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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2
votes
4answers
137 views

How could the disregard for both plot and dialogue tell the story?

I want people to understand what I write, but I do not want to use conventions such as plot or dialogue to tell a story. Without a plot I have been criticized of not having written a story, but ...
1
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3answers
85 views

How to write disorientation with sensory overload?

My character has super-senses, so anything that we feel, see, hear, etc. are heightened for him. So much so that when a flash bomb is set a few meters from him, he is greatly affected by this. ...
60
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17answers
12k views

Avoiding racist tropes in fantasy

I'm interested in starting a pleasure project: a fantasy story, along the lines of a witch delivering a prophecy to a king about a dangerous and deceitful foe who will overthrow him, and the king ...
7
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6answers
992 views

How to organize ideas to start writing a novel?

Beginner here. So, I have tons of ideas for a novel, and in fact I want to write one (even a series), but I'm struggling a lot in actually starting writing the story. I have ideas for characters and ...
3
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4answers
179 views

What kind of name should a fantasy author go by?

I'm currently in the middle of writing several fantasy books and, even though I'm not done with any of them, I can't stop thinking about how my name will appear on my books once they are finished. I ...
0
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3answers
98 views

Literate Cherokee and English dialogue east of the Mississippi in the 1860s with a nineteenth century narrator [closed]

It is my understanding that the Cherokee, prior to the Trail of Tears were bilingual, being educated in both Cherokee and English. Is it possible that a Cherokee man in his late twenties would have ...
1
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1answer
50 views

Formatting a conversation

In a novel, how would one best represent a recorded conversation between two people played back to a larger audience? The normal rules apply regarding quotation marks and beginning a new paragraph ...
0
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3answers
146 views

How to make philosophical ideas more relatable?

The consequence of some ideas can be so distant in the future or so foreign to most people that creating a relatable setting or character to exploit them can be hard, I'm being told. In particular, ...
4
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1answer
84 views

Scale: How to handle a personal story set in an epic war?

In both my last writing project and my current one, I have found an unexpected problem. Both tales are focused on a single character and their personal journey, but both tales are also set in the ...
2
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6answers
261 views

Averting Always Chaotic Evil

Always Chaotic Evil denotes an entire species in a fictional setting as outright evil - no matter how one treats them, they reward kindness with treachery and violence. Frequent recipients of this ...
11
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4answers
3k views

Is it bad style if the personal first person narrator of a story dies during said story?

Right now I'm writing a novel in which I use the changing perspectives of two main characters with limited information each to slowly unveil the whole plot to the reader. Both use the past tense and ...
0
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2answers
86 views

What is a good way to come up with original world building ideas? [closed]

I have a hard time coming up with original worlds and plots, but I need a portfolio of original work. Any thoughts on how to come up with ideas?
-1
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0answers
40 views

Can I name a character after another character? [duplicate]

I started to developed a interest in screenwriter when I was in Middle School and I’ve recently started working on my first screen play for a animated show. I already have most of the stuff planned ...
32
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10answers
6k views

How to write a sincerely religious protagonist without preaching or affirming or judging their worldview?

I am writing a book in which one my main characters is a devout Catholic. His struggles with reconciling his religion and his experiences in life are crucial to his character and I'd like to portray ...
15
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6answers
4k views

Do I have to mention my main character's age?

I finished my novel and realised that I never mentioned my main character's age. In chapter two I said that she in in her twenties, but that's the only mention of her age. I know that she is twenty-...
14
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4answers
774 views

Has anyone ever written a novel or short story composed of only dialogue? [closed]

The participants describe everything needed for the story to continue, within the conversation. The environment, the emotions, everything. The reader gets to "see" it all through their words. Has it ...
0
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1answer
61 views

Firing Squad Escape Scene [closed]

Is it possible for a highly trained elite soldier to escape a firing squad? Details: The soldier asks for a blindfold and the MP obliges. The MP walks over and the soldier headbutts the MP's crotch. ...
9
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7answers
1k views

When to ask for constructive criticism?

