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Issues that specifically target readers, marketing to particular sets of readers

12
votes
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 ...
27
votes
9answers
10k views

What do you do when your message could be dangerous?

I've long believed that for a novel (or any kind of fiction) to have a certain weight or power behind it, there must be a message. I've been writing this why for many years, and it's lent my fiction ...
2
votes
1answer
54 views

How to make sure that my reader has not forgotten an incident or character which was described earlier and referenced much later in the writing? [duplicate]

In the context of writing a fiction novel, how to make sure that readers remember several of the incidents or events or even characters that were described in earlier chapters, when the same gets ...
17
votes
7answers
4k views

Fantasy novel with obvious - but never defined - sci-fi elements?

I'm considering writing a fantasy novel. While I'm striving to make the world as original as I can, and not rely on many of the popular fantasy tropes, for the purposes of this question you can assume ...
19
votes
11answers
4k views

Do readers not like a book if it's too dark and the characters almost never win?

I started a book and although I wanted it to be dark, will the readers find it too dark if the characters almost never win? Or are a lot of readers into that? In my book the two main characters' whole ...
17
votes
7answers
5k views

Would it confuse my readers to give two siblings nicknames that can be abbreviations of the same name?

In my book, there's two brothers, who are named Nick and Cole. Now, I've always thought that Nick and Cole are cool names, so therefore I named the two brothers "Nick and Cole". But then I found out ...
47
votes
13answers
12k views

How to make the reader think that the *character's* logic is flawed instead of the author's?

Following up on my previous question, "How to make the villain's motives understandable if his logic is flawed?", how can I let the reader know that the lack of logic is on the character's side, ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

How to make the villain's motives understandable if his logic is flawed?

In a story I'm writing, the villain has his motives for his attitudes. However, he is very mentally disturbed, which makes the logic of his motives be kind of illogic to other people (including the ...
18
votes
11answers
6k views

How to avoid writing irritating fan fictions?

I have recently started writing a fanfiction and I am posting it online as I write it. However, I often see in comments sayings 'This fanfiction gave me cancer','The writer of this crap should just ...
4
votes
3answers
413 views

Would a character displaying the opposite of one of their characteristics break immersion?

The main character, while playing an MMO, was teleported to another world in her avatar along with all of the NPC's in her guild. As her reaction, she sent scouts around the area in order to discover ...
12
votes
4answers
1k 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 ...
3
votes
3answers
118 views

Is it acceptable to break the story up into POVs to show how the characters' stories all tie together?

I'm writing a novel. At 56k words, I've become a little nervous about how I've been building the story. BACKGROUND: I started this book with the introduction of the main character, Jules and a brief ...
3
votes
3answers
198 views

Does my constantly sad character make a terrible main character?

One of my characters, Mallory is a 37-year old mother who is willingly strict with her son, as repulsive as that sounds it turns out she is remorseful over her parenting decisions and her son is ...
3
votes
4answers
324 views

Is it a deus ex machina if the alternative is illogical?

Background: I know to avoid Deus Ex Machinas - meaning to me a sudden and unexpected solution arriving out of nowhere to save an otherwise unsolvable problem. They are often indicative of a writer who ...
5
votes
5answers
840 views

How can I make sure a major twist is not disappointing? [duplicate]

I've been having some trouble with the ending of my current story, and I've decided that the best way to deal with those issues is to include a major twist. Due to the nature of this twist, I'm not ...
6
votes
3answers
192 views

Is excerpts from an in-universe book, presented between chapters, a good way of handling exposition?

A book that I'm currently writing called Surge features an enemy faction called the Degenerates that are heavily inspired by the Scythians (Indo-Iranian horse nomads that ruled the Eurasian Steppe and ...
11
votes
7answers
496 views

What constitutes a 'hook?'

I intuit that hooks are things that hook. (I'm quite astute in this way.) They can be good prose, relatable characters, rich settings. Books must start with a 'hook.' This is a current truism. The ...
8
votes
5answers
426 views

How to increase my readers base for my blog?

