66 Answered Questions for the topic fiction
The world's population is currently 2. If the population doubles every 39 years, what will the population be 15000 years from now?
Hello all. I am writing a fantasy novel and need to calculate population growth for realism purposes. There was another person that asked a similar question on a smaller scale, so I was plugging in... more
Should I remove scenes that I myself find "boring"?
Sometimes, I find myself writing a scene that does everything I think it should do: reveal details about the protagonist, drive the plot forward, show other elements related to the story, etc.... more
Common mistakes made by first time fantasy novelists?
I'm in a writing group. I see repeating word-choice patterns among the fantasy writers. Example: frequent use of certain words (like 'utter,' everyone seems to use that word... ), or certain... more
Should you read your own genre?
In terms of novel writing, I tend to avoid my own genre, at least for the most part. Some of the reasons why:Genre Blindness / Genre Trap:Too much reading of your own genre blinds you to the... more
How to share the work, if writing fiction in a team?
How should one split up the work between two people? Should one write the even-numbered chapters and the other the odd-numbered? Does each person tell the story from the point of view of a... more
How to show that something is different than in real life?
I'm writing fiction set in the near future (~15-20 years). The world is still mostly the same and thus familiar to the reader, but an important part of the story is that a few things are radically... more
Do books have to be written in sequence?
So can we write the interesting action bits first, then add in the in between stuff, that maybe needed to understand the story or characters, but isnt so exciting by itself?For example the... more
Introducing the hero first?
In the book I'm writing, the first character I introduce dies before the end of the chapter. She is the girlfriend of my hero and is setting up their date before her untimely end.The hero is also... more
Quote at the beginning of a chapter, is it advisable for fiction novels?
I have read a few non-fiction works (mostly scientific) where there is a quote at the beginning of each new chapter. Sometimes the quote related to the chapter along with the title, sometimes it... more
What is a good methodology for researching a historical novel?
I'm having difficulty with the research aspect of my historical novel. This question was originally going to be "how much research should one do to write a historical novel?" to which, answering... more
How can I transition from academic writing to fiction writing?
I always receive the same critique when I write fiction. The critique is good for my characters and plot, but I am told that my writing style is stiff, awkward and amateurish. When I wrote... more
What exactly do I do to get published?
I'm interested to know what the publishing process exactly entails for future reference. I'm in my last year of school and I recently finished my first substantial piece of creative writing (a... more
Are modern authors still using colons and semicolons in dialogue?
Not sure if it's just my idea but I rarely see colons and semicolons in dialogue (especially in modern novels). Is it because they don't simulate normal speech? Because their use is more a... more
How should I "remind" the reader of something that they may have forgotten?
Say there is a small detail in the beginning of the book that has a big effect later on. The reader might've forgotten about that by the time they get to that part. How should I remind the reader... more
How can I make an in-universe random event feel like it was really random instead of just RNJesus' will?
Some stories feature random events that bring about drastic change either to the characters or to the setting.A lottery draw, some gotcha that grants a special skill.Most of the times I find one of... more
Series: How can I get my reader to not expect any one genre?
**Background:** I'm planning on writing an extensive series of fantasy books. I plan on writing quite a few of these books, and while they'll all be set on the same planet, I intend them to center... more
Can I switch from past tense to present tense in an epilogue?
I have written my entire novel thus far in past tense. However, I feel like my final chapter/epilogue would work better in present tense. I want to give the reader the sense that everything s/he... more
Is it a flaw if a book is readable, flows well, and gets the point across, BUT you can tell that the author is a non-native?
Even though English is not my first language, I have completed writing a fiction book in English. I have been in the US for over 40 years and I believe that I have a good command of the language.... more
How to expand my vocabulary?
I wanted to write something for a long time. But what I think is, in writing the choice of words plays a very significant role. From where I can learn this thing? I think I don't have enough... more
How do I find flaws in a character I'm building?
I have a particular character in my story who I feel is great. He's a retired monster hunter who settled down with his wife for his later years. He's all-around friendly, respectful, empathetic,... more
How can I hide a second narrative within my story? (using time travel)?
I've been planning a story that follows two characters. At the end, one character (let's call him Joe) goes back in time and appears at the start of the book.I intend to explore themes of... more
I am overplotting my story - how can I figure out what is necessary and cut out what isn't?
I have recently discovered that the plot and cast of characters of my novel is so unbelievably complex that I am the only one who can actually understand it. I have too many characters, with too... more
How to start writing a book?
I'm new to writing and I'm still young (preteen young). I want some advice on writing and help. How am I gonna start my book? What is the best way to begin writing a book?
alternatives to "he said" in dialog?
I'm working on my first fiction story. And one mechanical thing I struggle with is how to identify the speakers in dialog without constantly saying "Bob said", "Mary said", etc. Any ideas?That is,... more
Is it better to describe the main character's physical appearance early on in the story?
I'm writing a novel, and I just realized I don't describe be main character's appearance until Chapter 3 (each chapter is 1500~2000 words long and there are 25 chapters in total).I *do* mention... more