Anonymous said: hey. sorry if there is any mistakes, i'm not a native speaker and i don't know if anyone asked about this but i think my writing is shallow. the story i planned to write is different from the story i actually wrote and i just can't give it a depth, i guess. and i can't use proper descriptions either. do you have any advice and thank you already.
Try these posts:
How to Give Your Story a Purpose
Plot and Story Structure
Tone and Theme
Suspense, Climax, and Ending
Conflict and Tension
Figuring Out Who Your Characters Are
Fleshing Out a Flat Character
Describing Physical Appearance
How to Make Simple Writing More Vivid
Ways to Tighten Up Your Writing
Setting Your Story in an Unfamiliar Place
- Having a Beginning
- Having an Ending
- But WHERE’S THE MIDDLE?!?
- HOW DO I GET TO THE ENDING
- WHAT IS A PLOT
- WHAT ARE PLOT DETAILS
- WHAT IS WRITING
And most importantly:
- HOW DO I TITLE
- Over-explanation. This includes prologues. “Prologues are never needed. You can usually throw them in the garbage. They’re usually put on as a patch.”
- Too much data. “You’re trying to seduce your reader, not burden them,” Friedman said.
- Over-writing, or “trying too hard.” “We think the more description we add, the more vivid it will be; but we don’t want to be distracted from the story” we open the book for.
- Beginning the novel with an interior monologue or reflection. Usually this is written as the thoughts of a character who is sitting alone, musing and thinking back on a story. Just start with the story.
- Beginning the novel with a flashback. Friedman isn’t entirely anti-flashback, but the novel’s opening page is the wrong place for one.
- Beginning a novel with the “waking up sequence” of a character waking, getting out of bed, putting on slippers, heading for the kitchen and coffee…a cliche
- Related cliche: beginning the novel with an alarm clock or a ringing phone
- Starting out with an “ordinary day’s routine” for the main character
- Beginning with “crisis moments” that aren’t unique: “When the doctor said ‘malignant,’ my life changed forever…” or “The day my father left us I was seven years old…”
- Don’t start with a dialogue that doesn’t have any context. Building characterization through dialogue is okay anywhere else but there.
- Starting with backstory, or “going back, then going forward.”
- Info dump. More formally called “exposition.”
- Character dump, which is four or more characters on the first page.
This is like the Story Beginnings Bible.