I recently started writing a blog. It's about many things: travel, food, my perspectives, photography, comics, movies and whatever thing I feel about writing. I'm using a WordPress blog. Since I'm ...
0
votes
2answers
195 views

How do I handle unintentional occurences of politically hot topics?

Suppose an author is writing a novel. The novel has nothing to do with politics, our society, or any of the hot questions of the daily news. It's, say... maybe a fantasy or sci-fi novel, set in a ...
7
votes
1answer
295 views

Can an “adult” story have a child protagonist?

Is it ill-advised to have a child protagonist (either first or third POV) in a story that contain a fair share of violence and gore ? I'm worried readers of this kind of story may not relate with a ...
3
votes
2answers
190 views

Do people keep reading because of what's ahead or what's behind?

What's behind: the reader feels invested in the characters, the reader likes the tone so far, the reader likes the premise. What's ahead: how is this story going to finish, who killed his wife, what ...
3
votes
2answers
90 views

Is a neutral/impartial story “boring”?

In one of my wanderings through the interwebs, I stumbled upon the idea that "neutral stories are boring". A neutral story is a story that doesn't support any side, i.e. an impartial story that just ...
19
votes
8answers
3k views

How to be mindful of the reader when handling disturbing/distressing subjects?

I’m attempting to write some ‘difficult to read’ scenes such as violence, rape, trauma, etc. And I’m not talking about ‘good’ violence such as in Game of Thrones or a Quentin Tarantino film. The novel ...
3
votes
3answers
146 views

How do I get more exposure as an author?

I've done everything, from building a nice website, being active on social media, posting my work on numerous websites, but I just cannot seem to get readers/followers. Any advice? Here's my website ...
17
votes
8answers
2k views

Classic fantasy races lazy or boring?

In my fantasy world there are other other sentient races besides humans. Some of them are "original", or at least not as common in mainstream stories. On the other hand, I have also included more ...
17
votes
6answers
5k views

Two protagonists where one is dark - a mistake?

I'm currently writing a tale with two protagonists. One of them is a dark protagonist - that is, technically evil. The other protagonist is not evil. I'm wondering if this will cause the reader to ...
3
votes
5answers
192 views

Are all writers, readers? [closed]

I am new to the writing scene but i have had the passion for it. One thing that has baffled my mind was how writers would not comment on other people's work but more concerned with their work. It has ...
9
votes
2answers
917 views

Pros and Cons: A blog to get feedback

As a creative writer in my free time, I sometime suffer from a lack of feedback. To get some impressions on what I've written, I either have to ask my girlfriend (who acts as a sort of beta-reader) or ...
-4
votes
5answers
280 views

Is read, read, read really the best advice?

Is there any evidence that a prolific readers are better equipped to write than a non-reader? At first I'd suggest the answer is a no-brainer but on further speculation - I'm not convinced. I scan ...
7
votes
3answers
142 views

How to balance relatability in a story with unique world building?

I believe this falls well outside the world-building acceptable topics, so I have come here looking for advice! As a world builder, I want to produce languages, settings, flora and fauna, and combine ...
3
votes
6answers
303 views

Is blending genres well received by readers?

My writings tend to be a blend of multiple genre's. I know some can work well together, like sci-fi and fantasy, but are there genre's that should not be blended? Also, is it confusing to reader's ...
5
votes
5answers
570 views

How to make the reader feel like the protagonist is not a single character, but the group/squad?

Im writing a fictional dieselpunk story based on the WW2 era in a world of my own. The protagonists are two squads (one from the "Axis" and the other from the "Allies") with the characters within the ...
4
votes
2answers
163 views

Writing a book that appeals to both genders

So basically my novel consists of the following genres: Urban fantasy New Adult (somewhat; it's a high school setting but with details that exceed the boundaries of young adult) Romance (somewhat; I'...
3
votes
3answers
273 views

What Kind of Story can Achieve Cult Status?

