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Thread: Advice for Aspiring Authors

  1. #226
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    Regarding to the choice of party Pokemon of a Trainer, I'll suggest go to the route of "representative to the characteristic of the owner". Which means, the team that will somehow reflect the personality and characteristic of that specific owner.
    I'm doing this because it is just like in reality when someone go buy a car, people that has a more "masculinely powerful" personality might like BMW or the Mercedes Benz, the one with an economical mind will choose Daihatsu or the Citi Golf, the that loves speed seems to choose Audi, those arrogant upstart may go choose the expensive ones like Porche or other racecar, especially the limited edition. Just wanted to say, what they choose can indirectly reflect their personality and/or characteristic.


    Currently I'm writing an original fic where there are total 5 different main characters, whereas they are all NON-BEGINNERS, hence they all possess already more than 1 Pokemon right at the beginning of the story (three has 6 Pokemon in their teams, two has 5 Pokemon in their teams). When I did my character planning before I write this story, their handheld Pokemon was one of my main concern. As I look through the list of Pokemon, I select certain Pokemons that seems best to represent the characters' characteristics, with specifically the following rules are in consideration:
    1. No Legendaries;
    2. The team must be balance in type, no duplicate in the Pokemon types;
    3. Each team contains at most one of the "starter" pokemon;
    4. The team contains pokemon from different generations, no team will consist of Pokemon only from one single generation;
    5. The team should be competitively balanced, some excel in speed, some excel in power, some excel in defense, some excel in skills, etc.

    Then also, I used these guidelines to narrow down the possible choices of what I have to choose:
    a) Two characters participated in Pokemon League in the past, so they should possess some strong Pokemon, or at least, fully evolved Pokemon
    b) One character is not professional, but not beginner either. She was in the middle of training, so she would possess some evolved Pokemon at most up to the second stage, but no fully evolved ones.
    c) One character doesn't like to fight at all, whereas her position is "the healer", so she would possess some Pokemon capable to use healing moves.
    d) One character is a beginner, but he possess natural potential talent to become strong trainer. So I gave him some unevolved Pokemon that seems weak at start, but has potential to become very strong.

    With the help of these rules and guidelines for my selection, I think I had selected the most appropriate Pokemon that best suits my characters.
    "人には知らない世界はそこに存在する、そして人には知らない冒険はそこに始まってる"
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  2. #227
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    How much of a story should one have planned out before writing the first chapter?
    So far I have four decently-sized chapters planned out, but I fear that if I start writing now, then my story will slowly degrade in quality.





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  3. #228
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wishing Star View Post
    How much of a story should one have planned out before writing the first chapter?
    So far I have four decently-sized chapters planned out, but I fear that if I start writing now, then my story will slowly degrade in quality.
    Depends. A lot of people will tell you to plot out ALL the story, but that tends to turn into "best laid plans of mice and men" situation for me. I imagine most advice you will receive will be to plot out the entire story in advance, but allow me to play Devil's Advocate for you.

    A lot of times, the story I end up writing is drastically different from the story I plotted. As I'm writing the characters and the scenes, the story tends to move itself in directions I had no previously imagined. The story, to me, is a living, breathing thing that is not always entirely in my control. The characters are my alive as I write them than they were as concepts in my head, and so when I get to certain scenes in my actual writing, I literally just think "No...no, he wouldn't do that after all", and then I have to ad lib a new outcome.

    Also, I tend to get writer's block if I plot out too far ahead because I end up falling in love with my later ideas and not being as interested in writing the less interesting (to me) chapters that come first. In all honesty, that is the leading cause of writer's block for me: discouragement that I'm not writing the scenes/chapters/stories that I'm more excited about.


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  4. #229
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wishing Star View Post
    How much of a story should one have planned out before writing the first chapter?
    So far I have four decently-sized chapters planned out, but I fear that if I start writing now, then my story will slowly degrade in quality.
    I think it would help if you had an ending in mind. It doesn't have to be anything big or descriptive, but it's a goal of sorts so you know where you need to go in the end. And hopefully, it'll lessen any degradation in quality. For the middle, you don't need anything definite (or if you're feeling really daring, nothing at all); a sketch of a plot could work fine. I've found that if I didn't have some idea where or what to do next, I would be less motivated to write, but as Sid87 said don't stick to anything you plan, but rather let the story sort of write itself using you as a proxy. It'll not only feel more natural, but be better written for it once you hit that groove.
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  5. #230
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    A friend and I just started a collaboration for a fanfic. The story takes place five years after Pokemon Heartgold and Soulsilver when Red was defeated by a challenger. In the present time, legendary pokemon start to disappear for unknown reasons. Red and Green Oak(male) go to Johto to begin their search to figure out the cause of the disappearing pokemon. The story has some OCs and characters from the game.

