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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.

6
votes
2answers
587 views

Is my book legal? Is my story too similiar to Harry Potter

I have been creating a story in my mind from early childhood. Now, I am very talented in writing, so I decided to give it a try one day. It was awesome! The book I imagine in my head was being written,...
5
votes
3answers
342 views

Dystopia that isn't cliche

Dystopian fiction is a big thing right now, and YA books like The Hunger Games and Divergent are pretty individual and subsequently are bestsellers. But a lot of stuff is also really cheesy and trite,...
19
votes
6answers
2k views

Not projecting myself onto my characters

I have struggled with mental illness for my entire life. Writing has been an extremely helpful and important mode of self-expression for me, since I was little. But recently, I feel like my writing ...
7
votes
2answers
205 views

Raising infinite questions without isolating the reader

I've been spiraling down a rabbit hole of conspiracy theory/mysterious event case study videos on Youtube lately, and have been inspired by an Internet scavenger hunt from a few years ago called ...
1
vote
2answers
93 views

Consequences of imprisonment during childhood [closed]

My protagonist is a prince who was imprisoned by his uncle after his father died. This should happen at an age when he can vaguely remember his parents and the life he had. He should be extroverted ...
4
votes
4answers
146 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 ...
-3
votes
7answers
159 views

Should I be myself and write what I really want even though it isn't getting much traction? [closed]

Or should I dumb down my writing and pander to what I think most people like to read? (Note: This isn't necessarily about me. It's a general question for many writers facing such a dilemma.) NB: I ...
7
votes
3answers
108 views

Different methods of incorporating Korean into English text [duplicate]

I have a Korean character in the novel I'm working on, and it is fairly important to the plot that she has some dialogue in Korean. Korean isn't a language where you can say what you see, if you ...
24
votes
6answers
5k views

What keeps most authors writing after receiving multiple rejections?

Last year, I completed a heavily researched 95,000-word novel about an emerging pandemic that targets primarily children. I am a former scientist and current nurse and wanted to do teaching about what ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

How can I indicate a magical compulsion to protect someone without truly disclosing it?

One of the characters in my book feels the need to protect a woman she barely knows and later on it will be revealed that they have a magical which causes the character in question to want to protect ...
2
votes
2answers
236 views

Fiction: Living next door to a CEO [closed]

A CEO moves next door to a 3rd year college student who babysits and tutors for a rich family to keep the rent paid in her expensive apartment. It seems strange for a CEO, who probably has a ton of ...
3
votes
1answer
61 views

How can I describe someone wanting to make someone happy?

So I'm writing a story and I'm having trouble with one part. The main character says that someone will never like her because she's weird and the character's sister says something along the lines of, "...
3
votes
3answers
225 views

How to avoid “power creep” in my novel? [duplicate]

I am aware that many books and comics have this problem. The hero defeats someone and then the next bad guy has to be tougher so that there is suspense and the hero has to grow stronger in order to ...
5
votes
1answer
248 views

Protagonist who is morally compromised and antagonist who is “good”?

My protagonist is Eris and my antagonist is Ezrith. In a post-apocalyptic world, my unreliable narrator Eris has the ability to control and manipulate life and subsequently kill any living thing at ...
7
votes
5answers
2k views

How can you humanize infanticide of the evil-tainted?

The world is surrounded by an alternate realm called the spirit world. Humans existed as separate physical entities, but maintain an attachment to the spirit realm due to their connection with god. ...
1
vote
2answers
99 views

Short sentence(s) to be creative to ask Uber passenger to tip?

As a Uber driver, I did not earn much. Uber cut down the pay to drivers recently, it hurt a lot. I want to write a sign to remind people to pay tips. I want to be a bit creative to remind the rider ...
5
votes
2answers
206 views

Running four parallel stories

In my story, I have four important people (1 Protagonist and his friends). All four play a major part in dealing with the main conflict. Initially they do not know each other. They meet after a series ...
2
votes
3answers
1k views

I noticed that several already-existing poems used the same highly specific puns and phrases that I used. Is this unintentional plagiarism on my part?

