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2
votes
1answer
15 views

Describing symbols and glyphs succinctly and accurately

The system of writing in my work contains eight basic shapes that get a number of permutations each. One of my viewpoint characters is learning this system of writing for the first time, and I want to ...
8
votes
1answer
7k views

Is there a way to know who bought my books on Amazon?

I self-published some books on Amazon. I find it frustrating that I cannot contact my customers to ask for feedback on the books / ask them if they are interested in further products and use the book ...
1
vote
10answers
3k views

Is it possible to have a character who does not develop?

Is it possible to write a story with a single character and no development of that character at all?
2
votes
3answers
89 views

What Is The Key To An “Alien” Culture?

Today I am asking for something I've been stumped on: what is the "key" to an alien culture? Allow me to explain: I am currently writing a novel about a stuck-up, prejudiced, bratty girl in ...
-4
votes
2answers
48 views

How to write a letter asking for permission for something?

I need to write a letter asking for permission to enter a facility to get my things, which I left during the pandemic. Does anyone know how to write a good letter asking for permission for something?
1
vote
1answer
25 views

Is it bad to use “ok” in professional writing. Should I always use “OK” or “Okay?”

So basically I'm writing two books right now, and there's something that's been bugging me since day one, when I wrote the very first word of the very first chapter of the very first book, and that is,...
3
votes
6answers
167 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'. ...
2
votes
2answers
53 views

How can you reconcile blatant contradictions with good guy characters?

The SCP foundation is an world wide organization given the task of protecting the world from dangerous anomalies. These artifacts or individuals pose a threat to the normalcy of our reality, and are ...
1
vote
1answer
27 views

How do you write a character that falls into a character archetype without falling into cliches?

I have a character that falls into a particular character archetype. Specifically the genki girl. I remember seeing characters with that sort of personality in other works and wanted to try writing a ...
3
votes
6answers
140 views

How do I make a timid, introverted protagonist sympathetic and likable?

People like proactivity and boldness. Indeed, this has been suggested to be why readers are often drawn to charismatic villains over heros, people are more drawn to the proactive, goal-oriented ...
0
votes
2answers
55 views

What to do when you don't know what to write anymore? [duplicate]

About 10,000 words written in the book, I'm out of creativity to write the rest. If I were to write the last chapters, I would write without concern, but the medium is "cloudy" What to do? ...
14
votes
9answers
10k views

Is it offensive to kill my gay character at the end of my book?

In my novel, while the main characters are building the plot and driving it forward, there is a subplot with a gay couple. One of the gay partners is best friends with the female protagonist. At the ...
4
votes
4answers
619 views

Are wants/needs and goals/desires the same thing? Which of these is the motivation?

I've seen many people say I should know what my character's goals and desires are. But I've also seen people say I should know what their needs and wants are. I looked at the definitions, and they are ...
10
votes
6answers
960 views

How do you meet a writing quota?

As a parent with a full-time job, I usually have a limited amount of time to write each day. What are some tricks I can try to reach a specific word count in a specific time (e.g. 500 words in an ...
1
vote
1answer
15 views

When to use simple past or present perfect in scientific papers?

What are the best rules for scientific papers to decide whether to put a sentence in simple past or present perfect tense? Example Shapiro et al. (2012) use present perfect in the following sentence: ...
3
votes
4answers
59 views

How can you utilize tragedy as a form of character development without overusing it?

The scarlet king is an ancient deity intent on crossing into our reality from a second dimension. This demon will be born to a human bride, hiding itself within the soul of the human child until it is ...
1
vote
1answer
36 views

For succinct, flowing prose: Which style guide is best?

The elements of style provide rules for writing succinct prose, saying that rhythm is important "all things being equal". I want to write succinct, flowing prose. So, how do I achieve these ...
19
votes
14answers
9k views

My friend says that the story of my novel sounds too similar to Harry Potter

I always wanted to write a book and finally after so many years I started writing one. But when I told my friend about the Idea of my story...he said that it sounds too similar to Harry Potter. I don'...
14
votes
5answers
4k views

Methods for creating slang

I am interested in creating slang or a vernacular for a particular group in my story. I want it to be distinctive and a definite marker for in-group/out-group, but not incomprehensible. I'm not ...
0
votes
2answers
101 views

My Middle Name Is Amara And I Want To Add It To My Book [duplicate]

I'm writing a series that has to do with vampires. My middle name is Amara, and I personally find that name really, really pretty. I wanted to add it to my book as the name of the main character but I ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Describing the taste of food

I’m asking about this not because I have a tendency to do so myself, but rather because I find it unusually aggravating when I come across it in other people’s works. I’m wondering if this sort of ...
-1
votes
2answers
308 views

Is this allowed to use the name of Templar and other Order like Teutonic, Santiago, Hospitaler, etc as my fiction story?

I'm new here, but I really want to make a question about using real name order like Templar, Teutonic, Santiago, etc in my fiction but not as an Order, but a name for a Cult. To make my question ...
0
votes
0answers
18 views

Can I grant non-exclusive rights on a non-fiction book?

I've written a short historical account on a local 17th Century shipwreck which I have been serialising on a Facebook group. Given the very positive response I would like to publish as a small book ...
1
vote
2answers
37 views

How do you cite a quote that is broken up into two parts?

If I have one quote but I broke it up into two separate sections in my essay, how would I cite it? Even though they're the same quote would I need to cite it twice? I know an ibid would work but I'm ...
0
votes
0answers
45 views

Do you know an appropriate writing software? [closed]

I want one that I can compile my sources together so that I can review them as I am writing
11
votes
8answers
3k views

How Do I Compress Multiple Novels' Worth of Plot, Characters, and Worldbuilding into One?

