13
votes
1answer
6k views

What are widely-used UK-English style guides?

In the UK, what are the equivalents to Chicago Manual of Style, the Associated Press style guide, Yahoo, APA, MLA, etc? Most importantly, what are their intended audiences? (AP is used for ...
1
vote
1answer
72 views

Can I release material related to a work and maintain my rights before publishing?

I don't know how many writers here are into the techy side of life, but I am wondering, if say. someone is writing the next star trek, is it safe to go ahead and release related material under a ...
9
votes
5answers
778 views

Is it really so “impossible” to get published by a traditional publisher?

I was an avid reader in my early years (as in hard copy - books), and I still am (just now via computer)... and I never got wind of such difficulties in publishing, until now. Is it like going up ...
7
votes
3answers
802 views

Is it wise to publish a novel as an e-book, and how would I do it?

I'm considering publishing my novel as an e-book (since I'm very techy) before I take the usual "paperback" route. Is this a wise choice? Also what would I need to do? (steps).
16
votes
5answers
2k views

I'm getting tired of “he said” “she said” in dialogue; how do I get around it?

I get tired of "he said", "she said", "they replied". Is there a better, but still reasonable way, to indicate dialogue?
14
votes
8answers
22k views

Should I indent the first line of the first paragraph in a chapter?

I was reading a thesis report of a friend and I noticed that he didn't indent the first line of the first paragraph in each chapter. I don't remember noticing it anywhere before until I saw it there ...
2
votes
3answers
2k views

A more specific type of “nervous laughter”

A handful of my friends have an odd trait where they say something and immediately laugh after it in an attempt to judge its success. The topic is usually a rant along the lines of, "These people have ...
-2
votes
1answer
147 views

How to write an academic paper?

I'm looking for resources on how to write an academic paper. The Web really lacks of those. Edit: Standback's and A. Martin's answers perfectly illustrates what I expect.
2
votes
4answers
205 views

Will the word “seek” be associated with the word “sick” if it is present in the title of my book?

I'm planning to title a book "Taiwan Seek." The book is about starting a classified ads website in Taiwan. So I thought about short words that are related to classified ads: want, seek, looking for ...
2
votes
4answers
201 views

Is there any tool which points out the common mistakes in a piece of writing?

It will point out mistakes like: Use of bad constructs. Use of repeated words. etc. (On a side note: if you happen to be a C programmer, I am looking for lint for writing).
1
vote
1answer
152 views

Please advise on this comma among semi-colons and provide a more concise sentence

I created this question for two reasons: I want to know if it is proper to place a comma after the word and (in bold) below. This sentence is kind of clunky, like many of my sentences, and it helps ...
1
vote
2answers
272 views

What literary techniques are evident in this quote?

What literary techniques are evident in the following quote? I read each bullet scar in the Quai stonework With an eerie familiar feeling, And started at the stricken, sunny exposure of ...
3
votes
3answers
148 views

Disclaimer when writing about governmental entities

I've read many novels involving characters working at the NASA, Vatican, Secret Police, high government officers (Dan Brown, Stieg Larsson for example) and doing stuff that I wouldn't like being made ...
3
votes
1answer
116 views

Can I sell a blog content database in a Creative Commons Attribution license?

I have a blog online under a Creative Commons Attribution license. I would like to monetize it by offering monthly content database of the blog content for sale to developers at a low price of 1 USD. ...
12
votes
10answers
630 views

Why do writers use pseudonyms?

It's common enough -- recently I was looking for Seanan McGuire's newer book only to find it was published as "Mira Grant". Why would an author do this?
7
votes
5answers
233 views

About using authentic historical name for teenager material

I am writing a (short) story set in Ancient Egypt, and the intended audience are junior high-senior high school students in the US. I am trying to use authentic Ancient Egyptian names for the ...
9
votes
4answers
355 views

How can I strike a balance between setting and plot?

