corseque:

Ahhh! This is so cool!

An author was writing historical fiction, and decided (in hopes of escaping anachronistic language) to only use the vocabulary that Jane Austen used. They made a custom dictionary of all the words Jane Austen used in all of her books, and used that to spell check, so it flagged modern words and phrases that she would have totally overlooked otherwise.

I’m thinking it would be incredibly easy to do the same thing for fanfiction, especially book-based - compile a dictionary of, say, all the words GRRM used in ASOIAF, and use that as a spell check dictionary so it would flag any words GRRM did not use…

Or a particular TV show character’s dialogue, though that would involve much more manual effort…

edit: apparently, some historical fiction authors use old dictionaries (circa: 1700-1800s) as their custom dictionaries, even when writing about much earlier time periods. This helps them escape writing with modern-sounding anachronisms that throw modern readers out of the story, but also allows them to use language that a modern reader can understand when writing about time periods where characters should be speaking, say, Old English.




So You Want To Write A Book..

thewritersarchive:

And remember: Google is your best friend.




Advice & Tips on Metaphor and Symbolism

anaardvarkwrites:

While I do have a few essays and resources that would allow me to write something up on the theories of metaphors, I don’t find them that useful for application. So, instead, I am just going to describe a few processes that I do when I wish to add in some metaphors into my writing.

  • Sort By Character - The very beginning of my ‘metaphor construction’ process starts when I have created my character, or sometimes even during the midst of. For the purposes of explaining this, I am going to use one of my characters, who is called Saramil, as an example. Saramil is a young, wealthy member of high aristocracy, who works as a pastoral poet and social commentator to escape facing the prospect of inheriting his family’s (fairly boring, or at least he’d say so) land investment business. This kind of character naturally lends itself to images of gold and jewels, as obvious symbols of wealth, but what else can be taken out of these images?
  • Read Books With Similar Characters - While it seems to be every author’s goal to create a completely unique character, tropes and reoccurring patterns in literature are inescapable, but are necessary in the implementation of metaphors: established images make it more possible for readers to understand new creative metaphors, and are vital in forming conventional ones (an example of a conventional metaphor being “time is running out”). So, if you find a character in a book that is similar to yours in either goals or lifestyle, pay close attention to how the author describes them. Going back to the example of my character, a character that stuck with me was Daisy Buchanan from The Great Gatsby, and found the line “her hand was wet with glistening drops as I took it to help her from the car”. The idea of nature replicating a jewel had me come up with lines such as “dripping in cold gemstones” for my own descriptions.
  • Research The Object - What I mean by this is actually look into what you want to make a comparison with. So, say I want to use jewels as a reoccurring symbol for Saramil, my next step is to research jewels. Questions should naturally arise from this process: What kind of jewel? What colours? Does it have any historical or cultural context behind its symbol? If you are able to with the particular image in mind, try and get a hold of the actual item and look at it for yourself. After rummaging through my mother’s jewellery box and scanning through the catalogues of auction houses, I decided to align Saramil with the symbol of an opal, since these are jewels that aren’t one colour, and change with the light and perspective, just as I want his character to reflect. This also aligns quite nicely with Shakespeare’s usage of the symbol: in Twelfth Night, Feste tells Count Orsino that “thy mind is a very opal”, to refer to his easily-changeable mind.
  • Branch Out - Something I try to do with as many of my metaphors as possible is interconnect them. What I mean by this is, after I have my list of symbols for each character, I try to see what connects them together, with hopes that I can find something new. One example I have already included in this explanation: both raindrops and jewels are glistening, therefore the symbols can be simultaneously recognised by a reader. One of the most established focuses of symbolism in literature is that of light and dark. Light, as one of the first creations of God, is commonly linked to as goodness and purity, but it makes for a more intriguing read if one is to subvert established images like this. To do this, I linked the glittering light of reflections of gems with a gemstone’s physical coldness and lack of value to substance: gems are only worth their appearance, since they can be used for little else directly. With the wider imagery of “light” and “reflection” now attached to the character, lots of doors are opened for metaphorical possibility.
  • Don’t Delete Any Metaphors You Make - This is really a comment on all writing or artwork produced, but if you come up with a metaphor, but decide that you don’t think it fits your character, don’t delete it! Make a document for them, or keep them in a scrapbook if you hand-write.
  • If All Else Fails, Google - If you type in “[Insert Object Here] Symbolism” or “Symbols of [Insert Personality Trait Here]” into Google, you are bound to come up with results. Just be mindful of what you take as truthful in application of your character.

