3
votes
3answers
3k views

What elements should be included in a story's setting?

I know this will vary depending on the type of the story and the characters involved, not to mention the location itself. What I am looking for is some kind of guideline for identifying different ...
0
votes
3answers
374 views

How can this sentence better convey the immobilizing impact of fear?

Someone on another forum asked for advice on a sentence she was writing, so I thought I'd share it here and see what kind of responses we could get. The sentence in question is marked by italics. (I ...
3
votes
3answers
105 views

What's the best way to distinguish between co-authors?

I know a couple of people who are co-authoring a book, and they have been debating how to go about distinguishing between the two of them in their content. They have an outline of topics that they are ...
3
votes
2answers
160 views

All persons fictitious - where to place it?

I've got an all persons fictitious disclaimer similar to the one mentioned at All persons fictitious disclaimer — ideas regarding modification? but where should I place it? Bear in mind, this is a ...
4
votes
5answers
177 views

Do traditional publishers ever make use of “print on demand” (POD)?

Do traditional publishers always use offset printing for the books they publish, or do they sometimes use POD to make books available? If they do use POD, is it primarily for older titles?
12
votes
3answers
6k views

Other options for “had had”? [closed]

Although the use of "had had" is grammatically correct, it doesn't read well and seems awkward to me. Take for example the following sentence: I had had enough of this nonsense and was ready to ...
3
votes
3answers
632 views

First Person Voice - Same as speaking?

When writing in first person, if the POV character talks with a certain dialect or type of diction (eg. "I ain't got all day! Hurry it up, will ya?") should they narrate with the same accent, or can ...
5
votes
3answers
1k views

Why do authors usually put a reference section at the end of a book when they are not referenced throughout the entire book?

In the references list (usually at the end of a book), I've noticed that authors like to include references to other materials. However these materials are not so-called "referenced" or "linked" at ...
16
votes
3answers
568 views

Is there a quick way to know I have created a Mary Sue?

For those who don't know what a Mary Sue is: see here. The problem is, there are far too many ways a character can be a Mary Sue, as seen here. Many websites that offer tests to see if your ...
1
vote
3answers
307 views

How can I manage screen shots and other graphics for maintenance?

Our ~1500-page documentation set contains numerous screen shots and related graphics (schematics, flow diagrams, etc). Sometimes the user interface changes and we have to update all the affected ...
10
votes
3answers
796 views

What's the proper etiquette/format for updating a blog post?

I've been doing websites for 16 years, but am new to writing a blog. Websites pages change all the time, but it seems to me that blog posts are relatively static once they've been posted. If I want ...
9
votes
3answers
293 views

What to include in agreement with a Ghost Writer. . .

I am exploring engaging a Ghost writer to partner with me on the development of a non-fiction (well, mostly) business book. What are the critical elements of the agreement that need to be included? ...
2
votes
1answer
102 views

Phrase suggestion on Xiosis Scribe 2011

I have downloaded Scribe from www.xiosis.com and have been giving it a go. So far its all its advertised to be. My question is I have written a long article on Scribe and phrase suggestion is not ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

Tense of Literary Essay

When writing a literary essay in English what tense should be used: Past as in: Gatsby’s parties were ostentatious and exquisite Or present as in: Gatsby’s parties are ostentatious and ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

What exactly is “Conceptual Writing?”

I've seen this term (and its variations such as "conceptual poetry") used a lot to describe works such as Christian Bök's Eunoia. I have a sense of what it means, but I've never seen a solid ...
4
votes
4answers
820 views

If in real life the antagonist is often oneself, shouldn't it work in a full length novel?

I'm fleshing out a novel which seems to have enough going on without adding an antagonist. In reality, my main character is her own antagonist. She is warring with herself, battling feelings of guilt ...
3
votes
2answers
356 views

How could my friend publish his Steve Jobs biography?

A friend of mine (no, really!) is well on his way of writing a unofficial/unauthorized biography of Steve Jobs. In my opinion it is a fantastic read and he did a lot of research and has a long list of ...
9
votes
1answer
128 views

How to determine rates to charge as a freelance writer

While I have a few articles published, they were easy fixed rates. Today, however, I've received this email (identifying details removed): We need a writer to put together descriptions of ...
6
votes
4answers
304 views

Is it always ok to use the verb “to say” after a question?

Does it sound strange to use the verb "to say" after a question? For example: "'Why is it called a memorial?' said Laura." If I were to have written this, I would have used "asked" instead. Am I ...
3
votes
1answer
580 views

Email templates

I'm not sure if this is the right place to ask this, but here goes - I often find myself writing out emails that follow similar themes e.g. I've read through a document and have some questions, I'm ...
14
votes
4answers
6k views

What's a typical trilogy structure?

Is there a typical structure for a fantasy trilogy? To be more specific, would they usually follow the three-act structure, with an act per book? And would each book need a self-contained story arc ...
7
votes
2answers
80 views

Does this FAQ accurately convey the mission of DIY.SE?

The DIY stack exchange is currently trying to make our FAQ more useful to new users, and I wondered if some folks from this community could take a look and help us to define ourselves better. This is ...
4
votes
4answers
900 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 ...
2
votes
3answers
78 views

What is best way to accentuate the positive in an endorsement?

I want to write an endorsement for someone. I have one line that begins like this: "I have no doubt that ..." But I don't like the negative connotation of 'no doubt'. My best alternative of ...
6
votes
2answers
180 views

Finding words through meanings

Is there a place or a type of dictionary or even a good method, that instead of searching for a word, I can search for a meaning and get more words that have similar idea or meaning? For example, if ...
3
votes
3answers
648 views

How would one use punctuation to indicate tone changes?