    My friend and I revised our chapters several times and posted the chapters on a fanfic website, but we barely get any feedback or comments about the story. The story starts out slow because it needs time to build up to the plot. In terms of plot, the plot doesn't start moving until perhaps around the fifth chapter. The fanfic's link is in my signature. Is there a way I can make our story get more attention? Each chapter is about 2000 words long.
    Disappearance: REWRITE (19/??)
    Author: Mitsukiharu (collaboration account)
    Summary: Legendary pokemon once resided with humans until war and bloodshed turned the center of Johto into a wasteland 150 years ago. The legendaries scattered to keep peace. 5 years after Red was defeated, he and the Green are in a situation like before war broke out. They must find the cause of the disappearances of the legendary pokemon or the world would be thrown into disarray.

    My Personal FF Account l Ambition l Four Times The Charm l For The Love of Food! l Disappearance: REWRITE (collboration)

  6. #231
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    Quote Originally Posted by KumaPanda View Post
    Is there a way I can make our story get more attention? Each chapter is about 2000 words long.
    Unfortunately, you're on Fanfiction.net writing a story that doesn't capitalize on either the most popular ships or the in-vogue genre of the moment. While this would normally be a compliment, it also means that you're probably going to continue getting a small audience, regardless of how good your story actually is. That's the unfortunate thing about FFNet. You can get immense amounts of reviews (100+ for every ten chapters, for example), but in order to do it, you'd have to jump on a bandwagon of one kind or another, essentially. It really doesn't help that you've advertised that there will be shounen ai, which not a lot of people on FFNet are cool with.

    But in general, the rule of thumb is project yourself, and they will come. What that means is you have to give to the community to get back from it, and that's true no matter where you go. If you want attention on a writing community, the best way to get it is by participating in it as much as possible. For FFNet, that means review everything in sight, talk a lot to authors, make a lot of friends, and maybe participate in the forums a little. For Serebii, that means reviewing a lot and posting to as many threads as possible, not just here but all over the board. It's possible that you might glean some readers from Serebii, but honestly, FFNet has a negative reputation for all kinds of shenanigans at this point. (Not to mention not a lot of people are super-willing to click links to get to your story because that reads to them like advertising.) You might as well just post your work to Serebii and do the "post to ALL THE THINGS" method if you want attention from the Serebii community.

    For the other things, allow me to copypasta most of what I said on the topic.

    One of the questions I see the most frequently is this one: how do I get reviews? This comes in a variety of flavors, ranging from an actual question on a writing forum to a note attached to the fic itself complaining about a lack of reviews. Review farming itself has its own basic rules of etiquette, but to make things easier, let me just list them off in two categories: dos and don'ts.

    ---

    Do!

    1. Make sure you have an eye-catching title. While there's that old cliché "never judge a book by its cover," unfortunately, the first thing we judge of your story is its cover. Make sure your title is spelled, punctuated, and capitalized correctly. We're more likely to click on a title that is (just because clean grammar usually says to a potential reader that you're taking your work seriously and have put in the effort to clean it up). Likewise, make sure it's actually interesting. We're more likely to pick up a title that says things like "Influx Aeterna" than "The Kanto League." The first one gives off an air of mystery, whereas the second just tells us it's another original trainer story.
    - 1a. Do not use tildes ( ~ ) or asterisks ( * ) in your title. Potential readers might not take your story seriously if they see that kind of thing.
    [Note: This tip is outdated and depends on the community. I've also met people on Serebii who have read fics just because they had the newest region's name in the title or just because they sounded like trainer fics. It's just as good knowing how to work the crowd in order to get the highest response.]

    2. If you're posting your fic on a writing archive that allows you to include a summary (such as Fanfiction.net), be sure to do the same with your summary: proofread it and make sure it's worded in a way that catches our attention. Even if you're writing a new trainer story, try to make it so that it doesn't sound like every other new trainer story out there.

    3. Don't be afraid to add warnings to the summary or title of your fic. Warnings (M/M, AAML, transformation fic, rated R, et cetera) actually help advertise your story [in many cases]. While they chase away groups of your readers, they attract people who actually like some of those things you're warning about, and they can attract them in droves (particularly if the community happens to like that kind of thing).

    4. If you're posting on a forum, pay attention to the stickies. Some places have areas where you can advertise your fic. Take full advantage of these threads because, hey, easy advertising, right?
    - 4a. Writing archives occasionally have these if they also have discussion groups. For example, Fanfiction.net has C2 archives and forums where you can request reviewers. Try contacting C2 managers to get your fic advertised on their archives, and browse forums to find places where you can request reviewers.

    5. Forums tend to have signature features. Put a link to your story in your signature (and don't be afraid to dress it up a little with BBCode, a summary, or even a banner if you've got artistic skills or can find someone who does), and post like crazy. Find places to wedge yourself into the discussion. Review other stories. Do something to make your signature be seen by more people in the writing community. The more people who see your signature, the more likely it is someone will click on the link to your story.

    6. Reviewing always helps. Not only can you make friends with members of the community that way (meaning you can ask them to review your story eventually), but people who get reviewed will sometimes review you in return. In other words, be active in the writing community, and you'll get more of a response.

    7. Don't be afraid to ask a reviewer directly. If you see someone reviewing on a community, try asking them through PM, e-mail, or whatever other contact means you've got if your kind of story would float their boat and if they have enough time to drop by. A lot of the time, unless busy thanks to real life, a reviewer would be happy to check out your story and leave a response.

