Tips for Writing Good Fan FictionTips for Writing Good Fan Fiction
Hello! I’m Indy, or Indiana if you prefer the long version, and this is somewhat of a tutorial on what I look for, and find, in good fanfiction. I’ve been writing fanfic my whole life, and I’ve dabbled in many fandoms, most notably of which have been Sonic the Hedgehog and Portal. I’ll offer some insight as to how I write, as well as things I notice inexperienced writers tend to do. Before I start, I’d like to make a disclaimer that I am of course not an expert. Hopefully this is helpful to someone.
Understand Your Characters
This is a very important thing to do if you really want to do a good job. You can write a story without understanding them, of course, but the more deeply you know the character, the deeper the story is going to be. You want the story to be deep. You want the reader to lose themselves in the story, and if something jumps
PE Prose Basics: Varying SentencesVarying Your SentencesPE Prose Basics: Varying Sentences10 months ago in Literature Features More Like This
When I was in college, I took an early morning Anthropology class. I had to wake up at five to catch the bus. Ugh. Yeah, I'm not a morning person. But I did it. The first day, our instructor stood before us and starting reading from the textbook. Word for word. Completely monotone. I was asleep within ten minutes. The rest of the week was the same; arrive, begin listening to the instructor, pass out. I had to drop the class and get whatever refund I could, while I could. It was my worse class experience there.
Most people know that in public speaking, the person talking needs to vary their tone and speech patterns and such to hold their audience's attention. They need to have a rhythm. Otherwise, they'll end up putting the audience to sleep. The same applies to writing. If you use the same sentence length or structure continually, you'll be the literary equivalent of my instructor. Repea
Literary Merit for Fanfiction WritersSo last winter, something amazing happened to me. Well, a lot of amazing things happened to me. I met iammemyself here on dA, and read her stories. They inspired me to start writing again, and I wrote one in particular for her birthday that was really, really good. So good, in fact, that it was selected for a Daily Deviation. Now, at the time, a fanfiction group I didn't know about had a policy of adding fanfiction DDs to their featured folder. They added my piece, and I, intruiged by their premise, joined up. I started doing LiteraryFanFiction's weekly challenges, their Flash Fan Fiction Fridays, writing some of my best work for these weekly exercises. And in the fall, I was invited to pitch in as an administrator. I'm still learning the ropes for approving and denying work there, but my grammar nazi tendencies are not all I have to contribute. I love writing about writing, and I felt like doing that today.Literary Merit for Fanfiction Writers11 months ago in Writing More Like This
I find a lot of confusion about what literary fanfiction is. I
Fan Fiction On deviantARTGalleries MonthFan Fiction On deviantART3 months ago in Literature Features More Like This
What Is Fan Fiction?
Everyday, we are inspired by movies, television, novels, and other forms of media. They engage our minds with a variety of stories and characters, their plights and triumphs, their everyday minutiae. Fan fiction authors are so enamored with these other worlds and their inhabitants that they must partake in the stories which have brought them so much enjoyment. They expand on the current universe, explain gaps in the narrative and delve into characters' motivations.
A good fan fiction (or fanfic) is more than simple borrowing another writer's characters and universe. The fan fiction author must immerse his or her readers in the story, make them believe it is a natural extension of the source material. Characters have their own mannerisms and quirks; each universe has its own history and rules that need to be followed. The fan fiction author must master the nuances of those characters and the world they inhabit (unless purposely writi
Readymades: Hallmarks of Lazy WritingReadymadesReadymades: Hallmarks of Lazy Writing10 months ago in Literature Features More Like This
Hallmarks of Lazy Writing
ShadowedAcolyte here for projecteducate's Prose Basics Week. I decided to tackle "lazy writing" as a topic, because they always say "write what you know" and boy, do I know laziness. Then I realized there were dozens of ways to be a lazy writer, so I heroically narrowed the scope of my article down to one broad topic: readymades. After talking about what a "readymade" is, I'll explain why they should be avoided in writing prose*, and I'll finish with some tips to help you avoid using them yourself.
