Tips/Advice for Writers!

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Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by JLHxXxX » Fri 1st Jun 2012

I didn't find anything that was semi like this... And if it's in the wrong section, feel free to move :3~

OKAY. So, as I become more professional in my writing (AKA starting the fight of editing and publishing) I've noticed that everyone's advice helps. Even if it's past experiences, they always give me some sort of way to go at something. I've gotten such GREAT advice that I never would've even thought about. Here:

1) Avoid passive voice like the plague
Active: She threw the ball
Passive: The ball was thrown by her.
I've found, and others too, that readers like it simple and to the point. Over elaborating isn't something you want.

2)Any word can be annoyingly repeated, including "the" "as" or even simple conjunctions. Readers want that steady flow, but if you write a sentence such as "The dog, hit by the car, was in the hospital." That's repetition. :3

So it doesn't have to be all that serious, but I've seen how many writers are scrambling for tips, crit, advice. Well, here is an instant access to those tips, no? :D

Like I said, ANYTHING helps. Your way at it, what you avoid, what you embrace, etc.
Waiting for the bus that never comes is silly. Once you start to walk, every opportunity will be stopping you in your tracks to greet you.

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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by Shadow Light » Sat 2nd Jun 2012

Okay so I'm kinda a little really annoyed that my itouch decided to crash but I'll type this again anyways lol. /edit: TWICE. TWICE. ASDFGJKLL.

Okay, HANDLING CRIT. I personally don't encourage putting "it's my first fic please be nice to me no flames pl0x" as a disclaimer, since it may (or may not) discourage people from typing things they think might be too harsh for you and instead, showering you with comments, leaving you to be the village idiot people go to for the occasional amusement when you could've been a court jester had you tilted your HAR to the right just a teeny tiny bit.

Then we move on to [2] GIVING CRIT. I, for one, go by these rules when giving crit: always be nice. People accept it better. Always give positive before negative, and again, be extra nice when giving the negative. These are all steps to making the writer happily accepting your crit as guidance rather than repelling it because it was, well, mean. Why is giving crit part of being a writer so essential? It means that you're reading a piece of work with a certain level of awareness to detail. You notice mistakes and take note of it and never repeat it. Ever. It will also help you to perhaps take inspiration and influence to your own unique writing style. Because to me, each person's writing style is simply a mixture of influences, turned into something different altogether. Imitation is perfectly fine, plagiarism and copying is not.

[3] GENERAL KNOWLEDGE. If you ever plan to write something set in this day and age, and world, I suggest you read up on your general knowledge. It would simply be a sun if you didn't because, well, you'd seem pretty stupid.

For example, say, your story takes place in Shanghai 2003, and people are all casting their votes for the general election when suddenly, oh crap, a bunch of axe wielding neon yellow jumpsuit wearing ninjas appear and kill half the people there.

What's wrong here? One, ninjas don't wield axes and they sure as hell don't appear, they're supposed to be stealth monkeys, in black to increase their stealth (hate to burst the bubble, Naruto fans. ) And more importantly, China is not a democratic country. People do not cast votes to elect their leader.

Thus, your story is, pretty much, well, what story?

[4] EDITING. I personally don't double check, so everything you see from me is pretty much raw, save the spelling and grammar. At most, I will edit it over the course of rereading after I'd posted it. Perhaps it only applies to my own writing style, but I've tried revising a few of my stories and people almost always seem to enjoy my originals ones better. Perhaps it's the lack of thought in the sentences that make them seem more human, and the characters seem more fleshed out, I don't know.

Since that's more for me personally, I suggest this (though it isn't tested): don't edit your work, save grammar and spelling, and then wrap it up in pretty paper and ribbon (and attach a few cookies), then proceed to carefully placing it in the mailbox of a beta reader. (this is all hypothetical, by the way. ) that way, it'll probably correct your flaws and at the same time, maintain the rawness of your sentences.

[5] READ EVERYTHING. Don't confine yourself to fiction and fantasy, open up your mind to genres you'd never thought of venturing into. This will allow you to discover new favourite authors and writing styles, which will, in turn, influence and mild your own unique style. (as previously stated, I have a belief that every unique style is simply a mixture of influences.) I recommend perhaps starting with Oscar Wilde and George Orwell if you're trying to get into classics. Their usage of words and their sentence structure and simply gorgeous. (Orwell will be an easier read, with a more simplistic style as opposed to that of Wilde's)

[6]OBSERVE EVERYTHING. perhaps again, it's just me, but I realise that inspiration comes in all forms, including art, music, a sentence a friend might have said. Anything. I suggest listening to songs by Panic! At the Disco, My Chemical Romahce or looking for art by Marc Johns or [WARNING! Matured!]Ivan 'Vania' Zouravliov. Sometimes even watching dances will inspire you, mostly what inspires me are of the contemporary type of dance. Sentences you hear in daily conversation may also serve as inspiration. For example, my concept of 'Heaven' in my long-abandoned project you may recall was inspired by a friend who casually said "If heaven was limited and you does first, save me a spot. ".

So don't let go of any chance. Not a single one. Alright?
Last, but MOST IMPORTANTLY: keep writing, because if you stop mid-sentence, you'll get stuck, and then slowly, you get blocked, and then you'll stop writing for half a year and you'll realise you've turned into Sea. And no one ones that. Period.
Keep writing, if it sucks, don't care, you can delete it later after you've gone past the block, right? :3

(ps if you're writing on the forums I suggest you memorise all the codes. Makes life easier lol. )

(pps I hope people find this helpful cause I sure as hell don't. I've got more to add but maybe later, yea?)
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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by Battery » Sun 3rd Jun 2012

One thing I've figured out recently is that if you're writing in first person, it's best not to describe your character physically too much. Unless they're looking in a mirror or have a genuine reason. No one goes around thinking about their dark brown hair falling into their off-green eyes, no matter how well they're described. I learned that from writing a lot of first person lately and realizing just how idiotic my writing sounded when I did things like that XD

(Stickying this thread - I like it! :))
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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by jsreed5 » Tue 5th Jun 2012

Hooray, it's time for me to give crappy advice! :awesome:

I don't write too often, but I've taken a few creative writing courses and I've been writing as a hobby for over ten years. Over that time, I've picked up a few things that have really helped my personal writing, so here are some of them.

---

1. Don't use the passive voice (in independent clauses).

You've heard it a million times already: avoid passive sentences. BUT, I wouldn't tell you to avoid all passive clauses at all costs.

To me, the most important thing when constructing a sentence is to identify what you want to describe or have partake in an action - that becomes your subject. But playing around with the object of focus can change the effect a sentence has on a reader.

For example, consider these two sentences:
1) The girl tossed the ball in a high arc down the field, where her teammates positioned themselves for the catch.
2) The ball sailed through the air, thrown from the corner of the field in the direction of the girl's teammates.

In the first sentence, the focus is on the girl. The ball flies through the air and the teammates get ready to catch it, but they're added details to the sentence - the mental eye of the reader stays with the girl and doesn't follow the ball. I'd use the first sentence if I was writing a story from the point of view of the girl, where she is the center of the plot (or at least the center of the scene).
The second sentence does not focus on the girl, but instead focuses on the ball. It was thrown by the girl, and her teammates are still ready to catch it, but the mental eye of the reader is now following ball through the air instead of staying behind with the girl. I'd use the second sentence if I was writing a story from the point of view of a spectator, where their attention will be on the game instead of a specific player.

But pay attention to the fact that the ball still has an active verb in the primary clause - that of sailing through the air. The next cause is a passive clause, that of being thrown by the girl. So technically, the sentence is an active sentence, but a dependent clause is present. And the difference between these two sentences is that the central verb I want to convey - throwing or tossing - is in the active voice in sentence and in the passive voice in the other.

So I say you can use passive "sentences" - sentences with passive clauses in them. But before you do, think of what you want the reader's mental eye to be on, and if that object is receiving an action, then go ahead and use the passive voice. And always, always give that object something active to do in the independent clause.

2. Show, don't tell.

This is a phrase my old creative writing teacher used all the time. In a sentence, it means that the words you use should be descriptive, bringing a vivid image to the mind of the reader.

Consider those same two sentences again:
1) The girl tossed the ball in a high arc down the field, where her teammates positioned themselves for the catch.
2) The ball sailed through the air, thrown from the corner of the field in the direction of the girl's teammates.

What does the mind's eye see when the reader reads these sentences? It sees some sort of unspecified field game, played by two teams on an open field, and a intense moment in the game is taking place. A clear picture forms in the mind, and the reader can easily visualize what's going on.

But notice how few words were required to conjure that image. I didn't need to say "The girl was playing on a field. Her teammates were standing on the far end of the field from her. She threw the ball into the air, giving it extra force so that it would reach the far end of the field." That gives a similar amount of detail, but beyond being more wordy, it lacks the emotion, conviction, and vividness that the example sentences contain.

So make sure that you use descriptive words. The English language is rich in synonymous and analogous words, and each variant adds a distinctive flavor to a piece of writing.

3. Pay very close attention to grammar.

If you were to ask me what's more important in writing a story - spelling or grammar - I would answer "grammar" without hesitation. And I feel that most people would agree with me.

Some people only say this because they're OCD about grammar. But the truth is that sentences can completely change meaning because of a misplaced comma or apostrophe.

Consider these two examples:
1) You know your worthless stuff.
2) You know you're worthless stuff.

The first sentence means that you are familiar with worthless things that belong to you. The second sentence means that you are aware that you yourself are a worthless thing. Those are obviously two very different meanings, and the only difference between the two sentence is the use of "your" and "you're."

This is an extreme example, but it can happen quite a lot in more subtle cases, and it's not always so noticeable. I've read stories where my entire understanding of the plot was incorrect because one or two grammar errors conveyed the wrong meaning in a critical sentence.

Be aware of that. Simply because you know the true meaning of a sentence doesn't mean that your readers will be able to figure it out on their own. Conveying the right message with proper grammar is paramount.

I'll be the first to admit that I am not very good at comma rules myself. Many of my stories contain sentence structures such as "Because the train was delayed, he had lost his connection to Atlanta, and with it the rest of his day." The comma between the words "Atlanta" and "and" should not be there because "with it the rest of his day" is a dependent clause. But I usually stumble at such points, though I am trying to improve. (By the way, when you see me do that, feel free to call me out on it. XD)

4. Play with artistic license, but use it wisely.

On the opposite side of the grammar spectrum, we have artistic license.

There are varying definitions of what artistic license is, and I'm sure some definitions are more official than others, but I define artistic license as an intentional breaking of spelling or grammar rules in order to achieve a certain effect.

An example of artistic license, by my definition, would be the following passage:
"… He looked out the window towards the setting sun. With any luck, the patrol would make it back by morning. If they didn't get lost. Or killed.
No, he thought. Don't even let yourself think that way. …"

The artistic license here is the sentence fragments "If they didn't get lost" and "Or killed." These are, according to the rules of English grammar, improper. But these fragments invoke the image of a thought process, where pieces of information don't usually present themselves in grammatically-correct sentences. The reader can imagine the man thinking about the patrol returning by morning, and then the thought of them getting lost or killed pops into his head, which is very natural.

In such a way, artistic license can greatly enhance a piece of work. But use it with discretion. A lot of fragmented sentences or comma splices can be useful if the story is being told through the eyes of a child, but such structures would completely out of place for the character of a businessman or a politician, for example. Knowing when to portray a certain degree of formality with your writing is a subtle effect that can hook a reader quite effectively.

An effective way to get good at this is to pay attention to artistic license when it's used in published works. Colfer himself uses fragments quite a bit in the Artemis Fowl series to convey the effect of quick observations or incomplete thought processes. Note the atmosphere that such techniques create for a scene, and then try to write a similar scene with the same effects. It may take a few tries, but emulating different writers' styles was how I developed my own style over the years.

And finally…

5. Just write something.

Write anything. Anything at all. Literally. I mean it to the fullest extent.

Take characters that you're using in a serious novel and write a one-shot where they work at a circus. Write a crossover between The Fairly Odd Parents and Boardwalk Empire. Throw characters from one universe into another. Make a rift in time and space. Break the fourth wall. Insert yourself. Insert your friends.

