Tag Info

New answers tagged

3

If this were a question about usage in a technical paper or an essay, I'd suggest referring to a style manual for guidance. However, outside of formatting and punctuation rules, I don't think there are any absolute rules for fiction. Narrative writing is meant to show people in real world believably, and people don't always use exactly the same terms for ...


5

If it's important enough to mention the hour then it's important enough to be clear which one you mean, but using "AM" and "PM" in fiction may not be the best way. If the scene already makes it clear which one is being talked about -- on the beach you talk about the sunlight dancing off the waves, for instance -- then you don't need to say anything and "PM" ...


6

Those (and dialogue) are all quotations. The first might be quoting Sophia or an unnamed sarcastic commentator or someone else. The second quotes Genesis. The third quotes the character's anthropomorphized common sense. All quotations. So punctuate them like other quotations.


0

When you ramble a lot you will be inconsistent in delivering and imagine the kind of comprehensive emotions you will create for the reader. But in all what matters is how well it may go with the plot in context. Thank you.


2

Mercy, yes. If the story is burning to be told, yes. If you enjoy the craft of writing, yes. If you love reading over what you've written, yes. If you like the world you've created and the people you've put in it, yes. "Later" you'll still have a job and your daughter will be demanding in a different way and life will always, always suck up your available ...


2

Yes. I didn't even have to read your question (but I did). The answer is yes. Write 25K words in half a year. That's perfectly respectable. I work full-time, and often 2-3 hours a week is optimistic for me. Maybe you'll crawl along, maybe you won't be fully satisfied with your work. Hell, maybe you'll end up tossing everything you've written before your ...


3

Probably, the real answer is as simple (complicated?) as Charles Bukowski's, So You Wanna Be A Writer http://allpoetry.com/So-You-Want-To-Be-A-Writer Here's an excerpt: So You Want To Be A Writer if it doesn't come bursting out of you in spite of everything, don't do it. unless it comes unasked out of your heart and your mind and your mouth and your gut, ...


0

Reading outside of the genre that you wish to write in is important in cultivating a broader perspective. Artists of all mediums (music and painting, especially) study and consume creative works outside of their preferred genre or area of expertise. The works they consume, though not part of their genre, each have a small bit that the consumer takes with ...


0

You mentioned that your could be caused by "knowing it all" and are hesitant to try your hand at something overused because it has the potential to be cliche. But as Kurt Vonnegut once said, "Write with the door closed." In other words, tune out your doubts- especially during the first draft, when the most important thing is to get it down on paper (or on ...


1

Marks can indicate that the hero is "special" - chosen, if you will - and because the reader identifies with the hero, they too can feel like they're special. Is it a necessary device? That depends on the discretion of the author. Sure, there are "everyman" heroes who happen to be at the wrong place at the wrong time, and are brought along for the ride by ...


1

I have a bit of a writing exercise to suggest. I used it myself when tying to "find my voice", and probably absorbed the idea from someone else. First, pick a simple setting that is fairly open-ended and adaptable to many styles and genres. Then (without any specific characters, plot, or ending in mind) begin to write a scene in that setting in each style ...


0

Is this a sign of bad writing? No. You don't even have to have a 'main' plot. See these plot summaries of Pulp Fiction for a good example - different viewers have different ideas as to which is the most important plot line.


0

Heroes are different because readers are different. Some readers are lonely people that feel excluded from the social life of their peers. They feel ugly, abominable, as if they carry a stigma that repulses everyone. They feel marked by a cruel god. These readers can identify with a hero who is an outsider in his society because of a mark he carries. And ...


0

It's often struck me that there are two very different kinds of heroes in fiction in this sense. Some are heroes because they trained and practiced and studied or did some sort of hard work to get where they are. Others are heroes because they were born with some special status or destiny. Superman is a hero because he was born with "powers and abilities far ...


0

You can also have an anthropomorphic approach to description. This makes the thing you are describing have a life of its own. The walls sighed. The door groaned. The chimney belched smoke. The floors shrieked. etc. etc.


0

My first response is to say, "so what?" If you like to read science fiction, but you are really good at writing cookbooks, then ... write cookbooks. I can easily imagine someone who is very good at, say, auto mechanics, and very bad at gardening, who reads gardening books trying to learn how to do it right, but who writes auto repair books because that's ...