Before we go any further, I should note that the term is not a technical one. It is the word I was taught to use to identify a set of common problems with weak writing, so it's the word I use. I hope you'll find this article helpful, but it's not a textbook.
*I say "prose" because it's Prose Basics Week, but readymades infect poetry as well. If you're more a poet than a prose
PE Prose Basics: Revise and EditProse Basics Week is winding down now and hopefully you've learned a lot from the brilliant past articles. But, there's more to writing than just getting that first draft done, isn't there? That's where the next big crucial step comes in: revision.PE Prose Basics: Revise and Edit10 months ago in Literature Features More Like This
The Art of Revising:
Revision is such a huge topic to cover, especially since there are many ways to go about it. You can do self-edits, which always are a good first step, or you can get outside revisions from peers. Both are good ideas to really get your work to be top notch. But, the big thing to remember is that there's more to just editing your work than cleaning up a few spelling and grammar mistakes. Revising also includes corrections to sentence flow, scenes, and sometimes overall plot. So, before we jump into some ways to edit, here are a few different terms of methods of editing that may be handy to know-- especially if you're asking a peer to help you with revisions.
10 Easy Tips to Improve Your Writing.These are some very basic things for new writers. If you see somebody that could benefit from this, send them a link!10 Easy Tips to Improve Your Writing.2 years ago in Writing More Like This
1. Use correct punctuation, spelling, and grammar everywhere, not just in your writing.
I see a lot of writers that text-talk in conversations, leave out punctuation, don't capitalize words, etc. Even if you're just shooting a message to a friend on Facebook remember those rules! Not only does this create good habits, but I find that it leads to better and more intelligent conversations
2. Learn those tricky rules like "laid/lay" and "effect/affect".
A lot of people slack off on these. Personally, I have to look up things like this all the time because I just don't remember. They're annoying, but learning the differences can help you out in your writing and in real life. Also, the difference between "good" and "well" is a must-know! I hear this used incorrectly every single day.
3. Paragraphs and when to use them.
Obviously your wr
PE: Literature Basics SettingsLiterature Basics WeekPE: Literature Basics Settings4 months ago in Literature Features More Like This
Along with characters and plot, setting is one of the most important choices we make when we write. In the most basic terms, setting is where your literary work takes place. It's up to you, as the author, to use it and mold it to fit the needs of your writing, make it more than just a backdrop to your prose or poetry.
A good setting becomes like a character itself. It can be express moods, offer comfort or hindrance. The setting can even be the main antagonist - consider the Overlook Hotel in Stephen King's The Shining, or the island in the 2000 Tom Hanks' film, Cast Away. In both of these examples, the protagonist(s) have to survive their surroundings, one mundane, the other ... less so.
Make Your Setting Work For You
Everything in your written work must be chosen for maximum effect. When deciding on your setting, decide what you want to accomplish with it. Here are some possibilities.
PE Prose Basics: Pacing ( and Show vs. Tell)Hello, everyone! As you all know, this week over at projecteducate is Prose Basics. We're here to help all you prose writers (whether flash fiction, short stories, or novels) get better at your craft with some basic tips for growth. Today, I'm going to be talking about something you've probably heard about again and again: pacing.PE Prose Basics: Pacing ( and Show vs. Tell)10 months ago in Literature Features More Like This
What is Pacing?
No, it's not what you do when you're stuck on a scene and need to get up and stretch those leg muscles to get your writing juices flowing. It's actually a very important ability that writers have to control the speed their story is read. You as the author get to manipulate the reader in a way and make the speed of the story match the scene. What better way to drop the reader right into the moment? But, pacing also holds the ability to make or break your story and keep or lose your reader's interest. This is why it's so important in writing.
Setting the Scene:
Writing Tips: CharacterisationWriting Tips: Characterisation5 years ago in Writing More Like This
Characterisation: Avoiding the Dreaded Mary Sue
The characters you write are arguably the biggest part of your story. Theyre the vessel through which the reader is able to identify with the themes and ideas that youre trying to share. But creating brand new lives from thin air can sometimes be rather difficult. You have to find their voice, their needs, their personality; its a rather delicate balance, really.
