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Questions tagged [technique]

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

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0answers
4 views

Trying to find a particular literary device/technique

The device or technique I'm looking for is used to describe something mundane or ordinary in order to make it seem alien or special. For example, the following quote from Slaughterhouse Five: In a ...
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3answers
97 views

How can a writer point out the merits of his or her own work?

It is generally taken that if I tell you a joke, then have it explain why it's funny - it's not probably not funny. I continually return to one of my own short pieces. If I submit it I believe it ...
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1answer
38 views

What type of literary device is referring to a famous quote in a song?

In his song Land of the Free, the artist, Joey B., sings: And everything I do or say today that's worthwhile Will for sure inspire actions in your first child. is similar to this quote by Marcus ...
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0answers
22 views

What are the differences of these writing styles; [on hold]

Rhetorical writing Critical writing Reflective writing Argumentative writing Persuasive writing Could I have good annotated examples or user friendly book to learn them.
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5answers
2k views

Dangers of being sympathetic to the killer

I wrote a piece of flash fiction as a mental exercise. I happened to listen to Glen Miller’s “Moonlight Serenade,” and happened to watch an episode of “Samurai Jack.” “Moonlight Serenade” is a song ...
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2answers
123 views

Non-sense question about plot structures

Suppose then you have an story in your mind. Then, to write down this finite series of events, you have to translate your imagination into the paper. This process isn't trivial, of course and plot are ...
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1answer
45 views

Does this technique that deals with syllable meters have a name?

On the poem extract below I noticed the following technique and it sounded really familiar, reminding me of punk rock songs and some strong man speeches (I know this is super vague, if I remember any ...
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8answers
346 views

Dumping an entire world for dramatic effect?

About 1/3 of the way through my story the main antagonist "wins" and is able to completely remake the world of the story into his notion of an ideal world. The "new" world shares some elements with ...
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1answer
37 views

How to link paragraphs in essays and articles?

All I can find online is cohesion and coherence for paragraphs. But in a essay how can I link all the paragraphs. Any good methods for the university level. It would be great if I can find an ...
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3answers
188 views

The concept of “Exotic Culture” and the necessity of a new world

A personal point of view on the necessity of a new culture in fiction "A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away", "Pandora", "Dune", "Middle Earth". All quite different worlds compared to ours, but ...
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4answers
228 views

How to hint at an antagonist's identity?

A significant antagonist in my trilogy is an omnicidal alien by the name of Loki, whose characterisation borrows from Griffith, Keizer Ghidorah, Randall Flagg, Saruman and Hastur. Throughout the ...
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7answers
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How can I make “acts of patience” exciting?

This answer to the question Averting Real Women Don’t Wear Dresses introduces a distinction between acts of patience and acts of daring. [...] when it comes to telling a story [...] acts of ...
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6answers
5k views

How to “Start as close to the end as possible”, and why to do so?

Kurt Vonnegut has 8 tips on how to write a good story Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted. Give the reader at least one character he or she ...
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7answers
2k views

Detail vs. filler

How can I minimise the "filler" text that I end up writing when fleshing out a scene with detail? An appropriate level of detail seems to me to be a fundamental requirement for good prose. Whatever I ...
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5answers
781 views

Averting Bathos

Bathos is a storytelling technique that consists in the rapid succession of 2 “moments” with conflicting tones. This trope occurs when a serious moment gets followed by a gag. One of the many, many ...
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2answers
520 views

Secondary characters in character-study fiction

How would a story flow if I made the secondary characters solely for the purpose of showing the reader how the main character has grown though the years? I'm thinking a 10 year span right now. They ...
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1answer
59 views

Is there a writing style I can use to show “the result that appeared is contrary to the expectation”? [closed]

I'm wondering if there is a English writing technique or style I can use to show that the result that appeared is contrary to the expectation of the first-person narrator? (I'm not using garden-...
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4answers
191 views

How to deal appropriately with an inappropriate sexual relationship

Part of the character arc for my main character from Can I conceal an antihero's insanity - and should I? is that she is a sociopath, prepared to do things that normal people would not. Part of ...
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5answers
160 views

What techniques authors use to keep track of their cast?

There is a problem as stories progress (especially in never-ending web novels) where the cast of characters keep growing. Some webnovels I follow are in the hundreds! Is there a technique for authors ...
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3answers
615 views

How do we create our own symbolisms?

In the Bible, the apple is a symbol for knowledge, immortality, temptation, the fall of man and sin. The book itself gave the apple a symbolic meaning. How can you as an author give an object like the ...
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7answers
641 views

Rapid change in character

A story I am currently working on contains a scene where a figure with a certain character quite unexpectedly has a change of heart, and I am having difficulty finding a way of smoothing the ...
23
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11answers
6k views

Don't look at what I did there

This question is about hiding from the reader the fact that I am skipping some steps. Worse, perhaps, I don't want to show them, and I may have no clue or intention of figuring out how these steps ...
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4answers
176 views

How to write disorientation with sensory overload?

My character has super-senses, so anything that we feel, see, hear, etc. are heightened for him. So much so that when a flash bomb is set a few meters from him, he is greatly affected by this. ...
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2answers
2k views

How to describe accents?

India has a diverse range of languages and accents. Moreover, people from different parts of the country have different accents of speaking the same language as well. For example, a person from ...
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3answers
594 views

How to portray a character who has mood swings?

The protagonist of my trilogy-in-progress suffers from a serve case of Borderline Personality Disorder. Among his symptoms are continually splitting, unstable self-image, chronic feelings of emptiness,...
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8answers
609 views

How do I sound like Thanos when I write?

