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The Writer's Lounge

Wed Jul 06, 2005 9:12 pm

Blood Lord wrote:
Welcome to the Writer's Lounge
, the Talk Thread for the Literature Section.

This thread is for the intent to unify the writers and the readers of the section by giving them, you I should say, a place where you can come together outside of your story threads. Here, you and your fellow authors can share ideas, experiences, or even advise that you managed to steal from that time worn sage you know.

Say I'm having a issue with a certain aspect of my story. I can come in here and post about it asking if anyone knows a good way to introduce comedy into intense situations (like a firefight) without it jarring the story all over the place.

Keep in mind that this is a talk thread, they are meant for the unification and the strengthening of sections. This one though, I would like out of personal favor, to keep its focus on literature and writing, but since it is a talk thread, you are not limited to those subjects. If I come in here and you are talking about the War on Terror, or the results of the World Cup, I'm not going to care.

But remember we have rules. Please follow them.

EDIT: And yes, I do intend for this to be a potential reboot for the "Proper Writing Styles" thread by Cole, but also being more open. Hence the ask/tell I was playing with in the beginning.

Start of the new talk thread: viewtopic.php?f=7&t=6284&p=3425875#p3425875

Word processors:

While I'm a bit anal about writing, I'm going to only go with the approved styles and not the proper styles in this tutorial.
First, don't even think about writing in notepad. That's for coding in and making notes. Never for actually writing a story in.
Likewise, just about any of the word processors your OS comes with are absolute shite for writing.
Take your ass over to http://www.openoffice.org and download their program. The beta seems to be quite stable for 2.0(been writing in it for a month or three now) so download it or the stable version, then use that to write.

If I ever see a sentence or paragraph like 'It is the end of the world and we knew it was the end' I'll stab you in the face. Keep the tenses clear. Don't mix them unless it's a speaking characteristic. An example from one of my own stories, "All you were, is a good fuck to me." As you can see, he's lapsed into two different tenses. It should have been either "All you were was a good fuck to me," or "All you are is a good fuck to me." Sometimes confusing the tenses can add a depth to a character but never to actual writing.
Sentence structure:

Quick fast rules. Sentences that begin 'He picked up the bowl, wondering. He turned it over then shrugged. He threw it down.' Over and over, ad nauseum make the writing choppy and just plain annoying to read. Same with any word over and over beginning sentences. The only way that words is in poetry and even then, it's annoying in bad poetry. A better way to write that scene would be, 'He picked up the bowl, wondering. James turned it over, then shrugged, and threw it down.'

"I am worried he isn't really acting like himself," Hermione said.
"You're right Hermione you're right,"
---------------------------------------------------------------------------- ------------------- Ron stood in the dark forest afraid as ever. He hoped no one would see him here. Like every night he changed. His feet grew in size along with his arms. He grew a dog like nose and sharp claws. His clothes ripped off not able to fit anymore .He raced through the dark forest wildly. Running into a unicorn his werewolf instincts attacked the poor animal brutally. The unicorn kicked and shrieked as he ripped through his flesh. Afterwards Ron ran off leaving the poor animal dead.


Well, that scene right there is absolute shite. The girl who wrote it obviously never heard of something as useful as a word processor. That whole scene hurts my eyes even too much to correct it. Let's just take a few large swigs of vodka then continue on.
Now that we've seen what not to do(shudders), how sentences should be structured, let's look at the actual structure.
A sentence invariably starts with a capitol letter. Say an A. Let's use A. it begins a lot of my favorite compound words.
Absolute anarchy absolves attrocious authority.....
Now, let's see what's wrong with that sentences.
Hmm, alliteration, cute, but annoying.
Let's change that to-
Absolute anarchy discharges attrocious policy..... Still lots of A's but less annoying.
Now, let's see what we can do with the sentence. Well, let's fix that misspelled word. Atrocious. Better, yes?
Now, those full stops. Or periods. I prefer full stop.
In a sentence like this "You said you didn't know... or who he was?" The ellipsis in a sentence(three full stops denoting a break or absence or four indicating the end of a sentence) mean there's a word or words missing. Maybe he's afraid to admit he thinks someone's an alien or something. Who knows.
In this sentence, '"So, we're going to...," he trailed off.' As you can see, the ellipsis are followed by a comma. This means the sentence ended, but it's still part of a real sentence which ended after off.
Ellipsis can be used with every form of punctuation. Commas, full stops, exclamation marks, question marks, and so on.
So, a fully corrected sentence would be Absolute anarchy discharges the bounds of atrocious government policy...? since the sentence is actually a question, it needs an ellipsis followed by a question mark. Whoooo, everyone on the correct spelling train. All the cool kids are doing it.
Now, ellipsis can be used in three ways and still be used properly(though I absolutely despise the two latter ways)
He... did what?
He...did what?
He ... did what?
I don't know why those last two are okay. They look like absolute shite. You don't have a sentence start right after a full stop or have a space between the last word and a period, yes? So why is it proper to use an ellipsis that way?
Full stops:

At the end of a sentence comes punctuation, except in poetry.
Usually, it's a full stop.
Like so.
But when writing, most people either use only one space, or common enough, none.That's gay.
Technically, the proper way is two spaces.Like so. I only use one, which is proper as well. I have a bad habit of hitting space twice if I stop between words writing a sentence and invariably hit space once more. Then I just use replace to replace all my "" with "".
and are used to represent spaces.
I'm going to end this now but go ahead and post a question and I'll answer it.
Last edited by Cole on Mon Sep 04, 2006 1:39 am, edited 3 times in total.

Re: Proper ways to write:

Thu Jul 07, 2005 12:16 am

Reverend Cole wrote:Yo, Spike, Sticketize me. ;)

Why, is there going to be more? It's a good and informative rant, I thought, but lacks a certain degree of clarity to a beginning writer, one that would really need this, and I also thought it lacked structure, jumping around a lot.

I really do appreciate the gesture, good writing info and crits is something this forum really needs, but I'm not gonna sticky it unless it's going to be an ongoing thing :) (So... many... stickies! >_<)

Thu Jul 07, 2005 1:54 am

yes, there will be more and I will clean it up some. When it's done, it should be about ten pages and be more structured. I just ranted a bit on what annoyed me most at the moment.

Added after 2 minutes:

also, you could make one sticky that links to all the threads that are front page stickied, stating that it's okay to revive said threads, yatta, yatta, yatta.

Thu Jul 07, 2005 2:01 am

I love you for this Cole.

Re: Proper ways to write:

Thu Jul 07, 2005 2:15 am

I write everything in notepad! And I am the greatest writer on my computer! SO STUFU!

Using fancy programs that do things like underline all of my structural errors as I make them tends to INTERRUPT my flow a little.

Thu Jul 07, 2005 2:31 am

Why aren't you ever on aim anymore, you horrendous boil on satan's arse?

Thu Jul 07, 2005 11:49 am

Beause AIM is a horrendous boil on Satan's arse, that's why :P

Looking better already. I'm liking the addition of more examples. Showing paragraphs hilighting errors and then slowly revising, correcting those errors, is a good method of education, I think.

Let me think for a moment about what to do about stickies...

Added after 1 hours 4 minutes:

It's in the new Index now.

Re: Proper ways to write:

Thu Jul 07, 2005 1:04 pm

I am so incredibly busy, that I can't afford the time it would take me to clear my conversational backlog with all the people who demand to talk to me once I get on AIM. It would keep me up for FOUR hours, just fighting off the blinking windows. I'll be on come the weekend. As it is, work just takes the fight right out of me.

And MSN is unfortunately no better.

Fri Jul 08, 2005 4:29 pm

You should just post this in the art tutorial threads, since that's technically what it is.

Fri Jul 08, 2005 4:35 pm

No, I disagree it's totally different. You can't apply writing tutorials to drawn art and vice versa.

Fri Jul 08, 2005 4:43 pm

Layne's a bit touched. By a two by four. Upside the back of his head. Thrice Daily.

Re: Proper ways to write:

Thu Jul 14, 2005 7:08 pm

Hmmm, let's take a look at Toodee's work here.
[quote="2D"]Well this is my first ever fan-fic ever made, edited by Griddles but the story is mine so here ya go:

The First Encounter

It was a normal day like, much like every other day. Meadville was quiet and peaceful, which was the norm thanks to the rather special people who lived in the huge city. Yesterday had been normal. Today was normal, too. Well... at least that’s what everyone thought…

Mega Ville Elementary, the largest school in the area, possibly the whole state. Much like the rest of the city, things appeared normal. Sensei and groundskeeper, Jack, wandered around the schoolyard as the children frolicked and played. He loved children and they were a welcome change to the people he had dealt with earlier in his life. Every so often a student would approach him and say hi. Jack would grin, his tall muscular form casting a shadow on most of the younger kids. The first graders were tiny compared to Jack, their little forms almost below Jack's vision when he stared straight. The only one he really had no trouble seeing was Blossom, her large red bow giving her almost a whole extra foot in height. Currently, Blossom was sitting by her favorite tree in the yard, next to her close friend Dexter, reading some sort of comic. Jack squinted, and he read that the comic was entitled 'Tin - The Incompetent Ninja'.