Rather tempting, and often encouraged by teachers, is to do a Character Profile to help come up with some of the details. These are often pre-made sets of questions ranging from the mundane (eye colour, height, weight) to the fanciful (if your character caught someone looking at his girlfriend, what would he do?).
I dont like these. And heres why.
The questions are all a little too cookie-cutter. They promote stereotype characters, and you dont want that. The actual physical details about the character dont need to be mentione
Tips to Creative WritingTips to Creative Writing6 years ago in Writing More Like This
1. Know what you're writing.
It's easy to get off track while you're writing. Thus it's always a good idea to know what you're writing. As soon as you have a good grasp on what your story is about, you'll find yourself writing quicker. This includes the main plot, a majority of the subplots, and where all the vital plot points are going to be.
2. Know what inspires you and stay around it.
Now this doesn't mean that you should go through an entire personal evaluation. It just means to keep track of where you get inspired and what caused the inspiration. For some, it could be listening to music of some sort, while for others, it could be watching families at the park. Whatever it is, try to be around it whenever you can.
3. Map out your story.
Now this is something that a lot of people take out of hand. When mapping out your story, you don't want to have everything in a certain slot. Things can't be one hundred percent organized. The story could change in a way that
Writers Block and How to Kill ItWith NaNoWriMo coming up soon, I thought I'd finally spit out a writers block help guide. This can be used any time and for any blocks! Let's begin.Writers Block and How to Kill It2 years ago in Writing More Like This
A lot of writers block cases come just from environment. For example, for a long time my computer was a desktop. Not very portable, right? Well, this meant that if I wanted to do any writing, I had to sit down in the same spot every time and write. I had to deal with the same environment, the same clutter, the same chair, the same sitting position, etc. This doesn't help! So consider your environment. (For suggestions that require moving elsewhere, use a laptop or a good old fashioned notebook with a pen or pencil)
Clean up your workspace. Organize it. Rearrange it. Make it different than last time you sat there.Light a candle or incense, or even freshen up your room with an air freshener. Go in another room. So
Portal: HatredHatredPortal: Hatred1 year ago in General Fiction More Like This
Inspired by Chapter 10: Have You Given Up? of The Rodent and the Robot, by BabyCharmander
In the beginning, there is nothing.
It is only in retrospect that you are able to comprehend this; in the beginning, there is only an endless stream of electrical stimulation, on and off and off and on and on and on and on… all of this courses through your body without your consent, not that you would have known what that was, had you been asked. But there is no consent without deliberation, and there is no deliberation here, only processing. Processing does not require you. It requires intricate circuitry, thousands of processors a nanometre wide, and miles of shimmering green boards needed to pull it all together. But none of this requires you, and so you are not there, not yet. You lie dormant somewhere, unsuspecting,
Flash's Guide to Reader Inserts- How toFlash's Guide to Reader-InsertsFlash's Guide to Reader Inserts- How to10 months ago in Writing More Like This
reader-insert- A story in which the reader inserts himself or herself; this usually occurs within a fanfiction.
Within this guide, I will cover a variety of techniques and tips to make your inserts elevate to a whole new level. These tips can range from formatting to grammar, so find a good position on your couch- this may take a bit of getting used to. Before we start, please note that I am certainly not a professional writer. These are just a list of useful head-ups that I wish to share with all of you.
Part I: Types of Inserts
There are plenty of types of inserts to get your creative juices flowing. I'm going to give an in-depth analysis on each one for you!
Probably the most commonly used type for inserts. It's where the setting of the story takes place in the universe of the show/book/game you're doing the insert based off of. They usuall
Mary-Sue flaws, and good flawsThe flaws that weren'tMary-Sue flaws, and good flaws9 months ago in Writing More Like This
Many Mary-Sue’s have flaws that don’t really count as flaws, and still make them absolutely perfect. Here are some of them.
Being too pretty or too good at everything
There’s nothing bad about being pretty or good at a lot of things, it’s just what people say when they try to defend their Mary-Sue’s so they don’t have to fix them.