0

This depends purely on the writing style you are going for. In general, it is usually a good idea to avoid superfluous descriptions of things which have no bearing on the actual story. You should give the reader just enough information to understand what is going on. For example, if you are in someone's home, you wouldn't describe each and every object in ...


1

Writers love their heroes. Look, my first male hero in my first story was actually me, myself. And I obviously wanted my hero to be my better self, more muscles, more manly, more outgoing... So, I obviously gave such treats to my hero Lots of people like to pimp their ride You already bought the best phone on the market. And after few days you realized, ...


3

You're right that it's a cliche and they don't "need to". it is quite silly and one would expect it only from mediocre or lazy writters I agree. See TV Tropes: Birthmark of Destiny See also scars, beards and hairstyles. Villains also sometimes come with convenient labels, e.g. The Omen's Damien: See TV Tropes: Mark of the Beast. Frodo is one ...


4

Some of the most interesting and groundbreaking genre writing was written by authors who have come from literary fiction or another genre. For example, Tolkien was not a Fantasy reader or writer before he wrote the Hobbit and the LotR. The problem with fans writing what they love is that it too often turns into a bad rip off of the original. Just write ...


0

A world building genre like fantasy and science fiction will often benefit from generally longer, more descriptive sentences (up to a few lines long), whereas more "down to Earth" genres like drama might benefit from less. That being said, it greatly depends on the expectations and style of the narrative being told. You might write sentences no longer than ...


1

I would lean towards showing ownership through the use of its. They are both attributes of the river and cottage mentioned. Where you might use "the" is in the same sentence, like these examples: The waters of the river were calm as I gazed at them, stretching into the distance until they reached the city. The interior of the cottage showed none of ...


0

Yes, of course you can, and you don't even have to make it clear who the narrator is. You're the author: decisions like this are yours to make.


2

Obviously you cannot give the whole impression of the object you want to describe all at once, but have to start somewhere. Where you start and how you proceed from there will depend on what you want to convey to your reader and might be influenced by the following aspects, among others: the character of the narrator the atmosphere of the place the events ...


3

Too long for a comment, so an answer: In all of your recent questions you ask about objective rules that you can blindly apply. For example, you'd like to learn which grammatical structure is most readable, and then plan to use that structure, believing your final text will be a readable text. But language is not mathematics, and readable is not the same ...


3

Is that a sign of a bad metaphor? No. It's fine. And of course you're the author - it's up to you what you write. From this point of view there are no 'bad' metaphors. But I know what you mean and no, your example would not usually be considered poor English usage. You may be thinking of (in-)elegant variation or pleonasm.


5

Determining how much, and what information you pass through your sentences is a very important subliminal channel of information about the speaker, their character, current situation and mood. If you merely use it to optimize readability, you will crop a lot of flavour of the text just in order to pass verbatim data. It's like you took a painting and tried ...


2

"How much information" does not lend itself to quantification. That aside, readability is not a function only of the amount of information compressed into a given sentence. Factors include the writing style, the particular scene, the pace of the story at the time the sentence is written, the surrounding text, the nature of the event (brief or elongated), ...


3

You are allowed to have the prologue narrated by a different character as long as it is absolutely clear who the narrator is. You do not have to change the whole book. In fact, every chapter can be a different viewpoint narrator; George R.R. Martin does this throughout his Song of Ice and Fire books. You can also have the prologue written in third person ...


0

Here's the dictionary.com definition of poem: a composition in verse, especially one that is characterized by a highly developed artistic form and by the use of heightened language and rhythm to express an intensely imaginative interpretation of the subject. The problem, which everyone is indicating with their answers is the portion that states: ...


2

Ah the eternal question in all art forms. What is music? So John Cage created 4'33" What is dance? So someone I forget who, possibly Merce Cunningham, stepped on stage and didn't move, and then left. What is a painting? So many a painter put a blank canvas on the wall. What is an artist name? The artist formerly known as Prince.


0

First, they don't have to, a one-to-one correspondence is not mandatory. That said, they are two different narrative styles, the former simpler and faster to scan, the latter much superior literally, reflecting a creative twist added in. Occasional use of the latter can be enriching. (Also tests the reviewer's acuity.) .



Top 50 recent answers are included