I hope that helps! I can’t say my writing ‘method’ is… Well, much of a method, but I tried to make the tips coherent. Happy writing!




Things you should know about each of your characters

the-right-writing:

These are what I would consider to be the most basic, bare-bones questions of character creation.

  • What would completely break your character?
  • What was the best thing in your character’s life?
  • What was the worst thing in your character’s life?
  • What seemingly insignificant memories stuck with your character?
  • Does your character work so that they can support their hobbies or use their hobbies as a way of filling up the time they aren’t working?
  • What is your character reluctant to tell people?
  • How does your character feel about sex?
  • How many friends does your character have?
  • How many friends does your character want?
  • What would your character make a scene in public about?
  • What would your character give their life for?
  • What are your character’s major flaws?
  • What does your character pretend or try to care about?
  • How does the image your character tries to project differ from the image they actually project?
  • What is your character afraid of?
  • What is something most people in your setting do that your character things is dumb?
  • Where would your character fall on a politeness/rudeness scale?



undeadsidhe-inthetardis:

yeahwriters:

cleverhelp:

Write Rhymes finds rhymes for your words while you write and takes the weirdness out of poetry and scheming. 

Coooool!

I DON’T THINK YOU UNDERSTAND JUST HOW AMAZING THIS IS FOR WRITERS
LIKE
WE SPEND YEARS FILLING NOTEBOOKS WITH RHYMES FOR WORDS AND PHRASES AND END-RHYMES AND SLANT RHYMES AND THEN ONE DAY SOME 

FUCKING

GENIUS

GOES 

"YOU KNOW WHAT’D BE COOL?  MAKING EVERY POET WET THEMSELVES WITH FUCKING JOY

I” M SO FUXKC I NG




And here, the biggest lesson of them all, and a summation of all the problems.

You are in the way of your story.

Hard truth: writing is actually not that important.

Writing is a mechanism.

It’s an inelegant middleman to what we do. It’s a shame, in some ways, that we even call ourselves writers, because it describes only the mechanical act of what we do. It’s a vital mechanism, sure, but by describing it as the prominent thing, it tends to suggest, well, prominence.

But our writing must serve story.

Story does not serve writing.

This is cart-before-horse stuff, but important to realize.

Listen, in what we do there exist three essential participants.

We have:

The tale, the teller of the tale, and the listener of the tale.

Story. Author. And audience.

That’s it.

You are two-thirds of that equation. You are the story (or, by proxy, its architect) and the teller of the story. The telling of the story is most often done through writing — through that mechanical act, and because it’s the act you can sit and watch, it’s the one that is used to describe our role. I AM WRITER, you say, and so you focus so much on the actual writing you forget that there’s this other invisible — but altogether more critical — part, which is what you’re writing.

So, what happens is, early on, you put so much on the page. You write and write and write and use too many words and too much exposition and big meaty paragraphs and at the end all it serves to do is create distance between the tale and the listener of the tale.

It keeps the audience at arm’s length.

Quit that shit.

Bring the audience into the story. This is at the heart of show, don’t tell — which is a rule that can and should be broken at times, but at its core remains a reasonable notion: don’t talk at, don’t preach, don’t lecture, don’t fill their time with unnecessary wordsmithy.

Get. To. The. Point.




