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10/11/2011 9:33:12 AM
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How to write a decent story.(long read)

Storywriting is a skill that, for the most part, people learn through practice and careful study. The process of writing a decent story is simple, but requires patience and a bit of creativity, not to mention a firm grasp of the English language. The easiest way to teach someone how to create an interesting story is to break it into steps. To simplify them into categorized steps: Find your setting, create your characters, form the events, tell the story, and use grammar and spelling. If they are done correctly, the story should at least be of decent quality. Keep in mind these do not have to be in order, save for the latter step. The setting is the land and events that have led up to the story, as well as the events themselves, the characters, and the entire kit and kaboodle being written. The setting can be described as the "canvas" of the story. It is recommended that the setting be believable, or at least aptly described in such a way that the reader can mentally picture the events occurring. The setting doesn't have to be grand, such as a land of myth and adventure with sweeping valleys and mountains that straddle the sky. A small setting, like a family home, can be the setting to an equally, or even superior storyline of hate betrayal and lust. History is important to the setting. It serves as the groundwork for both the characters and plot of the tale. It is important to be sure the setting is helpful in influencing the interactions of the characters. For example, the amazing flounder was forced to battle his enemy fisherman joe due to the large factory blocking his path, or the amazing flounder rubbed his old battle scar, a window into his dark and wet past. As can be seen, the character the amazing flounder has been introduced as a man with a bad past, and as a man in a fishy situation, only with the usage of two sentences. History and environment have successfully affected the characters and flow of the plot. Creating your characters is integral to the plot and setting of the story. They serve as both the dependent and independent variables, changing the lay of the land, modifying the direction of the story, changing their plans due to the land or actions forcing them to. They are the human element. The color on the canvas. The grip the reader has on the plot. In fact, the characters do not even have to be people or animals at all. Simply something that changes the story, and is changed by it as well. Be it a spot of land, a rock, a pelican, or my uncles old beat up garden rake. For this discussion, the classic protagonist-antagonist scenario is probably the best solution. In both cases, the characters should have a backstory that accurately gives the reader an idea on their picture of the world. Set the characters traits to be unique, unless the opposite effect is desired. This allows the reader to differentiate between subjects in the plot, make preferences, connections, find similarities with them, or find them to be completely alien to them. Which most readers want. If a strong character is desired, making them complex and not relegated to a singular mindset is the epitome of good character design. Unfortunately, this is difficult for even seasoned authors, it shouldn't be expected for an attempt at it to be successful. At least not on the first try. For the villain, any route can be taken if it is carried through completely, the "villain" is a part of the "hero", so an incomplete villain is also unfortunately, and incomplete hero. Characters should be affected by the story in some way, either physically, mentally, or socially. This helps the reader to feel the train of events have went in a direction, rather than stay stoic and bland. The plot of a story should be well thought out and planned, if there is one thing in the writing that must be structured, it is the series of events and reactions that make up the backbone of the topic. Without an orderly, or understandable description of what the hell is happening when, most readers cannot even grasp the point. A bad timeline can completely destroy both the characters and setting. The plot is the story as a whole, for each event that occurs the plot exists to further the reader "into the rabbit hole", and convince them that the reading has a point that interests them. Your events should be what the reader needs to read, not what he wants. The plot is the paint on the canvas of the setting, and the characters are the color. The plot should describe the characters as well as it describes what happens, both to them and to the setting as well. Make the plot enjoyable, or at least something to react to. Grammar and spelling are musts when writing any kind of story. They are the medium in which the story is told, if they are botched in any way, the reader is distanced from the writing that much further, often to the point of frustration, and eventually, abandonment. If sufficient skill in spelling is not apparent, it should probably be attempted to simply stay within what can be done well. Do not focus on weaknesses in spelling to make the writing fell more "badass". The same does not go for grammar. Every attempt should be made to convey the story in a grammatically informative context, regardless of personal ability. Grammar is necessary to smoothly describe the events passing in the literature, and bland, simple grammar is just that, bland, boring, and utterly unlikeable. Please, improve grammar usage whenever possible. Because nobody wants to read: bob went to the store. He bought cheese. He ate a taco. He died of cheese death. With these steps, a passable story should be within grasp. Combine these areas of interest into a story appropriately, and it should appear to be a tapestry of the writers creation, either of low quality, high quality, or of high grade, chuck Norris approved badassery. Remember, keep the plot tangible, the characters entertaining, The grammar and spelling above a third grade level, and the setting descriptive and cool as hell.
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  • Also some people say that if you read heaps then write about similar stuff to what you read, you are copying and cant think up stuff for yourself. This is entirely wrong. It is great if you write to read alot. Trust me, it helps your writing.
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  • Thank you very much.
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  • Thread saved lol nice bump [Edited on 11.11.2011 9:56 PM PST]
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  • This is very helpful. thnx
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  • tl;dr
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  • [quote][b]Posted by:[/b] dahuterschuter You missed out on the most important aspect, the themes or messages, symbolism, allegory, metaphor and etc. [/quote] This is meant to get people into writing stories, thus the title "how to write a [b]decent[/b] story." Those are more advanced techniques than I wanted to put. Plus, it was 4am and this paper was due in only a few hours. [Edited on 10.11.2011 9:28 AM PDT]
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  • Good advice for people who are new to writing. I've been writing for about 5 years, but your insight into what is important in a story is interesting for me, nevertheless. I just want to add that if one sticks to writing for a while, that person should develop a style of writing that is unique to them. It makes the process of writing much simpler and when one ventures beyond that style, the results are usually interesting. Also creativity and originality are vital if a writer wants to catch people's attention.
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  • You missed out on the most important aspect, the themes or messages, symbolism, allegory, metaphor and etc.
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  • I was in the process of making a Halo fanfic on DeviantART but I lost track of it (I cba - it didn't feel right). However, I was thinking today of picking it back up. And so, I will keep this in mind. *saves Thread*
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  • Thanks Panzie. I'm actually going to my writing group today, bit of good timing.
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  • This seems very helpful. See Tartan; I am trying!
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  • That's fairly helpful. Any advice for creating stories I welcome.
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  • [quote][b]Posted by:[/b] ColdEmbrace Long read? No, that's just a short story.[/quote] It's long as far as the flood is concerned.
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  • Long read? No, that's just a short story.
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  • [quote][b]Posted by:[/b] Scary BIack Guy >implying you're any good at writing[/quote] Implying you aren't trolling.
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  • *saves thread*
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  • >implying you're any good at writing [Edited on 10.11.2011 4:14 AM PDT]
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  • 0
    Tartan 118
    Tartan 118

