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.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
5
votes
7answers
399 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 ...
3
votes
2answers
176 views

Alternatives to starting a sentence with well [closed]

I'm new to narrative writing and especially have trouble with dialogue. I too often am using the word well to start a character's sentence after receiving some information to then ask a question about ...
13
votes
4answers
2k views

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 ...
15
votes
7answers
2k views

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 ...
3
votes
5answers
191 views

Creating a logical framework for the concept of “decisional causality”

I'm working on a science fiction universe in which time travel exists, in a very limited form, but it's useless, at least it's the intention that it be useless. To that end time travel, on the rare ...
8
votes
3answers
271 views

How to organically and believably introduce the tools and skills necessary to survive after an apocalypse?

So I'm writing an urban fantasy story about the modern day after a mysterious unknown entity suddenly imbues humans with the ability to use magic powers. While the story initially starts out as a more ...
8
votes
6answers
356 views

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 ...
1
vote
3answers
244 views

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 ...
13
votes
3answers
3k views

What liberties can I take with the monarchies in my own world?

Could a writer make up his own rules, for a monarchy he created, in a world of his own making? My question is whether I can completely disregard the rules and regulations of real-life monarchies, ...
6
votes
3answers
327 views

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"...
6
votes
5answers
300 views

In a “Gatsby” type story, how does a narrator relate what he doesn't get to see?

"The Great Gatsby" was told from the point of view of Gatsby's neighbor, Nick Carraway by name, with Nick using the first person. Nick gets to see a lot, but not all of Gatsby's dealings. A case in ...
21
votes
8answers
5k views

How to get readers to care about a dead character?

My story happens as a result of one of the main characters getting murdered. I'm wondering how to get readers to care about someone who's not even in the story (as far as the readers know anyway) or ...
2
votes
3answers
399 views

Is there a term for a narrative where you are speaking to the reader?

I know that a first-person narrative is written from the point of view of the narrator, relaying events from their own point of view using the first person (i.e. I or we, etc). Is there a name/term ...
5
votes
3answers
117 views

Can I change tenses in my first person YA novel?

I'm half way through a YA science fiction novel that is told in 1st person, past tense. Currently there are two chapters in different tenses. One is 2nd person, present tense - the p.o.v. of an AI. ...
15
votes
5answers
543 views

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 ...
3
votes
1answer
113 views

How to balance between dialogue & character building and action scenes?

I'm writing a novel which takes place in a carefully built (science-)fictional world. The protagonist is also a fictional creature. Obviously, the reader does not know about the world or the creature'...
17
votes
5answers
2k views

How can I convey an absolute truth from the author to the reader without a mentor character?

There are sometimes moments in works of fiction where the author needs to convey something to the reader without ambiguity. Let's say the situations around the characters get so weird that the author ...
4
votes
2answers
91 views

Does the degree of immersion in the character alter the extremity of plot points used?

Star Wars IV: We never really get to know Aunt Beru and Uncle Owen, and so when they're burned to a crisp, little pieces of human toast, it's horrific but yeah OK. Not as horrific as if we saw Obi Wan ...
5
votes
1answer
131 views

A novel in which the only dialogue is internal? [closed]

I am mulling the idea of writing a novel in which the only dialogue is internal. Has anyone yet published such a novel? I define "dialogue" here as any kind of speech addressed by a fictional person ...
3
votes
3answers
123 views

Finding a cause when you already have the effect?

In the story for a graphic novel Im working on my protagonist is cursed by a witch (or other magic wielding person) to wake up in a new place/time every day due to a wrongdoing on his part. I want ...
28
votes
6answers
12k views

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 ...
4
votes
3answers
83 views

How to collect thought which is in mind on paper into story [closed]

I have lot of story in my mind but whenver try to write, my mind become blank and cannot collet all thoughts to write story.
28
votes
7answers
3k views

Where can I find resources for bedtime story plots?

For past ten months, my wife and I have been telling bedtime stories of our own making to our older daughter (who recently turned 4). We do it on alternate evenings. The stories have a nearly-constant ...
5
votes
5answers
6k views

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 ...
4
votes
4answers
580 views

How can I write a street-smart character?

The book that I'm currently writing has a 16-year-old boy called Joseph Norton as the protagonist and it's implied via flashbacks that during his childhood he would frequently run away from his foster ...
0
votes
1answer
113 views

What would be an effective way to narrate this story? [closed]

I don't want the story being told from the point of view of the protagonist. Could a third person (limited omniscient) be effective in telling this story? Giving points of view from other character'...
4
votes
1answer
182 views

Flashback vs long past tense exposition vs multiple frames of reference in the same scene

I'm giving my newest story a bit of break before I go back and fix the tense issue in it, and going back to the story I started last April. I am unfortunate enough to have about 180k words of novel (...
1
vote
2answers
234 views

Resources for improving storytelling

I mainly write fiction, but want to improve my storytelling techniques. I'm looking for some books or resources to improve this. I want study different story structures and storytelling techniques. I ...
3
votes
4answers
97 views

What's a shorter way of saying, “If you had asked me, I would have said, 'I suppose'”?