SYNONYMS FOR WORDS COMMONLY USED IN STUDENTS’ WRITINGS

writeworld:

by larae.net

  • Amazing- incredible, unbelievable, improbable, fabulous, wonderful, fantastic, astonishing, astounding, extraordinary
  • Anger- enrage, infuriate, arouse, nettle, exasperate, inflame, madden
  • Angry- mad, furious, enraged, excited, wrathful, indignant, exasperated, aroused, inflamed
  • Answer- reply, respond, retort, acknowledge
  • Ask- question, inquire of, seek information from, put a question to, demand, request, expect, inquire, query, interrogate, examine, quiz
  • Awful- dreadful, terrible, abominable, bad, poor, unpleasant
  • Bad- evil, immoral, wicked, corrupt, sinful, depraved, rotten, contaminated, spoiled, tainted, harmful, injurious, unfavorable, defective, inferior, imperfect, substandard, faulty, improper, inappropriate, unsuitable, disagreeable, unpleasant, cross, nasty, unfriendly, irascible, horrible, atrocious, outrageous, scandalous, infamous, wrong, noxious, sinister, putrid, snide, deplorable, dismal, gross, heinous, nefarious, base, obnoxious, detestable, despicable, contemptible, foul, rank, ghastly, execrable
  • Beautiful - pretty, lovely, handsome, attractive, gorgeous, dazzling, splendid, magnificent, comely, fair, ravishing, graceful, elegant, fine, exquisite, aesthetic, pleasing, shapely, delicate, stunning, glorious, heavenly, resplendent, radiant, glowing, blooming, sparkling
  • Begin - start, open, launch, initiate, commence, inaugurate, originate
  • Big - enormous, huge, immense, gigantic, vast, colossal, gargantuan, large, sizable, grand, great, tall, substantial, mammoth, astronomical, ample, broad, expansive, spacious, stout, tremendous, titanic, mountainous
  • Brave - courageous, fearless, dauntless, intrepid, plucky, daring, heroic, valorous, audacious, bold, gallant, valiant, doughty, mettlesome
  • Break - fracture, rupture, shatter, smash, wreck, crash, demolish, atomize
  • Bright - shining, shiny, gleaming, brilliant, sparkling, shimmering, radiant, vivid, colorful, lustrous, luminous, incandescent, intelligent, knowing, quick-witted, smart, intellectual
  • Calm - quiet, peaceful, still, tranquil, mild, serene, smooth, composed, collected, unruffled, level-headed, unexcited, detached, aloof
  • Come - approach, advance, near, arrive, reach
  • Cool - chilly, cold, frosty, wintry, icy, frigid
  • Crooked - bent, twisted, curved, hooked, zigzag
  • Cry - shout, yell, yowl, scream, roar, bellow, weep, wail, sob, bawl
  • Cut - gash, slash, prick, nick, sever, slice, carve, cleave, slit, chop, crop, lop, reduce
  • Dangerous - perilous, hazardous, risky, uncertain, unsafe
  • Dark - shadowy, unlit, murky, gloomy, dim, dusky, shaded, sunless, black, dismal, sad
  • Decide - determine, settle, choose, resolve
  • Definite - certain, sure, positive, determined, clear, distinct, obvious
  • Delicious - savory, delectable, appetizing, luscious, scrumptious, palatable, delightful, enjoyable, toothsome, exquisite
  • Describe - portray, characterize, picture, narrate, relate, recount, represent, report, record
  • Destroy - ruin, demolish, raze, waste, kill, slay, end, extinguish
  • Difference - disagreement, inequity, contrast, dissimilarity, incompatibility
  • Do - execute, enact, carry out, finish, conclude, effect, accomplish, achieve, attain
  • Dull - boring, tiring„ tiresome, uninteresting, slow, dumb, stupid, unimaginative, lifeless, dead, insensible, tedious, wearisome, listless, expressionless, plain, monotonous, humdrum, dreary
  • Eager - keen, fervent, enthusiastic, involved, interested, alive to
  • End - stop, finish, terminate, conclude, close, halt, cessation, discontinuance
  • Enjoy - appreciate, delight in, be pleased, indulge in, luxuriate in, bask in, relish, devour, savor, like
  • Explain - elaborate, clarify, define, interpret, justify, account for
  • Fair - just, impartial, unbiased, objective, unprejudiced, honest
  • Fall - drop, descend, plunge, topple, tumble
  • False - fake, fraudulent, counterfeit, spurious, untrue, unfounded, erroneous, deceptive, groundless, fallacious
  • Famous - well-known, renowned, celebrated, famed, eminent, illustrious, distinguished, noted, notorious
  • Fast - quick, rapid, speedy, fleet, hasty, snappy, mercurial, swiftly, rapidly, quickly, snappily, speedily, lickety-split, posthaste, hastily, expeditiously, like a flash