It doesn't matter what you write. It doesn't matter if it's a children's book or a very adult short story. It doesn't matter if it's best-seller quality or total crap. Just write. If you have an idea, write it out. Practice, practice, practice. Don't expect to turn out a John Grisham or J. K. Rowling novel every time you sit down at the computer, because it's simply not going to happen.

As you write, your style will come to the surface. You'll play with synonyms, grammar structures, aggressive or seductive language. You'll try everything from short stories to multi-volume epics, first-, second-, and third person, present and past tense, Hemingway-style conciseness and Hailey-style detail. You'll pick up on what type of writing you are and aren't good at, and you'll improve on what you can do while helping to fix what you can't.

Writing something out of context with your characters can help sort out writer's blocks in the work you're actually using them in, too. I often write shorts with Artemis Fowl doing things the Colfer manifestation would never do, from watching figure skating competitions to attending anime conventions to designing a video game with a St. Louis freelancer, and all of that OOC writing has helped improve the way I describe Artemis in serious works. Why that works I'm not completely sure, but it certainly does for me.

So write. Write like you're never going to see a word processor again. If you don't like what you make, you don't have to share it. But often you'll find gems in your efforts that you never even knew you could make.

And when you produce those gems, post them here so that we can all bow to your greatness. :P
Last edited by jsreed5 on Thu 26th Jul 2012, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by Iris_Cam » Tue 5th Jun 2012

It really depends on the piece of writing you are doing. Personally, I'm not one for drabbles and short stories. I've always liked writing loooooooong chapter fics that just go on and on and on, and sometimes I lose the inspiration and I feel guilty. So, anyway, here is something I found for writing long stories that would just about save your story if you're writing long fiction.

Read it here. You will need it.

Now, I shall start a random tangent on imagery. I picked up the tips somewhere else, and I think that they are simply fantastic.

Step One: Start with a sentence or two to start the scene.

There. Simple enough. Here's an example.
There is a storm coming. It's above the sea.
Step Two: What is it doing/ What is happening?

Pretty straightforward. Is something flying? Are there random wildlife around?
There is a storm coming. It's hovering above the sea, waiting. A gull shrieks above the roar of the waves, as the wind blows.
Step Three: Add some detail.

Adjectives. Use em.

Here's a little form to help:
  • What does it look like? Bright? Dark? Dull? Shiny?
    What does it feel like? Is it cold? Is it freezing? Is it warm? Humid? Soft? Cool?
    What does it sound like? Loud? Constant? High-pitched? Low? Rumbling? Silent?
    What does it smell like? Salty? Smoky? Sweet? Bad?
    What does it taste like(optional)?
Once you've got most of it, start adding adjectives. Describe exactly what it looks, sounds, feels, smells, and tastes like.

Then maybe add some little things that happen because of it.
There is a dark storm coming. It's hovering above the rough sea, waiting. A lone gull shrieks piercingly above the roar of the fierce waves, as the frigid wind blows all around me. I can smell the salt and feel my hair stand on its end.
Step Four: Pretty it up with suitable verbs and similes and metaphors and personification.

When describing a scene, you just cannot live without similes and metaphors. But the most useful of them all has to be personification. There is so much you can put in personification.

Note: Personification means giving something human-like traits. Such as,
The paper grinned at my writer's block, seeming to indulge in my frustration.
See. Paper can't grin, but it will give you an idea of my state of mind when I have writer's block. Like how frustrating it is and how I feel like the blankness of the paper's mocking me though it technically cannot do so. Because paper is paper and obvious, cannot have feelings or mock people. Except that I get so mad and crazy that I am willing to believe that it can just so I can blame it. Ignore the last sentence. It just makes it more confusing.

Metaphors are saying something is something it isn't, because the first something can be like the something you're saying it is. Confused? Here's an example. (PS: I'm using Wikipedia's explanation, because it's simple and easy to comprehend)
All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances; — William Shakespeare, As You Like It, 2/7
See, here Shakespeare says that the world's a stage. But the world's not really a stage. It's just "like" a stage. Got it?

Similes is literally just saying that something is like something. It differs from metaphors in that when you're using a simile, you're literally writing a sentence that contains 'like', or 'as'.