    8. There are two different kinds of stories that get the most reviews: awesome fics or terrible ones. If you want the most compliments, you'll want to aim for the "awesome fic" category. In other words, proofread. Always make sure your writing is clean, easy to read (by removing all of the errors that will trip a reader up), and enjoyable (i.e., with solid characterization, plot, and details). Never submit a story you haven't spent a lot of time not only planning out and writing but also proofreading.

    ---

    Don't!

    1. Never post to complain that you're not getting any reviews. (This includes making entire threads to complain about never getting reviewed or just derailing a topic to say it.) Potential readers tend to see this as obnoxious, so they'll actually be less likely to review or at least review you seriously.
    - 1a. Don't do it in your story, either. Same deal, really.

    2. On a similar note, never tell your readers that you'll post the next chapter/follow their advice after X number of reviews or that you're going to quit writing if you don't get reviews at all. This is also seen as obnoxious to future readers. Alternatively, saying that you're not going to post if your story doesn't meet a certain goal can possibly backfire because it discourages readers from posting. They'll think, essentially, that it'd be a waste of their time to review because there's a chance you won't actually continue the story.

    3. Never break the rules of the forum or community to advertise your story. Always make sure you read any rules sticky, the board rules, or the guidelines of the writing community before posting anything, including advertisements to your fic. Readers usually don't want to pick up a story from an author who doesn't show the community that they actually want to be upstanding members of it. It causes you to look like a troll, basically.

    4. Never demand to be reviewed, and be grateful when you get someone to look at your story, especially if you've asked them to look in the first place. Remember everything I've said in earlier guides? Here's where all of it really comes into play. A reviewer will be happier to review someone who's polite with them: someone who doesn't nag them on whether or not they've finished their review yet and someone who doesn't outright demand that they review their stuff. Likewise, they'll be happy to review your work in the future if you don't ignore them, if you say thank you, and if you try not to argue with them using any of the usual arguments I've shown you a couple guides ago. In other words, the more pleasant you are to your future and present reviewers, the more likely they'll want to review you.
    - 4a. This doesn't just apply to the people you ask, either. Reviewers on communities tend to look at your response to other readers. The more polite you are to other people, the more your future readers will think you're open to reviews in general. Then, they'll think you're worth their time and sit down with your story.

    5. If you want to be reviewed, don't drop off the face of the earth. It's writers who are active in the writing community who get reviewed the most often. Participate in discussions, submit helpful reviews to other writers, and generally be a productive member of that online society. The more you fit into the community as a whole and the more you let your name pop up on threads all over it, the more people will jump on your story when you post it.

    6. Don't let your story die. Contrary to popular belief, going months without updates tends to make readers forget about your story, so they'll be less likely to jump on it when a new chapter comes along. Alternatively, they'll assume you've abandoned your story (which isn't exactly an uncommon practice in any fandom), or they'll just not want to go back through pages upon pages of thread titles to finally get to yours. Update frequently enough to balance quality with keeping your story within the first few pages of the thread list. That way, your readers will know you're still interested in continuing, and they'll be more likely to see your story and be reminded that they have yet to read the next chapter.

    7. Conversely, don't update too quickly. Posting three chapters a day tends to heap tons of material onto a reader, especially if they're lengthy chapters. (It can also say you're not actually serious about writing a quality story if your chapters are brief and haven't been proofread.) The more material you give a reader to look over, the longer they'll put it off for when they have time to sit down and read through it. Of course, if you add more material to this pile, they'll just keep putting it off. It's not exactly common for a reader to go through all of your chapters in a few sittings unless you're already an established writer. (For example, a person will read through forty or more chapters if you're already getting a lot of reviews for your work as it is. They won't do that if you're a new face to the community because you don't have that same following of readers that will encourage them to join in your fanbase.)

    8. Never lose patience. It's very rare to get a ton of reviews right away, and it'll take a lot of hard work to get to that point. Follow the above steps and put a lot of effort, both into the advertising end of things and the story itself. While I can't tell you that you'll eventually be a writing sensation, I can tell you that after awhile of exposure and after putting a lot of care into your work, you'll get at least a decent following of readers.

    ---

    In other words, getting more reviews for your fic isn't a particularly difficult process. It's a matter of knowing how the community works, combined with communication skills and understanding what readers are thinking. Sure, that sounds like a hard formula, but all I'm saying is know your community. Make friends. Read the rules. Participate in discussions. Review. Be an awesome person to hang around. All of this can boost your review count pretty easily.

    Of course, there's other factors that go into all of this, such as the concept of the fic itself. Reviewers will tend to tackle fics with plots that happen to be in vogue at a particular time. For example, on Fanfiction.net these days, more people will review stories where readers can submit original characters than pretty much anything else. If you want to really get a lot of reviews, sure, go with the "in" plots, but otherwise, it's really just all about how well you get along in the community.

