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1

If you want to avoid outright describing the character as trembling, you could focus on how this feels from the character's perspective and how it affects nearby objects. In all likelihood, the character's hands are shaking. Maybe their teeth chatter, or their knees keep knocking together. Anything jingly they happen to hold or wear (such as keys or ...


0

A strong character has two elements: Its motivation, as revealed through its choices, and Its personality, as revealed through its dialogue and body language. So let's talk about how those apply to this situation! You AI's Motivation What does your AI want? Perhaps it just wants to keep the player from dismantling it. But I suspect it goes deeper than ...


2

Rephrase things so that you don't need to start sentences with "I": "Is this a death sentence?" was the first thought that occurred to me. Death scared me to death. The exam table was directly facing the doorway, and I was sitting at its end. I wanted to run away, far away. As I jumped off the exam table, my legs gave way, and I fell back onto it. What I ...


2

I think the elisions work better than the stuttering. Your "Whada hell you doin'?" is good. It's perfectly comprehensible and it gives the clear impression of someone speaking less than usually clearly (especially if the reader comes to expect from the wider context of your writing that the same character, when sober, would ask "What the hell are you doing?")...


1

Maybe describe the way he looks and behaves rather than making it hard for the reader to decifer what he's saying. If we know the character, make him talk in ways he normally wouldn't. Like the swearing and agressive behavior, is it out of character? He could be spitting while leaning in real close. Maybe he forgot what he just said and repeats himself? Or ...


1

So Alpha lies and manipulates to trick the Lord into thinking one of the neighboring lords is trying to ruin him, and then she asks for his support? Does he know about this? Maybe it can be a possibility for him to figure it out during their conversation (if I am understanding you right). You could also do the classic thing where everything is going ...


1

One thing you can do is make them be friends first. Any good relationship is developed on friendship. I had a friend who learned that the hard way... back to the point. You have a number options here, like the friend idea. Girl #2 could have been attracted to someone before, and have a flashback about how hardly she was rejected and that would lead to the ...


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I think it's a great idea! You should definitely go for it! Just make sure you don't use too much of the Harry Potter series, though it's okay to get inspiration from it! The book I'm trying to write I started because of inspiration from the "Harley Merlin" series, so it's okay to have inspiration! Make sure to put a GINORMOUS spin of you onto it, Okay? Be ...


1

I would recommend reading this article in full: The Psychology, Geography, and Architecture of Horror: How Places Creep Us Out. It's quite interesting, but the main point is that you need to create unpleasant features and unpleasant associations. And a word on what makes "cosmic horror" stand out from normal horror, by Lovecraft himself: Children will ...


1

There are plenty of bits and pieces of knowledge around concerning witches and wizards. If you are concerned about doing something similar to Harry Potter, maybe use other known aspects that aren't included in that series. Research can be fun. Don't use terminology you can find all the time in Harry Potter (like "wizarding world"). Avoid big cliches you may ...


1

Your first girl is funny and sly but you can make her have a more serious side. To make the other girl realize that she, not all fun and games but if you don't want to change her too much you could have a sweet caring side. like sweet tender moments, where they both get along with each other. Sorry if this isn't helpful.


5

I would say you need some tragedies; they don't have to be severe. The gay girl gets dates and they go badly, she needs a shoulder to cry on and her friend supplies that. I wouldn't turn that into a kiss or anything, just a soft spot for her friend. She needs to build up some sympathy for her friend, and grow to see nothing wrong with her friend's ...


0

I've had the same question but I'm dealing with 6 main characters. I agree with what others have said - about certain characters taking note of different aspects of life, and different outlooks, and vocabulary. I've tried to differentiate between my characters and I've tried a couple of things. Tying back to the whole vocabulary difference thing, some of ...


2

I think you did a great job. Comparing a heart to a bird flapping in a cage gets your point across, followed by some accurate-seeming description. I don't see an issue with it (but I'm not too experienced). You used a simile (the bird flapping) to describe the feeling. One idea could be to form it into a metaphor. That is less literal and brings the ...


0

I would suggest that using "Said" and then describing Graham's position relative to the person he is speaking too and his actions while speaking (did he look back at the other person of his shoulder? Or not bother to look at the other person at all). One being "Behind oneself" is typically impossible ), as I can't occupy a space that is behind my own back (...


