New answers tagged

1

What do you mean by "nothing happens"? If you mean "nobody gets killed, there are no car chases, and nothing blows up", then certainly you can have chapters where "nothing happens". There are lots of books that have no action of that sort at all. I suspect you mean something more like, "there are chapters that are entirely the heroine considering what she ...


0

I think you are wrong in thinking that nothing happens in your chapters. As you said, you are focusing more on the characters, and when you develop your characters, there is something "happening". It shouldn't be underestimated, chapters to let the reader delve in the mind of the character. It creates a much needed sense of connection, and not only that, ...


0

Does something need to happen in every chapter? Yes. Something needs to happen in every paragraph. Something needs to happen in every sentence. The story must advance. A story needs more to advance than physical action by the characters, however. It is the telling that needs to advance. Actions are merely one device for advancing story. Description, ...


0

Of the two writing samples, I found the first one terribly confusing, and the second one much clearer. If you do want to give a sense of how Rhea reacts to the dream while she is experiencing it, you should stick to what she is aware of at any given moment. "Feeling better, son?" Dr Evans asks patronizingly, and Rhea braces for a violent response. ...


0

Your questions says that your character is having a non-lucid dream, yet in your first description, which is supposed to be in dream, it says "Rhea understands what this dream is now." That is exactly what a lucid dream is. I think your best option may be to describe what she is seeing and her reaction as if it is a normal scene and either her reaction ...


0

Try to experience a similar event, or remember when you experienced something like it. Perhaps you fell out of a tree or fell off a swing. Or close your eyes and imagine falling. You can also read about falling. Salman Rushdie's The Satanic Verses begins with a fall from an airplane. Who's falling? The character with POV or is the POV-character watching ...


1

You can indicate attraction with nothing more than intense interest. If your characters are secretly attracted to one another, they will watch each other very closely. They will remember each other's likes and dislikes, even when mentioned in passing, and they may use this information to needle each other. Your POV character will think about Thomas a lot. ...


0

Try gong deeper in the pov: 1rst person: Where was everyone? Had they all gone to a safe place that nobody told me about? I stared at my hands. Did anything in this world really belong to me? No, nothing did everything had turned to dust. Boyfriends and friends they possessed and accompanied me but nothing substantial. I sat down, and looked back at the ...


2

The most important thing (the only important thing?) is the end result--and that someone reads it. Of course, the process to get there is important, because, duh, it's how we get there! But any way you do it, if it turns out good, it's a good process. It's your process! Imitation is important - feel free to pick and choose from other people's processes - ...


3

Some people talk about Plotters vs. Pantsters. A Plotter works out the whole book, chapter by chapter, point by point, then writes to the outline. It takes a long time up front, but then writing can progress quite quickly. A Pantster, on the other hand, writes by the seat of his or her pants, sitting down, clearing his mind, and then writing what comes. ...


0

I find it odd that some writers scope out their story, beginning to end, before writing it. Where's the fun in that? I never know how my stories will end. I learn about the end as the characters do. The ending flows naturally from the characters' actions through the story and their, well, their characters. I can't prescribe an ending on the story, and on ...


0

You don't have to know how it ends, but you do have to know how it begins. It begins with some pain, some longing, some need, some disturbance in the equanimity of life that forces some deep deviation from the ordinary course of affairs. You don't have to know how the deviation will end, or even what course it will take, but you have to know what it is ...


3

For me, it doesn't matter whether I know where a story is going or not, because I can only type so fast. I love to flesh out characters and plot out outlines while I'm preparing to write, but once I start writing, all bets are off. The finished product rarely looks like I thought it would as I started typing the opening scene. That used to bother me, but ...


8

Lots of writers start writing with no idea where it will go, much less how it will end. Dean Wesley Smith has a book about that, called Writing Into the Dark. On the other hand, I once heard Richard North Patterson claim that "Any mystery writer who starts without knowing the end is committing authorial malpractice." (The next time I read one of his books, ...


2

Not all writers know exactly where they're going when they start writing. Sometimes, they don't even know what the first turning point will be until they pick up the pen, or get on the computer, and start typing/writing. If you're not quite sure about the story-line yet, then maybe starting the first chapter is exactly what you need to do to get the creative ...