I have 40,000 words of a novel and I am not sure at what point to ask for constructive criticism.
9
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2answers
227 views

Using ”as” after dialogue tags

Should a comma be used after a dialogue tag and before the word ”as”. For example: ”I don’t like this at all, ” he said, as the door closed behind them. Or ”I don’t like this at all, ” he said ...
-1
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1answer
165 views

Do modern fiction writers adapt their style to the 21st century reader?

With shortening attention spans and the way we consume content nowadays, is there any shift in the way modern fiction books are written? Do contemporary writers write differently than those living in ...
2
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3answers
2k views

Is it stylistically sound to use onomatopoeic words?

I'm writing a non-comedic fantasy novel, and I find myself using onomatopoeic words, like "SLAM!" and "TWISH" (for the shooting of arrows). To my knowledge, onomatopoeic words are almost only used in ...
2
votes
1answer
123 views

Is Masterclass worth it for a middle-grade author?

I already read Larry Brooks' very useful book "Story Engineering", and Mary Kole's Writing Irresistible Kidlit. Now I have finished and revised my first middle-grade (MG) novel a few times. Before ...
1
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2answers
149 views

Is my Fantasy YA series idea interesting and unique? [closed]

For a while now I’ve had an idea for a YA series brewing in my mind. The series takes place in an urban setting much like our world now, but each human has the ability to wield an Element ...
8
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3answers
286 views

Any Tips On Writing Extended Recollection In A Novel

So, I've been working for about a month now on my latest novel but have come across some issues in regards to recollections of past events. I'll outline what I mean, because that's a bit general... ...
13
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4answers
742 views

Does it make sense to (partially) create a conlang that you don't intend to actually use in the story?

The story that I'm currently working on is in a very far future. Clearly, people will speak a different language then. Now, I wondered if it can make sense to (partially) create a conlang for the ...
1
vote
3answers
96 views

What tense to use for events that are still happening?

The question is similar to this but the answers does not answer me. In my general fiction novel, which is told in first person singular past tense, I encounter moments where I am confused whether to ...
3
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6answers
246 views

Can I use spoken English at some places over 'technically accurate English' in a general fiction?

I have written my novel as a 'first person singular' and in past tense. There are lot of times in it where I have written it as I will say it while speaking. I have used phrases which have implied ...
23
votes
14answers
6k views

How do I present a future free of gender stereotypes without being jarring or overpowering the narrative?

My story takes place in a relatively near future setting where gender stereotypes have become a thing of the past. Unlike a recent question on another site, physiological sex-specific traits are still ...
9
votes
3answers
133 views

Alternatives to Second-Person POV Narration

I am someone with no formal writing background, who has come to love writing for the fantasy adventure role-playing game Dungeons and Dragons (fifth edition) during my free time. I am currently ...
7
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4answers
815 views

Will writing actual numbers instead of writing them with letters affect readership?

This question sounds similar to this but I am asking something different. It is said that Stephen Hawking removed all the formulas except one because with each use of a formula the readers of book ...
3
votes
5answers
798 views

Should fiction mention song names and iPods?

In my novel, the protagonist is depressed. In the story which is in my mind... The autumn leaves were falling as I was sitting alone and Gary Jules' "Mad World" was ringing in my iPod. The ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

When two first person POV characters meet

NOTE: I've seen this question asked when the POV is third but not first. I write psychological thrillers that move quickly and focus heavily on what is going on in the mind of the protagonist. As ...
7
votes
2answers
477 views

Is a sequel allowed to start before the end of the first book?

I'm writing 2 stories simultaneously. The first one spans 17 years. The second picks up where the first left off... but only about 25% of the way in. The sequel seems to work best if I introduce the ...
0
votes
1answer
70 views

In fiction, can I write about Downing College, Cambridge? [duplicate]

I have included, in my fictional book, several mentions about Downing College, Cambridge. Now they have a fete on their lawns. Two Russians are killed there during the fete. No mention of staff ...
1
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2answers
97 views

Exhaustive research vs artistic license?