    That's all I can offer in terms of advice for reviewing and being reviewed. For those of you who made it all the way through at least one of these guides, thanks to all of you. I hope some parts of this will help you in the future, and best of luck to each and every one of you.
    Hope that helps!

    REBOOT: Chapter twelve now available. | Original: Chapter thirty-one now available.

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  7. #232
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    Thanks a bunch! I'll be sure to kept this in mind.
    Disappearance: REWRITE (19/??)
    Author: Mitsukiharu (collaboration account)
    Summary: Legendary pokemon once resided with humans until war and bloodshed turned the center of Johto into a wasteland 150 years ago. The legendaries scattered to keep peace. 5 years after Red was defeated, he and the Green are in a situation like before war broke out. They must find the cause of the disappearances of the legendary pokemon or the world would be thrown into disarray.

    My Personal FF Account l Ambition l Four Times The Charm l For The Love of Food! l Disappearance: REWRITE (collboration)

  8. #233
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    Now I've got a crisis I here I want to write something, but I want to ask whether to classify this as a roleplay or a fanfiction. Now I don't know if this could be considered a fanfiction or a Roleplay, because I would require other people to send me characters, but that is the only interactive part of the entire story. The rest of the story would be in the format of a normal fanfiction, so read this as some sort of prologue and can you tell me what to submit it as

    There was an empty studio, which was only occupied by a Male Chandelure named Chandler and a Bisharp named Blade

    Chandler: So Blade do you think this is a good idea for a contest

    Blade: Of course it is , why don't you explain to our audience about this

    Chandler sighs

    Chandler: Fine, Welcome to Total Pokemon Island where 28 pokemon will compete will compete for several months for the cash prize of 1,000,000,000 Poke Dollars.In this story we want you submit your OCs through the messages, then I will select 28 pokemon to compete on our show. Below us is the OC application form

    Name: ( You can name your pokemon anything you want, but please nothing with bad language)

    Species: (Any Pokemon can be entered, with the exception of Legendaries, as they will make cameos)

    Gender: ( You must consider Pokemon like Magnemite with a gender, despite the games

    Age: 14-20

    History: (You should tell about your Pokemon's life history or why they entered this contest

    Personality: ( Tell how your character acts, is he a good guy or a bad guy, I want at least one bad guy

    Unique traits: Now I don't want any Mary-Sues. Nobody is perfect. I understand if the Pokemon does have unique moves or has any colour differences

    Relationship:Yes/No, If you say yes, then who with or could you describe the ideal personality for a love interest for that character)

    Fear: ( Everyone has a fear)

    Evolve: Yes/No

    Extra:

    I will allow you to submit 3 characters per user

    I'll use the hosts as examples:
    Name: Chandler

    Species: Chandelure

    Gender: Male

    Age: 34 ( I know he is older than the limit, but he is an adult host

    Personality: Chandler is very calm at times, he doesn't fight unless provoked, if you make him mad your dead. He is very secretive about his emotions, as his depressed mainly at times, but he will play nice

    History: Chandler orignally lived in the Celestial Tower in Unova, but one day a trainer tried to catch his son and his wife sacrificed her own life to save their son, so he has emotional problems and he has gave up on hope to humans, but he likes only Pokemon, so he along with his friend made a contest to meet Pokemon not humans

    Fear: The trainer who killed his wife

    Evolve: No


    Name: Blade

    Species: Bisharp

    Gender: Male

    Age: 33

    Personality: He is mainly a loner, but he really wants to make a lot of friends, which makes him calm and quiet at times Despite having a bad past he is respectful, he made the competition to make friends

    History: He was abused by his trainer to the point Blade ended up running away and ever since then Blade became depressed and alone wandering the world. This trainer killed Chandler's wife

    Evolve: No

    Fears:Seeing his abusive trainer

    I'll accept 28 characters before we start

    So here is the prologue, can you tell me what to upload it as

  9. #234
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aakash98 View Post
    Now I've got a crisis I here I want to write something, but I want to ask whether to classify this as a roleplay or a fanfiction. Now I don't know if this could be considered a fanfiction or a Roleplay, because I would require other people to send me characters, but that is the only interactive part of the entire story. The rest of the story would be in the format of a normal fanfiction, so read this as some sort of prologue and can you tell me what to submit it as
    So is it a thing where readers interact as a character or is it a story where the readers choose the direction of the tale (like a Choose Your Own Adventure, but the readers do more than make rudimentary choices, they actually assist in defining the characters)?


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  10. #235
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    If the only interactive part of your fic is the fact that you're requiring people to send you characters, then it's a fanfic. If people are actually going to be writing what happens to those characters, then it's a roleplay.

    As a note, there are several things I would advise against here.

    1. Asking for characters. Yes, that sort of thing is immensely popular on FFNet, but there are things people do on FFNet that you shouldn't be doing (either there or on other writing communities). Here, for example, people tend to look down on character submission fics because there's numerous pitfalls. First and foremost, the people who know a character the best are the people who created them themselves. As in, if you ask for characters, you automatically set yourself up for a difficult time because you won't be as familiar with the characters you receive as the person who sent them. This will make later chapters difficult as you not only juggle multiple characters whose personalities and backstories you barely know anything about but also as you spend more and more time attempting to force the main submitted characters you're using into characterizations that don't fit who they were to begin with. In other words, you'd be flying blind -- attempting to fit a round peg into a round hole that's slightly too small.