I have been working on worldbuilding, plotting out, and writing characters for a science-fantasy series for over 4 years now, and I feel the time has come to take another stab at writing the actual ...
0
votes
0answers
27 views

Em dash with other punctuation

Proofreading my book: I've consulted the Chicago Manual of Style and do not find this question answered directly. Using em dashes to set off parenthetical material: Within a clause an em dash is ...
0
votes
2answers
59 views

How to credit an artist for adding minor details to a vehicle?

How do you credit someone for coming up with a general design of a vehicle without designing every little aspect about it? Let's say you make a video and you want to credit the person who came up with ...
1
vote
3answers
123 views

When is there too much of a plot misdirection?

I'm sure that somebody is going to point me to this question, but my case is different. So I and my best friend are currently writing a science fiction novel that has many plot twists and "...
24
votes
11answers
10k views

Is it bad to have no gender variety?

The majority of stories, movies, shows, comics, and other media I've read or seen have a pretty even split between men and women, and that's fine, I don't have a problem with it. But if I want to ...
1
vote
1answer
77 views

How long should character bios be for a TV treatment?

How long should character bios be for a TV treatment? 2-3 sentences? Or 2-3 paragraphs?
2
votes
2answers
307 views

Series: Is there a disadvantage to the number of books?

I'm an aspiring author. Though I am fairly certain of the answer to the question below, I figured I would make sure, or at least collect opinions, since I have not 'been there.' My question is this: ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

How to write a Scene Heading for on the way somewhere

I am writing my very first script and I have so much to learn. For now, I want to know how to write a scene heading where the character is on the way to a location. EXT. SEASIDE - DAY ... character ...
-2
votes
0answers
14 views

How to write a reminder email to a Professor [closed]

A professor I am working with told me to email him a reminder on Monday for to set up time for a chat. I am not so sure of the etiquette in the US/English language as pertains to such an interaction. ...
-1
votes
0answers
31 views

Descriptions on setting up a tent [closed]

Can someone help me with descriptions on how characters would struggle to set up a tent, and then when someone helps them set up their tent. And hiking through the forest? (English is my second ...
1
vote
3answers
68 views

Can I have one Aristotelian comedy and another Aristotelian tragedy unfolding simultaneously in one book?

In my novel, I have two main protagonists, a father and son, who each have related but separate arcs developing in tandem. Each learns from the other over the course of their stories, culminating in ...
23
votes
14answers
9k views

Creating a story in which the hero(es) lose [closed]

So I am still in the primitive stages of creating my own world and story, if I even do it that is. I am still trying to get a feel for where I want to go with it. The biggest issue would be that, my ...
0
votes
3answers
44 views

How to get CreateSpace-quality printing, without actually publishing?

I really like how CreateSpace can print on-demand books, even just one copy, at an affordable price, in a form factor that is readable. Simply printing on copy paper produces a book that's hard to ...
0
votes
2answers
43 views

Does descriptive language in written fiction work as well as physical characterization in visual media?

Character design in visually oriented works (comic books, film, television) is often a useful shorthand for making characters stand out and be memorable in terms of their appearance. For example, ...
2
votes
3answers
91 views

What is the proper punctuation when using the word “however” at the beginning or middle of a sentence?

I've asked this question using many platforms and tend to get conflicting answers. However, I believe the users of StackExchange will provide a trustworthy answer. In the example above, my instinct ...
0
votes
0answers
59 views

How can I make my character's personality better? [closed]

I am working on a book/novel idea I had a few months ago and I am just starting to outline the official idea that I had. The problem is, I am having trouble finding personalities for all of my ...
20
votes
15answers
7k views

What pronoun should a hermaphrodite species use?

In my fantasy novel, I have a species that is fully hermaphroditic: all individuals have both male and female reproductive organs. Like garden snails. Consequently, they have only one gender. They ...
4
votes
2answers
505 views

How to describe my character using they/them so the reader doesn't know their gender until their pronouns show up later?

I'm experimenting with writing nonbinary or generally gender-ambiguous characters in my writing. The most recent example of this is in an urban fantasy story I'm currently working on in my spare time, ...
4
votes
5answers
392 views

How to write an autistic character having a meltdown?

Background I am currently working on a short science fiction story, and need some advice about writing a pivotal scene for the main protagonist. The main character of the story is a biologist and ...
9
votes
10answers
1k views

I feel my protagonist is too “detached” from the main plot. What should I do?

Here's a summary of the plot: The main character goes to a mountain to visit his half-sister. He hasn't seen her in years. She went there to undergo a spiritual healing. Later he discovers her ...
0
votes
2answers
91 views

Use of the word “implement” discouraged in writer's workbench. Why?

I'm using the writer's workbench, which is a collection of tools that helps identifying errors in my writing. One tool, 'Diction', tells me that the word "implement" shouldn't be used, and ...
2
votes
1answer
92 views

Is my story too similar to others?

I'm writing a story about these detectives that are mythical creatures and go on a journey to save the five (or is it six I can't remember) realms. Some of the things I'm concerned about are: "...
1
vote
1answer
23 views

How to punctuate a list of quoted questions

I'm editing a work with the following passage, which describes seven signs: . . . signs. Each had both picture and words. The pictures were an X on a rock, a cave mouth, a castle, a big tent, a tall ...
18
votes
13answers
4k views

How do I provide exposition on a magic system when no character has an objective or complete understanding of it?

I'm writing an urban fantasy series in which like many urban fantasy series there is a magic-and-powers system hidden from the broader world that the supernatural phenomena of the series run on. ...
3
votes
4answers
1k views

Copyright of a book which is out of print

I have a question on a book which its last edition was published about 50 years ago and its author died about 47 years ago. Now it is out of print. The last edition of the book I am interested was ...

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