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Some rant and writing tricks 101

13 Jul 2017 16:34 #55232 by Woodclaw
Woodclaw created the topic: Some rant and writing tricks 101
Hi Maniacs,

I've meant to do a post like this for a long time now, but I'm a master procrastinator, so I ended up never finishing it.
Ever since I started as site librarian I noticed two things. The first is, I admit, more of a pet peeve, but a lot of people asked me why I insist in reformatting stories with first line indentation and so on. You can call me a literary elitist, but I believe that if s story get published in any way shape or form it has to be readable. Readability is something that is often forgotten, but it makes a story way better: a story that is easy to read flow much more naturally and makes stopping and starting again way easier for the reader. This is why I'm so hell-bent on formatting.
The second point is much more elaborate, but equally important, and this is where my old posts fell apart time and again: common writing mistakes. There are a number of mistakes every writer does, some more important than others, and it take years to get over them. Hell, I know I make a lot of them. I recently stumble on a Youtube video that really does a great job at explaining some of the most basic tricks to write a good story and I hope you'll all enjoy it.


(formerly Anon, still Librarian)

"What is the point of having free will if one cannot occasionally spit in the eye of destiny?" ("Gentleman" John Marcone)
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13 Jul 2017 17:24 #55234 by JonX
JonX replied the topic: Some rant and writing tricks 101
Hey! A really timely post about writing style. I have just gone back and looked at all my old stories, and I'm appalled by all of them. not necessarily the content, but the presentation of them, and right now I'm looking at re-formatting all the stories I have on superheroinestories.com. My latest chapter (Day) is formatted correctly (I think), but the others are bad :)

So thanks for posting that video. Really helps.
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13 Jul 2017 17:26 #55235 by Woodclaw
Woodclaw replied the topic: Some rant and writing tricks 101

JonX wrote: Hey! A really timely post about writing style. I have just gone back and looked at all my old stories, and I'm appalled by all of them. not necessarily the content, but the presentation of them, and right now I'm looking at re-formatting all the stories I have on superheroinestories.com. My latest chapter (Day) is formatted correctly (I think), but the others are bad :)

So thanks for posting that video. Really helps.


You're welcome.
To be honest I know exactly one person that doesn't seem to think that his old efforts are mediocre at best, so you're not alone in this :P .On a more serious note, while your old entry had some minor issue, I think that they are still serviceable in terms of format and th content is pretty good.

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"What is the point of having free will if one cannot occasionally spit in the eye of destiny?" ("Gentleman" John Marcone)

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13 Jul 2017 18:18 #55236 by LustMonster
LustMonster replied the topic: Some rant and writing tricks 101
I know my own writing tends to get rather long-winded, saying with a dozen words what I could have said with six.

I think that's one of the reasons I'm enjoying writing in the comic book format at the moment - it's forcing me to write in a compact style that will fit in the panels and still convey the information and sentiments I'm looking for. I'm hoping that will hone my writing skills for when I resume my written SWR series later in the year.

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13 Jul 2017 19:55 #55237 by shadar
shadar replied the topic: Some rant and writing tricks 101
Some good points as always, Woodclaw.

The trick, of course, is to entice the reader to keep reading. Engaging their curiosity is the key, but how to do that is a bookshelf of books all by itself.

Also, I've found that stories that begin with some action -- kinetics I call it -- are far more interesting than ones that introduce characters first. Yes, we all have to get the first phase over with, describing the so-called "Ordinary World", before the interesting stuff starts, but doing that kinetically is much more interesting than telling about the ordinary world.

Think about a movie like My Super-Ex Girlfriend.

What we see first is a store robbery with some heavily armed bad guys, who get away. Or so they think. Suddenly their car begins to fly (we still haven't seen G-girl), but we know who is flying the car. Then we see the car crash down in front of the police station and G-girl appears for the first time, floating down to land next to it to block bullets, bend guns and take out the bad guys, at which point she flies away. She doesn't say a single word. But WOW, talk about setting the hook.

That leads into an exploration of the "Ordinary World", but it doesn't matter since the hook was set so well that we'll wade through anything. Now we see G-girl in her civvies and nobody knows who she is, etc. The usual alter-ego thing. Now the writers have the time to develop the back story and relationships before G-girl is revealed doing her stuff again.

That's the kind of beginning I like for superhero movies. Setting the hook deep on page one. There is no reason we can't all write stories that same way, but we rarely do.

Shadar

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13 Jul 2017 20:16 #55238 by circes_cup
circes_cup replied the topic: Some rant and writing tricks 101
Hmmmm... the fact that Woodclaw started this thread makes me wonder whether he is working on a new story. Hope the answer is "yes"!
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13 Jul 2017 20:23 #55239 by Woodclaw
Woodclaw replied the topic: Some rant and writing tricks 101

circes_cup wrote: Hmmmm... the fact that Woodclaw started this thread makes me wonder whether he is working on a new story. Hope the answer is "yes"!


I have something in the works.

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13 Jul 2017 21:43 #55240 by Pepper
Pepper replied the topic: Some rant and writing tricks 101
I find it slightly ironic that a piece on writing tips is done as a video.

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