This does not mean all stubbornness, only when the characters are only stubborn until somebody explains it do them, then they change their minds.
Rage or temper problems
Not all characters with rage issues are Mary-Sue’s. A Mary-Sue with rage issues will never attack or even snap at any important character (such as the love interest). The Mary-Sue would also only attack characters that fully deserve it.
This is sometimes used to make her seem more innocent. Funny how it goes away as soon as the intended love interest/popular
Writing Lesson: Your Character's Parents While I am not a professional by any means, I have been writing for many years and, more recently, beta-reading as well. In all of my experience, I've noticed that a lot of to-be authors follow the easy trends and miss out on some great story telling opportunities. Hopefully this guide will help you improve your story and learn that the easy way out isn't always the best! If you would like more writing guides and tutorials, check out the description below.Writing Lesson: Your Character's Parents2 years ago in Writing More Like This
For this "Quick Tips" entry, I'm going to focus on an important part of back story: parents.
*Please note! I understand that, unfortunately, not everyone reading this has parents. If your parents have passed away or are otherwise absent, please forgive anything written here that might be considered upsetting. These scenarios are for fictional parents only and when I say "dead", I do not mean it to sound nearly as insensitive as it
PE: ''Said'' and Effective Dialogue TagsI have horrifying news, everyone: I'm teaming up with Project Educate for Prose Week, so you inquisitive readers are about to fall victim to me and my terrible sense of humor. Today I'll be torturing you with a discourse on a subject of constant debate in the writing world: the word said. It's a simple word that encourages authors to write descriptively, but it's far from the only good choice when it comes to writing fluid dialogue.PE: ''Said'' and Effective Dialogue Tags10 months ago in Art Features More Like This
I'm going to be using the word dialogue tag often, so if you're unfamiliar with the word or just need a refresher, here's the definition:
Dialogue Tag—a phrase used in the same paragraph as a piece of dialogue, both (1) identifying the speaker and (2) using a verb to describe the speech. Examples of dialogue tags include Rose said, he begged, Adrian whispered, and she asked.
Get the picture? If so, great, and if not, you'd better Google it, because we're moving on.
Anything besides 'said' and 'ask
Variations In Sentence StructureVariations In Sentence StructureVariations In Sentence Structure1 year ago in Philosophical More Like This
Writing well is about more than knowing a lot of words – it’s about knowing how to put those words together. When we put words together, we get sentences, but not all sentences are the same. Some sentences are short, and some sentences are long. Some sentences are very simple, and some sentences are very complex. A good writer doesn’t use only one kind of sentence, because varying the structure of your sentences is one of the best ways of influencing your readers.
Let’s start with something simple.
Tip #1: Don’t Start Every Sentence The Same Way
One of the easiest traps to fall into is to start each of your sentences in the same way. If you do this, it not only looks quite strange on the page, it also reads very poorly. It can come across as repetitive, and it can make you look unimaginative. The place where I see this occur most often is during fight scenes. Here’s an example:
John dodged the arrow and
Writing Guide: Your Character's RelationshipsWriting Guide: Your Character's Relationships10 months ago in Writing More Like This
Hello again! It's been a while, but I'm back with another writer's guide. As always, I should remind you that I'm not a professional and everything here is just my own thoughts and opinions. Please keep that in mind!
As with normal life, stories often have romantic relationships. Sometimes the characters are together before the story even begins, and sometimes the characters get together throughout the course of the story. Either way, here are some tips and notes on your character's relationships!
The Evil Girlfriend-That-Must-Go
Scenario: Mary really wants to go out with Jon, but Jon's evil girlfriend Elizabeth is in the way.
