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11

It's actually totally easy. Just let your characters interact with their environment in a natrual way. Here's a real world example, showing different systems of paying the fare for a public bus: Out of breath from running to the bus stop, John was still struggling with the ticket machine when the bus approached around the corner. (Konstanz, Germany) ...


9

If space travel is as common and casual as current methods, then treat it the way you would treat current methods. That is: Take it for granted. Ignore the physics and ignore how it is operated. When you get in a car to drive, you barely even think about how you operate it, much less the physics of internal combustion engines, or the mechanics of universal ...


7

There is one fault with the previous answers by Dale Emery and Henry Taylor, and that is that the basic principles of sailing and combustion engines are a part of every school kid's education. And if something new is invented, as for example solar cells, it is extensively described and explained in popular media from newspapers to television. Any educated ...


7

One of the big mistakes I've seen in some people's writing is that they focus on wanting to show the reader that "Hey, I've thought about these things and they are really important!" when they aren't. If you're story is going to be about physicists or chemists or other scientists dealing with the particular periodic table elements, then I can understand ...


6

Some of the choice of words depends on the desired feel of the story. The reader might be an invisible observer of this alien world with a fellow human guide explaining various details. This expert may be a tourist or have a more scientific bent (e.g., sociological, biological, or physical/chemical). With such a feel, wording would be more human-oriented ...


5

I agree totally with Dale Emery, but would perhaps use a long train/boat ride as the metaphor. Not only should the average passenger (a.k.a. the reader's point of view) be uninformed of how the vehicles operate, or the physical principles behind their locomotion, such passengers should not even recognize that their ignorance is unusual. Their attention ...


5

You can publish them yourself. If you do that, you retain all of the rights to the stories and the book. That way, nobody can get the rights to the book and throw them away. To publish an ebook, you can make an epub file and distribute it through Kindle, Apple iBooks, Kobo, Nook, Smashwords, and other places. They won't steal it. They want to sell it for ...


5

Short version: Carefully. Long Version: It is definitely true that any kind of fantasy/sci if setting that departs in its construction significantly from the shabby parade of commitment phobic half-truths we call reality will require some explanation to, and understanding from, that most ferociously temperamental creature known as the reader. The best ...


4

This is one of those instances where understanding the history of things matters. If you're building a science-fantasy world with the equivalent of modern chemistry, have some fictional elements with distinct properties, and have any concern at all for the periodic table, you really only have four choices: Make the new element something strange and apart, ...


4

You don't actually have to care much about hard-core physics. If your sci-fi world is set in another universe entirely (Star Wars and the Force), you needn't even bother about following the periodic table or conventional physics. After all, the Force isn't even something the Jedi (in their Universe) can explain completely. It's okay to create imaginary ...


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 ...


3

The first and most important thing to consider is your reader and, for the most part, I imagine they're humans. Writing a science fiction story where there is nothing for the reader to relate to becomes tedious, and unintelligible. To carry it to its extreme, assuming you're writing your story in English (sorry, you did mention you're not a native English ...


3

First, think about what is universal and what is specific to our own planet, species, or culture. Like, would aliens have the color blue? Color is a basic phenomenon of physics. The same colors exist everywhere in the universe. I suppose it's possible that there would not be any blue things on their planet, but this seems pretty unlikely. Surely something, ...


3

You may be interested in Brandon Sanderson's lecture series on writing long form fantasy and science fiction: https://www.youtube.com/user/WriteAboutDragons/videos This is an excellent series on the practical craft of writing and particularly about what you asked about, writing about what is alien to the reader. He talks at one point about the dangers of ...


3

I'm always a bit surprised by this question. My first impulse is to ask: Don't you read the type of book you want to write?!? You should remember how the world was introduced in those books, and how you reacted to that. Personally, I never read prologues, interludes and similar detours from the main plot. My recommendation is: Just write your story. ...


2

My personal opinion? Do not rush it. Do I need to know that its 31st August? Do I need to know that main character is 17 years old boy? Do I need to know that there is some "Wall" which needs to be protected? The intro should give me a hint about what’s going to happen. And not little details about something which can be revealed later. I will think about ...


2

I would counter that it is only possible to find your own voice, make your own way if you accept the element of isolation that is essential to the writing process. Yes, you may take a class, join a group, find a wonderful mentor. In the end, it will be you and the world, and how that intersection expresses itself in words that will vault you into the task. ...


2

This is an interesting question -- kind of the holy grail of "learning to write". The question is : Is it possible to learn to write better on your own? I believe it can be. Learn the Basics From Books Learn the basics from writing books. My all-time, knock-down, marooned-on-a-deserted-island favorite is: Make Your Words Work by Gary Provost. Learn the ...


2

It's worth considering the fact that characters are a product of their world, and their world is a product of key characters: I work in IT, working in IT defines a big part of who I am, IT makes up a huge part of the world I live in, IT is a product of people like Babbage and Turing. In short I find World Building is best as a free form ...


2

As another example, Asimov's Foundation series does a good job of this. You say, "I want to be able to write about spacecraft in space as authors in the golden age of sailing would write [about] sea ships on the sea." In that case, you cannot ignore the technology of spacefaring. Those ships in the golden age of sailing were the technological marvels of ...


2

I don't think there's a right answer for what you're asking. At the end of the day, you're writing in English. English, like any language, reflects the history and collective views of the society it came from. For example, English has many words for water related things, especially about things that relate to sailing, because throughout its history (through ...


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

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, ...


1

It sounds like you don't really have a story yet, but a world. But a story is the journey of a character who wants something. Try one of these: Start with a character who lives in your world. What do they want? How they get it is your story. (If they have everything they want, you don't have a story; take something away from them). OR Start with a big ...


1

One thing they could do is to ask questions about his home worlds with the intention to find inconsistencies that prove he's making things up. That would as a side effect also make the reader familiar with that home world. For example: "So you are from a far-away planet? So where is this planet?" "Well, do you see that bright star over there?" "You ...


1

A setting sketch is as important, if not more important than a character sketch. We also maintain sketches on structures, roads, livestock, pets, vehicles, etc. Especially when working with long time lines. Another term that may help you find more information than you will ever need is to use "World Building" as your key search word. World building can ...


1

A hint where you could actually place the new elements: You could put them in the island of stability. If some people expect half-lifes of millions of years, it's not much of a stretch to also put some stable element there (although a very long half-life may be good enough; after all, uranium is instable, and yet we even have quite a bit of naturally ...


1

Exploit your own weakness! Yes, you've got a problem - but luckily for you, you're writing a comedy, and your problem is actually funny. You should openly address the issue of having "Mr. Save-The-Day" cliche. Turn it into a main theme in the story. Let your main character actually be distressed by it, or maybe even neglect his duty because of it. It makes ...


1

With comedy writing one of the best things you can do is to write everything that seems even remotely amusing and then remove anything that later turns out to be a bit limp. In fact "just go for it have as much fun as possible and then edit after" is easier to do then "carefully write everything perfectly the first time around". The only way in all ...


1

It's science fiction, and more specifically dystopic fiction. That means the purpose of the story is to highlight the differences between the fictional, 'incorrect' reality and our own 'correct' one.^ That means that in order to keep the reader interested, you have to start the scavenger search for anomalies as soon as possible. What you should be concerned ...



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