I'm not a fan of Tolkien's work, but it's relevant to my question, so take it as a reference point. I love linguistics, culture, and worldbuilding, but sometimes have difficulty focusing on specific ...
15
votes
6answers
683 views

How can I make a story bigger?

I have written a first draft of what I want to be a novel -- aiming for 50-70K words. When the ending arrived I was at about 30K. So I essentially have to double the length. My list of notes scattered ...
2
votes
2answers
79 views

How it's better to format links to Internet in a text written on paper?

Links are useful to add additional information or second meaning or special flavour to certain words. This is especially useful for informal texts. Example: [Some programs](wiki://Metasploit_Project) ...
7
votes
6answers
294 views

Is it safe to create a wiki for a book (or something featured in it) before the book is published?

I'm working on a sci-fi novel, and it contains a lot of fictional creatures, which are in some ways separate from the novel because I came up with them a while before I actually got the idea to write ...
5
votes
2answers
312 views

How do you come up with a fictional character name in a historical era/region?

How do you research to find character names? Especially when it's long ago, not European, and the culture was totally different from what the region has now. For example, how would you generate names ...
3
votes
1answer
387 views

What is the style used in ISO/IEC publications?

I'm in the process of preparing a document to be sent to ISO/IEC WG14. What is the official style used in ISO/IEC publications (if there is one)? If there is no official style guide, is there a ...
4
votes
6answers
302 views

Is it worth spending money on a subsidy publisher?

The boss owes me about $10 000, and is going to pay me in the coming months. I can live without this money for now, but I'm wondering if it is worth spending $5000 or $8000 with a subsidy publisher to ...
5
votes
5answers
619 views

How Much Exposition is Too Much Exposition

I am in the process of figuring out how to write a mostly autobiographical piece (maybe, eventually, novel) about my experiences related to dancing (Swing, Blues, and a little Hip-Hop, in case you ...
1
vote
1answer
225 views

Help me to improve grammar of this question [closed]

I asked a question on stackoverflow.com some time ago. Would you please notify me possible grammatical problems of my question? And if possible give me tips to ask question with better expression. ...
2
votes
4answers
334 views

Does my story structure for an ensemble zombie story sound effective?

I'm working on a novel about the psychological struggle of 7 characters. It's got an ensemble cast, where every character has the same importance. I've got a structure for this that sounds good to me, ...
2
votes
2answers
443 views

Is character driven fiction more successful than plot driven fiction?

I have heard that editors and publishers prefer character driven fiction, where the characters grow and learn, rather than plot driven ones. Is there any truth to this? Edit: In response to comments: ...
2
votes
5answers
361 views

Do all main characters require equal development?

I have been doing some work on character development for my novel. I found that though I can write pages about the main character, other characters, who have an important role and will be there for ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Citing classics in Bibliography

I need to cite in my paper various "classic" works (Russian writers of the XIX century etc). In the text it is relevant to specify the year of the original novel, for example "Dostoyevsky in his 'The ...
2
votes
1answer
303 views

How can I improve the grammar of this paragraph about the role of internet? [closed]

People use computers for many different activities, from reading online newspapers to listening to music. No one can expect that people can use internet to make a revolution. The main ...
3
votes
1answer
569 views

Writing an artist statement , not a thesis

Question Hello, I need guidance writing an artist statement for a gallery. Specifically, what's good practice, and what should be avoided? Thanks, Thoughts I'm a visual artist appearing in a gallery ...
2
votes
2answers
4k views

How do I check if an ISSN is properly registered at issn.org?

How do I check if an ISSN is properly registered with issn.org? I found a tip on wikipedia to try link like "http://www.worldcat.org/ISSN/1021-9749" to see if an ISSN is registered, but for the ISSN ...
9
votes
3answers
315 views

Conlang question

Diving (OK, dove) into conlanging for a novel I'm working on. The Conlang is atmospheric and allows for some subplot intrigue, but it's not absolutely essential to the story. I've got basic grammar, ...
16
votes
8answers
209k views

Right usage of “P.S.” in Emails

I've been wondering this for a while. What is the correct usage of "P.S." in e-mails? Where should and shouldn't it be used?
9
votes
5answers
133 views

What style suggestions are common for which words are used in hyperlinks?

