Questions tagged [novel]

Novels are long-form prose fiction, typically over 40,000 words. Questions that use this tag can relate to writing, editing, publishing, formatting or technique as applied specifically to novels. If the question applies to more than just novels, it should probably use the Fiction tag instead.

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170k debut fantasy story. Is it possible?

This has been a very contradictory topic for me. I've been told that publishers expect fantasy books to be that long but others would tell me that 170k is too long. So far I've been cutting things ...
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-2 votes
1 answer
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How can I vary the POVs in past tense? [closed]

I'm writing my book in the past tense (even though I hate it, it makes the most sense). I wanted to vary the POVs in the story. Should I scrap the idea, or is there a way to write it without it ...
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1 vote
0 answers
37 views

Is this an exchange for novelists, poets, lyricists, and writers of all kinds? [migrated]

I am new to Stack Exchange, and do not wish to step on any toes or offend anyone. I searched for a group specific to poetry and song-writing, as this is my forté. I am an aspiring novelist as well, so ...
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3 votes
2 answers
72 views

What are some words for sound coming from somewhere?

I am learning/ trying to write a novel but I'm facing this problem. Whenever sound comes from somewhere (for example, from behind a closed door), I don't know how to describe it. I just end up writing ...
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2 votes
4 answers
151 views

Would it be too presumptuous of any established author to write a novel in the hope that it be made into a film?

Before I start, let me clarify that this is not a dilemma I am facing currently. It's just a question I had in mind for many established and aspiring authors. Many best selling novels get made into ...
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1 vote
0 answers
61 views

Protecting a POV in visual adaptation of a novel

I’m considering allowing a film adaptation of my novel but want the “frame story” message maintained. What would this device technically be called in the agreement? Example: The original Planet of the ...
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3 votes
4 answers
63 views

Should a flashback be written in first person or third when the narrator has lost his memory?

I'm writing a story where the main character wakes up on a boat with no memory, and throughout the story his past will be revealed, along with other characters in the story. It's written from the main ...
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0 votes
2 answers
56 views

Is it more difficult to unify the narrator after the story is written, than to juggle POVs into the narrator's world during writing?

A lot of my procrastination in writing my story is coming from anxiety over making the finished product come from one "head." I have perspectives from a couple first persons, and some 3P ...
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0 votes
1 answer
78 views

Copyright if I continue someone else's work

I am writing a book - continuing someone's book series. They were finished but I'd really like to see the other characters' lives. I need to quote (I wouldn't say really quote but let's call that ...
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1 vote
2 answers
65 views

How to decide whether to write a story as a novel or screenplay?

Any general framework for deciding whether a story should be produced as a novel or screenplay? It seems a screenplay, while ideal for dialogue-rich stories, would regardless still be more sought-...
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1 vote
1 answer
54 views

How do I describe a character tripping but regaining their balance?

In the story, my protagonist is walking in a part of town that is not taken care of. My character, at this point in time, is super tired and trips over a clump of grass growing from the sidewalk.
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-2 votes
2 answers
100 views

Multiple plots, multiple characters and multiple point of views in a single novel

I am wondering if this is at all possible. Usually, you have one plot and the plot is centered around one main character, but what if there are multiple main characters associated with a unique plot ...
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0 votes
4 answers
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Is there a resource (website, book, etc.) to learn the basics of novel/story grammar?

I'm interested in learning to write as someone that has been a reader my whole life. I'm aware there are many website for tips like "every time a different character speaks, start a new line"...
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5 votes
4 answers
158 views

How do I end my book?

I'm so close to finishing my first book, but I'm having so much trouble coming up with a conclusion. I know what needs to happen, but I just can't seem to finish it. I'm not sure if it's writer's ...
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1 vote
0 answers
76 views

How to write a novel with a mixture of horror and crime (detective) thriller? [closed]

I just had a idea where what if A Detective and his buddy have to face supernatural creatures, cases full of mystery... Like two stories : Sherlock Holmes + Goosebumps ( orIT) smashed together into ...
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0 votes
2 answers
70 views

ways to express joy, or basic humor in a situation (for a story)

not exactly sure how to solve this, and haven't used the app before. Just started story writing. So ya, I don't know what else to say
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2 votes
3 answers
106 views

How to Write a Temporary 'Goodbye" [closed]

I'm working on my first novel, and my main character is going on a 'no contact' vacation where she doesn't communicate with anyone in her life. I'm struggling to figure out how to write it even though ...
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0 votes
0 answers
38 views

Where can I get critiques on my Query?

