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Questions tagged [narrative]

A narrative is an account of events. This tag should be used for anything related to story-telling, including elements and principles or structure.

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2answers
154 views

The concept of “Exotic Culture” and the necessity of a new world

A personal point of view on the necessity of a new culture in fiction "A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away", "Pandora", "Dune", "Middle Earth". All quite different worlds compared to ours, but ...
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Letting a (secondary) antagonist leave mid story - Should it be avoided?

I have a powerful antagonist perform important functions within my story. At the midpoint, he just leaves. Several Plot developments depend on this character. I tried replacing him with other ...
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1answer
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Emotional arc types

Assuming this vocabulary: the narrative arc is the arc which makes the plot go forward, while the emotional arc is the arc which engage the character on a deeper, not always logical level. While ...
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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 ...
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7answers
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How can I make “acts of patience” exciting?

This answer to the question Averting Real Women Don’t Wear Dresses introduces a distinction between acts of patience and acts of daring. [...] when it comes to telling a story [...] acts of ...
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5answers
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How to avoid using “he/she/it” repetitively in action

Please do not make this a duplicate, I know there's a couple of questions like this, but they are not quite like my question, and their answers don't answer my question to the fullest, hence me asking ...
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4answers
428 views

Non-linear style used by *Arrow*

I was wondering if there is a term for the non-linear narrative technique used by the TV series Arrow. That is, flashbacks from the past feed into the story line going on in the present. I'm thinking ...
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4answers
239 views

Getting an editor after the second draft

Losely related with my latest question: Should one invest in a professional editor before querying? I've finished - not without sweat - my second draft. While I'm satisfied with the overall result, I ...
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3answers
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Doubt about the concept of “true (or complex) character”

Following the answer of @Cyn and my comment (on Doubt about a particular point of view on how to do character creation ): I would like to know more about how to "know" more about a true alived ...
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4answers
288 views

What is one way to write about feeling someone's sadness? [closed]

For example: I sensed as if he became sad from the way he spoke after telling him that I would go with her.
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2answers
160 views

Doubt about a particular point of view on how to do character creation

Of course developing a character is quite an intimate process. But still, like a story, you can in fact have some tools that give you some sort of axiomatic path on "how-to". There is a TV writer ...
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10answers
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Is there such a thing as too inconvenient?

I find myself often being irritated at elements in situations that help characters succeed, elements which are also highly unlikely or even illogical. But often, if not more, I find myself angered by ...
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3answers
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Avoiding episodic writing

I'm working on a novel that will have at least three distinct sections in three distinct locations (the two main characters start in the first location, travel through the second location, and one ...
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5answers
8k views

The seven story archetypes. Are they truly all of them?

The seven archetypes are as follows: Overcoming the Monster. Rags to Riches. The Quest. Voyage and Return. Comedy. Tragedy. Rebirth. But surely, there are more? For ...
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13answers
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How to tell readers that I know my story is factually incorrect?

Sometimes, it so happens that I do some research for a story and find that a major plot point could never work in real life. At this stage, I can either continue with my impossible (for a non-fantasy, ...
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5answers
3k views

Is it okay for a chapter's POV to shift as it progresses?

I have this duo in my novel, they're always together in chapters. Usually the story alternates between them within their plot, though mostly leaning to one of the characters, as he's one of the MCs ...
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6answers
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How important is it for multiple POVs to run chronologically?

The way I am currently designing a story with three distinct POVs. An issue I am running into, however, is that one of these has much more to do in the first third than the other two while having less ...
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3answers
283 views

What to avoid when writing the death of the protagonist?

Just a question in general. Let's say the protagonist has succeed in his goals, but has lost everything, then he gets badly wounded and slowly dies. What is to avoid when writing his death? Just ...
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11answers
777 views

How can I have a war with no “good” or “evil” side?

I'm conceptualising a story involving two heroes who go on an epic journey and return bitter rivals etc. etc. and form their own forces in a sort of civil war. My issue is that I want them to both be ...
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5answers
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How to slow down the pace of the story?

How do I slow down the pace of my story? And please refrain from answering with "add more descriptions," because I'm already aware of that technique :). I'd like to see if there are even more ways to ...
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3answers
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Points to keep in mind while writing a romantic novel

So I'm currently working on a story that kinda is a romantic novel. But I need some starters, like what exactly to keep in mind while writing a romantic novel? (From the reader's point of view) the ...
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7answers
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Writing a Satisfying Ending

It strikes me that the last chapter (or so) of any story needs to make the reader feel that reading the book has been a worthwhile experience. An exceptional ending might leave a reader with such a ...
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7answers
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Is it advisable to add a location heads-up when a scene changes in a novel?

In my novel, I have a scene at home which changes to scene at the office which is completely different. I have written it in a way that in a line or two the reader will understand the scene is changed ...
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6answers
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How to write a convincing religious myth?

In my story the protagonist hears, in a temple ceremony, the reading of a religious/mythological text. Now in the actual story, I don't need the text itself (the role of the text in context, and the ...
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7answers
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Voices of young children, how to write?

