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31 votes

How do I properly present dialogue in a scene with two female characters?

"There is a very simple solution to this," said Gryphon. "I'm listening," Dracaena replied. "First, don't be afraid to use names occasionally, Dracaena. There's a balance, ...
Wyvern123's user avatar
  • 1,695
26 votes
Accepted

How do you prevent yourself from neglecting scientific accuracy in a sci-fi-fantasy story without telling?

There's always the "Star Trek" version. If it makes the drama work, don't sweat it. Just be consistent across your story. So if "warp drive" works a particular way, keep it working ...
Boba Fit's user avatar
  • 1,668
25 votes

Is omniscient observer POV really dead?

The first rule of writing is that there are no rules. You can write any story you want using any combination of POV. The recently late Terry Pratchett wrote many parts of his novels using omniscient ...
EDL's user avatar
  • 11.7k
14 votes

Is omniscient observer POV really dead?

Which question do you want answered? Is omniscient observer POV really dead? Can a successful urban fantasy novel be narrated with a combination of both omniscient observer and individual characters ...
wetcircuit's user avatar
  • 27.2k
10 votes

How do you prevent yourself from neglecting scientific accuracy in a sci-fi-fantasy story without telling?

In hard science fiction, readers expect the tech to be plausible, or at least explainable. In science fantasy, you don’t have to explain why things work as long as they are consistent. Some ...
Gary R.'s user avatar
  • 330
9 votes

Is omniscient observer POV really dead?

The modern reader, unlike most readers in the 1800s and early 1900s, is looking for immersion and identification with the protagonists of the story. As a beginning writer, although I don't think it is ...
Amadeus's user avatar
  • 101k
8 votes

How do you prevent yourself from neglecting scientific accuracy in a sci-fi-fantasy story without telling?

In a sci-fi setting, I was told it was important to follow scientific principles to some extent. This isn't quite right. There is no universal definition of science-fiction, and the border with ...
AmiralPatate's user avatar
6 votes

How do you prevent yourself from neglecting scientific accuracy in a sci-fi-fantasy story without telling?

Star Wars does it. It's often called Science Fantasy, as the surface is Sci-fi, but the story is Fantasy (an order of nights with magic powers and swords). In Star Wars, the tech is not explored ...
hszmv's user avatar
  • 13.5k
5 votes

Should I use 1st-person or 3rd-person perspective for an alien character alone in a post-apocalyptic world?

Have you considered the third person limited perspective? That's the perspective in which the narrator sits in the protagonist's head as a passenger and shows us everything through the protagonist's ...
Divizna's user avatar
  • 2,967
5 votes

What language could I use to write spells or names of things in my fantasy novel?

The best language is one you invent yourself. I know it sounds like a real shortcut to pick a known done language and then just look stuff up in it, but: what if that language doesn't have a word for ...
Kate Gregory's user avatar
  • 3,761
4 votes

How do I write a story in which no one can understand each other?

You write about lack of understanding the same way you write about everything else: you give examples of it and explain it: "Can I have another piece of cake?" "Here's an apple." ...
Ben's user avatar
  • 5,337
4 votes

What language could I use to write spells or names of things in my fantasy novel?

Real magic spells are spoken in the mother tongue of the sorcerer In the real world, spells were usually in the language of the person speaking them. The effect of the spells was from the rituals that ...
Ben's user avatar
  • 5,337
4 votes

How do I properly present dialogue in a scene with two female characters?

Don't be afraid of using your characters' names. Names are among the words you can repeat as often as the text calls for. Some writers seem to think they need to avoid repeating names at all costs, ...
Divizna's user avatar
  • 2,967
3 votes

How to include multiple rare events in a story without it feeling contrived?

I think your intuitions about your story depending on too many rare events are good instincts. Rare events that are miraculous detract from a story proportionally to how much the flow of the story ...
EDL's user avatar
  • 11.7k
3 votes

Do I need to ask real locations' permission to use them in my story?

If by a "place" you mean a city, state, country, etc, then no. No one owns the name "Texas" that you could get permission from if you tried. If by a "place" you mean an ...
Jay's user avatar
  • 25.6k
3 votes
Accepted

How can I describe characters based on real world races like "Asian" or "Indian" in a fantasy world?

Descriptions, whether of characters, places, or objects, work best when they come in little pieces, and ideally in dialog. A character can "wish I was pale like you" or "wish I wasn't ...
Kate Gregory's user avatar
  • 3,761
3 votes

How do you prevent yourself from neglecting scientific accuracy in a sci-fi-fantasy story without telling?

Neglecting these principles can create confusion and disbelief among readers or viewers. Let's use Doctor Who as an example here. I'm aware this is not hard science fiction, but indulge me for a ...
Flater's user avatar
  • 3,147
3 votes

How to include multiple rare events in a story without it feeling contrived?

We Are Deus Ex Machina. You will be Assimilated: Don't pull away from the abuse of fate. Yours is a world with magic. YOU control that world. So don't make it coincidence. Make it inevitable. Create a ...
DWKraus's user avatar
  • 13.7k
3 votes

Should I use 1st-person or 3rd-person perspective for an alien character alone in a post-apocalyptic world?

In first person narrative the reader encounters a person. First person narrative is more directly emotional more conversational more subjective less reliable Here is the beginning of Andy Weir's The ...
Ben's user avatar
  • 5,337
2 votes

How do you prevent yourself from neglecting scientific accuracy in a sci-fi-fantasy story without telling?

For an interesting example of how "hard" science fiction is mixed with "sci-fi fantasy", check out Adrian Tchaikolvsky's "Children of..." series. I'm thinking ...
Michael Stachowsky's user avatar
2 votes

Inciting incident in Fantasy

Lead With the Action I'm eight years late here, but I have to disagree with the existing answers. The inciting incident should occur well before the 25% mark of your story. In Martha Well's Murderbot ...
codeMonkey's user avatar
  • 1,890
2 votes

How to go about describing an anthro protagonist?

Description is one of those things that will never please everybody. You have to figure out the general nature of your intended audience and try to get them. That is to say, decide what you want the ...
Boba Fit's user avatar
  • 1,668
2 votes

How to keep an original fiction from becoming fan fiction with world-hopping?

I'd advise looking into laws about copyright and fair use and derivative works. You're not the first person to make a homage character or a pastiche. I would advise setting a bunch of "show ...
hszmv's user avatar
  • 13.5k
2 votes
Accepted

What are the rules for using mythological names in characters?

As far as character naming goes, the sky's the limit. As the author, you dictate whatever rules you desire for naming trends. If you want all the characters from Group A and Group B to have differring ...
Wyvern123's user avatar
  • 1,695
2 votes

How to include multiple rare events in a story without it feeling contrived?

There are many stories in which there are rare or even unique events or objects that only affect or are relevant to the main protagonist. The only thing you mustn't do is have these unique events save ...
Ben's user avatar
  • 5,337
2 votes

Looking to include hijabi character in children's book about magic, would that go against muslim customs?

Islam in not a monolithic belief, and has many different branches: Sunni and Shia being the largest. Magic is at least an allegorical element of Sufism, a mystical branch of Islam. The Rubaiyat by ...
EDL's user avatar
  • 11.7k
2 votes

Can I just change the whole subplot for a new character?

You say rated E, but who is your target audience? Many books for adults are rated E, simply because there is no sex or violence in them, and yet children aren't interested in them and wouldn't ...
Ben's user avatar
  • 5,337

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