Example of a simile:
The tree was like a castle; it towered over me like a soaring skyscraper.
Whereas, if I put in it metaphor form, it would be:
The tree is a castle; a soaring skyscraper, towering over me.
Okay. Continuing on. You can breathe life into a scene using these three. They are just... the essentials of imagery. Now let's apply them to my example. Actually, I had already used personification before without noticing it... Oh well.
There is a dark storm coming. It's hovering above the rough sea, waiting, like a large predator setting a trap. A lone gull shrieks piercingly above the roar of the fierce waves, as the frigid wind rages all around me, a preamble to the pantomime of the storm . I can smell the salt in the air and feel my hair stand on its end. The air is electric; I tense as I feel the equal amount of anticipation, expectation and dread.
^Yes, I couldn't leave that bit alone. I had to tack on some stuff. But anyway, to top it all off, a warning. If you are writing a story, with an actual plot, you have to find the right balance of action and description. Your plot will quickly get derailed if you chuck ten solid lines of pure description for every little thing around. However, if it is just pure action, it's really really hard to visualise it and the scene seems unreal.

So use wisely.

And that ends the imagery lecture. *bows*

PS: My last exam is actually tomorrow, but I cracked a day early, so I decided to just rip the hiatus notice up into tiny little pieces and throw it in the bin. I'M BAAAAAAAAAAACK~
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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by JLHxXxX » Wed 6th Jun 2012

All right... I made this thread, I'll show my process.

WRITE GOSH DARN IT.

Okay! The point to NanoWrimo is so you write a novel without editing. Why? It works best that way. A fantastic author on a self-publishing site said to me, "write like your life depends on it. Say something stupid, describe something that doesn't exist. Rewriting, editing, rewriting, and editing again come later in the process."

Just WRITE. Don't care what the heck you're putting down on your paper, because if you saw first drafts of some fantastic authors I guarentee 8/10 times it will not be pretty. The writing takes a month, editing two, so on. But once you start editing you lose your flow. Once you lose your flow, the novel will never be truly the same.

PLANPLANPLAN.

Excuse the cappy titles, but that IS true. I have written novels where the main character starts off as a human and ends as a demon. It's a good plot, but it's not organized. The rewriting process is so much easier if you have a plot. You don't even need a word-for-word, strict, to the very last description plot... you just need to have a vague idea. An example:
- Vashti is the daughter of a Nightcrawler and Water Nymph
-Slade, another Night Crawler, is there to collect Vashti. She is to have an arranged marriage to the prince.
Now you have a plot going. What the organization does is make you answer the "who, what, where, when, why, how". Those are VERY important. Unless crucial to the plot, they need to be semi answered. Why is Vashti having an arranged marriage? Why is Slade collecting her? What is their past; how did a night crawler and water nymph meet?

You need to at least HINT that they will be answered. Remember, very little happens in a novel without a reason/story behind it.

Also, stories have depth. The more depth, the better the story. Plots that are simple are simple to read, AKA no fun. So you want to write down your characters, views, ages, religions, WHATEVER. Because you cannot write a story where the MC is 14 and suddenly they're 18. Plus, they're good reference papers. For Suspected I have a paper with the Council Room and the Round Table and all descriptions, names, blahblah. I need that, or my story would be a horrible MESS of characters.

Friends: Real and Cyber

I am fortunate to be in a group of friends that all write. We are fairly experienced at giving each other ideas, critting, so on. It is good to find these people, as they will make you successful. Having a reader will motivate you to write, because trust me... no one likes an angry fangirl.

When you put something online, you must THINK. Will you be doing anything with this in the future? Will you publish it? Will you do anything professional? When published online, your work can be stolen. And once it is copy-righted under their name, you can't do anything. I'm not saying any FGers would steal, but this is a public website. Remember that.

The difference between real and cyber is connection and understanding. When you see someone face to face, you can easily explain something. Over the internet, you need to understand yourself so they understand you. Note that this is a very good trait in my eyes; you will now be able to explain something in your story with that much more experience.

