Questions tagged [style]

This tag should be used for questions that deal with a consistent style in your writing, such as when asking about typical ways to introduce a certain aspect to your reader by showing-telling or if you are concerned that your readers might feel that a change in the point of view might be perceived as inconcsistency.

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7
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1answer
100 views

Should I capitalise a lower-case last name at the start of a sentence?

I have a fairly quick question. I am wondering if I should capitalize a last name when it comes at the start of a sentence if it starts with a lower-case letter. Example: In my essay, I am citing ...
8
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4answers
2k views

As an author, can I afford to get emotionally attached to my work?

It's said that to be a good writer you ought to "Write what you feel and feel what you write." While this sounds logical, I sometimes find that being too attached to my work cramps my ...
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2answers
93 views

Explain the lack of commas in James Joyce's “The Dead” [closed]

I am closely reading/editing (for my own benefit) the text of Dubliners, the collection of short stories written by James Joyce. In some stories, such as The Dead, there are many instances of what you ...
1
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2answers
62 views

Using “now” from a character's POV [duplicate]

The story is written in 3rd person POV, close. But I feel like the very last end feels jarring. He trailed his hand along the railing as he climbed the stairs so he could catch himself if he fainted ...
1
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1answer
58 views

Struggling with using correct tenses, please help! [closed]

I am writing my first book, which I am very passionate about, but there are small details in the art of writing that have me second guessing myself, and then comes the confusion. I am writing in deep ...
2
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1answer
54 views

When writing and formatting a novel, what are the rules for scene breaks? Is it okay to use both asterisks and double spaces?

I have found information on this topic of scene breaks available on the internet to be quite conflicting and I've frustrated myself into a lot of confusion. Some authors use only double spaces to ...
6
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1answer
480 views

How to cut down on using too many pronouns (he, she, his etc.) while writing paragraphs (fiction)

I'm a relatively new writer and decided I would try and write something for fun. For the most part I have been finding it alright, however, I am really having trouble with repetitive sentences with ...
3
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2answers
165 views

How do I add technical exposition in my fiction novel?

I have written a fiction novel about an adolescent who commits suicide. The story explores the childhood abuse from her father that pushed her to suicide, what she and her mother have done to try to ...
0
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0answers
49 views

How do I write with a rhythm/cadence without losing command of the English language?

I'm sorry. I know I've been posting a lot of questions lately. Many times in the past, when I tried to write words with cadence and showed them to people, they said that I had poor command of the ...
4
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4answers
131 views

Breaking the Rules

There are many style guides that urge writers to use the active voice and to avoid nominalizations. But many good books I've read often violate these rules. So when should we break the rules that we ...
-2
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1answer
61 views

What level of diction is best for optimal eloquence? [closed]

Many of the books I've read, being written in modern times, make use of language which is neither highly complex nor very simple, having sentences of fairly short length, making it easy for the reader ...
1
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1answer
57 views

What is rhythm, exactly?

I read two books that talk about rhythm, having different views, one saying that rhythm is created by phrase length (verb phrase, prepositional phrase, etc), the other saying that rhythm is created by ...
4
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3answers
72 views

Can I internalize style through imitation?

Books I have read and people have said that imitation of a great author is a good way to learn writing style. Well, what I want to know is whether I can actually internalize a writing style by direct ...
6
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4answers
1k views

Rules of Harmony

When writing prose, I noticed that certain words flow smoothly when placed next to others, while other words do not, but I can never be too sure exactly how smoothly they flow, or whether my cadence ...
3
votes
3answers
115 views

How do I control my writing style?

In one of the answers to a question of mine here, someone said that cadence does not depend on the sprung rhythm of a text, but on making emphasis fall on the right words. Well, I would like to ask ...
0
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1answer
28 views

Comparison of two quantities [closed]

I found the following passage in an NPR article today: The Biden campaign and supporting groups have spent almost 90% of their money there, while Trump and Republican organizations have spent 78 ...
0
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2answers
29 views

Present tense in personal recounts

I'm writing a travel memoir and have come across a dilemma of sorts. Yes, I know that a memoir is usually written in the past tense -- since it happened in the past. But certain facts remain true as I ...
0
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2answers
73 views

How do I punctuate a slogan?

I have the following slogan: I sell, I build I want to make sure it's clear and concise. I did not add a period, because I know it's not a full sentence. However, I want to make sure it's ...
2
votes
1answer
79 views

How do you format dialogue within a parargraph?

He made his way over to the crimson red telephone box that basked in the afternoon sunlight. Ted knew she was hiding in there. “You can come out now." He swung open the door, with a callous look ...
4
votes
1answer
74 views

Which manual of style suggests using parentheses within parentheses?

When it comes to nested parentheses, there are two options. (The first is to use square brackets for the inner text [like this]. The second is to simply use parentheses (like this).) I believe that ...
0
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0answers
25 views

Use of “set down” in a formal document

I was recently asked to translate a Spanish letter of recommendation into English. Not being an English native speaker, I was bound to make a few mistakes. According to a reviewer, one of these was ...
-3
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2answers
48 views

Looking For a Simile For Something That Follows You Around [closed]

I'm writing a blog post about the impacts of an autoimmune disease. The sentence I'm trying to construct looks like this: "The disease importunately follows me around like a god damn..." I'm ...
9
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11answers
3k views

Creating a unique spin on a nuclear apocalypse?

Basically, my story follows a group of 6 people (and 1 mutant human) exploring a barren wasteland of what used to be the USA. The world they inhabit was created through a nuclear war, that led to a ...
5
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2answers
237 views

How do you write a story with someone else overseas?

My friend and I have wanted to write a story together for a while now. But she lives in a different country, so we are just confused on how we can do this over calls. Because I know that we can't call ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Is there a name for a poem with rhyme scheme ABABCB?

I have just started writing a new poem, and I am thinking about rhyme schemes. The one that jumps out to me looking at the few lines I have already written is: ABABCB CDCDED... (in dactylic dimeter, ...
1
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1answer
86 views

How to write better introductory passages (usually the first paragraph in the chapter that introduces the setting)?

Each chapter of a novel usually has an opening paragraph, or an introductory passage, that lends a flavor to the setting essential for the action that will follow. How to make the descriptions more ...
0
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1answer
56 views

How to improve writing style and vocabulary?

I'm working on my first book. I'm not that great in English and sometimes while writing, I feel that I'm not able to give my 100% in dialogues and overall writing style, overall( like adding more ...
0
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2answers
136 views

What are some examples of the “simple but vivid” description that Chekhov talks about in the quote below?

(The quote below is from one of Chekhov's letters to other Russian writer, Maxim Gorky.) Your nature descriptions are artistic; you are a true landscape painter. But your frequent personifications (...
0
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0answers
18 views

How to properly include credits for the author, location, date and time?

I'm working on an amateur article about various topics and want to include my name (as the author), location of where I'm currently writing the article, and the current date and time. I've seen many ...
1
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0answers
28 views

What is the proper way to insert a subsection into a section / end a subsection within a section?

Not sure if this belongs here, or math.stackexchange but what's the proper way to do a special case subsection in a section? This is mostly in a proof/logical statement context i.e. To show ... \...
7
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5answers
251 views

Changing Genres in the Middle of a Story

Let's say the story was introduced as a romance, then somewhere in the middle it becomes a horror/thriller, would you immediately think it's bad? Would you feel like "This is not what I came here ...
3
votes
5answers
143 views

How to show a character with multiple personalitites?

To preface this, I have seen the question multiple personalities characters speech in text and I feel that my question is different enough, to warrant a separate question. In my book, a character has ...
3
votes
2answers
87 views

How does one strengthen their sense of rhythm?

