Questions tagged [technique]

Common, repeatable methods of achieving particular storytelling effects or of avoiding narrative pitfalls.

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I want to make my writing better

I am trying to write in a menacing and intimidating way that casts around a lot of philosophical and religious imagery, typically in absolutes. I am trying to do it in a tasteful way and I would like ...
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164 views

How to "show not tell" hero's thought process?

This question is inspired by a different one - How to communicate characters' inner states?. Although it may seem similar at first glance, I find the difference quite profound. My question regards ...
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how to write the word "so as if it is slurred or exagerated [duplicate]

How should I write the word "so" as if it is slurred or exaggerated for example: I'm sooo sorry. I've been so miserable and lonely.
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111 views

How to communicate characters' inner states?

This is a huge question, parts of which have been answered on this site. However, this is one of the biggest challenges writers face, and so I think the question's relevancy matches the amount of work ...
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2answers
79 views

How to revise or edit an extremely long story?

I have a story that I am working on that is extremely long. The first volume in the series is about 120,000 words, and that is only about half of its predicted wordcount. Counting the other entries in ...
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82 views

How would you describe a character that is ‘dogmatic’ without referring to religion or politics?

I am trying to develop a character who has a very rigid world view but I want to use more than just a single adjective to bring out this character’s “quality”. I also do not want to inject any ...
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3answers
142 views

How best to write an anxious character?

A character is shy, anxious, anti-social, nervous, etc. So, when speaking, she often pauses or makes noises like “uhm”, err”, “uhh”, etc. I’m asking a couple questions: What would be the best way to ...
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697 views

What is the process of creating a word using Latin and Greek word parts?

I am trying to create a word that means "division of a single God", but I am having some trouble. If I understand correctly, any word must have a suffix, root and prefix, but sometimes I ...
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135 views

What makes you turn off from reading a blog immediately?

What tell-tale intro elements are a red flag a piece of writing isn't worth your time? I write commercially but am conscious that my online pieces often have a lower-than-hoped-for time on site. My ...
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How to avoid overdoing deconstructive tendencies in writing?

The Issue I'm a person who likes to take things apart to see how they work, and someone who likes to poke holes in ideas. As a result, it's not surprising that I've always been drawn to a writing ...
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94 views

Is it possible to use an intentional plot hole as a literary device?

Is it possible to use an intentional plot hole as a literary device? If not as a literary device, can you use a plot hole intentionally for other reasons? I am wondering if there are authors who use ...
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165 views

Writing an American-style book as an outsider to the culture

I am an aspiring writer from Pakistan. It's a south Asian country rich in culture. Our cultural heritage and history is very interesting, twisting and multifaceted. However, I have grown up reading ...
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What are some common purposes in using run-on sentences as a literary device?

Generally, this is considered grammatically incorrect, and called a stylistic error. There are many examples of run-on sentences used as literary devices in literature. However, not all long sentences ...
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Deciding potential scenes and keeping the tension in my short story

To give some background, my short story is written from the perspective of person K. His school friend A (they are both in their mid-twenties now) invites him to stay in Vegas for a short time, and K ...
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54 views

This my approach to make a superhuman combat sport more fair? [closed]

This isn't really a world-building question. Since I im asking for y'all thoughts on my writing and writing a general. In the past, I said it would be hard to add an MMA/Boxing weight class type of ...
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1answer
67 views

Is "small-c conservative" or "capital-T Truth" redundant?

In English speech, it's perfectly normal to refer to the capitalization of a term to clarify if it's a proper noun or not—"The party's new approach is small-c conservative", because the ...
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2answers
59 views

How do you preserve emotions in a poem?

I am just another person who writes poems to vent out emotions. I discovered that the amount of emotions that I feel my poem has during the time of writing, slowly evaporates away. When I re-read it ...
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1answer
131 views

How do you avoid "rushing to the good stuff" with poor pacing as an inexperienced writer?

I was recently watching a writing review talking about the pacing in the recent Invincible adaptation. One thing that the author of this video pointed out is that when authors are very inexperienced ...
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What's the purpose of using the same verb, but using a different tense

I was born aiming for the light Bound by a bond, a thin string From the fortune of awakening for a mission Spinning many proud memories Into this world, for your sake Gratitude and a bouquet filled ...
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46 views

What are some ways to do recurring dreams effectively/better?

I am using a series of recurring dreams to illustrate a character's mental state and to also throw in a change of pace in amongst the regular non-dream action. The dream format really allows me to do ...
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1answer
83 views

How can I compensate for lack of decision-making due to a non-sentient protagonist?

I intend to write an adventure novel where the protagonist is a (divine) plant. Though it cannot move or speak, it's necessary for the plant to be the main protagonist (there will not be any subplots)....
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113 views

What are non-obvious ways to make the reader sympathize with the protagonist?

I was thinking of ways to make my audience like my characters. I always try to figure out my target audience and make the main hero as relatable as possible. Quite often do I embrace their integrity. ...
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What should phrases like “um” or “erm” be replaced with?

It is generally considered bad practice to include these in your writing, so what should be used instead? How would you show that your character is pondering something, or unsure about something, ...
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1answer
86 views

What type of rhetorical figure is this?

What type of figure of speech/rhetorical figure are the following: “You are dearer to me than myself, as you yourself can see.” (Bob Dylan) “Them I will forget, but you I’ll remember always.” (Bob ...
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109 views

How can I raise the stakes for my villain protagonist?