Jack chuckled, just as a flash of light descended from the sky. Jack held out his arm to shield his eyes as the brightness clouded his vision. Almost as soon as it had appeared, it vanished. Jack's sight slowly cleared. He was in a dark landscape, the rocks red with the color of what looked like dry blood. Then he noticed he was not alone. Many people from the school were here too. He saw Bubbles and Buttercup, the latter looking downright furious at having been yanked out of school. Blossom meanwhile was still sitting next to Dexter, comic book between them. He glanced around at some of the other people but had no chance to recognize them as a form took shape in front of the group. It took the shape of a strange man, whose eyes glinted with a hidden motive. His mouth parted and he spoke, “Hello everyone!" his voice was deceptively friendly, "You must be wondering what are you doing here...â€

Thu Jul 14, 2005 7:23 pm

Totally awesome. :D

Thu Jul 14, 2005 7:56 pm

Play nice, Cole...

Thu Jul 14, 2005 8:02 pm

Oh shush Spike XD
You're the one editing posts and correcting grammar in blood! XD

Thu Jul 14, 2005 8:09 pm

Jay wrote:Oh shush Spike XD
You're the one editing posts and correcting grammar in blood! XD

Only in self defense XD

Fri Jul 15, 2005 1:26 am

My fault on the 2D fic as editor, guys. Sorry. Dunno what happened but I had to HEAVILY edit the story anyway. I'm doing my best for 2D and I'll be on the lookout for mistakes in future parts.

I can't change the storyline, though.

Added after 1 hours 57 minutes:

Hmm... this is odd. I checked my save file of 2D's fic that I edited for. There are no grammar errors like those above. I can PM it to Cole if he really wants proof.

I guess it lost something in the translation, so to speak. I for one didn't make those errors...

Sun Feb 26, 2006 1:26 pm

Nicholas Robinson wrote:The night was humid when the Sith Empire Remnant invaded. They have tooken over Washington DC and re-named it New Coruscant with Sith Commander as president. In order to defeat the Empire, the Powerpuff Girls team up with the Darkstar Council. President Bush, Vice President Cheney and Congress flee from New Coruscant to Megaville. To make things worst, a few TIE Bombers have bombed the Baldwins, after that, Bush declares war on the Empire. Meanwhile the 2 cops from Lethal Weapon team up with the Powerpuff Girls. The war lasted for 9 years but the good guys won at the end. And so once again the day is saved thanks to the Powerpuff Girls, the 2 cops and the Darkstar Council. The End.

Son of a.... Now, I know I work in the doujinshi style universe on occasion but fuck, you suck. A story imports an emotional ride that draws you in. A summary just tells you what happened.

This is a summary:
Cult Wars: The Reckoning

Two lovers learn they are the children of Gods. In the middle of a war amoongst the Gods in the Outer Realms, they must fight and survive, ultimately choosing who to side with. Their own fathers amongst the Gods or their paternal enemies.

this is a story:

What you've written is an outline for a story. One that sucks, but an outline of a story, nonetheless. Sit down and write, don't post a lame little summary. No one likes summaries of stories, unless you're being told about the story to make you want to read it.

Tue Aug 01, 2006 1:25 pm

I'm having some problems reading your post, Cole. There are just random things in it like euro signs. Maybe it's my Firefox or something, but would like to know how to solve it, so I can read it. :snoogins:

Wed Aug 02, 2006 7:53 pm

SpellRuler wrote:I'm having some problems reading your post, Cole. There are just random things in it like euro signs. Maybe it's my Firefox or something, but would like to know how to solve it, so I can read it. :snoogins:

I'm having the same problem.

Thu Aug 03, 2006 2:22 am

Put it in unicode-8. I'd go through and fix it somehow, but i don't know why it does that exactly.

Thu Aug 03, 2006 11:38 am

So...Cole, can anyone post tips about writing style here? Cause I've got a couple comments I'd like to make about plot structure and common fanfiction pitfalls that people should avoice. Is that alright?

Fri Aug 04, 2006 12:54 am


Re: Proper Writing Styles

Fri Aug 04, 2006 6:27 am

Cole wrote:Now, ellipsis can be used in three ways and still be used properly(though I absolutely despise the two latter ways)
He... did what?
He...did what?
He ... did what?
I don't know why those last two are okay. They look like absolute shite. You don't have a sentence start right after a full stop or have a space between the last word and a period, yes? So why is it proper to use an ellipsis that way?
I'm not quite sure about this one. The way I always looked at it was that since spaces work as short pauses between words, putting one after a pause already in the sentence throws the timing off a bit. So in the second example it goes [talk][pause][talk], while the first example goes [talk][pause][pause][talk]. My mind interprets #1 as about a 50% longer pause then #2, which kind of screws with me when imagining a back and forth conversation between characters.

But of course this may be just me. Probably just me.

Fri Aug 04, 2006 5:48 pm

Cole wrote:No.

Ok, fair enough.
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