3

Stop trying to do it with a tag; clarity is more important than brevity. While looking out the window, Graham spoke to John standing behind him. "####."


3

I have questions. First, does the positioning of the players and the direction of the gaze have any meaning? Is the speaker saying something that is painful to the listener? Is the view outside of the window of higher priority? Does Graham trust the listener? Care about the listener? So many questions, so little time. I want to help you but I cannot point ...


3

I expect that a large part of the problem is that you are trying to make cleanliness seem unsettling. This is difficult because it's usually the unclean that unsettles us. It would be easy to make the hospital unsettling by filling it with flies or by making the walls ever so slightly undulate like the lining of a stomach. But something overly clean and ...


0

Just be ruthless with your adjectives. Look for ones that make you cringe (not in the Gen-Z type of cringe, but the actual cringe; wince, recoil, ect.). Describe things in detail and use metaphors. For me, when the character's descriptions go so far into the figurative that, as the reader, you almost don't know what is being said, it's unsettling. The novel ...


1

Since this question has received no real (non-nonsensical) answers, I will post an answer based on my own investigations and what other experienced authors and publishers have said about it in other websites by making a few quotations that deal with this question. [One can still sell it to a traditional publisher], but if you [do] sell it to a ...


0

Depending on where your line is for "too far", different types of horror could be played with. Like maybe you write something that psychologically scary (a mind-screw) and you avoid the gory physical horror. You could also imply the horror, setting up suspense and then giving just enough info to alert the reader of what's happening without describing it in ...


2

Generally it's a bad idea to do anything that does not serve a purpose for the story. Your readers will wonder why you spent their time on it. If how these characters meet and become friends matters for the story you're trying to tell, show it. If not, don't. The writers of Avatar: The Last Airbender had to show Aang becoming friends with Korra, Sokka, ...


0

I would think carefully about using the word "dysphoria" in that context. The most common use of the word "dysphoria" is in the phrase "gender dysphoria," which is a very specific psychological term. Even if you think it's safe to assume your readers won't be confused by dysphoria's close relationship with gender dysphoria, it is a term with a rather ...


2

Any adaptation of a copyrighted work requires permission to be published. That permission needs to be in the form of a license. A screenplay is not usually published, but a movie made from a screenplay is. The publisher of the movie will need to purchase the movie rights (a kind of license) from the estate of Mr Silverstein, the author of the poem. It’s ...


0

At this point in time I think you would be best writing in your native language - you can always translate it to English in a later date, either yourself or with some help. You definitely shouldn't be letting this question stop you from writing, if nothing else taking your work and translating it from your native language to English is a very good way to ...


1

Do both Some of the most beautiful prose was written the authors' second languages (Nabokov, Kerouac, Beckett). Writing in different languages gives gives you access to new vocabulary, new phrases, even new ways of structuring stories. Every story you write in one language will will benefit the next one you write in the other. Of course, writing in a ...


1

My process for writing the villain is to actually 'flip' the story in my head, and work on the villain as if they are the protagonist. Look at the evil plan as if it is the righteous plan is actually a very interesting process because you can start to develop a lot of nuance for it. It can help create moments of doubt with the protagonist because by ...


2

One approach is to build the plan from the character. An interesting character has interesting desires, which lead to interesting plans. Some examples. Lucifer (Paradise Lost) Better to reign in hell than serve in heaven. Jealous and self-obsessed. When God doesn't love him as much as he feels he should be loved, he rejects God, but is never capable of ...


0

The only way to avoid misinterpretation is by having little or nothing to interpret. What this means is telling simple, realistic (not fantastical) stories. This is clearly not what you are interested in doing. So, no, for the story you are writing avoiding misinterpretation is impossible.


0

You can deliver your experience to others, but just like your opinions, others will disagree. My stories occur in a world, and my hero characters express opinions about how the world should be. Many of those are my political opinions, too. But, I should think it obvious, at least half the world disagrees with me, in some cases 95% disagree with me. I don't ...


1

Take solace in the fact that most people will not read your story. If you manage to reach 10% of people, that would be a phenomenal success. For the other 90%, the reader response will be boredom and disinterest. I don't think there's ever been a story with universal appeal, and even the most successful ones probably don't get higher than 1%. If you're ...