I'm working on a post-apocalypse novel set all over the world. I'm fairly flexible on where some of the events take place, but there are often specific requirements on the look, layout, general region ...
13
votes
7answers
2k views

How do you show, through your narration, a hard and uncaring world?

As I've already mentioned, I'm working on a sci-fi novel. One of the main feelings that I wanted to represent when I started is the sense of a vast, empty, artificial world, mostly cold and uncaring ...
18
votes
8answers
3k views

I wrote a scene that the majority of my readers loved. How do I get back to that place while writing my new book?

I wrote a scene that I put my heart and soul into. It was received well by most of my readers, but I'm struggling with crafting a new scene for a book I'm currently writing. Here's some comments from ...
6
votes
6answers
1k views

How can I add depth to my story or how do I determine if my story already has depth?

I am new to writing. I wrote a lot when I was a kid and teen. I wrote my first book at 6 and then again in high school. I was also in journalism. After high school, life happened. I took an almost 20 ...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

How to provide realism without making readers think grimdark

So, I have a couple moments in a fantasy story where I want the heroes' actions to actually have consequences (Well, that are really impactful to the story.) One is where the MCs kill a minor lord, ...
3
votes
1answer
53 views

Writing a book review

I just came across a question that related to the topic of book reviews. I wish to know, how can I start as a reviewer and where can I find sample reviews of some non-technical books or novels? In ...
15
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3answers
2k views

What is the most important characteristic of New Weird as a genre?

Recently I've stumbled across China Miéville's novels. Apparently, they fit in a genre called Weird Fiction, or to be even more specific New Weird, where the "new" is used to distinguish new writers ...
2
votes
3answers
132 views

Where's the line between confident and upfront and being a jerk?

Disclaimer: Also works for guys, if you have the problem, but genderbent. So, in my plots, I typically have a "tough girl" character in my thing. She's confident and upfront, and is stubborn to the ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

How to make the POV character sit on the sidelines without the reader getting bored

My POV character has been seriously injured and is bedridden for three months. But life stops for no one. In fact, a major epic battle is brewing and to delay it would be unrealistic. If anything, ...
18
votes
9answers
5k views

Can non-English-speaking characters use wordplay specific to English?

Would it be jarring if in an original (non-translated) story, the characters, who don't speak English in-universe, use "untranslatable" wordplay/puns that are specific to English? By "untranslatable" ...
10
votes
6answers
311 views

Any advice on creating fictional locations in real places when writing historical fiction?

I am currently working on a historical fiction novel set during the tail end of the Harlem Renaissance, in the 1930s. As such, I would really like to have the story take place in Harlem. However, the ...
1
vote
3answers
72 views

Can monster/beasts be in a psychological horror

I am working on a psychological horror with an extra element. Monsters, and I don’t mean ghosts. My characters will face suspicions, distrust, paranoia and emotional disturbances. They will deal with ...
12
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6answers
723 views

How do I write real-world stories separate from my country of origin?

I live in India. And the stories I write don't want to. The thing is, as you all might already know, my country has an extremely- excessively, perhaps- rich cultural and historical heritage. It's ...
3
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4answers
265 views

Where is the line between a tough love character and a pure asshole?

So, I have a character who was going to just be an unlikable character at the start of the novel, but now I want to make her more caring towards certain people, like the innocent character. Thing is, ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

How to tease a romance without a cat and mouse chase?

So, my story doesn't have a romance subplot until way later in the series, but I think that there are elements of the romance very early on. A little background info: The story is set in a ...
4
votes
2answers
139 views

How to change the readers opinion of a character?

So, I have a character who starts off a complete ass to everyone. She hates the world, especially the protagonist. Then again, she had no parents to her memory, her people are enslaved and ...