It kinda annoys me how much we want to make characters #relatable to the point that we overuse incorrect quotes, chat fics and all that stuff until they’ve all been flattened into parodies of our real-world generations in fanon and are all virtually indistinguishable from one another. Don’t you guys ever want to, idk, explore life-experiences that are radically different from ours? Get into the heads of characters who would have completely different jokes, priorities and morals?
Everybody loves ‘grey’ characters but only ever when it applies to being hot and not completely evil, because we’re so bent on erasing every last bit of nuance and depth out of the stories we consume that it feels like every character ever would be into vines and either dislike boomers or be one and say ‘yeet’ - like we’re plastering caricatures of ourselves onto them. Of course we’re aware that it’s just crack, and it’s really fun - and harmless, and enjoyable - but after we’ve repeated enough times “oh yeah, X would totally do/say this” (even as we know they wouldn’t, really), it’s all we seem to be able to write them as...
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totally random but whenever Im about to post something super self indulgent and potentially not for everyone on ao3 I think to myself 'Hai would want me to do whatever the fuck I want" thanks for paving the way
You are absolutely correct!! 100% I want you to write and post whatever the fuck you want. It’s your idea and your story and if anybody doesn’t like it then they can throw spaghetti at the wall and die mad about it. 😤
That goes for anybody. Write whatever speaks to you, even if you think it’s stupid or too self indulgent. If it makes you happy—write the thing!! There’s a joy in the things that we create and my experiences have shown me that there’s an audience for pretty much anything. Pour love into your writing and it’ll always come through.
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Ok I have been wondering this for forever now but do you have an AO3 account because for the longest time I have wanted to read the stories you create.
I have one here but I'm not very active on it ^^
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“You need something to look forward to... A reason to fight.”
“Alright. If I survive... Will you marry me?”
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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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I don't want to put anyone specific on blast, but I'm so sick of those incredibly trite and unoriginal "dialogue writing prompts" from writing prompt blogs on this site that all say something like:
The hero turned to the villain, sorrow and longing in their face. "Don't you get it? I was supposed to be the villain in this story--and you, the hero...."
Just make the writing prompt general. Don't include your halfhearted attempt at compelling dialogue. Don't write this artificially-deep, contrived nonsense as a writing prompt. If I read something like this in a manuscript I was editing, I'd have to take a twenty-minute break. What kind of Riverdale-tier foolishness...
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When reading romantic fiction of any kind I tend to quirk my eyebrow and almost become uneasy when a phrase is used, but I also push past it because it’s often just how the phrase has been tossed around as “meaning the same thing” for such a long time.
But I wouldn’t be myself if I didn’t mention this, so here we go.
Having someone say “I need you” is not the same as someone saying “I want you” - it is two very different things.
A need, quite simply, is just something that is needed to survive.
Food. Water. Air. Etc.
A need is a NEED.
The phrase “I need you like I need air in my lungs” is a great way to make this work, but… that said, a need isn’t always the same as something you’d like in that moment.
I could say “I need something to drink” and have the only thing available be grape juice.
I hate grape juice.
But if I am desperate the need will outweigh my dislike and I will drink it out of the physical requirement to do so.
But a want… a want is something a bit more special in phrasing.
I know we all make the joke but, back onto the drink comparison, when you order a Coke and they say “Is Pepsi okay?” … there is always a bit of you that’s disappointed for a second, right?
A Pepsi will be perfectly serviceable, we all know that, but it will never be the Coke we actually wanted.
Now, back to the literal definitions…
A want is something that someone desires, you can live without it, but it will disappoint you or even depress you to not have it.
I say all that to say this.
When I read “Don’t go, please, I need you here.” it’s far less impactful than “Stay, please, I want you here.”
Again, there’s ways to phrase the NEED as romantic… and I like those just fine!
But the WANT is a desire, a dream, a passion, a purpose beyond just a simple piece of food, a drink of water, a bit of sleep, or the air in your lungs…
To be a WANT … is to be someone’s luxury.