I'm imagining this sort of statement: He's a... different... sort of person, I suppose. Some people would pronounce 'different' in that sentence as though it was followed by a question mark, but ...
4
votes
2answers
117 views

The best publishing platform for a business “vanity” book?

I have a client who has written a (well done) synopsis of his core business proposition that reads like a great little book, but is only 15,000 words. Is this a good candidate for Amazon's Singles? ...
7
votes
5answers
14k views

All persons fictitious disclaimer — ideas regarding modification?

I'm creating a parody/spoof magazine which contains some "real" advertisements and businesses in. How should I word an "all persons fictitious" disclaimer to include fictitious businesses? This is ...
8
votes
2answers
129 views

How much agent contact should I expect?

How much contact should I expect to have with my literary agent (from a sizeable London firm, representing my first novel)? Are months of silence to be expected/endured? If so...how many?
1
vote
4answers
184 views

Is it possible to figure out the ROI of an MFA?

Given that there are a few jobs where an MFA (Masters of Fine Arts) in creative writing is preferred as a writer or editor, is it possible figure out the ROI (return on investment) of acquiring the ...
3
votes
1answer
238 views

Dropping articles in the title (of a article or a section) or in the caption (of a figure or a table)? What's the general rule?

It is said that "To give added punch, articles are often dropped in the titles" source: http://www.davidappleyard.com/english/articles.htm Is there any general rule or reference about dropping ...
17
votes
4answers
525 views

What's the distinction between “vanity publishing” and “self publishing”?

This question came up on the pros and cons of publishing avenues question; when I tried to look it up, I found the results confusing. For example, SFWA's explanation of publishing types gives the ...
37
votes
8answers
6k views

“All of a sudden…” ?

I am writing a manuscript for a novel. It's my first attempt, and often I find myself wanting to write "suddenly" or "all of a sudden". I do this when I want the scene to change in an instant, or ...
1
vote
3answers
680 views

What should you do if you need more than five heading when writing an APA paper?

(I don't know if this question is appropriate here. I'm going to take a chance.) If you're writing a paper according to the APA (American Psychology Association) standard and you need more than five ...
2
votes
2answers
250 views

List of figures and diagrams?

I was wondering what is the most acceptable way of including a large diagram in my thesis. The diagram takes up a full page and splits a paragraph. In your opinion is this bad? Should I put the ...
1
vote
3answers
254 views

What are jobs that prefer or require MFAs in Creative Writing?

Other than getting adjunct work with your shiny new MFA, what other professions like them? (I'm gainfully employed, and while I think my MFA helps me, it is in not appreciated by my employer in any ...
1
vote
0answers
46 views

Writing a book on establishing Cash N Carry business? [closed]

I am currently writing a book on Cash N Carry and how to establish the business. Having authored a book on Retail Store Operations, the second venture is this. For this book I am looking for the ...
9
votes
2answers
5k views

When should one use a section sign (§)?

When I asked this on English.SE, the question was closed; it was suggested that I ask on Writers.SE instead. To be clear, I mean the section sign § (utf-8: 0xC2 0xA7), which is available via \S in ...
3
votes
5answers
273 views

Which English grammar should be followed when writing for a global audience?

In relation to my question on Usage of 'z' in the word serialized in English?, it seems I was mistaken in assuming there is a generally accepted correct variant of English. The question Which variant ...
12
votes
3answers
344 views

How to create space

Recently, a few snippets of my fiction have received critiques along the lines of 'Does not give a sense of space'. Or 'needs more description, sights and sounds'. I think where I am going wrong is ...
4
votes
3answers
288 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 ...
8
votes
9answers
844 views

Should I start work on a sequel before I have sold my book?

I finished the 1st draft of my book, and have put it in the freezer(as I asked about in this question). I was planning to start work on a sequel of the book in the meantime. But I was told by someone ...
13
votes
3answers
185 views

How much influence do authors have on the titles of their books?

The background to my question: I have always assumed that authors choose their titles, because I consider them an important part of the book, but then I read interviews with some authors who had a ...
2
votes
1answer
122 views

Press Kit proof-read in exchange for an app license?

I would like to find someone who would proof-read a Press Kit of an Mac OS X app in exchange for a license. Do you know any website / service where I could find some English native speaker, ideally ...
2
votes
0answers
142 views

How much of my (first) novel should be completed before trying to find a publisher? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Can I shop an unfinished novel? I assumed this question had already been answered but I found nothing regarding it. I've heard that before publishing your first novel, ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Is it plausible to get a contract with an US/UK publisher as a foreigner?

Looking for some insight in the publishing industry. Is it even remotely plausible to get published in with an English-language publishing house (UK/US), when you're not a national nor a resident of ...
10
votes
4answers
114 views

What effect on literature has the introduction of eBooks and eReaders had?

eBooks and eReaders are still relatively new, but they've had a major impact on literature. What impact has eBooks and eReaders had on the production of literature (specifically books)?
9
votes
3answers
414 views

Pros and Cons of different styles of publishing

I was reading on the meta site that someone thinks we're hostile to self-publishing, and I read over some old questions looking for evidence. I didn't really find signs of hostility, but I certainly ...
4
votes
2answers
145 views

Finding freelance work

My partner is trying to get more freelance web copywriting work and as an avid StackOverflow user I thought I would try to see what the fantastic stackexchange community thinks. There has to be ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

On writing an essay, what are some good techniques to teach to schoolchildren?

I am currently teaching the way to write an essay as this: Step 1, write the topic sentence of the whole essay. Then, in the following first paragraph, develop the ideas that you are going to ...

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