    The second drawback, of course, is that creating an entire cast of submitted characters or creating only a few characters yourself and requiring the readers to submit the rest tends to send the message that you're too lazy to come up with your own characters, so you have to go the extra mile to prove that you're a competent writer. And that means proofreading the crap out of your work, getting it betaed, and really thinking about your plot and how those characters fit into your story. Sure, you may argue that you're doing that now... but glancing over your prologue (is it really only five lines long?), you could stand to be a bit more careful in all of those areas.

    2. Script fic. Yes, we have one on our forums that hasn't been closed. No, that doesn't mean everyone should do it. It's difficult to write a script fic and pull it off adequately; most of the time, it's simply used as an easy way out in lieu of using prose. In other words, new writers tend to use script fic because they think it would allow them to write a fic that's primarily dialogue with very little in between (cutting out a step) or that can be written very quickly in general. That is not a good way to write a fanfiction. The reason why is because fanfiction isn't a visual medium. The reader can't see what's going on, so they need to be supplied with things like details and, heck, actions in order to completely understand what's going on in a scene. (If the script was actually going to be acted out, that'd be a different story, but even then playwrights -- yes, Shakespeare included -- would provide a lot of hints as to what's going on so that the director and actors can visualize what should be done in each scene.) Moreover, if you write a fanfiction too quickly (chapter a day, for example, and written in the post reply box to boot), that opens the door for a lot of errors in your work, which in turn would make it more difficult for a reader to get through.


    ...That and you'd be in competition with this fic -- which, while not perfect, avoids a lot of these problems on top of being a pretty decent fic to begin with.

    So... yeah. I'd just recommend rethinking what you're doing here. You may be running headlong into a pretty difficult scenario.

    REBOOT: Chapter twelve now available. | Original: Chapter thirty-one now available.

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  11. #236
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    Firstly What I said before wasn't the prologue it would be just like an example of script for your judgement like a prologue of a story. Additionally, I may make changes to the prologue if the story was approved.

    Also I like people making their own characters, because then a variety of characters could be added, so it was would be less the same then other fics with a generic sense of customly made characters by the user for example: a tough guy, a loner etc. I went fanfiction.net and almost all the most reviewed Total Pokemon Island fics on Fanfiction.net used the format to submit your own character, so I followed the trend. My first intention was to make my own characters, but I just found it interesting for someone else to make their own characters, I hope you don't disapprove of my idea

    I may change the script format to paragraphs with lots of detail if that suits you
    Last edited by Aakash98; 2nd September 2012 at 6:04 PM.

  12. #237
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aakash98 View Post
    Firstly What I said before wasn't the prologue
    But... you labeled it as a prologue at the end of your post. O_o

    Additionally, I may make changes to the prologue if the story was approved.
    So is it a prologue or isn't it?

    Also I like people making their own characters, because then a variety of characters could be added,
    Any writer can create a variety of characters by themselves. Most writers don't stick to just one type of character.

    That and this would be a variety of characters you wouldn't be fully familiar with because, well... they're not your characters.

    so it was would be less the same then other fics with a generic sense of customly made characters by the user for example: a tough guy, a loner etc.
    Actually, just because you're shafting the responsibility of creating characters on someone else doesn't mean that you'll suddenly have a non-generic cast. I mean, think of it like this. You're giving up control over who you can include to someone else. As a result, if tons of people want to create tough guys and if tons of people have the exact same skill level with characters, then you're going to get tons of tough guys who are basically the same in terms of personality. There's no reason to believe that you're going to get a full variety of characters because you don't know who's going to be submitting what. You could even get some serious Mary Sues.

    I went fanfiction.net and almost all the most reviewed Total Pokemon Island fics on Fanfiction.net used the format to submit your own character, so I followed the trend.
    Again, lots of people do things on FFNet (read: Fanfiction.net) that are not good ideas. Character submission fics are extremely popular and have been for the past couple of years, but it's very, very rare to have one that's actually good. If you take that idea somewhere else (like Serebii), then we'll be looking at the quality of your fic, not whether or not it's following a trend (for the most part). That kind of thing just doesn't fly until you're already established as a good writer.

    Also, following trends is not a good thing to do if you're a writer. That says a lot more about your creativity, and if you go anywhere but FFNet, that means you're probably not going to be sending a good message to potential readers. Readers (off FFNet) tend to look for fics that are either well-written or new and different -- preferably both. To say that you're just going to follow a trend doesn't tell potential readers that you're original.

    My first intention was to make my own characters, but I just found it interesting for someone else to make their own characters, I hope you don't disapprove of my idea
    Again, I highly, highly suggest you rethink things because this is not FFNet. Certain things just won't fly here, especially given the fact that there's been a lot of threads that have been getting locked in this forum because they weren't that well thought-out or carefully written.