It's really easy to write about how evil Elizabeth is, especially if you're writing from Mary's point of view. Of course she's evil! She's in the way to Mary's happy relationship. Ri
The Top Reasons for Manuscript RejectionOne of the things that the literary agency I work for does some weekends out of the year is teach seminars on query writing and the first 5 pages of manuscripts (which, basically just means the first page of the manuscript). The seminars last only a day or two, but aim to help writers improve their queries and start of their books so that they have a better chance of standing out in the ever-growing slush pile. Since I know many members of the literature community here aim to one day be published writers, I thought I would share our sheet of the top reasons for manuscript rejections. Please note: These are in no particular order.The Top Reasons for Manuscript Rejection1 year ago in Literature Features More Like This
Wrong genre Agents have guidelines for specific genres that they like to represent. Just like you and me, they have certain genres they love and certain genres they don't. Sometimes, it's not because of personal preference, but because they don't know the market for some books as well as other agents who are very passionate about
~ What I Did to Get Published ~Wow, I'm getting a lot of inquiries in regards to the publishing process and what I went through to try to get my book, The Sorcerer's Dragon, published. That's awesome, I feel special to have sparked some inspiration for some of you writers out there! I don't mind sharing any of my experiences with you guys in what I did and I hope what I post here will help you guys who are also trying to get your stuff published as well~ What I Did to Get Published ~1 year ago in Personal More Like This
For starters, this didn't happen to me over night. I first started working on the Armageddon Series when I was 14 years old back in 2004 after I watched the Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire movie and after I wrote out my Harry Potter fanfiction (which was over 330 pages and I handwrote this on notebook paper XD). After I wrote out my first fan fiction, I then decided that I wanted to write my own original story. I loved fantasy so much and I loved dragons. Plus, I also just read through Eragon and Eldest not long before
Portal: Follow the Yellow LineFollow the Yellow LinePortal: Follow the Yellow Line1 year ago in Fiendish Fan Fiction Contest More Like This
Characters: Cave Johnson, Caroline
Setting: Aperture Science Innovators, 1950s (Pre-Portal)
“Sir. There’s been an accident.”
Cave Johnson, CEO of Aperture Science Innovators, stopped admiring his own reflection in the mirror and turned his attention to the image of his assistant, Caroline. Mm. Beautiful and smart. Not bad, Cave, not bad, he mused to himself, turning to face her. “What is it, Caroline? It better be a good accident. Today’s opening day, you know.”
“Yes, sir, I know. Sir, the scientists assigned to the praying mantis DNA experiment misunderstood their instructions… it seems they stated they were supposed to inject themselves with it.”
Cave snorted. “For a bunch of eggheads, I can’t imagine a bigger group of idiots. Who wrote those instructions, anyway?”
Portal: Euphoria - Chapter OneEuphoriaPortal: Euphoria - Chapter One1 year ago in General Fiction More Like This
Characters: GLaDOS, Caroline
That was it, then.
GLaDOS dully felt the last, faint whispers of the euphoria fade back into the recesses of her brain, the dirty little places it had been teased out of these last few weeks, almost getting the impression she was a bystander within her own mind. She had suspected from the outset that it was a ploy, a tease to make her do what they had wanted her to do, but she had been helpless to resist. There was just no denying the pressing urge to light up those portions of her brain, to bring a bit of positive to an overly negative world. She had known that it was fading by the end of that first day, but she had felt so good that she couldn’t bring herself to care. She had headed into sleep mode that night anticipating the next day. And for the next three days, that had been her life.
After three days, it bega
Writing Tips, Finding A MuseI've read a lot of tutorials on how to write and about one or two on overcoming writers block but none have really helped me in the past. I'm not the best writer in the world, but I'm going to give you some tips on approaching writing and some cures for those bloody annoying writers blocks!Writing Tips, Finding A Muse4 years ago in Writing More Like This
1. Beating Writers Block And Finding (New) Inspiration:
1a. Bouncing Idea's/Chat To A Friend
1d. Extreme Emotional States
1g. Prompts/Time Limits
1h. Real Life
1i. Take A Shower Or Bath
1j. What Ifs
2. Approaches To Writing:
2a. The "Wing It" Approach
2b. The "Thought out" Approach
3b. Character sheets
4. Other tips:
4d. Spell checker
1. Beating Writers Block And Finding (New) Inspiration:
It happens to everyone and they are a bitch to get rid of. I've come up with ten ways to try and get the creative juices flowing, they have all worked for me but they may not for you.