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It doesn't matter if your book is 95% one person speaking. If your character is speaking aloud, and especially if you have a second person who interrupts even once a chapter, you must have punctuation indicating that someone is speaking. Also, I very strongly recommend that you don't just present your story as a wall of 95% one person speaking aloud. If ...


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Like Jay, I think that it is unimportant what this might be called. I agree with him that the reader should understand what is going on. But to me, much more important is the question wether your readers will want to follow you along that detour. Every reader loves a straight story (if it is well told). I have never read a review that complained that there ...


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I think the important question is not whether this qualifies as a "flashback" by some technical definition, but rather whether you make it clear to the reader what is going on. I've occasionally read books where there was a flashback and I was well into it before I realized it was a flashback. I started getting confused, saying to myself, "Wait, I thought ...


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If you've written at all, you can write long stories. A long story is simply a bunch of short stories about the same subject that are stitched together to form a narrative. Your life is a long story. Don't agonize over how to sustain focus or worry about losing interest in a long story. Just start somewhere. Anywhere. The middle is often a great place to ...


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Everyone has their own method. No method is any better or worse than another. Some find it helps to create a plot outline. Others prefer to create characters and let them do whatever they want. Some writers collect snippets on napkins and business cards and notes for years and piece them together into a coherent story. A novel takes a long time. Breaking ...


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I think the key to writing a comedy is in the dialogue. Make sure that the dialogue is real. Read over your character's conversations and if it doesn't sound smooth and like a real conversation then you have a problem. Make sure your characters talk like real people talk. Then have them say funny things.


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The overall problem of a book where nothing is ever at stake isn't just found in comedy. Writing is a ruthless art, and if you aren't willing for your characters to suffer, it shows. This is especially a problem in comedy, since bad things happening to the characters can bring down the happy mood (unless you're writing really dark farce). One approach to ...



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