REWRITE

Before you edit, you rewrite. (Rewrite, rewrite, edit.) There are three major things with rewrite:

Flow:
Here's a list of questions I ask myself:
1) Does it make sense? Does each character remain throughout the story... somewhat the same? Does this character adapt change and grow? Does this work and make sense?
2) Are the personalities the same? Did soandso start out as a goth and end as a girl who constantly wears bright colors? Does it make sense?
3) Do the scenes blend into each other? (think of a movie where they fade...)

Description:
1) Are these descriptions consistent? Does the character magically change throughout the story? Why? How? Should it be that way?
2) Is this described enough? (THIS IS WHERE PEERS - REAL/CYBER - COME IN.) Is there too much description? DOES THE DESCRIPTION INTERRUPT WHERE IT SHOULDN'T? I think it was Clare that mentioned that a description of the setting sun should NOT be placed in the middle of a battle scene. The description must fit in there like all the other puzzle pieces. Do not force it in or it will be awkward.
3) Does the description make SENSE? Is the description well enough written that I have my OWN mental picture?

Consistency (Excuse my horrid spelling. I'm tired.)
1) Think of one and two. IS IT consistent, why or why not? Should it be this way?
2) (I have done this) Why are they in Paris, and suddenly London? Should it be this way? Why or why not? (characters don't magically poof, but I sure wish they did sometimes.)

Then you rewrite again. This time you tie all the loose ends of the plot together and finish the puzzle. HOORAH.

EDITING

While editing, you need to ask yourself how this looks. You are your worst critic, and this is where you set that to work.

With editing, you check everything grammar/spelling wise. This means changing up words, sentences, etc. You want a variety of sentences. Using the same sentence structure is not only sometimes choppy but boring. It has no personal touch, and the author's voice is not distinct. It will be like reading in monotone.

You asked yourself if it was creative, now you ask yourself if it makes sense. This can be difficult.. this is where a peer can come in handy. It's a lot better to receive unbiased crit, so do not be soft. True writers do not enjoy crit where everything is positive, because nothing is flawless and they know it. They want those flaws so they can fix them and make them as minimal as possible. And remember: NOT EVERYONE WILL LIKE YOUR WORKS. Please remember that - don't stop writing because someone discourages you. Especially with publishing, seriously, you'll be damn lucky if you get your book out there on the first try. It took Cassandra Clare two years to get City of Bones published, Kagawa close to that. Plus, I think Rowling was rejected COUNTLESS times. Now look where she is. Keep that in mind.

As everyone else is saying:KNOW WHAT YOU'RE WRITING.

Please, please, please. Research for an hour can go a LONG way. Imagine what a ton could do. If you're writing a book about a different country, or even a different STATE, do your research. That voice comes along with their originations. And you'll look pretty stupid if you state something that is obviously wrong. Four things to know: Government, Way of Life, Social Levels, and WEATHER. Don't say it snowed in Malaysia during their summer months or something. Please.

POINT OF VIEW (POV)

There are rules for each POV. AA pointed out a good one for First Person. It goes on. Remember in first person you ARE THAT CHARACTER. That character is being formed from your voice and you need to look out their eyes as you write. Even if you disagree, their views are their views. And they don't magically go "oh, I changed throughout this novel". And this is one POV where rambling is allowed. I doubt many people stay 100% on topic, but unless part of the plot like the Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime, you need to stay semi on topic.

Third POV: Omniscient or Limited? (AGAIN EXCUSE SPELLING)

Omniscient is all knowing. This means the reader will see everything all characters are seeing or doing. Sometimes it switches around. This is a total "watching from the sidelines" story. Except the author and you know things the characters do not. It creates good suspence and irony.

Limited is almost first person in third. This is a story about one person and you're watching them, reading their minds, hearing them, everything. You're as close to stalking as you're going to get, so get into it. You will know EVERYTHING about this character, unless the plot proves otherwise. This is one MC, where their thoughts, wonders, whatever are. Remember that difference, because when these two smash together in the middle of a novel it's not always... easy to fix or make it flow.

And please, if you do switch POV's, third or first, clarify who it is. Readers hate becoming confused and can turn them away from the book if it happens too often. First POV's can change, but you are allowed to put a little note like "CHAPTER THREE: GABRIEL" in there, so they know who the hell is talking. Also, if you switch POV's in first person, be prepared to confuse not only the readers but yourself. That's where bigtime rewriting comes in. I personally know how difficult consistency is when you switch personalities. It is easier said than done, but remember, PRACTICE MAKES BETTER/PERFECT.

