Questions tagged [creative-writing]

"Creative writing" is a vague term, but generally means fiction, or writing that's not non-fiction, technical, or business writing. This tag should be used when asking questions that apply to multiple categories of creative writing, such as when asking questions that could apply to fiction or poetry alike.

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5answers
515 views

What are “good” writing habits?

I always read that good writers shouldn't use similitudes and metaphors. Also, a writer shouldn't use too many descriptions. Then, I read Raymond Chandler and my little stupid world of securities went ...
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4answers
179 views

What would you say is the best way to get a self published book popularized without making a blog?

I feel like a new blog would be too hard to gain attention to because for me I don’t especially love talking about writing that much even though I love to write so I just wanted to know if they’re ...
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2answers
196 views

How to organize your ideas, how to keep reasonable when writing

I tried to write about specific subject but i had a problem which is: I always lose concentration and forget some important things to write. Sometimes, a secondary idea comes to my mind and made me ...
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4answers
122 views

What format should I use when beginning a chapter with the time and location of the events?

What format should I use when beginning a chapter with the time and location of the events? I was thinking to use: Nine pm. Sunday, in Los Angeles, CA, USA. but I don't think it looks good, so I ...
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4answers
386 views

Are paragraph spaces used for emphasis?

I am writing a story and I have these 3 sentences that elaborate on the ending of a first page. This way the reader will continue to read my story. My question is, am I allowed to place paragraph ...
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3answers
225 views

Sympathy for a villain [duplicate]

I have a villain. The villain is the hero of their own story. The villain starts off as good, looking to overthrow a monstrous leader. They were once in the same shoes as the heroes. Part of the ...
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2answers
200 views

Skipping telling to get to the showing - pros and cons

In my style of writing, I often find that I lapse into relating what happens or has happened, usually via short, choppy, dead sentences. As far as I can tell, this is because the scene I am writing ...
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2answers
447 views

How to restart a novel(la)?

I've got a novel(la) of 33,000+ (130 or so manuscript pages) words that I would like to build up to 60,000 or so words - but I'm having trouble restarting the project... So my question is this: what ...
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3answers
816 views

Different types of “Flashbacks”

In a novel, particurlarly fiction, what are the basic ways to reveal something that happened in the past? What ways, (flashback, protagonist telling, etc.) are the most used and most effective? ...
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6answers
648 views

Is it OK to add chapters to slow down the pace of the story?

Example: I'm writing a story where the protagonist is searching for some information. She searches for it at her university, and fails. After that chapter, however, she finally finds someone who leads ...
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3answers
534 views

Is it OK to have two different POVs in a same paragraph (third-person omniscient narrator)?

This is my first time writing a third-person omniscient narrator. And just got stucked in a dilemma. This is the opening of the story: Once again Kuo found himself standing face to face with Mei-...
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3answers
6k views

Any techniques to make the reader feel sad and very sorrowful?

Are there any techniques which writers can use to really touch the character, and make them feel really emotional because of your writing? I'm trying to improve a dystopian piece of writing. I stood ...
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1answer
414 views

What are the elements of a good blurb?

I'm writing a blurb. To do so, I'm using my favorite novels as examples. Here's one: Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami. Kafka on the Shore follows the fortunes of two remarkable characters. ...
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2answers
617 views

How to write for a certain audience?

I'm busy writing a book that I've been putting off for years. In this book the main character starts off as an 18 year old but grows up to be a young adult, sometimes she will think about when she was ...
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2answers
252 views

How much influence does blogging have on learning to write better?

I have 100 blogs and have written for 10 years in my language (Persian), but I'm not focused on increasing my ability to write better. What exercises should a writer focus on when blogging to be a ...
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2answers
815 views

Is it possible to turn a cliche into something original?

I always try to avoid cliches as much as I can. But sometimes I just can't; they seem to be the perfect bridge between one scene and the other. For example, in the current novel I'm writing, the ...
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3answers
2k views

Are essays supposed to be formal?