0

The key to horror is that fear comes from knowing that something is wrong but not knowing what it is or what you can do about it. You don't need to gross out or shock your reader. But you do what them to be nervous that you'll do just that at any moment. The Saw franchise is one of the most overtly grotesque horror franchises out there. But the horror doesn'...


2

Ultimately, you are always going to go against someone's reader response. Are you aware of 'The Death of the Author' by Barthes? Basically, your intention as a writer dies once the work is out there because it is completely up to reader interpretation (this is a simplification of the theory). The only thing you can do is write it how you want to write it,...


0

Pick a phrase from your novel that is significant. 'The Day Before' Worried it doesn't stand out? Try restructuring it to make it slightly more unique - and make sure that still fits. 'Before The Day'? Bend your perspective. 'After Yesterday'? Run the words through www.thesaurus.com and see if something new pops. 'Auld Lang Syne'? Make something up '...


1

One technique is to read your story through and highlight phrases that pop out. Then choose one or a few and tweak them if necessary. Take your short list to your writing group for feedback.


1

Firstly, I'm going to assume you've read plenty of First Person PoV novels? I'm reading something that I need to read for an assignment. It's a PoV novel in First Person, and you know the character is an infuriating, pompous ass just from some of the interactions he has. He narrates meeting one of the other main characters and talks about her in a tone that ...


2

I'll Get The Bus Today There may well be other changes in behaviour as well... So, if your character is drinking a lot at night, they might well decide to catch the bus the next day because they know they are still intoxicated, and therefore can't drive. Calling in sick, or working from home. Self conscious about body odor because alcohol does make you ...


2

This Character won't Appear Drunk If a character is self medicating with alcohol, they probably aren't getting wild-college-party-blackout-drunk every night. They are drinking enough to calm themselves - to "take the edge off." If this character is a ways down the path to alcoholism, he will need to drink a LOT to appear intoxicated. And alcoholics often ...


0

You are writing science fiction, right? You could make a point of not mentioning human racism in any way, shape, or form, and thereby highlight how your fictional society differs from the real world. This is a very good option if you are far in the future, or if mankind has contacted other sentient species. Of course a couple of centuries without racism ...


1

It works for the very few people who are A Stephen King. It does not work for the masses of wannabees who think they can write like Stephen King by pantsing with Smith's approach or other variation of pantsing.


0

Wait until you finish writing. Then let it sit a couple of days and reread it. Often the name will jump off the page and smack you in the face.


2

Political correctness is not a challenge to clarity, it IS clarity, without your cruel and hateful or disdainful spin on it. What you call political correctness is what I call not using language I know, on average, is perceived by others as hurtful. I don't use racial epithets because I know people of the race in question typically find those epithets ...


0

To be honest, I think you should make it scary without holding back. At least in my opinion, getting scared at a book isn't easy to do, so try your best to make it as scary as possible.


2

Political correctness—the term—is a distraction. It was coined in Nazi Germany to describe what would not be censored, and all applications since have been disparaging. Applied to race relations it’s used for the disparaging sense, to deflect mere criticism and conflate it with full censorship, the better to preempt critical content. Often this usage is ...


1

Everything that contributes to the story you want to tell needs to be included, and everything that detracts from your story needs to be excluded. So if your story is about society or the personal experience of the hero, then racism is probably one of the things that are a part and belong there. But if your story is about superpowers and science, then you ...


0

It's Science Fiction, so depending on how far in the future this is set, we may assume that today's problems are totally irrelevant - but that in the future, there might be totally different problems. And that there will be people that are victims of systematic discrimination. But not because they are black, but for example because they are part of the ...


1

It's clearly seen that you are defining and introducing the characters you had created and included in your book by using their "races". Then it's out of your control to either include the issue of "racism" or not, of course on the side of the readers. As the author, you don't have to discuss, bring attention or express your thoughts on racism and the ...


3

A novel doesn't have to address every problem with society. A good novel has something it is trying to say (besides being entertaining) but you shouldn't try to shoehorn a treatment of every social injustice into your novel. You'll have some theme you are trying to express, and if you try to squeeze in everything else you'll end up with the point of your ...


10

It's not necessary at all. A little over 50 years ago, Gene Roddenberry produced Star Trek. Of the main cast members, two were very much White Americans, one was black, one was Scottish, one was Russian (in the middle of the Cold War!), one was Japanese, and one was non-human, and this was all treated as perfectly normal and never remarked upon in-universe....


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