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Develop. When you are excited in what about you are writing, you have a good chance that your reader will be excited too. Develop the beginning. Develop the story. Develop the ending. Everything you write is in other words what your feel. If you feel bored, your words and writing will be the same, if you feel yourself in the story you can make impossible ...


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It's called foreshadowing and it's common in fiction. Sometimes the future events are just hinted at or suggested (for example, the gun described in the first chapter later becomes the murder weapon), other times they are explicitly spelled out (as in your example). If the book has a first person narrator, you would usually only see explicit foreshadowing ...


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I don't want to be too cynical, but... being politically correct in just the right way. It is old news in U.S. politics that, as is said in some of the many constellations of African national cultures, "It takes a village to raise a child." (Or, if you aren't reading this in history books, "It takes a village.") I don't know which of the many constellations ...


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Here's a link to a great site of apology letter templates: http://www.apologyletters.net/ Just take one that piques your interest and change it according to your situation. If you want to do it step by step: http://www.wikihow.com/Write-an-Apology-Letter Though. He's your friend. I don't think you have to be so formal about not being able to attend his ...


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Everything is permissible, not everything is beneficial. There is no one to say if writing a certain way not forbidden by rules of grammar books is right or wrong. If you wish to see if words feel "natural" (I suppose this is what you want), then I recommend stopping. Wait a day, not thinking of what you have written. Look at your manuscript. Don't think ...


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As with adverbs, the key is "far too often". There's nothing wrong with using a gerund (riding) with a modifier (bike), although I wouldn't use the hyphen to connect them. Everything's "allowed", if it works. But if you yourself feel you're using them too often, you probably are, so you should give them a careful look. You may find they're less obtrusive ...


1

Young narrators often think, and string their sentences together, paratactically -- short independent clauses joined by conjunctions: We went to the zoo and we saw a lion and then we saw a monkey and the monkey threw some bananas at the people and we thought it was funny but then he ran at the bars and screamed and I was scared . . . " That's a pretty ...


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not at all a problem. At least w/in the contxt of these examples. Just make sure your story has a variety of paces and rhythms (one metric of which is sentence length) so you don't get boring.


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By default, my writing style idiosyncratically entails long sentences. It feels natural to write as I think and speak. It's more a matter of rhythm for me than anything else. Though I can't substantiate this, I sense that it allows me to permeate the reader's or listener's subconscious mind more effectively. Incidentally, I was once asked by a member of ...


1

The first thing you should ask yourself is whether or not the additional description helps to further the story. If it helps the reader get a better sense of the setting or mood of the scene, then you should consider adding it. However, if you are only adding it to increase the amount of content, then definitely don't do it. Your second example does do a ...


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It's a balance. When I read the first version, it just barely verges on being "too sensational", but it works. The second version offers an improvement of sorts, but phrases like "That's right" which Acknowledge how sensational/confusingly disparate the events are, instead of just letting the reader realize that for herself, are deleterious. I.e.: know how ...


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your voice is to some extent a composite of the voices you read. Read lots of different authors of all different heritages, occupations, styles, and subjects. It's like eating a variety of healthy foods, or solving a bunch of different types of problems: you pick up a lot of handy tricks for your repurposing/improvement.


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If I want to emphasize, I cap the first letter of the emphasizes word. Italics seem a bit cheesy to me. For example: You ate the Red biscuit?! You Ate the red biscuit?! You ate The red biscuit?! Of course there are issues when the word would be capped for other reasons (name, start of sentence). But that's what I do.


6

If you work for a client, especially if you write advertising, brochures, operating manuals and other publications that they authorize or even publish, they dictate the style. (The same is true in fiction or news or science or any other kind of writing, too, by the way. All publishing houses have their own style manuals, and if it bothers you to put a ...


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It's quite common to see dreams or memories placed in italics. I personally find this a beneficial technique since it effectively conveys a sense of altered consciousness. However, it depends, as always, on the effect you want to create --whether you want to emphasize or de-emphasize a discontinuity with the waking state. Some writers also place the dream ...


