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Questions tagged [fiction]

Fiction is a form of prose writing that deals with at least partly artificial or imagined events and characters. This tag should be used for any questions relating to fiction, including fiction formatting, techniques and publishing.

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4answers
95 views

Will my one sentence prologue work?

I know most readers don't like prologues, so I've tried to make it as simple as possible. I write the following knowing fully well how weird it’ll make me look. — A.B.G. A.B.G. Is the ...
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5answers
2k views

Can the prologue's POV be different from the POV of main story?

Let me explain my question: I want to write the prologue of the story with the narrator in first person with the point of view of the protagonist. But the story is already written in a third person ...
0
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0answers
14 views

What could an expression similar to “bridge the cap”/“walk up to” be? [migrated]

What I would like is bit more complicated. Essentially, when there is a wedge between two ideals, people, etc, you can metaphorically bridge a gap between both via actions taken. What I'm looking for ...
2
votes
1answer
35 views

Formatting a dream inside a flashback

I'm writing a first-person POV in which my MC has flashbacks/memories of previous lives. As these happen several times throughout the novel, I use italics for these scenes to help the reader ...
1
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2answers
64 views

How to use professional jargon when writing fiction?

The military, the medical professions, police, etc. - they have their professional jargon. One noteworthy characteristic of this jargon is the extensive use of abbreviations. Those abbreviations are ...
0
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2answers
46 views

Use of 'nigh' in fiction [closed]

First post here. Some background first: I write follow ups to my Pathfinder table session from the perspective of my character. These are shared, and read along with other player's own contributions....
4
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3answers
108 views

In literary fiction, when does allusion, pastiche or intertextuality cross over into plagiarism?

I want to write a novella that to some degree translates Conrad's Heart of Darkness to a modern urban setting, and I want the astute reader to be able to make multiple connections between the two ...
1
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5answers
135 views

How can I state what is written on a sign?

Is it okay to write: "Shop Name", read a sign hanging above the shop. Should I use italics for the shop name or use any other type of formatting? I wasn't sure how to do this. This is for fiction.
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4answers
189 views

How far apart can the dots be?

I've written enough to know the kind of writer I am, my voice, my style. I am often accused of making the reader work too hard to put the plot points together. In my latest story: a man experiencing ...
2
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2answers
163 views

If one provides inspiration for a story that gets published, and is named, do you get royalties for that?

If you were the inspiration to a story and it gets written in a book and published and they use your name do you get any royalties from that
1
vote
3answers
69 views

First draft Word count. [closed]

Do you find your first draft is longer or shorter than your completed work? I understand that I will be cutting alot of unnessary words, but I also have a list of things I need to add. I haven't gone ...
10
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4answers
2k views

How to convert a roleplay into a book?

My partner and I usually enjoy role-playing together in free-form. I was thinking perhaps we could convert one of our role-plays into a book and publish it online. I wanted to ask if there are any ...
0
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1answer
109 views

What do we mean by “Inevitable Narratives”? [closed]

The inspiration to ask & answer this question came from a comment made by Matthew Dave on this reply: https://writing.stackexchange.com/a/38648/16555 I've also been asked that before, by a ...
15
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4answers
225 views

How to research sex for writing?

I'm not writing erotica - I'm writing fantasy and sci-fi. But sometimes my characters make love, sometimes in ways I cannot be familiar with. In one story, it's two guys (I'm a girl). In another story,...
3
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1answer
48 views

Are there any set rules to creating a story with audience participation?

I have recently grown interested in the idea of writing a litrpg novel where each two days i will publish a chapter describing a single day of the main character and at the end of the day the readers ...
4
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5answers
126 views

Sensitivity with disorders/mental illnesses

The novel is overall very distressing and supposed to elicit emotion from the readers, it's practically dependent on it. A few of the characters in my novel will contain depressed and suicidal ...
-2
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2answers
54 views

How can I avoid repetition of “I”, while keeping present tense in first person? [duplicate]

I'm writing a first-person fantasy novel. I can't exactly figure out how to avoid the repetition of "I" when explaining the actions of the character. Any way I have ever seen makes the story seem like ...
1
vote
3answers
93 views

Does point of view matter drastically?