A bit of context: Exhibit A) I wrote a poem that had the line "crystalline crystal lines." I googled this phrase, just to see if it was out there, and I saw that it was. I had never read the poem ...
27
votes
13answers
7k views

Painting ritualistic murder in a “good-guy” light?

My good guys murder people. They slowly carve runes onto them to help defeat the bad guys. Sure they try to use "society's worst" people for the rituals, but realistically that doesn't always happen. ...
2
votes
2answers
116 views

How should sentient computer viruses act like? [closed]

OK; I'm obsessed with Toonami and their event Trapped in Hyperspace features the computer virus antagonist Swayzak, who I base almost all my computer virus characters on. Swayzak behaves like a one-...
1
vote
1answer
94 views

Keeping up with multiple projects at the same time

I love writing and write almost every day, and I have multiple pieces that I am working on currently: two books, multiple original characters' background and development, and academic analysis pieces ...
1
vote
2answers
64 views

Flashforward Tense

I am a new-ish author. I've written a lot of books, but they've never been published. Anyway, for this new book I'm about to write the first scene is a flash-forward to the end of the book. I really ...
3
votes
1answer
214 views

Do Open Source Novels Exist?

Are there any examples of novels that are "open source"? Anytime I run a search of open source novels, I keep getting results for open source writing software. That's not what I'm after. What I ...
2
votes
4answers
227 views

Writing a story about a immortal character

I have a character that I want to have live for 200 years. I've used the beginning to fill out his backstory with events that are critical to the story, including how he became immortal. How would I ...
0
votes
3answers
124 views

How do I make my characters sound British?

This might sound silly, but I am trying to make one of my characters British and I have a hard time portraying that idea on paper. My novel is set in a fantasy land, nothing like this world and I am ...
0
votes
1answer
48 views

Describing new/strange foods [closed]

Alright, another question from the POV of Eris, my unreliable narrator living in a post-apocalyptic world who has just met other humans and is experiencing a variety of new things. She just met a ...
9
votes
5answers
302 views

How to write a good MacGuffin?

I backed myself into a corner and have to create a [TV TROPES WARNING] MacGuffin for a story. How can I create a good MacGuffin? How to make it interesting for the reader ? I don't know where to ...
12
votes
4answers
2k views

Writing as a hobby, where do you learn the basics and go further?

Sorry if I use the wrong terms or make a wrong assumption. I consider myself a beginner, and I know that I still have to learn a lot in the field. I write as a hobby. I do it when I have the time, ...
15
votes
3answers
3k views

Should the name of a mythological creature be capitalized?

The name of the mythological creature in my novel is "manananggal". When I'm referring to it, should I capitalize what it is?
3
votes
3answers
292 views

Effectively conveying an unreliable narrator

I have been working on a post-apocalyptic novel for about a year. My female narrator/protagonist, named Eris, was isolated for almost all of her life until meeting a rogue group of survivors and ...
1
vote
3answers
137 views

Glossary in my book

While writing my book, I have noticed that not a lot of people, that read my draft understand half of the things I'm talking about. So I added a glossary at the end that they could reference via a ...
2
votes
2answers
91 views

Secondary Dialogue

When writing a novel how would one best represent background dialogue from a radio or television that is perhaps only half heard by the characters but still important for the reader? Should I have the ...
1
vote
0answers
64 views

Hooking the Reader. Feedback Needed [closed]

I am writing a new adult urban fantasy novel. The following is the beginning of my current book: My hand gripped her fragile, human arm. Her warm energy waited just beneath her skin. I stared down ...
4
votes
3answers
243 views

How to add depth to primary female character that contrasts well with primary male characters

I am attempting to write a relatively complex SciFi military novel following 3 primary characters. A male and female protagonist, and a male antagonist. So far none of those characters are aware of ...
0
votes
2answers
85 views

Music & Focus During Writing [closed]

I hate listening to silence while I write, so I usually end up listening to music, but then I lose my focus. I don't really like classical or lo-fi that much and they don't help me concentrate on the ...
8
votes
5answers
3k views

Needing Help Fleshing Out Male Character So He's Not Just a Stock Character

I have been working on a fantasy novel for the past twelve years, during which time there have been drastic changes. The most drastic being that I decided to cut out the first third of the story, as ...
2
votes
1answer
93 views

How to build a character from an invented professional title?

