21 votes

In novel writing, should I change the name a character is referred to by when he reveals his name to the protagonist?

You should refer to the character as the point-of-view character would think of him. Some people would think of "the waitress" even as she introduces herself as Amy, and some people would ...
  • 7,294
12 votes

In novel writing, should I change the name a character is referred to by when he reveals his name to the protagonist?

For narration in the 3rd person, the narrator should strive to always refer to a specific character by a single identity to minimize confusing the reader. Obviously, that is not always possible. A ...
  • 8,205
7 votes

In novel writing, should I change the name a character is referred to by when he reveals his name to the protagonist?

I always change the name, once it is known. **The waiter approached the table. "Hi, I'm Bill, I will be serving you today. What are you drinking?" Mark said, "Diet Coke." Mary ...
  • 94.1k
5 votes

In novel writing, should I change the name a character is referred to by when he reveals his name to the protagonist?

You might want to use a name change as a tool. For instance, if Joe incorrectly thinks Baker is an adversary, and the reader is taken down that path along with Joe, changing name habits at the ...
4 votes

In novel writing, should I change the name a character is referred to by when he reveals his name to the protagonist?

From a reader's perspective (based on my own experience) it is horribly confusing to deal with multiple names, especially when there are many characters to track. For example, consider the following ...
4 votes
Accepted

How should you refer to modern words and concepts like DNA and neutrons in a fantasy book?

What do they know, and how do they know it? Bear in mind that there were no terms for either one in any language for most of history because they were not concepts. If your fantasy world has its ...
  • 7,294
3 votes
Accepted

What can be said among the lost on Mars that alters one's mood?

No words can be interesting in a grave situation like then, where people are lost on Mars and not even sure if they would ever be able to find their way back home again and even uncertain about their ...
3 votes

In novel writing, should I change the name a character is referred to by when he reveals his name to the protagonist?

I agree with another answer that if your novel is written in limited 3rd-person as most are, and possibly other types of writing, that the point-of-view character (which is advisably the character who ...
3 votes
Accepted

Dialog during sex scenes

What kind of weirdos talk while they're having sex? Before, sure. After, maybe - if neither falls asleep and one (or both) still have the energy to think. During - nope, too busy. The problem with ...
  • 1,970
3 votes
Accepted

Can authors retell their own stories in different ways?

Sure. There are multiple recent examples of authors having done this: Stephanie Meyer wrote Midnight Sun, a retelling of the first Twilight novel from Edward Cullen's perspective EL James wrote Grey, ...
  • 9,746
2 votes
Accepted

Is there a website to generate short stories from prompts?

Random detail generation, or the green fairy: Having someone else's idea for a story is no good. Why would you want to have an AI write random stories for you? I'm sure you can find someone willing to ...
  • 13.1k
2 votes

How should you refer to modern words and concepts like DNA and neutrons in a fantasy book?

You need to come up with a story on how it's discovered first, and also how much they know about it (its function, origin, substance, etc), and also how often it occur in their daily life. For example,...
2 votes

Which English writer community website to give the free feedback on a writing content?

Scribophile is a community of writers. You post work and other people comment on it. It is mostly fiction but not exclusively. Unless you pay, you have to critique other people's writing in order to ...
  • 7,713
2 votes

Dialog during sex scenes

Which is steamier, having two characters simply silently going through the motions of this or actively communicating with each other? Because then they can tease each other to increase tension, flirt ...
2 votes

Dialog during sex scenes

I would not include a sex scene to "reward" readers. I generally exclude explicit sex scenes, my only exception would be if something happened during sex that changes somebody's mind. If two ...
  • 94.1k
1 vote

When, and how should I bring in my characters backstory?

There are several ways to bring in backstory. In the first Harry Potter book, the first chapter occurs ten years before the second chapter; Harry Potter is the boy who survived; somehow. A magical ...
  • 94.1k
1 vote
Accepted

Do dual narratives have to alternate every chapter?

Chapters are metatext There is no obligation to label any division of book a 'chapter'. The narrative can change direction without the label, and within the label. Put another way, you could write ...
  • 25.1k
1 vote

I'm so angry! How can I show that in an interesting way?

Describe the physical reaction: As your eyes grew wide with shock at what happened on the screen, perhaps you started trembling. Or maybe you smashed a keyboard (very popular with my kids). Your face ...
  • 13.1k
1 vote
Accepted

Is it ok to explain magic in a very abstract way in a fantasy setting?

An author's ability to solve conflict with magic is DIRECTLY PROPORTIONAL to how well the reader understands said magic. -Brandon Sanderson Your explanation will be a problem if magic is being used ...
  • 263
1 vote

Is it ok to explain magic in a very abstract way in a fantasy setting?

It depends. Does it suit the character who is saying it? Does it serve some purpose in the story?
  • 7,294
1 vote

Is it ok to explain magic in a very abstract way in a fantasy setting?

We don't do writing reviews here. It doesn't matter, in a fantasy book, if you "explain" magic; in many ways it is better if you don't explain it. In my opinion, your explanation doesn't ...
  • 94.1k
1 vote
Accepted

In a collection of stories with multiple worlds, how do you cue your readers as to what world your story takes place?

Are all the worlds exactly equal? Do they have the same skies, the same suns, the same moons? If the answer is yes, you need to do some literal worldbuilding. Make your worlds different. Give each of ...
  • 960
1 vote
Accepted

Should you make all information available so that your readers know everything that transpired at the end of the book?

(Full disclosure, I have not watched any Evangelion) What you're describing is a problem that frequently happens with Serialized Media. Usually when you're writing for something that needs a episode/...
  • 263

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible