#writing advice writing
Side Characters of TTK~ Richard
"My father had three sons. Edward who should have been the heir, he's the oldest and the best of us. And he had George. You know what he was. My father had three sons and I'm the one not worth mentioning."
Taglist: @reignnyx @death-and-flowers @viola-cola @anomaly00 @you-reblogged-from @mysthicrider @thebestmollygrue @authoressasusual @trapped-inadystopianovel
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I feel this in my soul
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friends to lovers never had a bad track. “scared i’ll ruin what we have” SLAPS. “friendship cuddles while secretly dying inside” BANGER. “teasing each other and holding eye contact for a little too long” KILLS ME. and don’t even get me STARTED on “screaming i love you in the middle of a heated argument.”
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Words to describe facial expressions
Agonized: as if in pain or tormented
Alluring: attractive, in the sense of arousing desire
Appealing: attractive, in the sense of encouraging goodwill and/or interest
Black: angry or sad, or hostile
Blinking: surprise, or lack of concern
Blithe: carefree, lighthearted, or heedlessly indifferent
Brooding: anxious and gloomy
Bug eyed: frightened or surprised
Chagrined: humiliated or disappointed
Cheeky: cocky, insolent
Choleric: hot-tempered, irate
Darkly: with depressed or malevolent feelings
Deadpan: expressionless, to conceal emotion or heighten humor
Despondent: depressed or discouraged
Doleful: sad or afflicted
Dour: stern or obstinate
Dreamy: distracted by daydreaming or fantasizing
Ecstatic: delighted or entranced
Faint: cowardly, weak, or barely perceptible
Fixed: concentrated or immobile
Gazing: staring intently
Glancing: staring briefly as if curious but evasive
Glazed: expressionless due to fatigue or confusion
Grim: fatalistic or pessimistic
Grave: serious, expressing emotion due to loss or sadness
Haunted: frightened, worried, or guilty
Hopeless: depressed by a lack of encouragement or optimism
Hostile: aggressively angry, intimidating, or resistant
Hunted: tense as if worried about pursuit
Jeering: insulting or mocking
Languid: lazy or weak
Leering: sexually suggestive
Mischievous: annoyingly or maliciously playful
Pained: affected with discomfort or pain
Peering: with curiosity or suspicion
Pleading: seeking apology or assistance
Quizzical: questioning or confused
Radiant: bright, happy
Sanguine: bloodthirsty, confident
Vacant: blank or stupid looking
Wan: pale, sickly
Wary: cautious or cunning
Wide eyed: frightened or surprised
Wrathful: indignant or vengeful
Wry: twisted or crooked to express cleverness or a dark or ironic feeling
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Pro-writing tip: if your story doesn't need a number, don't put a fucking number in it.
Nothing, I mean nothing, activates reader pedantry like a number.
I have seen it a thousand times in writing workshops. People just can't resist nitpicking a number. For example, "This scifi story takes place 200 years in the future and they have faster than light travel because it's plot convenient," will immediately drag every armchair scientist out of the woodwork to say why there's no way that technology would exist in only 200 years.
Dates, ages, math, spans of time, I don't know what it is but the second a specific number shows up, your reader is thinking, and they're thinking critically but it's about whether that information is correct. They are now doing the math and have gone off drawing conclusions and getting distracted from your story or worse, putting it down entirely because umm, that sword could not have existed in that Medieval year, or this character couldn't be this old because it means they were an infant when this other story event happened that they're supposed to know about, or these two events now overlap in the timeline, or... etc etc etc.
Unless you are 1000% certain that a specific number is adding to your narrative, and you know rock-solid, backwards and forwards that the information attached to that number is correct and consistent throughout the entire story, do yourself a favor, and don't bring that evil down upon your head.
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People will say “write what you know!” But I know so little
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i just think that unhinged female characters with a little blood on their face and wrath in their eyes is pretty neat, that's all
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When you're angry at the characters, the story is well-written. When you're angry at the writers, it is not.
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One of the best tips for writing descriptions of pain is actually a snippet I remember from a story where a character is given a host of colored pencils and asked to draw an egg.
The character says that there’s no white pencil. But you don’t need a white pencil to draw a white egg. We already know the egg is white. What we need to draw is the luminance of the yellow lamp and the reflection of the blue cloth and the shadows and the shading.