I've looked at a few other questions and answers but nothing that I was really looking for. The point of view is a little confusing at the beginning (and probably) throughout the novel. It starts with ...
12
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5answers
787 views

Invoking Deliberate Values Dissonance

Deliberate Values Dissonance is when the morals of a character or culture in-story (whether historical or fictional) that modern people don't agree with are presented in-universe. Not because the ...
23
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12answers
6k views

When writing science fiction, how important is it to provide scientific details for the (fictitious) things you are presenting in the story?

I know there is a difference between 'hard' and 'soft' science fiction. But even then, it can be hard to know what sort of categorization in which to place and treat your story, and it is not really ...
6
votes
4answers
522 views

How to improve a scene where the drama is one-sided and not with the POV character?

I have a scene I struggle with: it has potential for inherent drama, but it reads as an info dump. In a high-fantasy setting (more or less), character Alpha, a 14-year old daughter of a nobleman ...
4
votes
2answers
148 views

What if my published short story is made a movie or a novel, without my permission?

I am writing a short story and thinking of publishing it in the next month. But then, I had a doubt. What if somebody takes it, expands it and changes it a bit and makes a movie or a novel out of it? ...
5
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5answers
255 views

What if a concept on my story differs greatly from the common trope?

I'm planning of giving a -possibly very unpopular - interpretation to a very loved concept in the genre of my story and I wonder if this could be see as shocking or plain stupid by the average reader. ...
1
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0answers
55 views

Writer's Website — Feedback needed [closed]

I've been writing fiction off and on for a number of years and lately I've been more off than on. But I want to get back into writing books and to do that I thought I'd need a website (rather than ...
3
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3answers
148 views

In what order should I name characters?

I was wondering if there is a rule or advice in which order to name my characters. For example, if I want to tell that Bob, John and Rob entered the room should I just name them in random order or ...
42
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10answers
15k views

'The Chosen One' paradox

In many books novels or other forms of fictional writing, the reader is introduced to a so called 'chosen one'. This character or being is of higher power or in general, of different nature than other ...
2
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2answers
79 views

How should I move the story forward with the support cast while hiding a plot twist regarding the MC from the reader?

I am finishing an arc of my novel, and right at the end some sudden development happens with MC, that is partially obscured from the reader. They can guess at what it is, but it is a sudden change to ...
10
votes
7answers
1k views

How do I add tension to a story, when the reader knows the MC survives?

To clarify: There are two parts to the book (or I might split them into separate books), one with my main protagonist, and the second is a prequel, showing the protagonist's father's story. Both ...
3
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3answers
98 views

Why do literary magazines insist on cover letters?

Why don’t they simply judge each story based on its own merit? Why do they want your publication history? Of what relevance is it to the story itself? I ask this because a suspicion has been growing ...
12
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6answers
2k views

Series: How can I get my reader to not expect any one genre?

Background: I'm planning on writing an extensive series of fantasy books. I plan on writing quite a few of these books, and while they'll all be set on the same planet, I intend them to center on ...
11
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8answers
2k views

The stages of writing - what are they?

So, I'm likely finished with my idea in form of a novel, but now comes the difficult part with the rewriting. That's when I thought: What are the general Stages of writing? Of course I know the ...
16
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8answers
2k views

How can I make an in-universe random event feel like it was really random instead of just RNJesus' will?

Some stories feature random events that bring about drastic change either to the characters or to the setting. A lottery draw, some gotcha that grants a special skill. Most of the times I find one ...
10
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8answers
2k views

Of plottwists and endings

While writing my story this has come up in my mind a lot. I have been planning and foreshadowing this major plottwist near the end of my story. But the effects of it might change my world utterly and ...
4
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6answers
228 views

Is it true that “Any story can be great in the hands of the right storyteller”?

