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8

Be true to your characters. If the characters swear, do so. If they don't, don't. Be true to the moment, if the scene requires swearing, then swear. Don't confuse your preferences or personality for your characters. if you swear a lot, or not at all, that shouldn't reflect on how your characters speak. One of the most common mistakes in even ...


5

What you describe is mostly what the genre of High Fantasy is about. I have never found Le Guin or Tolkien to be archaic, or “dated”, it reads natural to me. I have more issues with Zelasny’s Princes of Amber series, or Moorcock's series, though. Also some fantasy authors try to inject artificial “old style” and that is glaring and distracting to the ...


3

Personally, I think adding too many details harms your case --it makes you sound like someone who habitually searches for excuses rather than someone who experienced a valid, one-time emergency. Therefore, I would initially go with the simplest reasoning: This is XXXX from your Tue/Thu mornings Speech class. I came down with the flu last week and was ...


3

At a guess I'd say it's probably a bridge too far for most publishers, but the other thing to remember is that it's pretty much top-of-the-tree as a far as profanity goes, so once you've used it, where do you go? If you want to represent levels/layers of emotion and associated profanities then you'd start small and build up, leaving the big stuff for when ...


3

I'm a native English speaker, am university educated, have been reading fiction for as long as I can remember, and would consider myself to have a reasonably extensive vocabulary, yet I suffer from the same issue: encountering words in fiction that I have never previously been exposed to. You're always going to come up against it no matter how well prepared ...


2

I agree with the above in regards to fiction exposure. However, your vocabulary and grammar seem just fine to me. You don't want to try to impress your readers with fancy vocabulary; it will look forced. Either this site or English Language Learners can help with phraseology on the occasion you need it. Commercial success requires ingenuity. You need a ...


2

I believe it is true of all languages that fiction, technical writing, songs, drama, informal speech, and formal speech all have their different registers and specialised vocabularies. How are these specialised vocabularies typically learned? I hesitated to answer this question because my answer seems so simplistic, but since no one else has offered ...


2

I would say that if you enjoy that, and you want to include it into your work then you should do so. I think the 'harmful extent' comes when it is over used, or it interferes with the flow of the story. But that is something that can be fixed in future edits. If you are having conversations in some alternate language then provide some means of allowing ...


2

Can it put readers off? Yes, by all means. Are there rules? Yes, don't turn off your intended audience, for obvious reasons. I know that regional differences and religious views hugely impact what could be considered norms, but you should at very least gauge your language off the rest of the content. On one extreme, if your book could otherwise be admitted ...


2

I know how you feel because I am a foreigner myself. As a translator I know many people who can write in English but need someone to review their texts. The problem we foreigners have is not only the insufficient vocabulary, although this is common too, but a problem of choosing the right words and expressions. In technical writing, if the technical words ...


1

The limitation is on the publisher or agent but not for legal reasons, for marketing ones. I always use an agent. They will tell you what to do about this issue in particular (among others). I've seen some ghetto drama where F bombs didn't break the top 5 on insults, for instance. I personally write the story I see. Finishing a book is an awesome ...


1

With this type of questions what I would recommend is to begin as straight forward and precise as possible, and add the politeness after. If you're worried about not irritating someone, first thing to consider is clarity. Here's how I would've written it: This is XXXX from your Tue/Thu mornings XXXX class. I'm wondering about the grading of the XXXX ...


1

There's no rule for not using the F word. It just might be that the author(s) are avoiding it. I recently read a book by Andreas Embirikos (whose style resembles that of Sade's) and he used the F word quite often. Can it put readers off? Depends on the book IMO. If I was reading a book like the aforementioned one, I wouldn't be offended. If I was ...


1

"Redouble" is almost always used in the idiom to redouble one's effort, meaning to increase the effort one is exerting. "Double again" has the very specific meaning of This was increased by 100% of the original, to make 200%, and will now be increased by 100% of that, making it 400% of the original. Which one you want to use is dependent on context and ...


1

I used to speak Spanish quite well, as a second language. The language I learned was conversational Spanish rather than literary Spanish. It was more difficult to read a novel than a newspaper for example, because the vocabulary used in a novel is quite different to the language that people generally use day to day, much more descriptive. I was still able ...



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