1

Supporting Digital Dracula's excellent answer, don't be afraid to leave out details which have a long shelf life. Revulsion, for example, is not likely to leave your character in the moment he leaves the killing room. If your scene demands detailed and emotion-inducing descriptions, leave your character's emotions unspoken until a quieter, less word-bound ...


4

I think this depends a lot on what you want to achieve. If, in your given example, you want to convey the feelings your MC experiences, you must be graphic or even gory. Parenthetically, as a vegetarian myself, I can totally empathize with such descriptions - but, trying to see the other side, you should try to visualize how they would make meat-eating ...


0

What I try to do when hiding clues is to make the POV character misinterpret them believably. Using your example, what if the MC knew a cross-dressing man who was generally accepted and commonly called Auntie So-and-so? This gives a plausible reason for the MC to mistakenly take for granted that everyone else knows auntie is a man. The principle I'm trying ...


0

Being a writer, I sometimes criticize the poor writing in my dreams while dreaming them, or note how a person or place is distorted from the real world example it is based on. Sometimes I seem to make myself wake up from a dream that seems about to turn bad. But don't ask us writers in the writers stack exchange, ask science experts in the science stack ...


0

If I correctly read your question, its more about the voice and pov. You can research symptoms and bring it out in forgetfulness, repetition, misidentification etc A knock on the door, it was a salesman. What does he want to sell me? It was the third one this week. "Mom, are you okay?", asked the salesman


-1

I would go with the first option. It's my understanding that's not Rhea ' s dream, but it's someone she knows well. Depending on the character, they would or would not tell the person they saw their dream. I feel as though the second option works well in scenes like they didn't know what the dream was about, or if you want to show other character's reactions ...


0

The correct citation depends on your style guide. In APA and MLA, you must cite every repetition of each source in the same way, no matter how close or far they appear. In some cases, the same reference may appear in subsequent sentences or even within the same sentence. Neither APA nor MLA allow the use of "ibid." or "op.cit.". Example (in APA format): ...


3

It doesn't matter how your book is received. What matters is that you write the book of your heart before you die. If this is that book, don't worry about what anyone else thinks and go for it. No matter what anyone else will think, you will know that you wrote your soul onto paper. Or something like that. Good luck!


-1

It is rather common for good feedback and opinion to be mixed. I can't really help you if you put it online, but if you show it to people you know well, you will be able to tell if they are giving good criticism and not opinion. This doesn't help, but I tried


0

This what I do: I give what I have to someone I trust to tell me truth. If they like it, it gives me motivation to keep writing it. I hope this helped!


0

You're fine. There are only so many plots, so go ahead and write the book you want to write because you love it. Remember that there are always new readers coming along who haven't read or seen all the other stories with that plot, so maybe for some people you'll be the first and The Hunger Games will be the cliché.


2

I don't think so. The hunger games surely weren't the first novel with this theme (there was battle royale, for example) but it works and people love it. Don't be afraid of overused ideas, because common themes are everywhere anyway, instead, try to make your book stand out because of the details, of the characters, the conflicts, etc. For example (and ...


0

Put yourself at her place ! You can make her first observe some symptoms, without paying a real attention, it has to be small details, you don't even have to make it like she is noticing, like she sees something in her eye but she thinks it's because she did'nt sleep enough, or she feels weak that afternoon, or her cat acts strangely in her presence etc. ...


1

Not unless it drives the story forward. Do not describe every outfit the MC puts on, puh-lease! It gets annoying. If they're looking in a mirror, maybe, but otherwise I don't see a reason for it


-1

Maybe just black? Probably not helpful, so here's more. Coal Black Can't - see - A - thing Black. Hope this helped! (Probably not)


1

What I do is usually just sit down and write without thinking, then edit it later. I have a basic idea of a story, but it usually just happens as I go along.


-1

I have written a scene similar to this. My MC fell of a building :/. Anyway, if they can, have them try to hang on and struggle to get up. Eventually, unless the character is really determined, have them accept they are falling off a cliff and are about to die. Hope this helped!


0

Well, this is kind of a broad question, but i suggest trying to pinpoint exactly what you find stupid about it, and seeing how you can make it less stupid. Maybe think of plans for future characters or future conflicts, think about what's cool about your villain, etc. Unfortunately, there is no set answer for "How do i story". You just have to write and see ...