I've written the query for my novel (YA fantasy, ~90k), but I'm having a hard time finding people to critique it. Query Shark is there, but she's REALLY hard to get critiqued by. I tried the subreddit ...
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0 votes
0 answers
30 views

Capitalising after punctuation within speech?

I've notices that Emily Bronte does not always capitalise in dialogue after exclamation marks or question marks, for example (light spoilers): "Be with me always - take any form - drive me mad! ...
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4 votes
2 answers
575 views

Is it outlawed to start Chapter one with the villain and only mention the protagonist?

Chapter 1 takes place in 1953. A girl is kidnapped. She manages to write a note to her friend (they both go to school together but the boy has moved). The letter is destroyed. Her friend is the ...
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9 votes
5 answers
1k views

What to avoid when writing distant and inconsequential POVs?

I'm currently writing a sci-fi novel, where we've got some huge, solar system-spanning stuff going on, with huge stakes. I've got four POVs that are directly involved with this, whose decisions matter ...
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15 votes
11 answers
3k views

How do I translate the uncertainty and suspense of a dice-based RPG into a story adaptation?

In a dice-based role-playing game, any action you take can either succeed or fail based entirely on the luck of the dice. This is part of what makes the story that is woven during a role-playing game ...
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  • 1,159
0 votes
2 answers
73 views

How to length chapters in book [closed]

I began trying to write a book yesterday and saw that what I wanted to write in 10-15 pages I wrote in two. How do I lengthen the book so it won't be this short?
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0 votes
1 answer
98 views

First-person, present-tense novels where the plot arcs on deep change within the protagonist's life from the negative to the positive

I'm doing research and preparatory writing on a novel and that's going really well. But I need some perspective on some of the technical issues. I need to dissect a couple of specimens. What popular ...
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0 votes
0 answers
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How can I change my story so it sounds less like Harry Potter? [duplicate]

My story has a main character that starts out in their regular world, the USA, and suddenly finds out that they're not human. They're part of this fantastical race that uses magic(but not spells). So, ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
62 views

Novel character description [closed]

I am trying to describe a male main character that grew up in a less friendly family. Can I say he is a cold and quiet introvert or less engaged?
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10 votes
5 answers
3k views

Should you publish your book online for feedback?

This is a question I've had in my mind and have been a bit curious about. Let's say I finish writing a novel but before publishing it, I want to get feedback on it. Should I publish it online ...
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1 vote
5 answers
290 views

I want to explain something in a novel that shouldn’t exist in it

In my novel, the world is made entirely out of islands, but I don’t know how to explain this without using the word islands. In that world, there are only islands so they are just called countries. ...
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7 votes
3 answers
160 views

I struggle to make characters emote during dialogue

I often find myself with two (or more) characters speaking, and too often my descriptions would be "he paused," "he sighed," "he rubbed the bridge of his nose," etc. Too ...
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0 votes
3 answers
235 views

What are corridor scenes in novels used for?

What are corridor scenes in novels used for? Usually, most novels don't continuously follow a characters for more than 1-2 chapters, but what if you did that for 10 chapters in a row and included ...
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0 votes
4 answers
90 views

How to avoid making the romance in your novel predictable? [duplicate]

I'm currently writing a YA novel, and one of my sublots is a romance between the protagonist (A) and another supporting character (B). I introduce the two to each other early on, and they start out as ...
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0 votes
1 answer
106 views

How do you put as much worldbuilding as possible in a short novel or novella?

How do you put as much worldbuilding as possible in a short novel or novella? In a short novel, it is very difficult to do worldbuilding, so I am wondering what might be some of the tricks to do ...
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1 vote
2 answers
279 views

Using multiple first-person narrators, should I do it or avoid it?

I'm writing a novel. My main character - Bob - is the first-person narrator. However the 2nd character - Larry, his travel buddy - has a few deep conversations with Bob. Bob tells anecdotes. They ...
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3 votes
4 answers
310 views

Can you add worldbuilding footnotes in your novel?

