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7

Write the story you want to write. Some people will take offense. That's okay. Read any chapter of Game of Thrones that has an adult viewpoint character. Watch any episode of Deadwood. Some people will take offense. That's okay.


6

The narration. I'm thinking of not using the narration at all. Please don't do this. It is very, very hard to understand even when handled by a master. If this is your first book, it will be almost impossible for your readers to follow. My suggestion for you is this: Start a blog, and write short stories, flash fiction, or chapters of your book using ...


6

Swearing can be tricky and in general it's not a great idea to over use it. However, I think that if you do it in context and use it sparingly then there isn't a problem with it. The opening line of the book, "The Martian," uses the F word, and it's not having any problems with sales and was turned into a movie, but you should be aware that by including ...


5

In English, proper names are generally not translated, because usually the meaning is not important --what is important is that it is the name of the character. Many common English names have no definition (at least not one that would be known to the average English speaker) and even when a name has a meaning, the meaning is usually irrelevant. ...


4

In the United States, a language, generally, is described as a "specification"; that is, as a set of facts. For a language, these facts would be a series of statements along the lines of "X is a word having such-and-such a definition". Facts, in and of themselves, cannot be copyrighted (or patented, for that matter). What is protectable is a specific "...


4

If the character is narrating his story to the reader, then he's speaking to the reader, so that problem is solved. If he doesn't know where he is, then he has to figure it out from what he can take in through his senses, which he's going to describe to the reader. I woke up slowly. It was dark, and cold — a lot colder than the last time I ...


3

Look at your characters. If they are people who are likely to swear then to strip them of that is to make your characters less realistic. Look at the scenes you're creating, if you're writing the conversation between a group of mid-twenties guys in a bar, it would be strange if they didn't swear. Obviously your perceived audience comes into that, if you'...


3

What happens in real life in England may be instructive: Sometimes people anglicise their names and sometimes they don't. Additionally, sometimes they just anglicise the pronunciation, leaving the spelling the same. For example, a student I know is called Piotr. He tells everyone to just call him 'Peter'. Usually, if people can make a fair attempt at ...


3

Use the English form. It will increase the sense of dislocation your character is experiencing (if this is what you're going for). You could draw attention to names using an English salutation (Mr, Miss, Mrs, Dr, and so on) which helps convey a sense of being in another place. If your characters don't speak this way, the narrator or voice of your novel ...


3

The answer here would depend on the convention in Czech, and not about English. In English, names do not normally have obvious meanings. When a name is also a common word, we usually have a certain amount of mental dissonance to keep the two meanings separate. Like if you told me, "I saw an old-fashioned black smith at the fair", I'd understand "smith" to ...


2

Serious Edit: The lowdown, as pointed out by Lauren Ipsum, is that it's probably not a good idea. Since the Tolkien languages - among other constructed languages - are within copyrighted works, and are probably subject to copyright law. There haven't been any serious legal limitations to using a constructed language, but that's mostly because it hasn't ...


2

David Williamson wrote a play called 'The Club'. It used swearing. However, a theatre group that came to the school where I was teaching said they could do it without the swearing if we wanted. We wanted. It was just as effective, when acted, without the swearing, as anything we could imagine from the version that used swearing. Robert Swindells, in his ...


2

Any reader perverse enough to read 50 Shades of Grey can handle more than a few swear words. Apparently, there's about 100 million of them.


2

Everyday scenes: I think not describing the narrator's environment is a valid option. For example, I never describe environments that are perfectly natural and well-known to my narrator, since my narrator does not have the slightest motivation to talk or even think about them. You do not leave your house in the morning and actively notice what your street ...


2

The first thing you must consider, is your own vocabulary. In order for the swearing to SEEM natural, you must be totally comfortable with your own use of curse-words! Otherwise, it's akin to Mark Twain's observations on a spinster's "cursing": You'll know the lyrics, but not the tune! I've known women authors who were excellent word-smiths; but only one ...


2

You've already described a great solution to your problem in your comment to your own question, but I'm going to give my two pence worth anyway. Factors against using Polari: as you hint in your question, it could be perceived as mocking rather than celebrating the original users. I am quite sure that is not your intention, but there is a tendency ...


1

As a writer of fiction, you are not a linguist. You do not need to describe language in an objective way, in fact that would even hinder your purpose of telling a powerful story. Character description in narrative fiction is not scientific. It has the purpose of telling us something about either the character or the person describing him or her. Let's look ...


1

You could mention that it's like a beating heart being ripped from someone's chest. One second beating, the next silent and still. There's something conclusive about dead silence. When a dying person cries, there's still hope for survival but in the silence that follows death, it's a hopeless black void. The silence symbolizes the shift from life to ...


1

Silence itself can be unnerving. A ghostly slice or emptiness can be eerie. Or perhaps the calm after a tornado surrounded by the visual display of destruction.


1

People have brought up this question in several other writer's forums that I've been on. From all the answers posted here, apparently the question interests many writers. Whenever I hear the question, I always think of a comment I once read from film critic Michael Medved. He said, "I've never heard anyone say, That could have been a good movie, but they ...


1

Relating to the common adage that persons with inadequate "social vocabularies" will "resort to cursing," I feel it necessary to point out that "Tourette's syndrome" manifests in uncontrollable cursing . . . ALTHOUGH it is now recognized that victims of strokes affecting portions of the frontal lobes of the brain can also begin "adulterating conversations ...


1

That would depend on the audience. If you are writing for a certain age group, consider that. If you are a writing a book hoping that it will reach a lot of different ages, or types of people, consider that too. If you are going to publish a book, I would think the idea is to gain a lot of readers who enjoy your work, but also make enough sales that you can ...


1

There is a case pending that may answer this in court: Paramount v Axanar. See http://conlang.org/axanar for more info, including formal legal briefing and a memorandum from Dentons on conlangs & IP law. (Disclosure: I direct the Language Creation Society's lawyer on this.) You could also just commission a conlanger to make a language for you, so you ...


1

I am not a layer, but I doubt the courts would recognize a copyright in an invented language. I'm assuming you're not actually copying complete sentences and paragraphs, but rather individual words, and applying the rules of an invented grammar. The publishers of an English dictionary certainly couldn't sue you because you wrote a book consisting entirely ...


1

In most cases it's to make the book look more complex, while also being intelligible and cool. In my own book, you will find loose, slightly-changed Latin sprinkled all over it - like a species of bird called tabbelarees, or "bells." The original word translates to "carrier" as from the term, message carriers (Tabbelarrius Nintius), effectively letting ...


1

I was instructed by multiple Princeton professors that one's native language is the only acceptable target for a self-produced literary translation. (Of course, not everyone obeys these rules--but even the Nabokovs suffered for it.) If the "second language" is your native language, I'd say go for it.



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