Presumably, like all trite sayings, it's a bit of an exaggeration since a story has to be at least interesting. (I mean, it would take amazing talent to write simply about someone sleeping and make it ...
2
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2answers
148 views

Is telling one of three convergent plot-line before moving to the next an acceptable alternative to interleaving them?

This is related to a previous question of mine: Convergent, parallel plotlines okay?. It has been suggested that this is might be too closely related to that question, however whereas that question ...
6
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3answers
128 views

Can a mystery novel have more than one mystery in it? And does it have to be a “who dunnit” concept?

I am writing a novel and it goes something like this: In the first half of the novel, the protagonist knows who is doing the killing, but they are trying to make sense of it as in "how are they doing ...
0
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1answer
50 views

Dialogue in First Person Fiction (Detective Mystery) [closed]

Karl is my detective protagonist. His girlfriend, Jenna, is with him. He is hospitalized, and his boss, Rob Tucker, shows up for a visit. Which example of dialogue is correct? In true first person, ...
10
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3answers
2k views

When can I kill my character? [closed]

When is it acceptable to kill a character? (and if possible, when is it most appropriate?) BTW, I'm not talking just about a protagonist; I'm talking about any of my characters, whether they're MCs ...
9
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4answers
354 views

How can I make my anti-heroic protagonist more likable?

A while ago, I asked if there any possible way for my series to avoid causing Darkness Induced Audience Apathy. A well thought-out response stated that unless I give my readers a reason to care about ...
10
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4answers
527 views

How does one add puns in another language?

Back in college, I took a regular English course that was required for all majors. The teacher just happened to be a grad student in British Literature, so we read a lot of British literature. All the ...
6
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6answers
173 views

How much value do publishers and editors place on informative/educational content in fiction stories?

I have heard people say that ‘good stories are educational as well as entertaining’. But how much does it actually matter in the eyes of editors and publishers? For example, if one is writing a story ...
15
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2answers
833 views

Is it posssible to find a literary agent if I'm Egyptian but write in English?

Here is my situation: I am Egyptian, my native language is Arabic but I don't want to write in Arabic I want to write in English. Would a literary agent from an English speaking country agree to work ...
8
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4answers
344 views

The advantages and disadvantages of Fantasy-time

Many works of the High Fantasy genre are set in a pseudo-European fantasyland, in a rather amorphous time-period that mixes early-medieval and late-medieval arms and armour (but never gunpowder), late ...
14
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3answers
1k views

Is it true that stories get rejected simply because the stories are not appealing enough and not because of the quality of the writing?

In other words, if the writing is poor or not good enough but the editor likes the story, then a revision is requested. I'd like to add that part of the reason for asking this question is because ...
0
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1answer
104 views

What's the best way to implement a character arc? [closed]

WARNING: MULTIPLE TV TROPES LINKS In my three-part series, The Ragnarǫk Cycle I plan having my protagonist and deuteragonist to undergo a character arc. The protagonist, Joseph Norton to put it ...
2
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1answer
99 views

Writing: Self made logical issue with time travel in a story [closed]

So, I have not gotten anything published yet, but I have had plans for future novels including the one I am most way done with at the moment. As for the Details: It's going to be a multiverse existing ...
17
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7answers
4k views

How to survive editing

I am currently trying to edit a one my most recent novel. Trying is the keyword. I asked a few people to read my book as beta readers, but all of them have been busy, so no progress on that front. I ...
6
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3answers
158 views

First Chapters protocol

I am a first time novelist with writing experience. I have an idea for my novel that begins with an important scene which actually plays out in the middle of the novel. Should I write this as a ...
5
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2answers
162 views

How to make a cat's perspective exciting?

I'm writing an article about a cat saving a three-year-old girl's life. So what tools/techniques can I use to keep the reader interested?
12
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4answers
195 views

Is it a flaw if a book is readable, flows well, and gets the point across, BUT you can tell that the author is a non-native?

Even though English is not my first language, I have completed writing a fiction book in English. I have been in the US for over 40 years and I believe that I have a good command of the language. (...