Many pieces of writing are succinct, but they are not rhythmical, giving no pleasure to the ear of the reader. The reason for that is likely this: The writers themselves either are unmindful of rhythm ...
2
votes
4answers
132 views

If you're writing a story where the location is based in the USA, should you adapt your spelling to the American way, rather than British?

If an Australian writer writes a story based in America or another country that uses American English, should you change your spelling to American English, or continue using British English? Is this ...
1
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3answers
188 views

What is the literary form or style of a story with no heroes?

I have a piece of non-fiction to write that I'll be doing by telling a story. It's somewhere between a news report, op-ed, and historical lesson, but told as a short story. In this story there are ...
3
votes
2answers
134 views

What are the grammatical and stylistic alternatives to avoid overusing pronouns?

Recently, I've developed a habit of writing he/she/him/her and overusing the character's name at the beginning of sentences. For example: Pandora ran through the snow, following the coughs to a small ...
2
votes
2answers
79 views

Font Size for Book

I am writing a short book. What is the best font size to use with Times New Roman: 12 or 14?
1
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1answer
116 views

I want to incorporate a Men's Rights message into my book, how do I it properly?

I want to add a message into my book about Men's Rights, but I don't want to do it in an obnoxious way. I want to add it in without it being told. I want to show, not tell. This one book I was reading,...
3
votes
4answers
53 views

Hyphen for “multiple-response”?

I'm writing a help document for a website that tests people. In much of the copy for the website, I've referred to "multiple-choice" questions with the hyphen. Now, I have to write about multiple ...
3
votes
1answer
55 views

Adjective alongside verb [closed]

"Marlon walked suspicious along the corridor". It's important to stress that Marlon was (still) suspicious (not suspected, nor walking suspiciously) about something (that was already covered in the ...
1
vote
2answers
61 views

Book recommendation for keeping writing specific / concrete

My job requires formal writing, however after self-review, I found that my writing does not have enough substance. This was confirmed as feedback from higher-ups implied that I use too many phrasal ...
1
vote
1answer
43 views

Im wondering if for a unique writing tactic, could i shift from first to third person?

As a way to show exposition of my characters background,In a dream sequence could I use third person POV? Just wondering if this could work, as Im an aspiring writer and i'm looking for a way to make ...
1
vote
1answer
45 views

Alternative for “first” at the beginning of a sentence

I am writing a paper in the mathematics field, and I found out that very often (too often) I begin sentences and paragraphs with the word "first". For example, "First, define P as the string..." I ...
0
votes
1answer
17 views

MS Word correct the style of footnotes

I am having an issue with a bad documents that one of my colleague formatted. The footnotes appear to have a Return too much... I tried clicking everywhere around the area to be able to modify ...
1
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1answer
42 views

A compelling blog writing

Although I maintain a blog on which I give anime reviews, academically my english is really good, but I have experienced a problem that whenever I am writing a blog, I am not able to express exactly ...
4
votes
1answer
484 views

Apparent contradiction in rules about writing that I learnt throughout my education

I noticed that there are a few inconsistencies in what I was taught throughout my English education, and I hope to clarify them. I think the nature of the question is somewhere between "grammar" and "...
1
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0answers
24 views

How do you quote a quote? [duplicate]

There's this sentence from Marie Kondo’s book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing that I want to use as a title of my project, and I'm not sure if I ...
0
votes
1answer
32 views

How to properly put asterisk around a term?

How do I properly put asterisk around this title? Do I put it at the end of the title of after the term, KonMari Method? Which one is correct? How the KonMari Method Changed My Daily Routine* or ...
1
vote
0answers
21 views

How do you properly quote a quote as a title? [duplicate]

There's this sentence from Marie Kondo’s book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing that I want to use as a header/title of my project, and I need ...
1
vote
1answer
93 views

How to introduce a “fourth reason” after having stated that there are “three main reasons”?

In an academic paper, I have written "There are three main arguments for why X is not Z." I have then discussed them like this: "First, ....​ (of medium length) The second argument is ...

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