With a purpose of avoiding "More details here" style links that do not provide any information in the link itself, what styles are common/popular/suggested? A good example case (with bold as the ...
2
votes
3answers
3k views

Write a 1st person story with a 3rd person narrator

I am writing a story in the 3rd person and i would like to switch the narrator for one of the main characters half way through so that the reader can read how he perceives the story. does anybody have ...
6
votes
4answers
257 views

Mixing topics in a blog

I was reading this Jakob Nielsen Alertbox about the top 10 weblog design mistakes. Mistake #8 was: Mixing Topics If you publish on many different topics, you're less likely to attract a ...
0
votes
2answers
89 views

How to close read and do an oral presentation on it in 12 minutes orl less? [closed]

so i am going to recieve a random passage from the book "1984" and will be given 12 minutes to read it, write all over it, and then do a 4+ minute oral presentation on it. My teacher also says to ...
1
vote
1answer
59 views

What is the term for written expressions that lead to “reading between the lines?”

What is the term for something that is inferred, but not explicitly written within the text?
1
vote
3answers
2k views

It is unprofessional to use double exclamation marks and CAPS in a product or service?

I'm developing a website: http://alexchen.info/brianfunshine/ My customer wrote the following in the front page: Hi, I’m Brian “Funshine” Alexander. I offer professional Music, Voices, and ...
7
votes
8answers
4k views

Example of a fictional story without any characters (the story being 1000+ words)

Guessing that there is no such example, but if there is, I'm very interested in knowing about it. Just as a short example, just to make it clear it's possible; the example is not intended to be a ...
65
votes
13answers
5k views

What's the modern way to handle gender in tech writing?

Back in my day, I was taught to use masculine pronouns. The user chooses a password, and then he types it in the text box. I'm fine with that. but a male coworker insists on using he/she, ...
2
votes
2answers
379 views

Correct format when talking about money $$

I'm writing a formal research paper (Highschool) I have lots of statistics involving money (In fact, my whole essay is about the economy). So a question arises about the format of writing money. ...
11
votes
1answer
31k views

What does Character development actually mean?

I keep hearing the terms "character development" and "characterisation", but I'm still not sure what they mean? How does one "develop" a character?
3
votes
2answers
199 views

Do we need a gap of time between drafts?

Stephen King, in his book 'On writing' (and other writers), says one should put some gap of time between drafts. So for example, wait a month after finishing the 1st draft, before starting work on the ...
5
votes
3answers
319 views

Is it easy to change genre?

I read somewhere that one should choose ones genre carefully, as it is hard to change later. Although there are exceptions, most writers, even established ones, find it hard to change genre, and have ...
8
votes
5answers
2k views

Writing about drug induced hallucinations and paranoia

Not long ago I wrote a short story about a mathematics graduate student on the verge of a nervous breakdown. The young student is innocent and working to finish a difficult mathematical derivation ...
3
votes
4answers
161 views

Does this microfiction provide a slightly surreal sense when describing an ordinary scene?

In this short story I'm trying to describe an unexceptional scene in an exciting and compelling way. I want to make a common ritual seem strange and a bit surreal. Does this paragraph accomplish these ...
8
votes
5answers
2k views

Do you have to be good at grammar to get published?

I am not very good at grammar. Is there someone who would go through and correct your grammatical mistakes, even if you are not good at grammar? Who would this person be?
8
votes
3answers
300 views

World Building critique: Building an SF society off a tangent of “Adaptation”

I'm writing a short story for my english final - I'm a junior in high school; we've already taken our AP exam, but our teacher wanted to finish the year with something meaningful. Anyway, I have been ...

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