703 reputation
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bio website annailonamussmann.blogspot.co…
location USA
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visits member for 1 year, 6 months
seen Aug 3 at 19:10

I am an aspiring author with a love for Irish breakfast tea, long walks, period costumes, and tales of the fantastical. I cling to the use of the Oxford comma and I blog about writing and literature at http://annailonamussmann.blogspot.com .


Jul
28
comment Can novels have twist endings?
I would add that another type of twist that sometimes appears at the end of a novel is the death of the protagonist. Usually this is a "twist" mostly because the reader assumes that the hero will survive. Of course, this kind of ending only works if it's thematically satisfying and thoroughly meaningful. Ex: Rosemary Suttliff's Mark of the Horse Lord: the protagonist impersonates the real heir and becomes king. In the end, he is able to protect the people by sacrificing his own life, thus truly acting the role of the king.
Jul
24
answered Can't write, can plan
Jul
21
answered When Is a Relationship Too Antagonistic?
Jul
18
comment Can I use general short stories to publish on my site, blog, etc.?
Whose stories are they? If they are old stories that are in the public domain, that's one thing, but if they are current works that belong to someone, that's another.
Jul
18
comment no matter whether = whether?
I think that the "or not" is technically needed in both sentences, but is more successfully implied in the first than in the second.
Jul
15
comment How to show characters learning something in a non-boring way?
Have you read the Newbery-winning children's novel, The Avion My Uncle Flew? In the novel, the young protagonist learns lots of French words (made fairly interesting by being relevant to what he is trying to accomplish in his interactions with French people) and, in the end of the book, actually writes an entire letter "in French." The cool thing is that a young reader who has been paying attention will be able to understand the letter, and will feel that they "know French."
Jul
14
comment Pros and cons of using real brand/company names?
possible duplicate of Is it unusual to use product placement within a fictional novel, and what are the legalities around this?
Jul
7
comment What are some strategies for surprising the reader?
J.K. Rowling can be used as an example of this, too, I think. She included so much extraneous, fun, world-building information that it was difficult to tell (especially in the early books) which pieces would actually become important to the plot. Such a method wouldn't work for every style, but it worked for her.
Jul
7
answered What are some strategies for surprising the reader?
Jun
19
answered Avoiding a juvenile/archaic feel in formal verse
May
28
comment What concrete steps do you take to write for a specific reading level?
Are you familiar with the Accelerated Reader program from Renaissance Learning? The program, which is used by a number of schools, ranks a large number of books according to reading level and gives them different point values. It might be helpful to look up children's literature that you are familiar with and see what reading level they have assigned to it (they look at vocab, etc., but not overarching concepts). arbookfind.com/default.aspx
May
23
answered How do I write a gory scene?
Feb
16
awarded  Yearling
Aug
20
answered Making a female character sound more boyish/masculine
Jul
13
comment What factors in fiction arouse readers' expectations?
I just ran across this article, which seems helpful/relevant in light of your question. lbgale.com/2013/07/02/…
Jul
12
comment Who is the perfect rival to the right-person-wrong-time character in a love triangle?
If readers root for both/either of the romantic rivals all through the story, can you provide a satisfying ending? Usually the protagonist and reader only discover gradually that Mr. Seems-Right is actually Mr. Wrong-Person, right? In that case, the reader is happy with the choice of Mr. Really-Right.
Jul
10
comment Referring to people in a book
I have to admit that as an (American) English-speaker, it jars me to see authors referred to by their first name unless I knew the writer knew them and was telling a personal story. "As Mark said..." (instead of Twain) is so jarring as to seem, to me, pretentious-- which is the opposite of what you are going for.
Jul
9
comment Books for children: complexity
Perhaps so-- but a lot of classic children's books were written for the author's own child/ren or a small group of children.
Jul
9
comment What factors in fiction arouse readers' expectations?
The style of the book can also be part of the "contract." Literary books often close with more unresolved questions than genre books do (plus, if a story seems to be conveying the idea that life is bleak and meaningless, I am less surprised at an unresolved ending).
Jul
9
answered Roadblocks in my story: The Gladys Tribe