So, yes, when writing things it is important to note the how, why, and when of the use of NEED or WANT in the relationship you are writing about.
Because while a need is important… everyone wants something and to be wanted is extremely powerful.
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You wanna know something I’ve noticed? A lot of people will say “soulmates don’t have to be romantic” and then prove that they don’t actually believe that statement at all because the second someone makes platonic soulmates those same people complain about being invested in a relationship not centered around romantic attraction and saying they were robbed of something when they weren’t, and I feel like we really don’t talk about that enough.
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An aye-write guide to Showing vs. Telling
I’ll bet that if you’ve ever taken an English class or a creative writing class, you’ll have come across the phrase “Show, don’t tell.” It’s pretty much a creative writing staple! Anton Chekov once said “ Don’t tell me the moon is shining. Show me the glint of light on broken glass.” In other words, showing should help you to create mental pictures in a reader’s head.
Showing helps readers bond with the characters, helps them experience the emotions and action more vividly, and helps immerse them in the world you have created. So “show, not tell” is definitely not bad advice - in certain circumstances. But it has its place. More on that later.
So How do I Show?
So instead, of telling me “He was angry”, show me how his face face flushes red, how his throat tightens, how he slams his fist, how he raises his voice, how his jaw clenches, how he feels hot and prickly, how his breathing gets rapid, how his thoughts turn to static, etc.
Instead of telling me “The cafeteria was in chaos”, you could show me someone covered in food and slowly turning crimson, children rampaging under the feet of helpless adults, frenzied shouting, etc.
Handy Hint! Try to avoid phrases like “I heard”, “I felt”, “I smelled”, etc. These are still “telling words” (also known as filters) and may weaken your prose, as your readers could be taken out of the experience and you may lose their attention.
Is Showing Always The Right Thing to Do?
No! Showing is not always right and telling is not always wrong! It’s important to develop the skill and instinct to know when to use showing and when to use telling, as both can be appropriate in certain occasions.
So, “Show, don’t tell” becomes “Show versus tell”.
What is Showing and Telling?
Showing is “The grass caressed his feet and a smile softened his eyes. A hot puff of air brushed past his wrinkled cheek as the sky paled yellow, then crimson, and within a breath, electric indigo”
Telling is “The old man stood in the grass and relaxed as the sun went down.”
Both of these excerpts are perfectly acceptable to use in your writing! But both do different things, although their meanings are pretty much the same. The first example is immersive, sweeping, visual, engaging. The second example is much more pared back and functional. But both have their places in prose!
Telling is functional. Think about when you tell people things. You tell your children dinner is ready. The news reporter tells you there’s a drop in crime rates. Your best friend tells you she’ll be late because her car broke down on the way to yours. These are brief and mundane moments in everyday life.
So, do these deserve multiple paragraphs with sensory detail and action/feeling/thought for every little thing? Do you need to spend an entire paragraph agonising over a minor detail when there’s a sword dangling (physically or metaphorically) over your MC’s head? No. And I’ll explain why.
When To Use Telling
As before, telling is functional. It’s brief. It’s efficient. It gives a gist of a situation without getting bogged down in detail.
Showing is slow, rich, expansive, and most certainly not efficient!
Here’s an example of some telling:
“Years passed, and I thought of Emily less and less. I confined her to some dark dusty corner of my brain. I had to elbow my memories of her to the side. I was too busy with other things. Finishing school, then university a year later. Life was full and enjoyable. But then, one dark cold September night…”
You can’t show this example, unless you wanted to waste page after page of your MC waking up, going through everyday life, to get to the point your actual story started. If you do that, you will likely kill off any interest a reader would have in your novel and likely, your book itself.
Should be used for anything dramatic
Uses thoughts, feelings, dialogue, action, and visual detail
Will likely be used more than telling
Delivering factual information
Glossing over unnecessary details
Showing the passage of time
Adding backstory (not all at once!)
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Something that still stands out to me in regards to Frodo’s impact on the hero’s journey is that he choses himself.
So many modern “chosen one” characters: Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, Jim Lake Jr., Adora-- they’re all either the subject of a prophecy or chosen without their agency.