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As Kate said, over-using adverbs is never good, but they do tend to serve some strong sense when needed. Some writers follow the no-adverbs attitude but it is OK to use one occasionally. Usually there is a word describing the action and the adverb together for example "Said quietly" is quite similar to "whispered". And it's especially noticed the trivial ...


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You need to know what clues she will find. If she finds for example a paper, it's most likely to be in the trash or stolen from a student's bag. There is always the conversation in the bathroom while she is also in there but they don't know. A lot of teens use the web and smartphones today. A message can be wrongly sent to her, she might find a site or some ...


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You have got to try writing these clues/ideas down and then see which ones work. Of course you've got lots of ideas in your head but you won't be able to judge which ones really have legs until you put them on paper so they can run. Some of them might trip over and fall, others will spring to the line, but you can't see which ones will break the tape until ...


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OVER-using adverbs is a sign of bad writing, just like OVER-using anything else. In your first example, I think it's fine. There are different kinds of smiles, it's hard to describe the differences between them using "showing" words, and it's important that people know what kind of smile this is. So I don't have a problem with "kindly". Technically, I guess ...


1

First a disclaimer: There are always exceptions to every rule, especially when it comes to writing - some people can do completely opposite things to each other, and still produce good works. That said, I would suggest as a good rule of thumb, that you never explicitly describe physical characteristics, unless they are related to something else in the ...


5

Do not differentiate the dream text from the surrounding text. What you want is that readers follow the experience of the protagonist. The protagonist does not know that he dreams until he wakes up. The reader should not know that the protagonist dreams before he reads that the protagonist awakens, either. If you want the reader to know that the ...


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Joe Abercrombie does this a lot with his later books, allowing the reader to build up a picture of the character, then throughout he will add the description piece by piece. It works great and I always feel satisfied that I understand the character well enough to live without that predefined picture in my head so early on.


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As the other answers here show, to each their own. Some people enjoy combat scenes, and some don't. But also, different people (in both categories) enjoy different kinds of combat scenes, and there are many different ways to handle them, depending on purpose as well as audience. For readers who aren't really into combat, the best combat scenes will be ...


2

It seems to me that Kit Z. Fox's answer, which you quoted in the question itself, is a good answer. That is, you can avoid ever describing your characters. Whether it seems weird depends on the expectations of your readers, the genre you're writing in, and your own style and narrative voices. In your case, it seems like you are writing (conventional?) ...


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There are different kinds of essays - are you looking at an expository essay (an academic essay designed to set forth an argument about a specific idea)? If so, there's really not much creativity required... Standard format is to start with a hook - something that connects the topic of your essay to the larger world or than shows why readers should be ...


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An alternative to using _underscores_ to stress a word in a case where you'd normally use italics is to wrap the content in /slashes/. If nothing else, it's less likely to cause a miscommunication of its meaning than "quoting" and less likely to cause an unintentional emotional effect on the reader than USING ALL CAPS. It may be preferable if the other ...


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If you don't describe a character the moment they first appear, the reader will form an image. If you're happy to let readers form whatever image they want, don't describe the character, ever. Many stories do this. If you are going to describe a character, do it as soon as you can when they first walk onstage. Never wait until after the reader has formed ...


3

I'm currently reading the Diving Universe books by K. K. Rusch. They are told in first person, and all we ever learn about the protagonist is that she is a woman (from the blurb and by inference). We are not told anything else. The other characters refer to her as their "boss" or not at all. We don't know her age, looks or anything. What we do learn, though, ...


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It's important to remember that the characters live in your head, but they only are present in the reader's consciousness to the extent you place them there through your words. As a writer, I also dislike writing physical descriptions, but as a reader, they are very helpful in helping visualize a character. When a physical description comes in a book after ...


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I think readers need some general idea about the physical characters. It's generally a good idea if we know gender, for example. But other than that, I'd say most of your description can (and should) come as needed. Show what your characters look like by having them do things. A strong man can be called on to lift something, an old person can hobble, or ...



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