AND REMEMBER your writing will never be solely like anyone else's. These are your characters. Characters come from a part of you, something deep inside your own personality. Embrace it and enforce it in the writing. You have your own style that no one else has, and it makes YOU unique. So go write with that damn style or your own voice and enjoy it, because it's only coming out of you!

Ahem. That's enough. Maybe I'll ramble about character development if I get bored later... plus, there's an endless supply of tips/advice any writer could give. It depends on the topic, etc.~

~Ha
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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by world is quiet here » Fri 21st Sep 2012

Say, does anyone have advice on writing a songfic? I've tried writing Beyonce songfics but I've failed, any tips?

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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by AngelMoon » Sat 22nd Sep 2012

I was wondering..when I try to write a book I get bored VERY quickly and stop, even though the beggining might be amazing...help!!! (if u can..)
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amazing signature, sara!! thanks! <3

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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by JLHxXxX » Wed 26th Sep 2012

Wicky: You need to know the song entirely and make sure the story doesn't overpower the song. They need to go hand in hand and it takes practice.

Angel, if you get bored with a plot then you can leave it to the side for later. If it's really a great thing that wants to be written, it will come back. :D Or try writing a quick novella or something to get your juices flowing again.

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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by AngelMoon » Wed 26th Sep 2012

thanks Ha (:
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amazing signature, sara!! thanks! <3

Penguins cannot fly.
I cannot fly.
Therefore, I am a penguin.


When man kills lions, its called game. When lions kill man, its called ferocity.

A friend is a person who knowes all about you, and still loves you ~Elbert Hubberd~

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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by world is quiet here » Sat 29th Sep 2012

A little tip here.
SWEARING IN STORIES
A few swear words are okay. But, don't have many. There are so many other ways to show anger, fear whatever. And, it restricts the age group for the story.

I found this out recently. ^^

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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by Immortal » Thu 4th Oct 2012

I find that using Tvtropes is great in general for writing. From a new character, to getting new ideas, to re motivation to finish a project.
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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by Falcon! » Tue 23rd Oct 2012

Okay. Three very basic rules that have been hardest for me to follow.

The first and foremost is to learn to make a ROUGH DRAFT.
That means you never, EVER stop fix stuff. Just. Keep. GOING. Fixing stuff is what editing and revising is for.

The second is to STAY CONSISTENT.
My best (worst?) example of not staying consistent is the Maximum Ride series. It's about seven or eight books long (I have no idea) and already has made several complete switches in what it's about. I won't give away anything, but if you've read past the first five you know what I mean. My point is: tie up all loose ends. If something isn't relevant to the plotline, don't add it. You can't have a big mystery build up and then not even acknowledge it for a while. Even if it IS intentional, if someone asks you "What happened to..." you have an issue. It just makes the author look stupid.

The third is to REREAD YOUR STUFF OUT LOUD.
I know it sounds stupid, but I have read the same thing in my head a dozen times perfectly, and then read it out loud and found a dozen mistakes. Seriously.

I probably wan't that helpful. But seriously, take any advice you can get. That's more or less rule no. 4.
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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by ArtemistheTimeLord » Thu 20th Dec 2012

This really helped! Thanks! I one day want to become a professional writer, I'm glad you gave out this advice and I hope you make more.

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Re: Tips/Advice for Writers!

Post by HollyShort9 » Tue 11th Jun 2013

I don't know if anyone else has said this, but I always got really confused on if something was passive voice or not. Even though I understood the concepts of passive voice and active voice, I would always be uncertain for some types of sentences on whether or not they were one or the other.

Someone told me to check by adding "by zombies" to the end of the sentence. If it makes sense, it's probably passive voice.

Examples:

"I threw the ball - by zombies" Active.
"The ball was thrown - by zombies" Passive.
"The ball arced over the field - by zombies" Active.

"We ate dinner - by zombies" Active.
"Dinner was eaten - by zombies" Passive.

I don't know. Figured you might find it useful, if it hadn't been posted already :D
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