  • Fat - stout, corpulent, fleshy, beefy, paunchy, plump, full, rotund, tubby, pudgy, chubby, chunky, burly, bulky, elephantine
  • Fear - fright, dread, terror, alarm, dismay, anxiety, scare, awe, horror, panic, apprehension
  • Fly - soar, hover, flit, wing, flee, waft, glide, coast, skim, sail, cruise
  • Funny - humorous, amusing, droll, comic, comical, laughable, silly
  • Get - acquire, obtain, secure, procure, gain, fetch, find, score, accumulate, win, earn, rep, catch, net, bag, derive, collect, gather, glean, pick up, accept, come by, regain, salvage
  • Go - recede, depart, fade, disappear, move, travel, proceed
  • Good - excellent, fine, superior, wonderful, marvelous, qualified, suited, suitable, apt, proper, capable, generous, kindly, friendly, gracious, obliging, pleasant, agreeable, pleasurable, satisfactory, well-behaved, obedient, honorable, reliable, trustworthy, safe, favorable, profitable, advantageous, righteous, expedient, helpful, valid, genuine, ample, salubrious, estimable, beneficial, splendid, great, noble, worthy, first-rate, top-notch, grand, sterling, superb, respectable, edifying
  • Great - noteworthy, worthy, distinguished, remarkable, grand, considerable, powerful, much, mighty
  • Gross - improper, rude, coarse, indecent, crude, vulgar, outrageous, extreme, grievous, shameful, uncouth, obscene, low
  • Happy - pleased, contented, satisfied, delighted, elated, joyful, cheerful, ecstatic, jubilant, gay, tickled, gratified, glad, blissful, overjoyed
  • Hate - despise, loathe, detest, abhor, disfavor, dislike, disapprove, abominate
  • Have - hold, possess, own, contain, acquire, gain, maintain, believe, bear, beget, occupy, absorb, fill, enjoy
  • Help - aid, assist, support, encourage, back, wait on, attend, serve, relieve, succor, benefit, befriend, abet
  • Hide - conceal, cover, mask, cloak, camouflage, screen, shroud, veil
  • Hurry - rush, run, speed, race, hasten, urge, accelerate, bustle
  • Hurt - damage, harm, injure, wound, distress, afflict, pain
  • Idea - thought, concept, conception, notion, understanding, opinion, plan, view, belief
  • Important - necessary, vital, critical, indispensable, valuable, essential, significant, primary, principal, considerable, famous, distinguished, notable, well-known
  • Interesting - fascinating, engaging, sharp, keen, bright, intelligent, animated, spirited, attractive, inviting, intriguing, provocative, though-provoking, challenging, inspiring, involving, moving, titillating, tantalizing, exciting, entertaining, piquant, lively, racy, spicy, engrossing, absorbing, consuming, gripping, arresting, enthralling, spellbinding, curious, captivating, enchanting, bewitching, appealing
  • Keep - hold, retain, withhold, preserve, maintain, sustain, support
  • Kill - slay, execute, assassinate, murder, destroy, cancel, abolish
  • Lazy - indolent, slothful, idle, inactive, sluggish
  • Little - tiny, small, diminutive, shrimp, runt, miniature, puny, exiguous, dinky, cramped, limited, itsy-bitsy, microscopic, slight, petite, minute
  • Look - gaze, see, glance, watch, survey, study, seek, search for, peek, peep, glimpse, stare, contemplate, examine, gape, ogle, scrutinize, inspect, leer, behold, observe, view, witness, perceive, spy, sight, discover, notice, recognize, peer, eye, gawk, peruse, explore
  • Love - like, admire, esteem, fancy, care for, cherish, adore, treasure, worship, appreciate, savor
  • Make - create, originate, invent, beget, form, construct, design, fabricate, manufacture, produce, build, develop, do, effect, execute, compose, perform, accomplish, earn, gain, obtain, acquire, get
  • Mark - label, tag, price, ticket, impress, effect, trace, imprint, stamp, brand, sign, note, heed, notice, designate
  • Mischievous - prankish, playful, naughty, roguish, waggish, impish, sportive
  • Move - plod, go, creep, crawl, inch, poke, drag, toddle, shuffle, trot, dawdle, walk, traipse, mosey, jog, plug, trudge, slump, lumber, trail, lag, run, sprint, trip, bound, hotfoot, high-tail, streak, stride, tear, breeze, whisk, rush, dash, dart, bolt, fling, scamper, scurry, skedaddle, scoot, scuttle, scramble, race, chase, hasten, hurry, hump, gallop, lope, accelerate, stir, budge, travel, wander, roam, journey, trek, ride, spin, slip, glide, slide, slither, coast, flow, sail, saunter, hobble, amble, stagger, paddle, slouch, prance, straggle, meander, perambulate, waddle, wobble, pace, swagger, promenade, lunge