We know a broken bone hurts. We know a knife wound hurts. We know grief hurts. Show us what else it does.
You don’t need to describe the character in pain. You need to describe how the pain affects the character - how they’re unable to move, how they’re sweating, how they’re cold, how their muscles ache and their fingers tremble and their eyes prickle.
Draw around the egg. Write around the pain. And we will all be able to see the finished product.
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tumblr posts about writing bilingual characters: bilinguals DO NOT change their language in the middle of the conversation! It's unrealistic!
me, who said the phrase "i have beaucoup de friends" this morning:
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Narrative Botox: Filler Words and Phrases to Look Out For
If you’re planning on publishing traditionally, chances are you keep a sharp eye on your word count. Literary agents and publishing houses are on the hunt for the best quality stories that they can print for the cheapest price (using the least paper and ink), so you have a higher chance of gaining representation if you can crank your novel out in the least words possible.
However, filler words and phrases aren’t only the enemies of aspiring traditional authors; every writer—fanfic, novelist, journalist, you name it!—should try to eliminate filler from their stories to assure more concise and high-quality writing. Oftentimes, filler contributes nothing but clutter, and without it, your narrative can flow smoother and in a more sophisticated manner.
But how do you know what’s filler and what’s not? Here are some tips on how to Ctrl+F and kick this narrative botox to the curb!
I compiled these lists with the help of Infusionmedia, BDR Publishing, and ResetEra !
A writer’s worst enemy, and the bane of my manuscripts’ existences. Eliminating all the ‘just’s can cut down your word count by hundreds.
2. “That” as a conjunction
It’s an unnecessary addition to a sentence, which will be more streamlined without it.
Example: “He said that he wouldn’t do it again.”
Revised: “He said he wouldn’t do it again.”
3. “Now” as an adverb
“Now” is essential if you’re talking about the past and present, but when you’re using it to draw attention to a particular statement or point.
Example: “Now, I didn’t think it’d get so out of hand.”
Revised: “I didn’t think it’d get so out of hand.”
4. Redundant adverbs
These adverbs serve no purpose because the verbs they’re describing already imply the way the action is performed.
5. “Telling” words
These words are redundant, especially when using first person, because in describing an event, we can already assume that the characters are experiencing it.
6. “Clarifying” words used to portray definiteness or indefiniteness
Although these are meant to help out the readers get their bearings on a situation, all they do is come across as wishy-washy! Be concise and sure of yourself!
1.“Let out (vocal noise)”
Use the verb instead!
Example: “He let out a sigh.”
Revised: “He sighed.”
2. Using passive voice
Passive voice inflates your word count by including various “to be” verbs into the prose. Passive voice involves actions happening to a subject rather than the subject performing an action, and as a result isn’t as riveting to the reader as active voice; even if it wasn’t a matter of word count, you’d still want to get rid of it anyway!
Still don’t know what I’m talking about? Check out this article from Grammarly.
Example: “The boy was bitten by the dog on his arm.”
Revised: “The dog bit the boy on his arm.”
3. Describing the wrong noun
Many writers will be as specific as possible about what “thing” is affected by the event they’re describing, when it’s much simpler to take a step back and write about something more general.
Example: “The level of water rose.”
Revised: “The water rose.”
4. Phrasal verbs
Phrasal verbs are the combination of two or three words from different grammatical categories—a verb and an adverb or a preposition—to form a single action. Usually, these phrasal verbs can be replaced by a single-word verb.
“Ask for” can be replaced with “request”
“Bring down” can be replaced with “reduce”
“Come across” can be replaced with “find”
5. Clarifying phrases
Same reason as clarifying words. Get to the point!
In a sense
6. Remember your contractions!
Even if your story takes place in olden times, I can guarantee that if you never use any contractions ever, your story’s gonna be a clunky mess. But sometimes you’re in the moment, consumed by the poetic power of the muses, and forget that this isn’t a soap opera; so make sure you check that you’ve been using your contractions!
It is, it was, it would, she is, would not, should not, is not, does not etc.
7. Inflated phrases
These phrases can be replaced with more concise words.
