28 votes
Accepted

Referring to different instances of the same character in time travel

I think it may be solved using the same term consistently. From what you wrote: "the man", "his older counterpart", "his future self", "his older self", "Older Adrien", and "his other self". ...
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22 votes
Accepted

What can I do if I hate my own protagonist?

You may have story problems, too. As Mark says (I have to say that a lot) she needs to want something, bad. You say she is "quite determined" but mousy: She can be usually mousy, but when it comes to ...
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  • 91.1k
19 votes

Why is young adult romance now being written primarily in the first person?

Young adult generally is written in first person for the strong voice and the closeness of the POV. It has almost become industry standard, likely because it sells well for the target market. You can ...
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  • 7,530
19 votes
Accepted

Using footnotes in fiction: children's book which can be enjoyed by adults

I don't think this is the right way to go about it. I have to say I'm not a fan of explanatory footnotes in fiction, it's far too much of an immersion breaker. In fact I'd go so far as to say they ...
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  • 6,507
15 votes
Accepted

How to describe an angry voice in dialogue?

Your trouble in finding a word is that it does not exist. You will need to use adjectives and other descriptions to properly describe it. My first piece of advice would be to find a good example of ...
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15 votes

Referring to different instances of the same character in time travel

Pick a name and go with it. If the fact of the new character being future Adrien isn't a secret from the reader, you don't have to worry about names that spoil the surprise. Use whatever name ...
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12 votes

Does my book need to have a love triangle in it?

Writing SE often gets a lot of questions in this vein: "Should I include [thing] in my story, since so many other books in my genre have it?" "I don't feel super comfortable writing [...
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  • 8,622
11 votes
Accepted

How to write a board game scene?

The interest, I think, will be in the context around the game: What's at stake for her? What makes this game so important to her? What makes it so important now? Who is her opponent? What's at stake ...
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11 votes
Accepted

Describe illustrated characters?

Think about people who may use a screenreader (or like audiobooks) E-Books are very important and a lot of books are sold as hard-copies and as e-books alike. This allows people with a disability to "...
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  • 5,586
11 votes

Using footnotes in fiction: children's book which can be enjoyed by adults

You don’t say what age of children you want to address and I’m not sure whether your use of the young-adult tag indicates older children or if that is intended to cover your ’adult’ audience. If you ...
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  • 787
10 votes

Referring to different instances of the same character in time travel

If it were me, I would pick a name with a common, well-known nickname, and then call the younger version exclusively by the nickname, and the older version by the full name --for instance, "Andy&...
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10 votes

Wanting to write a gay kiss... for young audiences

I feel like advice that was given to me about writing characters of the opposite gender also applies here. Just write it as if it were a regular kiss with individuals of separate genders. Of course ...
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9 votes

A flower's head or heart?

Putting scientific definition aside, "Flower head" works better since it's a personification. The human reader has no trouble associating the upper part of a body with the upper part of a flower. On ...
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9 votes

Referring to different instances of the same character in time travel

The Magic 2.0 series by Scott Meyer has this situation with a core character (so it's not a passing situation). The narrator and the characters identify the two as Brit the Elder and Brit the Younger....
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9 votes

Should I stick with American terminology in my English set young adult book?

If you're writing for an American audience, with an American publisher, then use an American dialect for your narration. But... your character is living in England. Whether she's British or an ...
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9 votes
Accepted

Are My Novels Middle-Grade or Young Adult? Having Trouble Figuring It Out

You haven't really provided enough details to make definitive calls for these, and to be honest you'd probably struggle to do that in the context of an SE question anyway. What I can do is give you ...
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  • 6,507
8 votes
Accepted

Genre conventions: Which end do readers expect?

This answer is highly, highly subjective. But I personally dislike almost every YA dystopian future novel I've ever read (they're all the same thing to me and they're all predictable), so I think if ...
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  • 943
8 votes
Accepted

What are some clear differences in theme/story between children's, middle grade, and young adult fantasy?

There are no clear-cut distinctions. Children are different. One child might be reading at 6 what another wouldn't touch until 12. For example, King Matt the First is explicitly written for children (...
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7 votes

Genre conventions: Which end do readers expect?

I'm going to spin this around for you. In Jeffrey Schechter's My Story Can Beat Up Your Story, Schechter suggests that a lot of theme is about the protagonist asking a thematic question, e.g., ...
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  • 28k
7 votes
Accepted

Is mild sexualization of minors allowed in writing?

It is absolutely certainly legal for what you describe to appear in literature. Consider, for instance, that Juliet was 14 when she married and had sex with Romeo. A more modern example: Song of Ice ...
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7 votes

Crossing the line from Middle-Grade to Young-Adult

Aged 10-12, my understanding of sex was "that's how you make children". It didn't sound like fun, so my understanding of why people would do it, other than to make children, was rather in the "adults ...
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7 votes

Is there a market for all-ages novels?

The marketing environment for books has become immensely more complicated and crowded than it was in the past. Partly due to the ongoing information explosion (which lets you and discuss this at all), ...
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  • 91.1k
7 votes
Accepted

Who decides how to classify a novel?

Young adult vs adult fiction isn't about the age of the characters (though that usually does vary too), it's about the age of your readers. If you're writing for adults, then write for adults and ...
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7 votes
Accepted

A flower's head or heart?

A few alternatives: She dived into the flower. She dived into the zinnia's flower. She dived into the petals. She dived into the zinnia's center. Or, simply: She dived into the ...
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6 votes
Accepted

Writing first person or third person limited for steampunk?

Everything you have a problem with is stuff that isn't a problem, or that you needn't do anyway. Regardless of which POV you choose, the symptoms you are experiencing are common novice symptoms and ...
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  • 1,712
6 votes
Accepted

YA novel with old protagonist?

Your listed themes and goals are at cross-purposes. You have: finding your place in the world living according to your values figuring out what really matters to you questioning assumptions sticking ...
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6 votes

Genre conventions: Which end do readers expect?

Which end do readers expect? Either of the ones you given. Some will expect one, others the other That's why you should choose neither. You have two obvious options, plus a dull 'no choice made'. ...
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  • 15.3k

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