  • Moody - temperamental, changeable, short-tempered, glum, morose, sullen, mopish, irritable, testy, peevish, fretful, spiteful, sulky, touchy
  • Neat - clean, orderly, tidy, trim, dapper, natty, smart, elegant, well-organized, super, desirable, spruce, shipshape, well-kept, shapely
  • New - fresh, unique, original, unusual, novel, modern, current, recent
  • Old - feeble, frail, ancient, weak, aged, used, worn, dilapidated, ragged, faded, broken-down, former, old-fashioned, outmoded, passe, veteran, mature, venerable, primitive, traditional, archaic, conventional, customary, stale, musty, obsolete, extinct
  • Part - portion, share, piece, allotment, section, fraction, fragment
  • Place - space, area, spot, plot, region, location, situation, position, residence, dwelling, set, site, station, status, state
  • Plan - plot, scheme, design, draw, map, diagram, procedure, arrangement, intention, device, contrivance, method, way, blueprint
  • Popular - well-liked, approved, accepted, favorite, celebrated, common, current
  • Predicament - quandary, dilemma, pickle, problem, plight, spot, scrape, jam
  • Put - place, set, attach, establish, assign, keep, save, set aside, effect, achieve, do, build
  • Quiet - silent, still, soundless, mute, tranquil, peaceful, calm, restful
  • Right - correct, accurate, factual, true, good, just, honest, upright, lawful, moral, proper, suitable, apt, legal, fair
  • Run - race, speed, hurry, hasten, sprint, dash, rush, escape, elope, flee
  • Say/Tell - inform, notify, advise, relate, recount, narrate, explain, reveal, disclose, divulge, declare, command, order, bid, enlighten, instruct, insist, teach, train, direct, issue, remark, converse, speak, affirm, suppose, utter, negate, express, verbalize, voice, articulate, pronounce, deliver, convey, impart, assert, state, allege, mutter, mumble, whisper, sigh, exclaim, yell, sing, yelp, snarl, hiss, grunt, snort, roar, bellow, thunder, boom, scream, shriek, screech, squawk, whine, philosophize, stammer, stutter, lisp, drawl, jabber, protest, announce, swear, vow, content, assure, deny, dispute
  • Scared - afraid, frightened, alarmed, terrified, panicked, fearful, unnerved, insecure, timid, shy, skittish, jumpy, disquieted, worried, vexed, troubled, disturbed, horrified, terrorized, shocked, petrified, haunted, timorous, shrinking, tremulous, stupefied, paralyzed, stunned, apprehensive
  • Show - display, exhibit, present, note, point to, indicate, explain, reveal, prove, demonstrate, expose
  • Slow - unhurried, gradual, leisurely, late, behind, tedious, slack
  • Stop - cease, halt, stay, pause, discontinue, conclude, end, finish, quit
  • Story - tale, myth, legend, fable, yarn, account, narrative, chronicle, epic, sage, anecdote, record, memoir
  • Strange - odd, peculiar, unusual, unfamiliar, uncommon, queer, weird, outlandish, curious, unique, exclusive, irregular
  • Take - hold, catch, seize, grasp, win, capture, acquire, pick, choose, select, prefer, remove, steal, lift, rob, engage, bewitch, purchase, buy, retract, recall, assume, occupy, consume
  • Tell - disclose, reveal, show, expose, uncover, relate, narrate, inform, advise, explain, divulge, declare, command, order, bid, recount, repeat
  • Think - judge, deem, assume, believe, consider, contemplate, reflect, mediate
  • Trouble - distress, anguish, anxiety, worry, wretchedness, pain, danger, peril, disaster, grief, misfortune, difficulty, concern, pains, inconvenience, exertion, effort
  • True - accurate, right, proper, precise, exact, valid, genuine, real, actual, trusty, steady, loyal, dependable, sincere, staunch
  • Ugly - hideous, frightful, frightening, shocking, horrible, unpleasant, monstrous, terrifying, gross, grisly, ghastly, horrid, unsightly, plain, homely, evil, repulsive, repugnant, gruesome
  • Unhappy - miserable, uncomfortable, wretched, heart-broken, unfortunate, poor, downhearted, sorrowful, depressed, dejected, melancholy, glum, gloomy, dismal, discouraged, sad
  • Use - employ, utilize, exhaust, spend, expend, consume, exercise
  • Wrong - incorrect, inaccurate, mistaken, erroneous, improper, unsuitable