Can you add worldbuilding footnotes in your novel? Most philosophy books have footnotes on them, because sometimes the text by itself is too hard to understand. Are there novels that use footnotes to ...
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14 votes
5 answers
3k views

Should you avoid using hard-to-describe gestures and acts in a novel?

Should you avoid using hard-to-describe gestures and acts in a novel? Some gestures that are often used in real life are hard to describe without using familiar languages or slang. One such example is:...
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1 vote
5 answers
194 views

How do you keep track of character timelines?

I would love to hear, in-depth, your system for keeping track of character arcs happening simultaneously in a novel. Particularly for characters' emotional highs and lows which don't sync up. I am ...
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-1 votes
3 answers
133 views

Can you have several sequential plots inside a novel and how much is too much?

A plot is composed of the following: Exposition Inciting Incident Rising Action or Progressive Complications Dilemma Climax Denouement Can you have a novel where a plot ends with the heroes finishing ...
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-1 votes
4 answers
292 views

What makes a novel boring?

It is often said that "a writer is a reader first, then a writer next." Therefore, I think it is important to know: what makes a novel boring? What are the biggest turn-offs for readers that ...
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2 votes
2 answers
425 views

Expanding ideas into novels

A lot of tiny ideas come to my mind but I don't know how to work on them and expand them into "valuable, satisfying, and worth of reading novels", and as a result, I lose motivation and give ...
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5 votes
7 answers
425 views

How to believe in your novel

I often come up with an idea, write an outline, and sit down eagerly to write, but over and over again, this sense of doubt sets in. This affects me tremendously while I'm writing, because I believe ...
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0 votes
0 answers
91 views

How do you properly write a novel with very little dialogues?

How do you properly write a novel with very little dialogues? I tried doing it and it reads awful. It looks weird if you look at the format and layout if you don't insure the descriptive parts don't ...
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0 votes
2 answers
83 views

Is it acceptable for a published short story to serve later as the prologue of a novel?

If I was to publish an original short story to get feedback for a concept and characters, would publishers find it distasteful if I then wanted to include the same text later as the prologue part of a ...
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0 votes
4 answers
123 views

Writing Science Fantasy: Problems with oversaturation of weird?

I have been thinking of writing a Science Fantasy novel, basically a world with both magic and not currently invented science. I have concerns that it might just have too much fantasy, too much ...
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2 votes
3 answers
228 views

When writing a YA novel, how necessary is it to include LGBT characters?

I am attempting to write a YA novel, and I keep wondering if it is important these days to include at least one LGBT character. So far, no LGBT character has 'organically' come up in the story, and ...
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0 votes
1 answer
69 views

Is it okay to change plots/genres multiple times?

My question is rather simple, and means exactly what it looks like. I'm writing a book in which there have been a genre change, from a not-very-good suspense novel to more of an action, however, the ...
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2 votes
3 answers
169 views

How many books do authors tend to write at once?

I was wondering, how many books do authors write at the same time? I usually try to focus on one project at a time, but I sometimes get inspiration for something else and want to write something ...
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2 votes
2 answers
132 views

Can my prologue be written in omniscient third person if the rest of my novel is written in third person limited POV?

I'm writing a novel in third person limited point of view. I want my prologue to feature an event that is referenced later in the novel, but my protagonist is not involved in the event. (e.x the ...
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1 vote
2 answers
153 views

Is there any "right way" to outline a novel?

I've never had a solid template for outlining my novels. I don't even know if I'm doing it right, if there's a right way to do it. For my characters, I have a list of questions that I fill out. For my ...
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2 votes
1 answer
103 views

Is there a tradition/style of novel writing that is closer to screenwriting?

What I really like about screenplays is that a lot of them have minimal descriptions of objects or the environment. By contrast, novels usually have detailed descriptions that I have difficulty ...
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3 votes
3 answers
239 views

Will marketing still be effective if I advertise my self published novels almost a year after they've been released?

I've been worrying if my marketing will still be effective for my self-published books when I market them almost a year after the novels have been released. My plan is to self-publish more novels this ...
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