This is really a dumb question but as a fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, I have watched Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame so many times. One of the most interesting things that popped ...
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2answers
54 views

Should I include details relevant to a “close reading” in my thesis statement?

I am writing a five-page essay about a novel my literature class has read. I do not want to post my thesis or any snippets of my essay for fear that a plagiarism checker will flag my paper. My paper'...
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2answers
284 views

Job description for my employment reference

I've canceled my job to move on. Now I was asked how I want my Job description for my employment reference. My first draft was one full page... This is too much. Now I've reduced the long version to ...
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1answer
91 views

What's the name of this type of “literary work”?

Character1: dialogue Character2: *action* Character1: ... Character1: dialogue In the context of fanfiction, they're sometimes referred to as drabbles. But the official definition of drabbles is 100-...
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6answers
303 views

Averting Always Chaotic Evil

Always Chaotic Evil denotes an entire species in a fictional setting as outright evil - no matter how one treats them, they reward kindness with treachery and violence. Frequent recipients of this ...
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6answers
776 views

In a script how can I signal who's winning the argument?

Arguments, discussions, disagreements In my script I have a lot of "arguments" – loose definition: long discussions where characters disagree about what to do. These arguments don't escalate to a ...
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2answers
76 views

Which tools are recommended for writing/authoring with? [closed]

I have to following tools available, looking for other options. Microsoft Word Sublime Text Editor Atom Visual Code I'm a Software Engineer, who is interested in writing. Thanks in advance.
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1answer
120 views

Term for future-tense technique that isn't exactly foreshadowing

Not sure if this has a name, but I think it's best demonstrated with some examples I've seen: Nadia and her family both considered her thereafter to be without a family, something all of them, all ...
14
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6answers
869 views

How important are the author's mood and feelings for writing a story?

How important are the author's mood and emotions while writing a story or describing a scene? For example, while writing an erotic scene, is it important for the author to feel the same way as they ...
20
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5answers
2k views

How to not confuse readers with simultaneous events?

In an omniscient third person, I have 8 (practically unrelated) events going simultaneously in different parts of a large mansion. I want to present these events as they happen, but I feel jumping ...
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4answers
396 views

Ambiguous sentences: How to tell when they need fixing?

A story of mine has the following sentence: Alyssa was possessed by a sudden, fierce urge to snatch the teacup out of her sister's hand and dump the contents into her perfectly arranged hair. ...
10
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2answers
343 views

What's a moment that's more impactful on a reread called?

I've met a few of these but the most recent instance was two characters discussing buying a third character a drink when they all got home, on the first reading this is a simple moment of comradery ...
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8answers
3k views

How can one write good dialogue in a story without sounding wooden?

I began an assignment to write a short story for a Creative Writing submission to a publication and although it was accepted, I found that I struggled with the addition of dialogue to this first-...
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3answers
2k views

Is it stylistically sound to use onomatopoeic words?

I'm writing a non-comedic fantasy novel, and I find myself using onomatopoeic words, like "SLAM!" and "TWISH" (for the shooting of arrows). To my knowledge, onomatopoeic words are almost only used in ...
2
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1answer
125 views

Is Masterclass worth it for a middle-grade author?

I already read Larry Brooks' very useful book "Story Engineering", and Mary Kole's Writing Irresistible Kidlit. Now I have finished and revised my first middle-grade (MG) novel a few times. Before ...
21
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9answers
5k views

What are some bad ways to subvert tropes?

I recently came across something I wrote in 4th or 5th grade, where the MCs, a girl and a boy, were superheroes. One wore a blue costume with knives, and the other wore a pink one with flowers... BUT ...
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14answers
9k views

What can a novel do that film and TV cannot?

I have enjoyed writing prose for years and have a few short stories penned. I would like to build up to a novel but believe I have identified a potential weakness in my storytelling. My style is ...
42
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13answers
12k views

Averting Real Women Don’t Wear Dresses

Real Women Don’t Wear Dresses is when writers portray female characters possessing traditional feminine qualities as being less desirable, competent and reliable instead of their tomboy foils. They ...
32
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12answers
6k views

How can I convince my reader that I will not use a certain trope?

Imagine a fantasy story in which there once was a very powerful evil divine being, but it was defeated long before the beginning of the story. For the story it is very important that it was defeated, ...
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2answers
443 views

How do I make a very short story powerful?

I'm currently working on a project where I write events for a story driven video game. The limitation is that I have to get through a discovery, the consequence and the character's response to that in ...
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7answers
3k views

When is it ok to add filler to a story?

After a couple iterations I came up with the "skeleton" or summary of my story. I have read many places and guides saying "if it's not advancing the story and can be removed without affecting it, ...
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3answers
200 views

Why do authors use variations on a character's name within a single story?

I am having trouble understanding why authors use multiple version of a character's name in the same story. I feel it can make it harder to follow the story. Why do writers sometimes write the same ...
37
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5answers
2k views

How to write a nice frame challenge?

When answering questions on Stack Exchange, some of us challenge the assumptions of the author. These frame challenges can often be quite popular answers. This popularity, however, can simply be a ...
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13answers
10k views

How to represent jealousy in a cute way?

The main character (which is a girl) of the first romance I'm writing would feel jealous sometimes of her love interest, but I want it to be a cute trait or even a setup for funny scenes, not a very ...
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3answers
458 views

How can I make some of my chapters “come to life”?

In my current WIP, I re-read through some of my chapters, and they seem completely dry and dull. I need to add some oomph to it- it seems my descriptions, and just plain storytelling (in some of my ...