Resources: Creating a Fantasy Race

writing-questions-answered:




starrify-everything:

TIPS:

Tips For Characterization

21 Harsh But Eye-Opening Tips From Great Authors

The Importance Of Body Language

34 Writing Tips That Will Make You A Better Writer

Things Almost Every Author Needs To Research

Eight Short Story Tips

How To Stop Procrastinating

Ten Exercises In Creativity

How To Show (Not Tell)

Ten Ways To Avoid Writing Insecurity

Why Research Is Important In Writing

Five Ways To Get Out Your Comfort Zone

Seven Ways To Use Brain Science To Hook Readers And Reel Them In

The Difference Between Good And Bad Writers

Five Essential Story Ingredients

Formatting Your Manuscript

Four Ways To Have Confidence In Your Writing

99 Ways To Beat Writers Block

You’re Not Hemingway, Helping You Develop Your Own Skill

Best Apps For Writers

Online Whiteboard

This Sentence Has 5 Words

GRAMMAR (WORDS):

Urban Legends From The World Of Grammar

20 Common Grammar Mistakes

Synonyms For Said

Alternatives For But

Alternatives For Angry

Alternatives For Whispered

200 Words To Describe Light

45 Ways To Avoid Saying Very

Colour Names

Other Ways To Say…

Lay vs Lie

Make Words Longer

Words And Meanings

Common English Mistakes

Online Etymology Dictionary

Tip Of My Tongue

Cliche Finder

NAMES:

7 Rules Of Picking Names For Fictional Characters

Names In Different Time Periods

Behind The Name

Meaning Of Names

Fake Name Generator

Random Name Generator

Quick Name Generator

Fantasy Name Generator

Baby Names Country

Muslim Names And Meanings

Indian Names And Meanings

Name Playground

NOVEL:

How To Rewrite

Editing Recipe

How To Write A Novel

Writing 101: Revising Your Novel

Revising Your Novel: Read What You’ve Written

Finishing Your Novel

Novel Outlining 101

Outline Your Novel In 30 Minutes

13 Most Common Errors On A Novels First Page

How To Organize And Develop Ideas For Your Novel

CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT:

Family Tree Maker

Tips For Characterization

Character Trait Masterlist

Character Bio Help

Character Writing Exercise

123 Ideas For Character Flaws

Three Ways To Avoid Lazy Character Description

How To Create Fictional Characters

Writing Magical Characters

Character Development Sheet

Character Development Worksheet

Character Chart

Character Chart For Fiction Writers

100 Character Development Questions For Writers

Ten Questions For Creating Believable Characters

Ten Days Of Character Building

Writing Effective Character Breakdowns

PLOT, CONFLICT, STRUCTURE and OUTLINE:

When To Change Paragraphs

36 (plus 1) Dramatic Situations

How To Write A Death Scene

The Snowflake Method

Effectively Outlining Your Plot

Tips For Creating A Compelling Plot

One Page Plotting

How To Create A Plot Outline In 8 Easy Steps

Choosing The Best Outline Method For You

Creating Conflict And Sustaining Suspense

Conflict Test

What Is Conflict?

Writing The Perfect Scene

How Can You Know What Belongs In Your Book?

SETTING, WORLDBUILDING AND FANTASY:

Masterpost For Writers Creating Their Own World

World Building 101

Creating A Believable World

Maps Workshop - Developing The Fictional World Through Mapping

Creating Fantasy And Science Fiction Worlds

Writing Fantasy

Myths

Creating The Perfect Setting

POINT OF VIEW:

Establishing The Right Point Of View

How To Write In Third Person

The I Problem

OTHERS:

Types Of Crying

Eye Colours

Skin Tones

Who Do I Write Like?

Write Rhymes

Survive Nature

How To Escape After Being Buried Alive In A Coffin




Don’t Go Full Cinders

mooderino:

image

The Cinderella story is an archetypal narrative structure that can be found in many books, both by established and aspiring writers.

A put upon person, treated unfairly and cruelly through no fault of their own, overcomes their unjust circumstances to win great rewards and happiness.

It’s an appealing format because it creates a sympathetic underdog who triumphs against adversity; the kind of struggle we’d all like to think we could battle and win.

But there are two problems with the Cinderella story that make her an awkward fit for the modern world.

 Read More




Writing Tips #148:How to Revise, Edit and Proofread Your Writing

bookgeekconfessions:

image

Whatever sort of writing you do, it’s important to revise and edit your work – especially if you write academic essays, or articles or short stories that you’ll be submitting to editors. However much time you took over the piece on the first draft, you’ll always find a few mistakes to correct.

This is the method that I’ve used for years when writing essays or short stories, to ensure they’re as good as possible before a lecturer or editor gets to see them!

Do nothing (for a day or two)

Set your work aside for a period of time – don’t hit ‘Save’ on the first draft then start again straight away on the second pass. You’ll come to the work afresh if you leave it alone for a while.

As Michael said in Write First, Edit Later:

Let your writing sit for a while. It may make more sense if you sleep on it. Or, it may make less sense after you have slept on it. At least you’ll know which.

For essays, try to allow at least a day. Short stories can sometimes need longer – your mind will carry on mulling over the ideas whilst you’re doing other things. And many novelists advise putting your novel aside for at least a month before starting the revision process.

Revision

Read over your whole piece quite quickly. Circle any typos and mistakes that you spot, but concentrate on overall flow. If it’s an essay, check for any gaps in logic or any sides of the argument you might have missed. If it’s a short story, do any passages drag – or go too fast?

Print out the first draft, and read through the whole thing, concentrating on the overall flow of the piece. Circle any typos or mistakes that you notice, but focus on the big picture.

