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8

The bits you put in parentheses don't (necessarily) take me out of the narrative. They are the character's opinions of people and events. That takes me deeper into the character, which is a big part of where the story is. One test for such parentheticals is: Do these opinions characterize the character in a way that serves the story? As Lauren points out, ...


4

The reason you think it's obvious is that you assume that only a woman would be having a romantic dinner with a man. Your baseline assumption is that everyone is straight. There is absolutely nothing in the text which precludes the narrator from being a gay or bi man having a romantic dinner with another gay or bi man. If you want to assert her gender, you ...


3

I don't see any tense changes in your examples. It all appears to be in past tense. The reason the reader has the perception of the passages happening in present tense is due to the narrator presenting their rendition of the events in the way a storyteller would. To clarify, your examples give the impression of somebody telling a story around a campfire, ...


2

Without an example it's hard to tell, but if you feel like you are writing too much dialogue in proportion to the rest, then perhaps your gut is telling you to dial it down a little. As always, if you read a lot of well written stories, you'll have a good idea of where your story lies in terms of style. Then again, if you're writing a scene like one of the ...


2

I think the gender and sexual ambiguity only makes this story that much more compelling. I've written similarly vague characters in the past and consider it not only more difficult to hide a character's gender throughout the narrative but also a pretty big compliment. You can even use this technique to conduct your own mini-experiment of people's perceptions ...


2

I don't think you should make the gender more obvious unless it needs to be more obvious. By choosing a 1st person narration the character uncovers him/herself and the logic should flow from how you have conceived this character to express themselves. Is gender really a duality anyway? Men and women express their gender in such a variety of ways that you ...


1

Well, you are the author so it is really your call. If you feel that there is too much dialogue, then odds are that there is. Perhaps there needs to be more of a narrative voice to pull it all together and then you can eliminate some of the dialogue that is used to advance the plot.


1

The transition seems fairly smooth to me, probably because the action doesn't feel like action: It feels like the continuation of the musings in the earlier paragraphs. Maybe this is because we're not seeing the setup, but I think the entire excerpt feels rushed. This is someone who's thinking through reasons why life just doesn't make sense, but I'm not ...


1

There's nothing technically wrong with doing this, but you're right to think it sounds fishy. I'd suggest confining exclamations like these to dialog. Ultimately, though, you'll have to rely on your ear and the ears of your beta readers.



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