Note: I have rewritten this question, upon realizing it was being misinterpreted. Please reread the question and provide new answers accordingly. Star Wars. Lord of the Rings. Star Trek. These are ...
5
votes
4answers
299 views

How can I get my readers in the gut?

Braveheart. Titanic. Lord of the Rings. What do these movies (movies, not books) have in common? Besides great musical scores, they have what I call Gut Emotional Appeal. In other words, at some point,...
2
votes
2answers
71 views

CMS or web service with points system

I've written a book that I want self publish. The book is complete (well I've completed 3 edits and I'm happy with it) so I can publish to a schedule. The reason I want to self publish is to build ...
18
votes
9answers
6k views

Do 'text walls' scare off readers?

A comment on a recent question of mine claims Right, so that's [large unformatted text blocks scaring off some readers in certain contexts is] a myth. This is how I know: Harry Potter. Big long ...
1
vote
0answers
33 views

How can I get reader profiles? [closed]

How can I get a reader profile for a publishing category i.e. criminal justice, social justice?
11
votes
8answers
1k views

What Can Ensure Re-Readability?

I've come across some answers and questions on this site which have gotten me thinking about re-readability. It isn't something that I think about much, but now that I consider it, I think it could be ...
16
votes
6answers
3k views

Serious real life problems in a fantasy?

I have a fantasy story I'm writing and several other fantasy ideas, which treats (in-depth or almost) some serious real life problems, such as diseases (mental or corporal), mental health degradation (...
32
votes
11answers
7k views

Is it a bad idea to adopt an 'English' pen name as an Asian American writer to reach a wider audience?

There is currently a dearth of Asian American writers on U.S. library bookshelves, and those few authors who are Asian Americans tend to write about things associated with Asian culture. Think of Amy ...
2
votes
2answers
170 views

If I write a word with a letter that isn't used, will I confuse my reader?

Background So I recently had my first ever issue with the spelling of places in my novel. Someone pronounced a rather illustrious city, Ethil, incorrectly. Ethil is not pronounced with a 'f' sound as ...
2
votes
4answers
1k views

First Person when the PoV is not the Protagonist?

I believe writing in the first person gets the reader closer to the character. As far as I know, this is generally accepted as true. That's not all there is to character development, certainly, but it ...
8
votes
5answers
249 views

How can I respond to praise without appearing egotistical?

Background Alright, so my friends and English teacher recently found out that I've written novels, and asked to read them. So, I gave them out because I have plenty of self-confidence and really ...
1
vote
6answers
474 views

Does a reader care about how realistic a book is?

Introduction I said a reader in the title. I don't know if I can answer this myself, as I'm not the kind of person who hates on something for not being good. I like virtually everything, and don't ...
5
votes
5answers
386 views

Why do Popular Fantasy Novels of Today Feature Teenagers?

This could be a misconception of mine, but I've noticed that the popular fantasy novels of today seem to nearly all have main characters who are children or teenagers. I have a list of some off the ...
12
votes
7answers
1k views

Just how Different are Male and Female Readers?

It is my belief that male and female readers are more or less the same. There are differences in how we view things, but those differences do not stop us from liking the same book or movie. I can see ...
8
votes
4answers
452 views

Will what worked 'back then' work today? (Novels)

Tokein. Jane Austen. Steinbeck. The greats of the past. I often come across people on this site and elsewhere who use the works of these great authors and others as examples and reservoirs of advice. ...
1
vote
3answers
194 views

Onomatopoeia usage, how much of it detracts from the story?

So, in a novel I'm writing, there is a situation where the first-person protagonist is in a lot of pain, so much that she is screaming and sobbing. I've seen the onomatopoeia "Augh" used to represent ...
3
votes
5answers
158 views

How can I determine the public opinion of an author?

I recently asked a question which cited a book by Orson Scott Card, How to Write Fantasy & Science-Fiction. Orson Scott Card is the author of Ender's Game, as well as many other sci-fi and fantasy ...