  • If it’s an essay, are there any logical missteps, points you’ve not backed up, or angles to the argument that you’ve missed?
  • If it’s fiction, do any scenes drag or go too fast, and are there any plot holes or inconsistencies of characterisation?

This is the stage to sort out any big problems. I often rewrite the whole thing (especially when working on fiction), starting afresh with a blank document on the computer. If you’re better than me at getting it right first time, you may not need to do that – but you could find yourself cutting out whole paragraphs, adding in new material, and changing the direction of the piece.

After you’ve done this, you might want to ask a friend, classmate or colleague to read the piece. Tell them not to look for tiny errors like typos or clumsy sentences at this stage: ask whether they think it’s broadly OK, or if they have any reservations about the overall direction of the article or story.

Editing and proofreading

Once you’ve sorted out the big picture, you can start fixing any individual sentences and words. Again, it’s a good idea to print out the document and do this on paper: I find I miss errors on screen (especially typos which are valid words, such as “they’re” for “their”).

Look out for:

  • Typos and misspellings (a good tip here is to read backwards! You’ll go much more slowly, focussing on every individual word).
  • Clumsy sentences and confusing or misleading phrasing (try reading your work aloud).
  • Unnecessary words (check for the ones in Five Words You Can Cut).
  • Commonly misused or confused words (there’s a whole list of these in the Misused Words category).

If you’re not 100% sure about a spelling, double-check with a dictionary: try Merriam-Webster for clear, succinct definitions. When you can’t quite find the right word, using a thesaurus can help (again, Merriam-Webster is good).

Do you have a great tip for revising and editing your work? Or do you have a horror story about an occasion when you handed in a first draft with a glaring error..? Share your experiences in the comments below!




Resources: Writing a Novel - Masterlist of WQA Posts

writing-questions-answered:

Anonymous asked: Hi. This might be long. I’m writing a novel for the first time ever and I have so many questions. How to give my characters realistic backgrounds and futures, how to create a fantasy world, how to introduce my novel without sounding like a complete idiot. I don’t want to write, I want to create and I’ve got ideas I just can’t get a story. Have you got anything that might help me with creating characters, a world, and starting the novel? Thanks.

Congratulations on starting your first novel! Very exciting!

Here are posts I’ve made with lots of tips and links to help you out!

Getting Started:

Plot: Brainstorming for Ideas 
Outlining and Planning a SeriesFinding Focus During a Storm of Ideas
Beginning a Novel
Creating the Perfect Writing Space
Finding the Time to Write
Turning Ideas into a Story
Research Tips

Plot and Story Structure:

Figuring Out a Plot
How to Develop a Plot
Plot and Story Structure

Character Development:

Character Authenticity
Fleshing Out a Flat Character
Different Kinds of Antagonists
Strong Female Protagonists
Name Resources

Fantasy World Building:

Establishing a Non-Traditional Fantasy Setting
Creating a Fictional Calendar
Creating a Language
Telling Time Without Clocks
Going Too Far with Fantasy?

Everything Else:

Should I Cut My Prologue?
Chapter Titles and Endings
Foreshadowing
To Kill or Not Kill a Character
What to Do When Your Story Stalls
How to Make Simple Writing More Vivid
How to Avoid Forced Romantic Sub-Plot
Cliffhanger Endings
The Opening Line
Writing Process: Drafts
Suspense, Climax, and Ending

If you have any further questions, you know where to find me! :)




Making the Leap: Fan Fiction to Original Work




Anonymous asked: How do you write a action scene?

bookgeekconfessions:

I have posted a bunch of tips about that. :-)

#40: Ten Tips For Writing Good Action Scenes.
#50: Writing Action. Part 1.

#51: Writing Action. Part 2.
#60:Writing Action Scenes

#96: How To Write A War or Battle Scene in Your Novel
#120:Fight Scenes and Love Scenes – Seven Tips to Writing Action
#121: Writing Realistic Injuries




Creative Writing Exercises

writeworld:

Read More →




LH