Community Digest

Top new questions this week:

Is there a way to make text feel like an unhinged rant while still being readable?

I want to write a passage of text that makes the reader feel like the person writing it is deranged or otherwise not in the right state of mind. It seems relatively easy to write incoherent, ...

characters character-development prose-style  
user avatar asked by Finley Baker Score of 1
user avatar answered by Amadeus Score of 0

Does it come off as weird/offensive to describe someone as 'brown' in partial reference to their skin color, but in absence of a specific descriptor?

I'm not talking about describing someone as 'brown-skinned' or 'having brown skin' or even specific phrases like 'brown people', I should expect the former two to be acceptable and the I know the last ...

user avatar asked by user61513 Score of 1
user avatar answered by Ben Score of 1

Past progressive in a novel

I have been reading a lot of different options on how to write a novel. Many people suggest that the past progressive tense is most often used in fiction to describe interrupted actions (in relation ...

user avatar asked by Piermo Score of 1
user avatar answered by Amadeus Score of 1

Greatest hits from previous weeks:

How to avoid using "he/she/it" repetitively in action

I'm writing a zombie apocalypse genre book (yes, I know it's a heavily used and abused writing genre, but I'm writing it in my way, a way I believe is a good way). Anyway, I caught myself writing &...

creative-writing style technique narrative pronouns  
user avatar asked by A. Kvåle Score of 14
user avatar answered by Cindered Soul Score of 12

The "Rules" of Writing

There are a lot of axioms that get tossed around in creative writing courses, books on writing, and of course, the Internet. Often, these little gems are explained to new writers as though they were ...

technique style rules  
user avatar asked by sjohnston Score of 221
user avatar answered by sjohnston Score of 73

Where to put counter-examples within a 5-paragraph essay?

I am tutoring some students in the very basics of writing a 5-paragraph essay to present an argument, in preparation for more advanced academic writing. I am instructing them to include: An ...

academic-writing structure essay  
user avatar asked by Village Score of 6
user avatar answered by Jay Score of 7

"All of a sudden..." ?

I am writing a manuscript for a novel. It's my first attempt, and often I find myself wanting to write "suddenly" or "all of a sudden". I do this when I want the scene to change in an instant, or ...

style fiction cliches  
user avatar asked by Tim Chaves Score of 56
user avatar answered by Kate S. Score of 72

What is the correct way to write a fractional number in a formal letter?

If I'm talking about a length of time in a cover letter, let's say 5.5 years, what would be the correct way to write this? five-and-a-half years 5-1/2 years 5.5 years

style business-writing time-depiction cover-letter numerals  
user avatar asked by bernk Score of 10
user avatar answered by Lauren-Clear-Monica-Ipsum Score of 9

How to show a crying/sad scene without using sentimentalism?

Previously, I had no difficulty in showing a scene like that, and as for me, to show a crying scene I'd write something like "then a teardrop rolled by her cheek". However, I had read an article from ...

creative-writing technique  
user avatar asked by Yuuza Score of 14
user avatar answered by wyc Score of 19

Is it morally wrong to use tragic historical events as character background/development?

I'm writing crime fiction. The current scenario is that I have a main character (late 20's) who is Algerian but the story is set in Chicago. He lives in the United States because, as a baby, he fled ...

creative-writing fiction morality crime  
user avatar asked by MikeS Score of 11
user avatar answered by hszmv Score of 27
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