Writing Tips!

Chapter 2

More Tips From The Wonderful Mind Of Me

Comment and Rate

This is going back to "Read Others Work" (a tip in the last chapter). Writers love ratings and it takes about 3 seconds to rate a story. Why won't you? It's not like you have to learn how to speak Chinese, just click a star! You like seeing rates right? Extend the favor.

Also comment. Constructive criticism is great! Okay, so you might be asking me what you do when you have no constructive criticism...you still comment. Cue gasping of crowd. You can say what you liked about it and how great it was. Also if you have no constructive criticism you could tell the author that. You could also say a quote from the story you liked, an event, a character, anything. If you comment (helpfully), it will come back. People will comment on your stuff and leave constructive criticism on your works.


Don't Take Everything So Personally

Okay so lets say there is this author named Sue. In her intro she says "I am open for constructive criticism." Okay. So someone (Bob), reads her work and comments "well the idea is interesting but the plot is weak and spelling and grammar needs improvement."

Now the good author thing to do would to ask where the bad grammar stood out the most and how to fix it, or accept and thank Bob's help. Unfortunately most people will flip out. And when you welcomed constructive criticism and you flip out...no. You aren't perfect and the person isn't being hateful by pointing out your stories flaws in a helpful and polite way. In fact he is helping you!


Don't Break The Bloody Fourth Wall

Fourth Wall: It is the invisible wall the separates the story from the audience. Usually used in theater.

When you break the fourth wall, you are speaking to your audience (otherwise known as second person). I am speaking in second person right now.

It's okay to break the fourth wall every now and then, that's fine. I do it occasionally. But when a story breaks the fourth wall constantly...I just want to tear somebody's head off. Okay speaking to your audience constantly in a narrative is annoying. It also distracts from the story. This is one of my writing pet peeves, people who always break the fourth wall. It's there for a reason.


PROOF READ

So you get to laugh at me here. Yay! So I was writing a chapter for a group story, at like 2am. Well you are going to see how amazing proof reading is, however my example might be a little extreme but I was tired okay? So up first you will see the published paragraph. Then you will see how it would look if I didn't proof read.

Proof Read (Published) Version:

"Alex at least has the decency to look ashamed. I don't know if she really feels it or not. I don't care, it sickens me to look at her. "Were you hoping that I would freak out when I saw my landscape. Did you hope that I would get caught in Amity? Or how about Regina in Dauntless? Did you think about how she could die and I could be factionless? Or was that what you were hoping for?" I am shaking and tears are streaming down my face as I say this. By the end of it, I am screaming it at her."

The Version That Didn't Have Proof Reading:

"Alex at least has the decency to look ashamed. I don't know if she really feels it or not. I don't care, it sickens me to look at her. "Were you hoping that I would freak out when I est mues habitae. Asia est non Romae. Vina in veritas. Erupoa in Erupon sunt. Or how about Regina in Dauntless? Did you think about how she could die and I could be factionless? Or was that what you were hoping for?" I am shaking and tears are streaming down my face as I say this. By the end of it, I am screaming it at her Mercitio aqua-oh crap I missed practice! I have a math test Friday."

This is a mess. Okay so I switched to Latin and was taking about how Europe is not in Europe and how there is truth in wine. This is why I shouldn't write and do homework at the same time. Then it went onto how I had a math test and I missed swim practice. Yeah, it is crazy. If I didn't proof read...imagine that mess. So lesson of story is...don't write at 2am and proof read!


Type Out Your Numbers

In a story does "22" or "twenty-two" look more professional? "Twenty-two" looks more pleasing and in actual published books the type out numbers.


GROUP STORY TIPS


Be Understanding Of People's Schedules

Okay, I have a crap load of stuff going on in my schedule; homework, swimming, dance, Divers Education in the weeks coming up, school musical (spring). Okay, I'm exhausted and my brain is like done during the week. I write on weekends.

However some people in charge of stories are like "write in three days". Okay no, if I write late at night when I'm exhausted...well you saw what happened. Also when you are forcing me to write, my brain shuts down in rebellion and is like "nope, not doing it, sorry."

When I'm on Quibblo during the week it's to message friends. That's it. So be understanding. I understand some people need that little push, but with me I swear I will get to it soon.

This leads me to my next point.

Know Your Authors

Okay so you know your style (or have an idea at least), know your fellow writers too. So say Writer A is amazing at fast paced actions scenes. Don't give them the mushy, slow, romantic parts. I know that sometimes it is unavoidable but you can try.

Also be considerate and try to end your chapter at a place where the next author can pick up the story. I have been after people who just end the events and I am like "how am I supposed to continue this?".


If A Writer Says They Can't Write (And It Is Possible To Give The Next Chapter To Another Author) Skip Them:

We have all fallen to writers block before, it is an occupational hazard to say the least. But if you are trying to force an author who is unmotivated (at the time) to write...lets go back to a rule in the last chapter, "If You Don't Want To Write, Don't Write." I have ten times better work when I am motivated, when I'm not its like crappy. It's like "lets just get this done and over with to get this person off of my back." That work is never good.

Motivate Don't Dictate

Okay that saying probably makes no sense. Basically you should motivate and encourage your fellow writers. You should also check up on them but don't become a bull in a china shop and be like "get your chapter done by tomorrow". Again we are back to understanding that they might have busy schedules. Or they might be slower workers. Like Linde, she doesn't send out invites often but when she does, holy cow that's some amazing writing.


Character Neglect
If you are in a group story don't completely neglect a character, it unmotivates them. It's happened to me before and other than my own chapters my character was mentioned twice. I wasn't very motivated in the story and I got lost because I didn't know what my character's role was, what she knew, anything! And I have been guilty of doing it too.

Communicate With Your Fellow Writers
Self-explanatory. It helps save writing mix-ups.

Keep Group Stories Smaller
I once had a group story with like 18 writers (at least) and yeah it crashed. I couldn't remember all these people, the story didn't flow, and it stressed me out (as I was the creator). So keep it small. :)


Research Your Applicants
Look at their writing, how well they work with others, everything. It is like a job interview almost.

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