Along the lines of (shorten to: like)
As a matter of fact (in fact)
As to whether (whether)
At all times (always)
At the present (now or currently)
At this point in time (now or currently)
Be able to/would(n’t) be able to (could or couldn’t)
Because of the fact that (because)
By means of (by)
Due to the fact that (because)
Even though (though or although)
For the purpose of (for)
For the reason that (because)
Have the ability to (could)
In light of the fact that (because)
In order to (to)
In regards to (on or about)
In spite of the fact that (though or although)
In the event that (if)
In the nature of (like)
In the neighborhood of (about)
On the occasion of (when)
On one/two separate occasions (Once/twice)
The/A majority of (most)
There is no doubt that (No doubt)
Wasn(n’t) capable of (could or couldn’t)
Hope this helped, and happy writing!
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Side Characters of TTK ~ Geoffrey
Geoffrey is built like a bull, strong and rippled with muscle but the gods made him gentle and kind as well as gifting him with the strength of a giant. "I don't think it fair, to be honest. Why can't they fight too? They've just as much right as we do to defend our home."
Taglist: @anomaly00 @lil-mephistopheles @trapped-inadystopianovel @viola-cola @lady-literate @authoressasusual @mysthicrider @reignnyx @thebestmollygrue @you-reblogged-from @heldinhishands @thewordsinthesky-andstars @write-for-your-life2
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Writing advice #?: Have your characters wash the dishes while they talk.
This is one of my favorite tricks, picked up from E.M. Forester and filtered through my own domestic-homebody lens. Forester says that you should never ever tell us how a character feels; instead, show us what those emotions are doing to a character’s posture and tone and expression. This makes “I felt sadness” into “my shoulders hunched and I sighed heavily, staring at the ground as my eyes filled with tears.” Those emotions-as-motions are called objective correlatives. Honestly, fic writers have gotten the memo on objective correlatives, but sometimes struggle with how to use them.
Objective correlatives can quickly become a) repetitive or b) melodramatic. On the repetitive end, long scenes of dialogue can quickly turn into “he sighed” and “she nodded” so many times that he starts to feel like a window fan and she like a bobblehead. On the melodramatic end, a debate about where to eat dinner can start to feel like an episode of Jerry Springer because “he shrieked” while “she clenched her fists” and they both “ground their teeth.” If you leave the objective correlatives out entirely, then you have what’s known as “floating” dialogue — we get the words themselves but no idea how they’re being said, and feel completely disconnected from the scene. If you try to get meaning across by telling us the characters’ thoughts instead, this quickly drifts into purple prose.
Instead, have them wash the dishes while they talk.
To be clear: it doesn’t have to be dishes. They could be folding laundry or sweeping the floor or cooking a meal or making a bed or changing a lightbulb. The point is to engage your characters in some meaningless, everyday household task that does not directly relate to the subject of the conversation.
This trick gives you a whole wealth of objective correlatives. If your character is angry, then the way they scrub a bowl will be very different from how they’ll be scrubbing while happy. If your character is taking a moment to think, then they might splash suds around for a few seconds. A character who is not that invested in the conversation will be looking at the sink not paying much attention. A character moderately invested will be looking at the speaker while continuing to scrub a pot. If the character is suddenly very invested in the conversation, you can convey this by having them set the pot down entirely and give their full attention to the speaker.
“I’m leaving,” Anastasia said.
“What?” Drizella continued dropping forks into the dishwasher.
“I’m leaving,” Anastasia said.
Drizella paused midway through slotting a fork into the dishwasher. “What?”
“I’m leaving,” Anastasia said.
Drizella laughed, not looking up from where she was arranging forks in the dishwasher. “What?”
“I’m leaving,” Anastasia said.
The forks slipped out of Drizella’s hand and clattered onto the floor of the dishwasher. “What?”
“I’m leaving,” Anastasia said.
“What?” Drizella shoved several forks into the dishwasher with unnecessary force, not seeming to notice when several bounced back out of the silverware rack.
See how cheaply and easily we can get across Drizella’s five different emotions about Anastasia leaving, all by telling the reader how she’s doing the dishes? And all the while no heads were nodded, no teeth were clenched.