I'm currently writing a story about a psychopathic serial killer that meets a detective (the murderer owns a restaurant and the detective and his wife meet him there) that is investigating the victims ...
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138 views

I'm writing blindly and I need help dealing with it

Writing isn't like drawing, and I can't take a step back and look at it and search for flaws in the story, because it's in my head already, and I know it, and I can't forget it. So when I write I ...
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What can I do with a part that I feel is necessary to a story but it's an absolute drudgery?

I've just written such a paragraph: He turned around and started walking to the nearby store. He bought a bread and a yoghurt. Then he came back and gave the groceries to the homeless guy. There are ...
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126 views

Often, weasel word, and absolutes

I'm writing about large subjects such as human society, human culture, and human behavior. I need to identify and discuss various phenomena, and make specific arguments, but I also want to avoid the ...
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4answers
122 views

How to keep all my sentences from having the same structure?

Been reading through my writing and I noticed that 90% of my sentences follow the same basic structure of [phraseA], [phraseB]. The few exceptions I could find were very short sentences I put there ...
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1answer
54 views

Rhetorical analysis: How do you examine a line of reasoning without mindlessly repeating the argument?

In AP Language and Composition, I am often tasked with identifying and examining the line of reasoning of an argument. While I can reliably internalize an argument and understand what the author uses ...
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84 views

What are some strategies to integrate historical facts to a storyline?

What are several different ways to incorporate true facts into historical fiction without just giving a massive info dump? Whether big or little details, I want to inform the reader of facts without ...
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4answers
907 views

I have too much exposition in my stories. What to do?

I’ve posted several chapters of my in-progress trilogy on several writing critique websites, and while many of my fellow writers have praised my worldbuilding abilities, they have remarked that I ...
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I feel like my stories are too short considering the amount of action described. How can I extend them? [duplicate]

I have a story in my mind and put it onto paper. The contains a lot of content: characters appearance and personalities, plot, action. My issue is usually I end up having several pages while giving ...
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212 views

Is it possible to write a serious story without any humour?

I'm planning out and (will hopefully be writing) a trilogy takes that takes itself pretty seriously and very dark while having a distinct absence of comedy. The reason is behind this choice that I ...
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1answer
53 views

Character's point of view when using empathic powers

I am writing my first novel in the third person semi-omniscient. I am aware that I ought to still structure passages from a primary character’s point of view, as in, if two or more characters are ...
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79 views

Structure of argumentative writing essay?

When writing an argumentative essay what is a good way to structure my writing? What general rules should I follow when starting off an essay?
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152 views

How do I expand my chapter?

I'm writing a book and I was wondering how I could expand it? My chapters feel like they have 500 characters while 1 chapter should become 3000 - 5000 words. Is there a way to expand it? Note: I'm ...
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179 views

What Is the Best Approach to Making A Main Character That is Not "Special" Without Making it Feel Like A Pity Party?

Just some background: I'm writing a story centered around a boy who is not special. As in, there is nothing too defining about him physically. The thing is, he isn't in a realistic setting. He is ...
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2answers
62 views

Dreams as inspiration

I am not an author. Occasionally I have an idea for a story but I've never been inspired to invent and connect ideas to make a convincing tale. Recently; however, possibly because of some medication I ...
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105 views

How to add symbolic things "in the background" without giving them focus?

my primary interest is video game development and I picked up writing (short stories) as a secondary skill. Because making games is a visual art that encompasses a bit of painting, cinematography and ...
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93 views

Could Abridged-Series-Style Comedy Fit a Fantasy Series?

Minus the obvious tropes like 4th-wall-breaking, pop culture references, or lampooning the source material that wouldn’t be usable in a serious novel, would you still be able to take a fantasy novel ...
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1answer
47 views

MLA In-text citations for websites

I've done some research, but a lot of sources contradict each other. I was just wondering how to do embedded citations for MLA regarding websites. I wasn't too sure how to do them as the websites I ...
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If I can't smoothly fit something into my writing, can I use parenthesis instead?

Ok, so I'm writing a book set around 10 years in the future. Obviously, them being in the future, there are more high-tech gadgets that we don't have here. Normal things that they use in their every ...
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6answers
195 views

How to keep it clear which character is speaking in a long dialog?

I'm trying to write a long dialog with multiple exchanges between characters. How can I keep it clear which character is speaking without filling the story without repeating 'he said/she said'. ...
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2answers
81 views

Presenting a Character's Thoughts

Is this an acceptable introductory paragraph to a fictional character's memoir? I'm not sure if the first sentence should be in quotations or have its own line and be italicized.. How often do you get ...
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1answer
75 views

When to be literal and when to be metaphorical?

I tend to chide myself when I explain things very literally. However, I've noticed some excellent literature uses some very literal explanation of the scene and even the character's emotions while ...
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179 views

How to describe a setting but without making it too cliche?

There is this one author technique that I find a bit cliche, which is matching the mood to the setting. This means that for example, when one character is upset, the skies are grey to match the mood ...
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966 views

Giving journeys a sense of scale

Journeying is a central part of my novel. However, it gets really boring really quickly to describe them walking through the same landscape for a few weeks. I want to skip to the parts that are ...
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1answer
49 views

How to get across to the reader a character’s prophetic abilities

My protagonist is speaking to my interpretation of the three fates from Greek mythology. He doubts their abilities until one of them echoes his every word as, or an instant before, he utters them. How ...
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1answer
42 views

Is it okay to touch type with several different finger placements?

I typed using a QWERTY keyboard for years since my childhood, but I never learned how to type properly and I just type the way I type instead. I use all of my fingers (I had the feelings of that), but ...

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