Wendalyne is not a boring character; she is living the dream. Her dream, that is. More of a game than a dream, actually. The Morphophonemic Wheedlometrist lives for the experience of her craft......
2
votes
3answers
143 views

How to describe a horse from the POV of someone who has never seen one? [closed]

In my story, my narrator has only recently met other humans and the biggest creature she has ever interacted with are dogs. In the survivors' camp, she encounters their horses and is pretty freaked ...
6
votes
2answers
732 views

How to write a fantasy novel? [duplicate]

I want to write a fantasy novel. I have the story(Only the main conflict) but I'm unable to make any progress. My question is in novel writing what are all the things you do before literally start ...
29
votes
15answers
6k views

Creating an incompetent antagonist

I'm in the early stages of developing a fantasy story. At a high level, it involves the tried-and-true, if cliched, plot line of "Scrappy group of rebels fights for liberation against the oppressive ...
0
votes
1answer
77 views

How would law enforcement react to a “Jane Doe”? [closed]

In my story there's this woman who has a seizure/stroke/something-capable-of-putting-someone-into-a-coma while driving and gets involved in a car crash. The other driver suffered but a small ...
20
votes
6answers
4k views

Explaining made up card game

In my book I've made up a card game where I've already thought out the rules. Now I want some of the characters playing this game. My questions are: Should the reader know the rules? If I want to ...
6
votes
3answers
194 views

How should you use sexually deviant monsters in fantasy?

terror is a real and powerful thing. A monster is ever-so-slightly scarier if it violates you in some way. there have been many of these types of creatures seen in myths and fairy tales. This goes ...
2
votes
2answers
121 views

How to combat “uneven writing density”?

I'm not sure if I would "officially" classify as a discovery writer, but I usually write very freely. I get a bunch of ideas, write them down and try to put them together to create a compelling story. ...
18
votes
6answers
4k views

Should I write my story if I haven't established a plot?

I'm in the process of start writing my story and I'm not sure if I should do it if I'm not done with the main plot of the story. Also I don't know since what part should I start writing off, The start,...
1
vote
3answers
87 views

Do I need less exposition if I'm going to add images?

So, I'm trying to write something called a light novel, which is a Japanese-type of writing. It's a novel, but spaced throughout different chapters, there are manga-style images, as well as full-color ...
0
votes
2answers
83 views

Can I mention Sherlock Holmes in my story? [duplicate]

Now that character SHERLOCK HOLMES is no longer under copyright and is in public domain, can I bring him into my fantasy story where the Protagonist meets him to get some help?
5
votes
9answers
359 views

Why do expert fiction writers often give conflicting and contradictory advice to novice writers? [closed]

Lots of writers give writing advice -- but why do they so often contradict each other? For example, some say that "good writing is rewriting", while others (like Dean Wesley Smith) say that rewriting ...
4
votes
2answers
423 views

How to turn an Alternate Universe into an original story?

So, I have an Alternate Universe (I'll call it an AU from here on out.) of one of my favorite shows, called RWBY (link to wiki: http://rwby.wikia.com/wiki/RWBY_Wiki) It takes the premise of the show, ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

How do you make a scene “tasteful”?

Let's say you have a scene that contains nudity. There are many ways to do it wrong and have it just be a pervy scene, but there are also ways to make it "tasteful" in a way where it's slightly less ...