After reading a prompt to one of essays, and then looking at this link, I realized how little I know about the actual meaning of an essay. Here is how my definition of "essay" has become muddied over ...
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4answers
6k views

Capitalized opening lines

I've noticed that novels and short stories nowadays capitalize the first sentence. Example (This is from Joe Hill's Throttle): Two questions: 1) What's the font size of the capitalized text (right ...
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3answers
1k views

Ways of presenting a metaphor/simile/analogy

This is something I wrote (adult content—and very bad description of sex): Strangely, it didn't feel much like sex. I felt we were just exchanging feelings that we couldn't be put into words. ...
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3answers
406 views

3 short stories that can be turned into a novel. Should I pick the one with best reviews?

I wrote 3 short stories a long time ago, and I realized there's still room to expand them. Recently I made the decision to write a novel with the purpose of starting a writing career. So my plan is to ...
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4answers
675 views

How to deal with cliche dialogue?

The following is from a story I'm writing: "Goodbye Choco," my mother said, to end the prayer, “may your soul rest in peace,” and crossed herself. “Sorry I couldn’t come earlier,” I said. “I’...
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4answers
3k views

What is the best practice for writing a character that speaks with a whistle lisp?

For a character that whistles when pronouncing the "s" sound, how can I write in the lisp effectively? I tried using multiple "S"s, but it reads as a snake-like sound, which I don't want since there ...
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2answers
109 views

What is a “methodology” I can I use/follow to determine the ideal set of protagonists for my story?

So I'm pretty much about to start a new story, which I plan to be a big process. I have several fleshed-out characters in mind, but I'm really not sure how exactly to determine if they're all fit to ...
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2answers
530 views

Converting/rewriting present tense narratives to past tense gracefully. Not a question about verb conjugation

I decided a few chapters into a book I'm writing that I dislike present tense, and that I would need to go back and make all instances of present tense past tense to maintain consistency. However, now ...
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7answers
810 views

What happens with changing POV Irregularly?

I have a story that is primarily told from one POV character (third-person limited). However, plotted within this story are a few chapters from other characters. Most of my multiple-POV research ...
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5answers
537 views

What are the Criteria that Distinguish a Thriller from Horror?

The criteria that come to mind are not exclusive to horror novels, so I'm a little confused and annoyed (annoyed because I find horror novels scary, and yet just cannot define it logically when I try ...
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2answers
194 views

Would it be annoying for the reader if the all the scenes alternate between “present” and flashback?

I'm writing a short story with the following structure: B tells A she is gravely sick and wants to be alone (present) A talks about how he met B in a hospital (flashback) A talks with his ...
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4answers
1k views

How much repetition is too much repetition?

This is a question that'd been bothering me for a while. Here's an example: My heart racing, I wriggled to the edge of the bed and fumbled for Travis' hand. Just make sure to hold onto it, he'd ...
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4answers
48k views

Does this sound like a good description of someone falling asleep due exhaustion? Anything I can do to make it sound better? [closed]

I'm trying to describe somebody falling asleep from exhaustion, in first person. I'm currently using a longer, detailed description, but is that the best way? Never had a few moments deliberation ...
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2answers
621 views

How can I implement more show less tell in my writing? [closed]

I wrote this piece, but have had quite a lot of problems with showing, not telling. I am wondering how I can add More SHOW and less TELL in this piece of writing. The morning was warm. Just like ...
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4answers
133 views

I'm having an issue committing to my novels [closed]

So, obviously, I'm a writer. I have pretty bad ADD/ADHD and though it's never bothered me before, it's really affecting my writing as of late. I don't really think this is a medical question, as ...
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7answers
659 views

Is the following deus-ex-machina? If so, should I remove it?

