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oni flygon
July 31st, 2004, 12:01 PM
note: Though obsolete, I still think that this thread can help authors improve. - Niko

Originially created by Frostweaver

Basic Pokemon Fanfiction Writing FAQ

This is a basic FAQ for all new Pokemon fanfic writers for some guidance on how to write a good Pokemon fanfic. It should cover most of your concerns, along with examples of stories, which you can review (and read for enjoyment) to see these concepts in action. All of the stories can be found either at www.fanfiction.net (http://www.fanfiction.net/) or within the fanfic forum in PokeCommunity. (The authors of stories used as good examples are also listed)



Q: Where should I begin as a fanfic author?

-Find and sign up to multiple places where you can post your story

-Write some good stories to slowly establish your reputation



Q: What are the common writing styles for Pokemon fanfics?

-There are only 3 narratives that are common, with a few genres. Remember that you can always combine narratives and genres for your story.
Narrative A: pros narrative

The narrator is also a character in the story. This is the only case where the word “I” should be used outside of a dialogue. (Example: Ties of Love and Friendship – Oni Flygon; Price for Freedom – Silver Dragon 2488)



Authors sometimes switch into this narrative when s/he wants to emphasize a character’s dialogue. (Example: Tangled Web – ChicRocketJames; Against the Rules, Against the Odds – Veravine)

Narrative A-2: Pokemon pro narrative

The narrator is also a Pokemon within the story. (Example: Price for Freedom – Silver Dragon 2488)

Narrative B: 2nd point narrative

The narrator unfolds the story as a 3rd person, and is not a character in the story. This is the most common narrative format, often combined with a little pros narrative once in awhile for certain effects. (Example: Pokemon MASTER – Acey; Cavern of a Million Colors – Eeveebeth Fejvu)

Narrative C: Script narrative

This is usually discouraged because stories in script narratives are either absolute trash, or it’s definitely worth reading. There are a few script fanfictions that are quite a read. Fanfictions such as Hoenn Mirror World by Nekomajo Asunya and Pocket Monsters Chronicles by Yamato-san are one of the few excellent fanfictions.

Genre A: Original Trainer fanfics (OTs)

This is the absolute worst genre possible if the author does not add twists into their story… Most OTs are written in the sense of following something similar to the Pokemon Anime, and that’s just terrible… This genre usually needs to blend in with another genre to even stand a chance to get reviews. (Example: The One Drop – Aiya Quackform; Tangled Web – ChicRocketJames)

Genre B: Dark fanfic (darkfic, df)

Started by the legendary darkfic author Acey, darkfic strays away from the G version anime into something suitable for more mature audiences. Usually rated at least PG-13, it satisfies the popular demand of Pokemon being more mature. Dark and twisted ideas are usually involved in this fanfic, along with heavy angst. (Example: Pokemon MASTER – Acey; Codename:ASHURA – Legacy)

Genre C: School fanfics

Characters from the anime are warped into the alternate universe of being at a normal school, instead of venturing off into a Pokemon journey. All school fanfics are based on romance, and never anything else. Regardless of its lack of flexibility, it’s still well loved. (Example: Yoru no Uta – Washuu Puppet)

Genre D: Pokemorph

This genre features humans changing into Pokemon, or vice versa. It used to be as common as OTs, but now it is no longer so common. (Example: Called into Question – ShinobiWolf; A True Role Reversal – Acey, and can only found on his website)

Genre E: Crossovers

Some concept/characters of Pokemon are mixed with some concepts of other games/anime/whatever, and there are just too many of these fanfics that you will come across one eventually. It’s usually either a beautiful classic, or it’s trash. (Example: Card Captor Ashura series – shadow/phantomness)

Genre F: New Game!

This genre floods Fanfiction.net every time a new Pokemon game for the GB/GBA comes out. This genre features characters from the gameboy games, and what happens to them. (Example: Hoenn League: A Brandon and May Adventure – o0o BrEzY o0o)



Q: What should my fanfic’s title be?

-Anything but “untitled” or anything else along that line

-Title should be catchy and reflects something about your fanfic

-Title should not be a cliché phrase

-Try to avoid the use of these words in titles, because these words are overused to the extreme to the point of boring for titles: legend, legendary, adventure, Pokemon, shadow, story, Fanfiction, fanfic, <name of legendary Pokemon>, search, journey, lonely or league



Q: What Pokemon should I add into my story? Also, what are some cool nicknames?

-Anything works for Pokemon really… just keep in mind that not all Pokemon stories need Pokemon in it

-Common and overused Pokemon protagonists are: any legendary Pokemon, Umbreon, Espeon, Jolteon, Eevee, Vulpix, Ninetales, Ponyta, Rapidash, Pikachu, Pichu, Houndoom, Houndour and the 27 starters of the Pokemon gameboy games

-Don’t give clich&#233; nicknames to your Pokemon (like Fury, Blaze, Inferno for a Torchic)

-Don’t give them names of characters from somewhere else unless you are trying to allude to something. A real living example of this ugliness is Yuna the Umbreon.