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  13. #238
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    Ok I'll think about this idea for a while

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    From experience in writing fanfics, certain audiences and writers place suggestive background music on the stories they read/create. It gives them a pedigree sense of understanding the circumstances of the story. I can share you guys an example from my Feli Chronicles:

    Last chapter:

    “Oh my goodness! I’ve never expected my brother to give us something so beautiful!” I’m just dumbstruck. “Here you go little baby. Hold on to it. Lemme get my papers and—“



    Celena’s POV:

    (Play the Background Music: Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Explorers of Sky – I Saw Something Again ; Story’s Theme: Disturbance)


    “Lucas! That’s the stone!” Mien Rin react the quickest while we catch up to see this one orb holding that unknown sickness. I just grabbed that orb and placed it on the table without thinking. It’s just gives me a sense of foreboding. Just when Keema’s husband is about to pick it up, I snatched it away.

    “WHOA THERE YOUNG LADY! No hurt but you are getting quite tense on that thing!” Like I should not, Trim.

    “Don’t you know what’s in this one?!” I was frantic. But … , “Oh no! What am I fearing? Why am I feeling like this?”

    “Heyhey! What the hassle goin on here?” that is until Keema faced me. “Miss Celena. Are you okay?! Seems like you are spooked by that present that my bro gave me! I just hope that my man didn’t do something to ya. Or the other way around that is.” Oh no, I got to do something. I made quite a mess. “Young man, do something to her. Seems that she just saw a fading spirit that rose from the ground.”

    “Sweetheart. Just give some composure to your reaction.” Lucas made it easier said than done.

    “It’s easier said than done! This orb holds-“ Just as I stopped, I heard ringing bells. After a few seconds, I was speechless.

    “I hate repeating it again maam but you are making yourself look insaaaaaaAAHHH!” Just as Keema screamed, the orb that I’m holding shines a very bright red that it enveloped all of us inside. Then I just passed out

    (End music)
    Not only does give practice in story writing but it can be used in other ways too. Like if your story is for a video game. Or a fanfic. Music and Fanfic cand mend very nicely. But in personal favored music, you want background music than Lyrical Music on the fanfics you made. Lyrical music is nice but it can be challenging to mend not just the music and the story, but you have to synch the lyrics of your music to the fanfic you are making.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jireh the provider View Post
    From experience in writing fanfics, certain audiences and writers place suggestive background music on the stories they read/create. It gives them a pedigree sense of understanding the circumstances of the story. I can share you guys an example from my Feli Chronicles:

    [I]

    Not only does give practice in story writing but it can be used in other ways too. Like if your story is for a video game. Or a fanfic. Music and Fanfic cand mend very nicely. But in personal favored music, you want background music than Lyrical Music on the fanfics you made. Lyrical music is nice but it can be challenging to mend not just the music and the story, but you have to synch the lyrics of your music to the fanfic you are making.
    Can I just say I'm not sure how to feel about this kind of thing? On the one hand, hey, interactivity. On the other, you don't make it optional when you put it smack in the middle of a chapter. When you do something like this, it's extremely jarring for some readers because we have to take the time to open a music player (or YouTube) to queue up music that wasn't actually written specifically for your piece (meaning it's at best a close approximation of the feel you want for your fic, rather than a good embodiment of it, if that makes sense) instead of simply read your work. And even if a reader decides not to follow the directions, they still have to stop for a second because you put it smack in the middle of your writing, rather than let them read on through the chapter. (It's the same principle as why you shouldn't put POV headers or flashback headers or scene headers smack in the middle of a chapter too.) It's also not a good thing to rely on because of the fact that you should be creating atmosphere through your writing; if you can't convey the emotion of a scene through words, there's just something wrong.

    So instead of telling me that your work is interactive, it actually says to me that the writing is actually amateurish if I see links to music literally smack in the middle of your work. Granted, if you want to say "here's some music that a scene was inspired by; you can queue it up when you reach it for added effect" in the author's notes before or after a chapter, by all means go for it, but don't do it smack in the middle of a chapter because that's jarring and because you shouldn't be implying that we need the music in order to enjoy your work. Good writing can and should be enjoyed with or without bells and whistles, no pun intended.
    Last edited by JX Valentine; 18th September 2012 at 11:42 AM.

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  16. #241
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    Ahh, I see. Just place suggestive music as an option on the Start or end of the story, not in the middle. Well, That helps.
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    I'm still pretty new to writing in a non-academic setting but I have learned a few useful things:

    Names: There's nothing wrong with ordinary names but I usually try to find names that fit the character, I've even made some up (IE: Aven from my mystery dungeon story, I made her name from a latin root)

    Music: try writing to orchestral music, it helps to accent the mood. (I suggest Hans Zimmer)

    Character: It may sound corny but your characters shold feel like people (or pokemon) that you could have convesations with. Don't make someones sole charcteristic a keen sense of sarcasm or a kind heart, make them layered and complex.
    Last edited by ChaosCaptain; 5th January 2013 at 9:40 AM.
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    I'm not sure if anyone checks this anymore, but I have a few questions I was hoping experienced authors could answer.