I have this sentence: Rebecca lived in the building and was one of my wife's closest friends. One of mine too, I supposed. With "I supposed", I'm trying to convey that if you had asked the ...
7
votes
8answers
5k views

How do I include a powerful theme in my story without making it blatantly obvious? [duplicate]

I want to have an underlying message in my writing but I really don't want it to come across as annoying or too preachy. Thanks!
6
votes
5answers
633 views

Should the narrator use pseudonyms in writing?

I have characters who have to use false names. Should the narrator use their real name or false name? For example, if person A was being called Adam when their real name was Archie, person B would ...
2
votes
3answers
378 views

In first person narrative, is it acceptable to end rhetorical questions with a period?

In first person narrative, would it be acceptable to use a period in place of a question mark when the narrator is asking a rhetorical question? example: My car broke down again. Why does this always ...
2
votes
3answers
299 views

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 ...
0
votes
1answer
83 views

Is there a term that describes a written work that includes narrative in addition to scientific and historical information? [closed]

I can think of a few books, such as The Year of Magical Thinking, by Joan Didion, and I Can Hear You Whisper by Lydia Jones. In both these novels, the author was narrating a true experience, but at ...
2
votes
1answer
134 views

What's the name of this gesture? [closed]

Imagine yourself driving a car and and spotting someone on the sidewalk. You stop the car beside him and want him to get in the backseat. You say something like "Hey, get in." with a nod of head that ...
2
votes
3answers
199 views

Writing flashbacks in novels

You would have seen many movies where the flow of the story goes in such a way - The present life of the protagonist - talks with someone / sees something - reminds him something of a past experience ...
3
votes
2answers
121 views

How do readers/writers alike feel about too much narration in a story?

My question is pretty much summed up in the title. My story includes a lot of narration. Narrating events, narrating character's thoughts. There are several intervals in each chapter where the ...
3
votes
1answer
120 views

What type of stuff should someone read to improve their email skills?

I've heard that writers should read the type of stuff they want to write. Usually that implies really good fiction and prose, but I want to write great emails to my colleagues and network. What types ...
8
votes
5answers
4k views

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 ...
8
votes
4answers
527 views

Storyteller/creator vs writer

Since I've begun to attempt this thing called writing, proper writing not coming up with tales and bits to amuse little kids, I've had this doubt. What are the differences, if any real ones, between ...
4
votes
1answer
97 views

Tech-limited metaphors?

In my native language, we sometimes use the expression "to be shot by (Someone)'s eyes", meaning that Someone is staring at you very intently and in an examining, measuring manner, most often trying ...
4
votes
1answer
145 views

Will this form of “third person limited” confuse readers?

I've been writing a novel that pushes the bounds on a conventional POV. It's essentially third person limited, but I sometimes leave the perspective of the main protagonist to cover an event that has ...
2
votes
3answers
454 views

Memoir on a coveted experience, has no conflict! What should i do?

I am writing about my experience at place X-- a place that is coveted by many people, a dream come true of sorts! Problem is: There is no conflict in my experience -- just a description of what a ...
2
votes
4answers
193 views

Help! My brain is writing several chapters at once!

So, I've been thinking about my story, and suddenly I got inspiration for the continuation of the chapter (I'm not even sure what chapter it should be). So, basically, I ended with progressing 3 ...
2
votes
4answers
663 views

Point of view, narrative voice, and when to name a character in narration

Let's say you have a scene with Maria, written in third person from Maria's point of view. Then you have a scene with Akash, written in third person from Akash's point of view - and suppose they do ...
14
votes
11answers
754 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 ...
2
votes
3answers
199 views

What is it called when the reader is the focal point?

Here is an example of what I mean in present-tense (though narrative time is irrelevant): You walk into the empty room, you should be worrying about what's about to happen but instead your mind is ...
1
vote
1answer
133 views

How do I describe this particular scene?

My character lives in a war torn country. I'm trying to start this short story with him waking up on his way to school (possibly the bus stop). On his way, he sees graffiti, vandalism (basically ...
4
votes
3answers
573 views

How do I blur the line between dream and reality?

I intend to write a science fantasy where dream world plays as important role as reality. The dream world stated has quite a distinct feel from the real world, and it is integral to the plot. The ...