    Search Amazon for The Earthfault. - old

    [quote][b]Posted by:[/b] Synyster Snipez Also avoid using any form of "deus ex machina", it's incredibly lazy writing. [/quote] 'The eagles are coming!'
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  • [quote][b]Posted by:[/b] the panzie man [quote][b]Posted by:[/b] Bad Travis Thank you panzie... Even though I'm not entirely a huge fan of your stories that there was good advice. [/quote] it's actually the paper I have to turn in tommorow. EDIT: oops, look at the time. I should have said today. Because my college professor doesn't want them over six pages anymore.[/quote] Lol. Great post (of China). I like some of your works. They're a good read. I just wish half the people who rigth books actually took Drama and Advanced English in highschool/university. There is alot of crap that gets published over true gems. We deserve better. Still. again, good thread. Hope some potential writers/authors took something from it. [Edited on 10.11.2011 1:53 AM PDT]
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  • [quote][b]Posted by:[/b] Bad Travis Thank you panzie... Even though I'm not entirely a huge fan of your stories that there was good advice. [/quote] it's actually the paper I have to turn in tommorow. EDIT: oops, look at the time. I should have said today. Because my college professor doesn't want them over six pages anymore. [Edited on 10.11.2011 1:45 AM PDT]
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  • I thoroughly agree.
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  • Also avoid using any form of "deus ex machina", it's incredibly lazy writing.
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  • Thank you panzie... Even though I'm not entirely a huge fan of your stories that there was good advice. [Edited on 10.11.2011 1:37 AM PDT]
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