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December 25, 2012
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Tips For A Young Writer

:iconbeauty-elevates:
Beauty-Elevates Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Student Writer
I have two short stories I am getting ready to write but I want them to better than my last couple of pieces (meaning I want to improve a bit).

If you have any tips for a young writer like myself about anything (plots, characters, interaction, setting, conflict, etc.) Things you like, things you don't.

All insight is helpful.
~~~~~
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:iconytcyberpunk:
YTcyberpunk Featured By Owner Dec 28, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Here's my advice:
* Write first, edit later. Accept that your first draft WILL blow, and don't let that slow you down. Just write, and worry about making it look good later.
* If you don't want to describe every detail that's fine, but give your reader SOMETHING to work with. Sometimes, a character's age or living situation is enough. If we know she's female and in high school, we can probably form an image of our own of what she looks like. But if you're writing a sci-fi story with a generic hero, and won't tell us anything about his appearance, age, or clothes, you're telling the readers, "I don't care about my protagonist, I just snatched a name from the air so I could have someone to carry the story."
* Only fill your story with things that are either important to the plot, or entertaining. If you want to waste five paragraphs on a pointless but fun action sequence, that's fine. But don't waste five paragraphs describing the character's every-day lives, just so you can make your story longer.
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:iconavenvia:
Avenvia Featured By Owner Dec 28, 2012  Student Writer
I actually submitted a kind of guide... rant... thing on here a few weeks back about stylistic errors I've been taught to avoid by various sources that are common to new writers.

I'm not gonna be a complete twat and link it here, but I'll summarise:

1. Don't over describe things, especially not with huge complicated words.

2. Try to limit adverbs, especially with dialogue tags.

3. Try to use concrete rather than abstract imagery.

4. Don't repeat words or images, especially unusual ones.

5. Try to avoid passive voice unless it's really necessary.

Those are literally just the bare bones (and not comprehensive in any way), so if you'd like me to justify any of them or give examples, just say.
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:iconcarusmm:
carusmm Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Ignore all advice, even this.
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:icontheblackbullets:
TheBlackBullets Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
You are in control of your characters. Not them, you.

They may not like a certain situation, but don't use it as an excuse to get them out of it
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:iconrileighfreeman:
RileighFreeman Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2012  Hobbyist Artist
BAM. Awesome.
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:iconnekoryocatsan:
NekoRyoCatSan Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Keep Writing~ and write and improve your grammar and use strong words~
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:iconcarusmm:
carusmm Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Respect no-one.
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:iconenuocale:
EnuoCale Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Don't spend months perfecting a single page. Accept that you have to move on.
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Read—as a writer. Go back and revisit books you love, and figure out what makes them amazing.

Also, don't expect your first draft to be anything but crap. This is normal.
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:iconatlantech:
Atlantech Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
brainstorm, brainstorm, brainstorm
Practice writing drafts to see how it sounds when you write it out.

What I like most, are characters that are believable in the way you can relate to them.
I like stories that are exciting, that don't give away everything or reveal all the answers so I can still use my imagination.

I'd say more but I'm fucking tired right now.
Best of luck to you.
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:iconsorair:
Sorair Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012
A good writer is an obsessive compulsive perfectionist with an addiction to express and one who is highly knowledgeable in life, trivia and history.

Perfected execution can be explained easily but its not understood until its put into practice.

I would like to point out to many new writers that places like this are full of blow-hards that know nothing substantial.

Now your first lesson is to guess which I am.
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:iconneurotype:
neurotype Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
"A good writer is an obsessive compulsive perfectionist"...isn't that someone who never gets around to writing?
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:iconraspil:
raspil Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012   Writer
number three.
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:iconatlantech:
Atlantech Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
when you say obsessive compulsive perfectionist, are you talking about those who constantly re-read and change things in their writing?
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:iconmoonpiefsn:
moonpiefsn Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
i always try to remember to keep it fresh but not too fresh. For instance, "his coat was blue". "his coat was as blue as his eyes that stared longingly into space." "His coat was the blue of a thousand moons." Option two would be the best choice because its somewhat relevant and also serves as a describing point for his eyes as well. This is just my opinion though. I hope i'm making sense ^^;
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:icongreymuzzles:
greymuzzles Featured By Owner Dec 26, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
See, I’m inclined to think that those longer descriptions are just too flowery / over-the-top for a coat. If it’s just a coat, then you’d be better off keeping it simple and using the first description; only go for longer, more elaborate descriptions when you need something to stick in the readers mind.
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:iconatlantech:
Atlantech Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
"The coat he wore was as blue as his eyes, and he stared longingly into space".

I think that sounds better, but I would not use the word longingly because it doesn't make sense. Why would someone stare longingly at nothing?
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:iconmoonpiefsn:
moonpiefsn Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh yes, that was the wrong word to use in that instance. I think i had meant to use "blankly" or "with a glassy-eyed expression". Many pardons
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:iconatlantech:
Atlantech Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
no worries.
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:iconpinkymccoversong:
PinkyMcCoversong Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Professional Writer
Option one was the best.  The other two are in the realm of "purple prose" -- completely overwritten.  Do you know anyone who talks like that?
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:iconmoonpiefsn:
moonpiefsn Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Well noted. Then again we dont often talk like spoken stories do we?
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:iconpinkymccoversong:
PinkyMcCoversong Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Professional Writer
If a character/narrator is convincing, he/she should read in a way that people speak -- something believable.
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:iconmoonpiefsn:
moonpiefsn Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Its been 5 minutes and i have at least comments critisizing my critisizm :) ah to be a writer. It's quite useful knowledge of course for my age range is not often taken seriously when it comes to these things. I believe you may be the first! You're right, that was a mistake on my part.