The reason I recommend having it be one of these boring domestic chores instead of, say, scaling a building or picking a lock, is that chores add a sense of realism and are low-stakes enough not to be distracting. If you add a concurrent task that’s high-stakes, then potentially your readers are going to be so focused on the question of whether your characters will pick the lock in time that they don’t catch the dialogue. But no one’s going to be on the edge of their seat wondering whether Drizella’s going to have enough clean forks for tomorrow.
And chores are a cheap-n-easy way to add a lot of realism to your story. So much of the appeal of contemporary superhero stories comes from Spider-Man having to wash his costume in a Queens laundromat or Green Arrow cheating at darts, because those details are fun and interesting and make a story feel “real.” Actually ask the question of what dishes or clothing or furniture your character owns and how often that stuff gets washed. That’s how you avoid reality-breaking continuity errors like stating in Chapter 3 that all of your character’s worldly possessions fit in a single backpack and in Chapter 7 having your character find a pair of pants he forgot he owns. You don’t have to tell the reader what dishes your character owns (please don’t; it’s already bad enough when Tolkien does it) but you should ideally know for yourself.
Anyway: objective correlatives are your friends. They get emotion across, but for low-energy scenes can become repetitive and for high-energy scenes can become melodramatic. The solution is to give your characters something relatively mundane to do while the conversation is going on, and domestic chores are not a bad starting place.
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Me trying to remind myself that I’m not going to be a terrible writer forever.
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you know what’s a better question than “is this too self-indulgent?”? “is this self indulgent enough?”
because, like, damn, maybe there just aren’t enough kitty ears in this story! maybe there isn’t enough homoerotic tension! maybe that character’s backstory just isn’t tragic enough!! we won’t know until we really ask ourselves these questions.
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…fiction gives us empathy: it puts us inside the minds of other people, gives us the gift of seeing the world through their eyes. Fiction is a lie that tells us true things, over and over.
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fuck a break up, have you ever gotten emotionally attached to a scene and then realized it doesn’t work so you have to remove it from your story
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Tips for Writing a Difficult Scene
Every writer inevitably gets to that scene that just doesn't want to work. It doesn't flow, no matter how hard you try. Well, here are some things to try to get out of that rut:
1. Change the weather
I know this doesn't sound like it'll make much of a difference, but trust me when I say it does.
Every single time I've tried this, it worked and the scene flowed magically.
2. Change the POV
If your book has multiple POV characters, it might be a good idea to switch the scene to another character's perspective.
9/10 times, this will make the scene flow better.
3. Start the scene earlier/later
Oftentimes, a scene just doesn't work because you're not starting in the right place.
Perhaps you're starting too late and giving too little context. Perhaps some description or character introspection is needed before you dive in.
Alternatively, you may be taking too long to get to the actual point of the scene. Would it help to dive straight into the action without much ado?
4. Write only the dialogue
If your scene involves dialogue, it can help immensely to write only the spoken words the first time round.
It's even better if you highlight different characters' speech in different colors.
Then, later on, you can go back and fill in the dialogue tags, description etc.
5. Fuck it and use a placeholder
If nothing works, it's time to move on.
Rather than perpetually getting stuck on that one scene, use a placeholder. Something like: [they escape somehow] or [big emotional talk].
And then continue with the draft.
This'll help you keep momentum and, maybe, make the scene easier to write later on once you have a better grasp on the plot and characters.
Trust me, I do this all the time.
It can take some practice to get past your Type A brain screaming at you, but it's worth it.
So, those are some things to try when a scene is being difficult. I hope that these tips help :)
Reblog if you found this post useful. Comment with your own tips. Follow me for similar content.
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reminders for writers.
nobody gives a crap if something is cliché or not. what they care about is the execution.
having a bad day of writing does not make you a bad writer.
writing in your second or third language isn’t always easy. you’re doing great.
writing advice = tools. not rules. you’re not meant to follow every advice you read about on the internet. learn the rules so you know which ones to break.
every writer is capable of writing a captivating story, but your story might not be everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s ok. there will still be people out there who’ll adore it.
it’s ok to not excel at every genre. you can write it because you think it’s fun. it doesn’t always have to be a matter of writing something strictly because you’re good at it. it’s ok to explore.
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Insult names to use instead of "idiot,"
None of these are actually meant to be hateful, if any of these have truely offensive meanings (such as the r word) that I was unaware of, please tell me so I can remove it! Tried to avoid cursing, but it contains some!
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