views

Does this convey that I recommend the anthology I'm reviewing?

Here's a snipped-up version of a review of an anthology I wrote a while back (full original review here). Most of the stories were pretty good, a few were superb, and there were a few poor ones. For ...
1
vote
5answers
298 views

Complimenting on solid structure with no major flaws

When reviewing fiction, there's a certain quality that's very important to me, which I can best describe as being "solid." By which I mean: the story is well thought-out, well constructed; it flows ...
1
vote
3answers
606 views

Do I need to write a bibliography?

I made a program and wrote a paper on how it works. I do not quote anything, I just talk about my program. Do I still need to write a bibliography?
1
vote
3answers
12k views

Citing multiple quotes from a single novel

I'm writing a analytical essay (for school) about a novel. I need to cite some quotes (for support), that comes from that novel. I know that the MLA style citation goes as follows: "Quote goes here" ...
5
votes
5answers
1k views

What are some strategies for developing basic writing skills? Beginning Writing (again)

I have a friend who is going back to college after a decade, and is quickly finding out that his/her writing skills are not up to snuff. He/she writes in a style suited more for Facebook than ...
12
votes
5answers
2k views

Pitfalls of writing a main character of different gender to the author, specifically first-person perspective?

This is my first question on here, so bear with me, if you will. My question is in two-parts: a) When writing in first-person, is it wise to choose a main character of a different gender to yourself ...
4
votes
6answers
3k views

How do you make your characters likable?

Though I disagree that characters need to be likeable for a story to be good, I certainly do not think it hurts - nice people in stories serve as redeeming factors and give the occasional "tingle down ...
5
votes
1answer
6k views

Is there an accepted format for comedy sketch writing?

I have been doing Google searches for examples or teleplays to download that may offer insight for sketch comedy writing. Is there a specific format that those in the industry follow or is simply the ...
8
votes
5answers
3k views

Is Postscript still useful in the age of email?

"Post script is usually written when a writer forgets to write something on the main body of the letter and wants to add on to what he had written on the letter." But in this age of email and word ...
2
votes
5answers
81 views

Quoting text from a country with different internationalization.

I'm writing my doctoral dissertation here in the United States, and quoting some text from an English-language paper written in Germany. In Germany, the convention for writing numbers is to use a ...
4
votes
2answers
270 views

How can one get better at copywriting?

Since copy is such a key part of a startup's website, many business people would like to learn to be good copywriters personally. Such a person would need to be a good persuasive writer, and able to ...
1
vote
3answers
767 views

Good report making software

I am reaching the final stage of my academic project work. Usual practice is to use Microsoft Office/OpenOffice/LibreOffice for preparing the final project report. As I am inclined towards FOSS I am ...
3
votes
2answers
113 views

Does Wiktionary supply what writers need in an online dictionary?

There are actually Wiktionaries for many languages and the English Wiktionary also defines and translates words of many other languages. But ignoring these other languages, have you tried the English ...
3
votes
4answers
136 views

Is this clearly expressed: “The real power is information”

I want to say that information is the real power in the world. I want to say it in one clean (short) sentence. Is the following good enough? (My mother language isn't English.) The real power is ...
4
votes
4answers
98 views

Is it a Good or Bad thing to use 'I' Regularly in Magazine Articles?

Do readers want to read articles where the author refers to themselves and their experiences, or would they prefer the author to leave themselves out of the article? When I say 'readers' I'm ...
0
votes
1answer
155 views

What are some possible reasons of why my readers preferred this “writing” over the others two? [closed]

Recently, I wrote the following stuff for a photo web comic I created inspired in "a softer world.": To break up and stay friends means to throw away a possession and turn it into something ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Preventing genre-savvy second-guessing in murder mysteries

In a murder mystery, most of the story is generally focused on figuring out who the murderer is; in "Fair-Play" mysteries, it's assumed the murderer is a significant character in the book, and the fun ...
5
votes
2answers
181 views

plagiarism vs. reference?

I just finished reading the annotated edition of Lolita, and Nabokov hid references to other works of literature everywhere. Lately I've also been considering ways to work in lyrics and other oblique ...
4
votes
3answers
268 views

Online technical writing classes

anyone aware of or can recommend online training courses for technical writers to improve your technical writing skills? I'm looking for courses that provide video or audio lectures, and teachers ...
15
votes
8answers
2k views

What breaks suspension of disbelief?

So much of Sci-Fi and Fantasy requires the viewer (or reader) to suspend their disbelief: The speed of light can be circumvented, magic works, vampires are real (and may or may not sparkle), etc. ...
0
votes
1answer
495 views

English writers IDE [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is there a special software for writers? What IDE's do writers typically write in? I'm aware of Microsoft Word, but surely that is not something that a professional ...
10
votes
4answers
416 views

How do you avoid the problem of all the characters in your story sounding the same?

There's a common flaw that I can easily detect in amateur writing, (and of course my own) which essentially boils down to all the characters "sounding the same", dialogue-wise anyway. Trying to ...
3
votes
4answers
397 views

Can I use “We” to refer to me and the reader?

I am writing my thesis and in many cases I want to take the reader through an example. For example: Besides the advanced composition rules, it is also important to have a set of basic rules to ...
6
votes
1answer
561 views

Is an overview clearer when outlined with bullet points, or when written in paragraphs?

I am writing a short piece for a technical audience. In essence I have three main points, each with sub-points. A few of the sub-points themselves have sub-points. I cannot help but find it clearer ...
5
votes
10answers
281 views

What's a good title to a presentations' table of contents?

This is a professional presentation, I'm looking for a good title for the ToC page (some humor allowed). What I have so far is "What am I going to talk about", which frankly kind of sucks. Your ...
6
votes
4answers
587 views

Which goes first: summary, background or justification?

I am trying to write a long expository piece and cannot figure out which information should come first. Here are three candidates: A summary/abstract lists the main points, without necessarily ...
4
votes
5answers
602 views

How to explain something mid sentence

I'm writing a review for a fiction book and I'm using a lot of terminology that is specific to the book and I feel that it has to be given some context and explanation. Otherwise any reader would be ...
2
votes
4answers
3k views

What Types of Jobs can a Writer find?

as you all realize the term 'Writer' is very broad and general. So my quick question is: I'm trying to help my young aspiring writer friend find a job in PA, but the term writer is really general. ...
5
votes
6answers
475 views

Does this feel like natural English?

Although I'm pretty confident in my English, I'm not a native English speaker. I need to write a short introduction for a symposium; I'd like to know if you think this paragraph feels like 'natural' ...
2
votes
3answers
664 views

Help me rewrite this sentence [closed]

I would like help re-writing this sentence. I would like the overall tone of the language kept intact, and I would like it to be as concise, eloquent and well written as possible. In the event ...
3
votes
3answers
617 views

What are the ingredients for a good book review?

I've recently started writing book reviews. I am doing this for numerous reasons, most importantly perhaps is to be able to express in a clear and concise manner. English is not my first language and ...
-2
votes
1answer
182 views

How many words (or lines) are long enough to make someone think about his life but short enough to hook lazy readers? [closed]

OK, I know that it depends of what it is written. But I believe that human brain responds to a certain amount of words in different ways. Based on that, how many words (or lines) you think are long ...
7
votes
6answers
571 views

How to attract the average reader to an “intellectual” novel?

For instance, If I write a novel which has the following: “The universe goes through a gradual transition from one condition, to a different condition, without any abrupt changes.” ...

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