The man strode into the shop with even steps, cloathed ina a long coat that was blue. He was much like a cat in his movements, the shopkeeper thought. Whoever he was, the strange figure had a curious air about him that suggested there was something not right.
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:iconpinkymccoversong:
PinkyMcCoversong Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Professional Writer
I think that if you're not ready to give advice, it's better not to. Because spreading misinformation can be harmful.

You should definitely read more though -- reading books will help develop your voice.
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:iconlovely-words:
Lovely-Words Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
No, but if you over stuff your sentences with flowery language, then it drags the story to a crawl and half the time, the description has very little to do with what's going on. In your example, does the fact that the coat the same shade of blue as his eyes an important fact? Is the fact that the coat is blue the important part or the fact that his eyes are blue? And if it's the coat, then what does him staring out the window have to do with anything happening in that sentence? If you just through in random details without rhyme or reason, you'll confuse your character. Bring them up where relevant, but don't just stuff them into sentences because you can.
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:iconmoonpiefsn:
moonpiefsn Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Ah yes quite so my friend. Well noted well noted. I apologize for my embaressing mistake.
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:iconlovely-words:
Lovely-Words Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
No worries. Just remember that when you're writing, you also have to think about the reader as well. They're going to be picking up details and things get very muddled very quickly if you're just throwing in things that aren't important to the characters or the plot. Yes, you can give trivial details, but do so sparingly as to not bog down the reader. :)
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:icondorianharper:
DorianHarper Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Professional Writer
I agree 100% with `PinkyMcCoversong. Browsing around in the forum is a great place to start getting some tips. Even if you have nothing to say or contribute, reading the posts and people's responses can be rather insightful!
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:iconsorair:
Sorair Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012
Though the insight could occasionally have you facepalming profusely since the many writers helping other writers have the inability to read.
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:iconraspil:
raspil Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012   Writer
you're YET ANOTHER new name to the lit forum; how would you know this? is this an alt?
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:iconsorair:
Sorair Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012
Because I've lurked every forum with a creative writing section.

Writers go by a life cycle of progression. We all go through the same rites of passages and learn the same things. The only difference is the order and the conclusions.

Just for clarification, there is a right way to write. A human being has a limited ability to fathom concepts and ideas, as such originality is a dead concept. You can indeed create samey crap (you have no choice) but it's the execution of the style and the timing your publishing and the reading of modern trends that makes you a good writer.

Not crap like originality and creativity, that shit is lies. Innovation and ingenuity should be the buzz words you should follow in life as well as art.

That is what makes history.
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:iconraspil:
raspil Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012   Writer
backing away slowly from the scary person who thinks words
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:icondorianharper:
DorianHarper Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Professional Writer
Ahaha! Those are always there for the laughs, though! :lol:
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:iconsorair:
Sorair Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012
It gives me mixed feelings.

angry for misdirecting new blood in the wrong direction.

happy for the retardation of possible competition.

sadness and shame that I once thought it too was a good idea to go here for writing advice instead of learning from masterful examples and actually cited creative writing theory like I do now.

and mildly amused that I look on at said masterpieces and theories with cynicism as a post-modernist masturbator.
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:iconpinkymccoversong:
PinkyMcCoversong Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Professional Writer
If you read enough of the forums you should be able to suss out what's decent advice/who's on top of things.  Especially because a lot of the old timers are in here regulating.
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:iconmute-swans-song:
Mute-Swans-Song Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Distopian and fantasy is huge now. But, in my personal opinion, I think the next big thing is going to be Sirens ^-^
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:icondorianharper:
DorianHarper Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Professional Writer
I think the OP was looking more for ideas for being a writer and tackling stories in general rather than what to write. Publishing trends would be more relevant to a post about publishing instead of tips for the everyday writer :)
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:iconmute-swans-song:
Mute-Swans-Song Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
*head nod* indeed fellow... pikaponian :iconbaronofevil:
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:icongalaxygoddess:
GalaxyGoddess Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
How would knowledge of popular subject matter assist in the improvement of writing? Or did you not read the post?
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:iconmute-swans-song:
Mute-Swans-Song Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Once you find the subject you want to write you have to study other books of the same genre. Thats what I do and it helps me a lot, figuring out the borders between all the genres and how far you can go
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:iconpinkymccoversong:
PinkyMcCoversong Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Professional Writer
Not sure publishing trends are relevant at this point, wouldn't you agree?
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:iconmute-swans-song:
Mute-Swans-Song Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I know, but a good Siren story would be unique and original. Wouldn't you agree? Or do you like other things?
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:iconpinkymccoversong:
PinkyMcCoversong Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Professional Writer
I wouldn't be unique/original -- there are a lot of siren and mermaid books out right now.

I think that the OP was looking for tips on craft and style, not so much market trends. Either way, this question has been asked a lot. I hope the OP looks thru the forum a bit -- there are lots of tips already here.
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:iconvglory:
vglory Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012
I think OP already has ideas for his/her stories. The question was how to execute them better.

IMHO you get better through good feedback. For now, just write.
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:iconmute-swans-song:
Mute-Swans-Song Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
oh well, in that case I suggest she just reads a lot of books and do her best to write. No one writes the same which makes it fun to read other peoples stories
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:iconpinkymccoversong:
PinkyMcCoversong Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Professional Writer
Read the other threads in the forum...that's a good place to start.

Also, read in general.  All the books.
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:iconlytrigian:
Lytrigian Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
:iconallthethingsplz::iconsaysplz:Read ALL THE THINGS!
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:iconpinkymccoversong:
PinkyMcCoversong Featured By Owner Dec 25, 2012  Professional Writer
ALL THE THINGS!
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