    1) How long should each chapter be (roughly) in Microsoft Word?

    2) How thoroughly do you plan out the story? Anywhere from having a detailed plan of each chapter to having a basic outline of the plot.

    3) Do you post chapters as soon as you finish them, or do you wait until you are a certain number of chapters ahead?

    4) Any pre-writing tips for me? I have the basic plot done, but what techniques do you use to brainstorm?

    Thanks a bunch to whomever answers this!

  19. #244
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maveox View Post
    I'm not sure if anyone checks this anymore, but I have a few questions I was hoping experienced authors could answer.

    1) How long should each chapter be (roughly) in Microsoft Word?

    2) How thoroughly do you plan out the story? Anywhere from having a detailed plan of each chapter to having a basic outline of the plot.

    3) Do you post chapters as soon as you finish them, or do you wait until you are a certain number of chapters ahead?

    4) Any pre-writing tips for me? I have the basic plot done, but what techniques do you use to brainstorm?

    Thanks a bunch to whomever answers this!

    Well this is what I learned as I improved my writing with my fanfic:

    1. How long each chapter is is depentant of the story, but I recomine 10-20 pages

    2. I tend to think out the basic plot then try to draw inspiration from others around me when it comes to details, even if you have the basic plot, it never hurts to draw new ideas from talking to people that are interested in what your writing.

    3. I tend to post chapters soon as I finish them because with all the detail I get into, it can take a week or more per chapter. remember, writing is an art form so it's something that cannot be rushed if you want your ideas to flow together.

    4. Again with brainstorming...sometimes you can draw your inspiration just from talking to people and while it's not a pre-writing tip...my ultiment tip is never second guess yourself (unless your sure wth conviction the idea won't work) and if you run into writter's block...walk away and take a walk outside. that walk helps to clear your head and possibly draw new ideas. O and one last thing...don't be scared to act out parts of your story because if they can't come alive for you, how will they for the reader?
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    Just a small question, when writing which of the three points of view is the most powerful? First Person, Second person, or third person?
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    The short answer is that there is no "most powerful" point of view when talking about writing in general. Different points of view work best for different stories and different methods of storytelling. How much information do you want the reader to know about what's going on, especially if it's something they might potentially learn about before it happens to the characters? Who are the characters in the story, and who should the reader know the most about or identify the most closely with? Whose story are you telling in the first place? All of these things go into choosing a point of view, and because the answers are different for each story it means that the most "powerful" way to tell one may not be the most "powerful" way to tell another.

    Most people will tell you to avoid second person, generally because it tends to be the most difficult of the three to write appropriately. That's not to say that it can't be done—there are some very moving and well-executed fics that were written in second person POV. Second-person stories use the pronoun "you", so you're implying that the reader is the one going through the events of the story. On the one hand you could almost say that this makes second person the most powerful POV of the three, because it more or less means that your reader "is" the one having the argument or "is" the one experiencing a painful loss. It's arguably the quickest way to attempt to punch someone right in the feels, to oversimplify it. On the other hand, however, you generally have to write extremely well to make your reader feel that involved with what's going on as opposed to just confused, and to make the reader feel like they could actually be this person even though they're not. If the main character deals with his problem by drinking himself into a stupor but your reader would never touch alcohol, they're not going to feel any real connection to your hard-drinking protag and the effect is lost—the story is supposed to be "about them", but "they" just did something that they would never do. (For that matter, even seemingly small issues like the character's gender being different from the reader's can cause that disconnect and thus make second person POV less effective.) It takes a bit of work to really overcome a hurdle like that, and simply put it may not be worth trying if it's not critical for the reader get that deep into the character's head. Certainly the reader won't feel so awkward about the drinking character if they're just observing him as opposed to being him.

    Someone else may want to come in and elaborate with some examples of effective uses of each viewpoint; I'm tired and really ought to be heading off to bed now. The upshot really is that it does depend on the story in question, though. Rather than looking for a blanket "best" POV for all stories you'll ever write, you should consider which POV will best serve your purposes for this one story now.
    Looking to get back into the swing of fanfic R&R. PM/VM me if you'd like me to check out your work. Note that I'd rather not read fics heavily focused on the animé, (any) manga or shipping. If it's anything other than that, or if your shipping/animé/Special fic is so awesome that it transcends traditional genre preferences, try me. I'm not picky; a good story is a good story.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maveox View Post
    I'm not sure if anyone checks this anymore, but I have a few questions I was hoping experienced authors could answer.

    1) How long should each chapter be (roughly) in Microsoft Word?

    2) How thoroughly do you plan out the story? Anywhere from having a detailed plan of each chapter to having a basic outline of the plot.

    3) Do you post chapters as soon as you finish them, or do you wait until you are a certain number of chapters ahead?

    4) Any pre-writing tips for me? I have the basic plot done, but what techniques do you use to brainstorm?

    Thanks a bunch to whomever answers this!
    Chapters can be as long as the story needs, though Serebii has a reasonable minimum of at least 2 pages.