Frodo? Serves as a chosen one who really chooses himself. He stands up volunteers. And I just think that’s really beautiful.
I also think it’s why Gandalf reacts as he does.
I’m not sure what is more tragic: someone not having a say in their fate to shoulder this great burden and sacrifice, or having a say and choosing to wield the mantle anyways.
All I can say for sure is that it’s damn brave.
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No, seriously, one of the coolest things about writing, for me, is watching the way my stories keep overlapping each other. There’s always a theme, character trope, a moment that repeats itself. Something I throw away here migrates there. Nothing is wasted, and no matter how different these stories are, there’s always something connecting them.
Like, it’s the way I see these worlds are mine.
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That fic you wrote with 10 words? STUNNING
That fic you wrote with 100 words? AMAZING
That fic you wrote with 1,000 words? GENIUS
That fic you wrote with 10,000 words? WONDERFUL
That fic you wrote with 100,000 words? INCREDIBLE
No matter what anyone says, a fic takes as many or as few words as it needs to in order to tell the story. You’re no less of a writer if all your fics are drabbles than you are if they’re all epic length! All fic lengths are good, so don’t let the bastards wear you down ❤️
Keep on writing you funky little fic writers ✌🏼❤️
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Hey, hot take here, but sometimes, characters don’t need to develop to be strong characters. If you have a character who is kind and loving, and they go through tons of terrible things in the story, but still come out the same kind and loving person, then they are an incredible character, and I’d much prefer that sort of character than have a character who’s told they’re “stronger” because they turned into an asshole with no regard for anyone.
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“Piandao as an airbender? No good, gross” I respond unless he absolutely “Piandao as an airbender? No good, gross” unless he Sucks as a bender. Like a fear of heights, air at speed makes him sneeze, kind of way. Like the man knows the forms but bending makes No sense to him. What does make sense? Swords. Swords make sense. (Sorry if double post am on phone)
No no, ALSO gross! This would change the fundamentals of his character from "master swordsman" to "master swordsman who couldn't cut it as a bender". See the difference?
Piandao as an airbender is a cool concept, no argument there. But characters have narrative meaning, and it would completely change his, in ways detrimental to Sokka's character arc and the representation Piandao brings to the story.
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how to finish your wip really fast
stop scrolling through tumblr
turn on your laptop
open a google doc
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do you ever go through your old writings and feel genuinely impressed by your work? ah it's the most fulfilling thing ever!!!
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i keep forgetting to post things here but a question: how do y'all ficwriters come up with your ideas for fics? like i've been sitting here at my desk for like thirty minutes trying to come up with an idea for a fic i want to make and the gears are turning but nothing's happening
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You’ve always had a hard time finding romantic love so, at some point, you just gave up. This didn’t really stop you from feeling incomplete though, since romance is something you yearn for. So then, with the help of an assistant, you decided to build a robot that would love you.
You did not anticipate that the robot would turn evil, nor did you realize that your assistant had been slowly falling in love with you.
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Hi 😳 I haven’t slept yet but I am 3k words deep into this Ahsoka bonding with a very shy and awkward Cody fic I’m writing, since tcw didn’t give us any big brother Cody and little sister Ahsoka moments
But I also haven’t really found any fics about them being siblings before so idk if people even wanna read it idk idk
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Sometimes when I’m bored I go through the bookmarks on my fics bc I genuinely think they are so funny and I thought I would share some recent faves:
This one is on DoO and it feels so accurate lmao
A much better summary than whatever I wrote
I am particularly fond of this one bc it is on a Merlin Fic and not my HP fic
Such a literal summary and I wish dearly I had thought of it first
I don’t tend to write a wholeeee lot of horror/creepy fics so I often go back to the one I did write for validation 😂
A solid analysis. I also love the upset tone, but the fact it’s also a fave
Stop this made me laugh too much. That’s exactly what that Fic was too lol
Pretty much my brand at this point
These last two were literally on the same Fic a few spaces apart and I adore it
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