1

I applaud your ambition to develop the habit of writing every day. I now understand why you want exercises. The WritingExercises.co.uk has a number of writing prompts and exercises. Rather than worrying just about writing, you might want to think about spending some time editing every day in order to improve your writing.


4

I see others missing the problem the clue is an elephant in the room. They hint on hiding various subtle clues. The problem is this is not a subtle clue. Missing this clue would totally break suspension of disbelief. It's far too obvious. It must be hidden in the plain sight. What you need here is misdirection. Unintentional, accidental event that changes ...


0

There is very little details given here. It also sounds like you are trying to get someone to write it for you because you say so little about it. To answer your question with what you gave: Write it as if it was you falling off the cliff, or you witnessing someone else fall off. (unaware of the POV you are going for). What you are feeling, hearing, thoughts,...


0

I believe you are too young to publish a novel. Look at work you have from a year ago, chances are you likely want to change it and don't like it. You aren't even in high school yet, you haven't had enough experience to write a great novel. Even for adults it is hard to find a publisher, chances are even slimmer if you are a child. You can write all you ...


2

Mystery Requires Vicarious Experience Fiction is best read when you experience it as the main character. That is why modern fiction which is written in close 3rd person is quite popular. Of course, first person fiction is also quite popular but it is often sloppy and only used because the author thinks in first person so s/he writes stories that way. If ...


1

I would scatter a lot of small, subtle clues throughout the text. The idea is that no single clue will give it away, and they’re disparate enough to prevent the reader from putting 2 and 2 and 2 and 2 together and getting 8. But, on a second reading, in hindsight, they should all clearly be clues pointing to the big secret. “Ah! Of course, that’s what that ...


1

I don't think your voice is chosen, it's what comes naturally from you. Therefore, it changes as you mature, as you read and write.


0

Carpe Diem. it could summarize it all. Use your best ideas, while you're still enthusiastic about it, it will give you the enregy to write it down (and writing takes a lot of energy) You will evolve, as a writer and as a person, so trust your future self to find other great ideas ! Carpe. Diem !


0

I think a writer style or voice is something inner : you already have it, you just don't know how to express it. For that, you have to see and read other "voices", see what is possible to do, the different manners that exists, read, read and read, absorb all of it and let it age and then, when you've done enough reading : unlearn it all. You have to, unless ...


1

Describe whatever the viewpoint character notices and has opinions about. In a naughty story, the characters might choose their attire to have certain effects on other people, or to express certain aspects of their attitudes, mood, or desires. Which means that the characters will have opinions about their attire and the attire of others. So describe ...


-2

Simply put: An abstract is what you did and what you found. The background is why you did it.


1

I heard a really great interview... by someone... somewhere... can't remember though - I'm only saying this because I don't want to take credit for the answer. The essence of what he said is that whenever you ask an author what they do when they write, they're always going to tell you the things that came hard for them, or the things they really had to work ...


4

In looking at your excerpts, and granting for translation, I think the problem is that you start well and then add too much. You don't have to give all the details at once. If this is a person we never see again, secondary details don't matter; if your protagonist is interacting with the character, then there's time later in the scene to add more detail. ...


3

In addition to Mike C. Ford's excellent suggestions, there is a secret technique, misunderstood but effective, known to all professional writers but divulged to few outsiders… Don't show, tell. "The city was founded by people from all over the world. Generations had gone by, but not so many that its people all looked the same." Job done!


4

There are a number of solutions that I have for this, as I suffered from the same problem: Only describe what you need to Imagine trying to describe James Bond to someone. You could say that he is handsome, looks good in a suit, and has an athletic build. This could be enough to get a good image in the reader's head, and could describe any of the actors ...


1

I've had a related discussion with my wife two weeks ago about whether there's anything significant about men writing a female protagonist and women writing a male protagonist. For example, Robin Hobb writing about FitzChivalry, or Witi Ihimaera writing about Paikea. In the end, my wife and I concluded together that the protagonist's gender is really only ...


3

This is a very broad question and a lot of thoughts come to my mind when trying to answer it. Two things, however, are specially important to me : Read a lot. Write different things. Read a lot because other writers' styles will bring you new ideas and narration techniques. Much like drawing style is influenced by visual artists we love (see all these ...



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