    I've written a story with very little planning and only some vague thoughts of the ending, and it turned out fairly well. It really depends on the type of story you're writing, though; if you're trying to make an intriguing mystery, it would definitely help to know who the villain is, and if you're writing shorter piece you may want to know all the details before putting in too many empty words.

    But really, the most important characteristic of planning I find is to nail down the characters. If you know what each character is like and is going to respond to a situation, you could take the story into many different directions.

    After I finish a chapter I tend to wait about a week, maybe more, just to revise and reread and get a good feeling on it. I'm trying to put across certain emotions subtly, and if I'm not careful I end up stepping on those, or making silly mistakes like having a cool autumn breeze turn into a stifling summer day later on.

    Pre-writing tips? I've got two, actually.
    1) Type up a word. After that, put another one after it.
    2)Repeat step 1-2 until story is complete.

    For me, I find the biggest problem is just sitting down and doing it. Sometimes I'll find myself wasting half an hour to an hour just looking up tips on how to write well...not the most productive use of writing time, I think. Good luck!
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  23. #248
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maveox View Post
    1) How long should each chapter be (roughly) in Microsoft Word?
    However long it takes for you to get everything you want to get done in a chapter done. Sometimes, you might take twenty pages to do that. Sometimes, you might only need four. Focus on the specific scenes you want your chapter to cover, and remember that you don't necessarily have to aim for a set number of pages every single time.

    But yeah, as IJuggler said, so long as you write more than two pages, you're good to go. (And even then, the mods will make an exception for you if the chapter in question is awesomely written.)

    2) How thoroughly do you plan out the story? Anywhere from having a detailed plan of each chapter to having a basic outline of the plot.
    Depends on your comfort level. Lots of people don't really do much planning, but then you've got others who know every detail of their story. Every writer works differently, so experiment with planning and rolling with whatever idea pops into your head to see which one works best for you.

    As for myself, it depends. Some fics, I don't plan. Others, I do. I know how my main fic ends; I don't know how my parody fic does. It just feels right to do what I do for both stories.

    3) Do you post chapters as soon as you finish them, or do you wait until you are a certain number of chapters ahead?
    Personally? Post as I finish.

    However! There's a lot to be said about waiting too, and some authors on this site have done that. You have more of a cushion if you hold off on posting, so you're more likely to maintain a reliable update schedule, which readers will appreciate thoroughly. On the other hand, if you work too far ahead, you're also less flexible. Say a good number of reviewers give you comments that say your plot makes no sense or your dialogue is punctuated completely wrong. In order to make the changes that will keep people from deciding they don't want to follow your fic anymore, you'd have to make changes to all of the chapters you've written in advance, not just the one you just posted and your WIP next chapter.

    So what you want to do really depends on what you're going for. If you want more of a cushion in order to maintain a good update schedule (which itself will attract readers), go with waiting to post chapters. If you really want feedback and the ability to develop your story, go with posting them as soon as you finish proofreading them the first time.

    4) Any pre-writing tips for me? I have the basic plot done, but what techniques do you use to brainstorm?
    Keep a separate word processing document for any notes, lines, or scenes that pop into your head as you write, even if you're going to be one of those folks who don't plan out their stories in detail. It's easier to keep things organized for longer fics.

    Also?

    Quote Originally Posted by IJuggler
    Pre-writing tips? I've got two, actually.
    1) Type up a word. After that, put another one after it.
    2)Repeat step 1-2 until story is complete.
    Yeeeeep.



    Can't really add to Phoenix's post about POVs because she's spot-on about how there's no such thing as a stronger or weaker POV in general. It's really dependent on your story.

    If it helps, here's a run-down of all the POV possibilities and what they do.

        Spoiler:- Spoiler: There's more than three ways to tell a story.:


    So, yeah. Each has their own pros, their own cons, and their own reasons for being used. There's no particular one that's stronger than another because they're all so very different in terms of how they tell a story and what kinds of information they can present. There's just different levels of challenge in handling one instead of another. However! As a writer, you should be up for challenges anyway, so don't feel intimidated or that you need to avoid one point of view when it's actually the best mode to use for telling your story.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IJuggler View Post
    For me, I find the biggest problem is just sitting down and doing it. Sometimes I'll find myself wasting half an hour to an hour just looking up tips on how to write well...not the most productive use of writing time, I think. Good luck!
    I definitely understand this. In the past, I've had problems with fics of mine dying out, and I really wanted to make sure the one that I'm working on will have some staying power, ya know? But I'll make sure to think about overthinking... I think.

    Liz and JX, thanks a bunch. Just needed a few pointers to make sure I was going in the "write" direction.
    ..... that might have been my worst pun ever.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maveox View Post
    Liz and JX, thanks a bunch. Just needed a few pointers to make sure I was going in the "write" direction.
    ..... that might have been my worst pun ever.

    haha, that pun made my night :P but yeah, glad we could help you out, best of luck to you and your writting. O one last tip: music can be a powerful writing tool cause if you listen to a song/instermental music then you can better invision your story
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