I wrote a novel called Animal Suicide. It's a mix of romance and dark humor. It's about a girl who, after a weird incident, postpones a pill overdose and starts researching about the topic of animal ...
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3answers
116 views

Literary criticism handbook

Can you point out some reference books on literary criticism – from a theoretical as well as practical point of view – to hone and systematize my skills, acquired through first-hand reading of lots of ...
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2answers
95 views

Are there widely recognized iconic story examples of “a stranger comes to town” and “a stranger in a strange land”? [closed]

I am working on a story and looking for examples of a particular type I can read as an archetype that might commonly be taught in writing schools. I believe it was Robert McKee who I heard say that ...
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4answers
315 views

Writing backwards

I am a writer, I tend to write and then write my outline. I have done this for many years with papers and stories but it doesn't seem to work with my books. Is that a good strategy?
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5answers
226 views

technical subjects - non-fiction vs fiction

This is a question I tried to ask in Novelizing non-fiction, is it worth it? But was un-clear and maybe too generic. Let’s say I am a scuba diving expert and I could write a non-fiction book about ...
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2answers
536 views

Is there a problem in switching from present to past for a backstory sequence?

My understanding was that it's fairly normal for a present-tense novel to switch into past tense in a backstory sequence. But I was having a conversation with a friend and he insists any tense ...
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1answer
110 views

How to deal with awkward pronoun repetition?

Example from my writing: Aru smiled back at him and at his thought. “I think there’s no need to find him.” So what if Ichi wasn't a prime number? Their hearts combined would produce a one, one ...
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3answers
789 views

Rhythm in the following passage

I wrote the following: Having finished her breakfast, Tsuki went to take a walk at the beach. She made her way through the sand barefoot, feeling the cold water and foam run between her toes. ...
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4answers
274 views

How much information should a narrative sentence contain ,from experience on average, for good readability?

While randomly browsing, i noticed fiction writings contain much more comas in their sentences as lets say sentences in chats or instruction leaflets. just for contrast simple sentence: i live in ...
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5answers
167 views

How can a screenplay writer learn to write a novel?

I am the sort of person that is really great at coming up with amazing ideas, plot-lines, worlds, etc. for stories, but I'm not so good at putting them to paper - at least not in a novel. I'm really ...
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2answers
224 views

How much copying is okay?

I have an idea for a story, but I realize that many of the idea's elements are similar to another story out there. (The attire of the main character, fighting style and structure of some social groups,...
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5answers
275 views

In-universe swear, curses, similies and sayings, how to make them less cringeworthy

Hold Your Hippogriffs: A (more often than not) cringeworthy version of a saying (though can be invented on the spot), that is prone to cause Fatal Death in most readers. But it sounds fun, who wouldn'...
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1answer
2k views

Using senses and similes in descriptions

I'm trying to make my descriptions to look less like a bunch of bullet points. So I decided to use more senses and similes. This is something I wrote: The sun hung in the cloudless sky, like a ...
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1answer
168 views

Issue of tense and breaking the fourth wall/meta

Looking at another thread on tense, I realize that this one of mine may be misconstrued as me asking for help fixing a specific paragraph. Rather than that, I am asking for advice in general on ...
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0answers
63 views

What are some genuine sites for content writing? [duplicate]

What are some good genuine sites on the web for paid freelance content writing, proof-reading etc.? Even though I do not have any degree in journalism (full-time or part-time), I believe I have a ...
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1answer
891 views

Chapter titles or numbers?

I am about to start writing a science-fiction novel, and having only ever written technical documents before, I have very little experience in the finer details of creative writing. In particular, I ...
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3answers
88 views

Need help titling my book? [closed]

So... I'm writing a book that takes place in an alternate world. In this world, there are a bunch of islands that align with the star sign constellations (Ex: Gemini, Sagittarius, etc.) the island ...
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3answers
138 views

Finding resources for sci-fi writers on Quantum Mechanics

I don't have the financial resources to hire a scientific consultant to ask him whether my science-fiction plot is realistic, so I was wondering if there were any resource that teach Quantum Mechanic ...
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1answer
37 views

Publishing my book [duplicate]

my name is Ash, and I'm 14, I've been writing since I was in sixth grade, well, I mean I've been writing over 500 words since sixth grade. I have written small little books that had no plot whatsoever ...