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I was taught to handle foreign languages (and this would include pidgins) as grace notes in the prose and dialog: there's enough there to remind the reader that characters are speaking a language other than English, but not so much to hinder the reader's progress. So once you've made it clear that the characters are speaking the pidgin, most of the dialog ...


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Nothing can prepare you to write. It is a freefall. Allow yourself ONLY ONE outline, then start. Or just start. Consider this question as you start: "What does my protagonist want?" In the monomyth, the hero is called. The only reason this is relevant/interesting is because the hero wants to answer. The protagonist's desire, at every point in the story, ...


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There's an Australian combat sport called "WhipBoxing". Competitors clad in Drizabone trenchcoats and fencing masks compete for points by striking each other with bullwhips. It'd be worth checking out videos of the Chinese Nine-Section Chain Whip. Similar techniques would be possible with a more standard leather whip. In film, there's a vamp character in ...


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How Green Was My Valley by Richard Llewellyn, I believe. Such a great favorite of mine and due for a re-read.


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Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov and The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald


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Just draw a map of the area and then write a description of each of the locations on the map. Write some little backstories of how each of the worlds factions came to be. Write descriptions of each of the cultures in your world and their history. The benefit to doing this up front is that when you write the novel you can have characters casually drop ...


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As an alternative to footnotes, you could just immediately translate the first few statements containing a new pidgin word, perhaps putting the translation in italics. For (an extremely made-up) example: "Jah, got might owie in me gulliver", said Collins. God, my head really hurts. Used sparingly, this might serve as a less intrusive way of expanding the ...


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Something you need to be aware of when creating a theme before characters etc is that you can end up shoehorning characters into the theme they are telling. If you're not careful with character development they can end up being stiffled by their 'role' in the general theme. The benefit of ignoring theme until the story and characters are written is that ...


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Your theme is the general statement you're making, but you can only make the statement via the plot. The plot should be developed via the organic actions of the characters. Therefore, decide on your theme, figure out a rough plot which will express this theme, and staff the plot with characters who will accomplish it.


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Give Gunner a problem to deal with. Let him try to solve it. But arrange for him to fail, and for things to get worse instead of better. That's called a try/fail cycle. Try/fail cycles are standard elements of much fiction.


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Maybe you don't find the boy's perspective interesting? How did you approach writing the girl's chapter? Approach the boy's chapter the same. There must be something to interest you. If there isn't, maybe it is better if you write the whole book from the girl's perspective.


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Well if you don't have *nix, and you're not familiar with programming, then there is one way to do it, though it might be a little slow. Word does provide a find/replace where you can quickly just replace all words in a document/selection with a word you give it. It's quick to replace, the slow part is that if you are trying to replace a whole variety of ...


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As writers we often make transitions from one scene to the next much more difficult than they should be. The reader's mind follows changes much more fluidly than we think they do. I learned this from the great book Make Your Words Work (Gary Provost) - amazon link There is an entire section on Transitions in there and he explains how simple they can be ...


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For all of this there is nothing better than reading and rereading. By the time you have fully proofed the story yourself you will know it inside and out, and there will still be errors you can't see. After you've gone through and checked yourself a couple of times, have a friend read it and help you proof through it.


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A no-distraction fullscreen mode. Seamless integration with cloud based storage but obviously not reliant on the cloud or internet connectivity. A visual layout / outlining mode that allows you to build a basic graphical outline of your story. Nothing fancy. Good built-in thesaurus with a solid dictionary. When I'm looking for a synonym I don't want the ...


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To be able to write nonlinearly I want to be able to write chapter 3 before finishing chapter 1. To have a thesaurus built-in To have a proof-reading mode (like the track changes feature in Word) Built-in Integration with Dropbox or Google Drive Version Control, so that one can choose which are major changes, and can be reverted back to if needed.


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Personally I don't think you need to make the words italics, if you introduce a word that isn't part of the reader's vocabulary, and give them enough clues to understand what it is, then they will pick it up. So for instance, if you had a sentence that said - 'Do you want to come to my lattie for supper' and later maybe said '...its in my lattie' people ...


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A pidgin by its nature could theoretically form from English mixed with the language you are writing in so constructing such artificial pidgin seems to be a good solution. Just abandon grammar of your language and mix it with (commonly known) words from English and roman languages. Translators in such situations sometimes do mix languages close related to ...



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