I am currently writing a narrative featuring many young children. Some of the children are under the age of five, and I'm wondering what the best way to write dialogue for their age group would be. I ...
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3answers
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When does something become “torture porn”?

I've heard this term thrown around sometimes in a derisive way (obviously), and usually not just to refer to Saw movies. I don't remember who it was, but I remember someone saying how the movie "Logan"...
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6answers
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Dead parents: something to avoid?

A lot of people die in my story, some of them are parents. One of the main characters for example lost his father (and one brother) in a car crash when he was young, which he was a part of. He became ...
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Plotting a Compelling Story [closed]

How should I approach plotting a compelling story, i.e. one aimed at changing the way people think and behave (rather than just being "art for art's sake")? I want to write a novel or collection of ...
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7answers
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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 ...
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3answers
458 views

How can I make some of my chapters “come to life”?

In my current WIP, I re-read through some of my chapters, and they seem completely dry and dull. I need to add some oomph to it- it seems my descriptions, and just plain storytelling (in some of my ...
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6answers
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How to create feeling with setting

I have a passion for setting. I've heard you should write about what you're passionate about. Now when I say passion I mean I like to visualize the fantastic place the author is describing to form a ...
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2answers
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What are the differences in writing a narrative between a CV and a resume?

When I googled "The Difference between Resume and CV", the first result I bumped into was this. I am highlighting a few points that are mentioned in it below: The primary differences between a ...
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4answers
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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, ...
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How to find different meanings behind metaphors used in speech writing?

I'm looking for ways to discover what others might think when they hear or see a metaphor used in a speech. I tend to think a certain way. I have certain prejudices. I think we all do. If I use a ...
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2answers
172 views

Are there narrative structures other than Kishōtenketsu and the three act structure and its derivatives?

Derivatives of the three act structure include the Hero's journey, Dan Harmon's story circle, and the five act structure.
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How can I hide a second narrative within my story? (using time travel)

I've been planning a story that follows two characters. At the end, one character (let's call him Joe) goes back in time and appears at the start of the book. I intend to explore themes of ...
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2answers
306 views

Ways to develop characters in a fast paced video game

The Goal: I am currently working on a video game project and I need some help with character development techniques. It is a character driven ensemble cast jRPG/cRPG. Therefore I want the characters ...
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Static Scenes that still Move the Story Forward

I've just read a tutorial about scenic techniques in novel-writing that recommends that a story should have a rhythm of static scenes and dramatic scenes. Here's an excerpt: Dramatic scenes are ...
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0answers
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How to write that a character waits a certain amount of time? [duplicate]

Let's say the character of the story has to wait a day and you need to write in the story in a smooth manner that they waited the day for the thing they were expecting?
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3answers
154 views

What kind of writing style works for a game?

Background: I'm creating a story for a video game--it's set in a cyberpunk, futuristic setting, and it has many flows, one of its flows is that the story is so complicated and novelized, that it ...
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5answers
607 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 ...
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4answers
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What are the components of a legend (in the sense of a tale, not a figure legend)?

I'm compiling in-world legends for my built world, and would like them to feel like established legends from our own human experience. What should I keep in mind while writing these legends? What ...
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2answers
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Is writing literary devices in a narrative essay (reflective) always good?

In narrative essays, writing literary devices almost always makes the reader feel more of what is in the story. However, sometimes I like writing reflective narratives, where thoughts of the character ...
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6answers
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How much indirection is too much?

I'm writing a chapter with a lot of indirection, and I'm wondering if I'm doing too much of it. To be specific, it is the main character remembering an event from his youth when a merchant who stayed ...
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Is it bad writing or bad story telling if first person narrative contains more information than the narrator knows?

Here are a few examples of the narrator knowing more than he should. (A) In a humourous short story about Bertie Wooster and Jeeves, Bertie is talking about a situation involving two strangers and ...
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1answer
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What truly makes dark and morose storytelling effective?

This is a fairly simple, straightforward question that I hope I can get an answer to. Where is the line of separation between an effectively dark storytelling and trying too hard to be edgy with ...
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1answer
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What effects do the different types of flashbacks produce?

Different types of "Flashbacks" In this question, the OP asks what the different types of flashbacks are, which of them is used the most and which is the most effective. He doesn't really ...
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Symbolism of 18 Journeyers

In my story, 12 year old Ruth has visions from another place and time which lead her to gather a group of kids for a quest. She is told there will be 18 kids, but she can only find 17 with the ...
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11answers
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A poker game description that does not feel gimmicky

I'm writing a scene in which four characters play a high-stakes poker game. So far my narrator has been an omniscient third person, who just does not wish to enter into the characters' heads. I ...
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5answers
962 views

Does detail obscure or enhance action?

I have two versions of a pivotal scene in my novel (both already written). My SP is a rather impulsive young woman who is learning to be a bit less of a hothead. She saves the MC by literally taking ...