-Don’t you even try to call your Umbreon Moonlight, Darkness or Shadow, as there’s already 1000 other Umbreons in the world nicknamed Moonlight, Darkness or Shadow.

-You can easily make a nickname by looking up a Japanese word, then add or take a few letters (a great idea used by many respectful authors whenever they ran out of original names)



Q: How long should my fanfic be?

-At least an average of 900 words per one chapter (unless this is a song or a poem)

-Oneshots (stories with just one chapter) should be at least 1400 words long

-There is no requirement for maximum length. The longest Pokemon fanfic so far is Pokemon MASTER by Acey with 200000 words)



Q: Where should I get ideas for my story?

-(From a post by Aiya Quackform) just “freewrite”… write down whatever ideas that come into your mind. After that, reorganize these ideas into a story through constant reviews and edits. Freewriting almost always provide you with original ideas.



Q: What are some general tips for writing?

-Grammar is your best friend. Try to be as grammatically correct as you possibly can.

-Be original! A good plot is one of the most important things you can possibly wish for.

-Always have descriptions! This is not a movie. Your readers rely on your words to “see” what’s happening. The more detailed your story is, the better.

-Don’t use “said” without adverbs. “Said” is the most boring verb in any Fanfiction. Use adverbs to help out, or use alternative words like commented, asked, exclaimed and so on.

-Sudden usage of one short sentence always helps create an impact on whatever’s being mentioned in that one short sentence.

-“A lot of work” doesn’t mean a few hours. It means a few days at least… don’t rush a production. Take all the time you want in the world.

-Ending a chapter with a cliffhanger usually attracts your readers to continue reading.

-Never dedicate an entire paragraph to descriptions… descriptions are important, but do not let the story come to a halt for the sake of descriptions.

-Try to save all authors notes at the end of the story. You can have a little bit at the beginning, and some at the end as well, but never in the middle of a story.

-Writing takes practice and a lot of work. Don’t ever be discouraged if nobody reviews your fanfic. Most authors need to write a few stories before even getting one person (who is not a friend) to review it.

Oni's notes: I'll some of my tutorials at some other time when I finally have some time...

oni flygon
August 18th, 2004, 12:24 PM
Here's my contribution. Descriptions. Feel free to correct me on some of this... XD

Okay, welcome to learning how to write fanfictions! Now, its my turn to contribute to help people write decent fanfictions. This lesson is about descriptions. Note that descriptions are the essence of literature. To quote my English teacher, a story without descriptions is like hot dog without mustard or music without melody.

Now, to do descriptions, you must have a visual picture in your mind. Try to describe something that you see in your mind. Here is one example. The best to do when doing descriptions is to list down as many things as possible in your visual picture. Here is a picture for one example. Try to list down as many descriptions in it as possible for the surroundings only and not the people in it.

http://ww22.tiki.ne.jp/~ujikinn/20030404.jpg
(Fanart credit to Ogura Hermitage (http://ww22.tiki.ne.jp/~ujikinn/top.html))

So what can you describe? Here are my descriptions:

The beautiful, pink blossoms of the tree fell slowly and gently to the ground while some were blown by the wind. The branches of the tree spread towards the sky while the great, brown tree supported them. The trees roots were softly pressed on the fertile ground where the luscious green grass grew. Petals of the pink blossoms were strewn all over the ground.

The best thing to do in descriptions is to describe the picture in order. I described the picture from top to bottom if youve noticed. Also, try to use as many adjectives in order to make your descriptions a bit more colorful. One thing to do when youre doing descriptions is to use a Thesaurus. If you dont have one at home, you can use Microsoft Words Thesaurus.

To use the thesaurus, just highlight the word and right click it. Then, go down the list to synonyms. It will list a few adjectives that might be able to help. If you dont know how to do it, heres how to do it.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v233/oni_flygon/doc1.jpg
Write your sentence.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v233/oni_flygon/doc2.jpg
Highligh, right click on the highlighted word and pic synonyms.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v233/oni_flygon/241ba61d.jpg
Choose from a list of sysnonyms.

When you describe a character, try starting from the bottom or up and, depending on what you chose, work your way describing from up to bottom or bottom to up. In that way, the reader wont be confused.

Describe the appearance of some characters that will have major roles in your story or if the characters have a very important purpose in the story.

When you describe characters, try to make the characters do something while you describe them. In that way, you wont make up boring description paragraphs.

When describing the surroundings, try to catch the air or the emotion of the surroundings by adding sound words.

When describing something, dont overuse the word. Try finding synonyms of that word using your thesaurus or Word.

In Pokmon fanfictions, a well-described battle will capture the tension of the reader and will make the battle stand out. Describe the attacks or the appearance of Pokmon. Dont leave behind the trainer and describe their actions, too.

When you describe emotions, try to make them meaningful and never, ever conjure up fake emotions that you made up. The best way to make the emotions evident is through the characters actions. (i.e. smiling, gnashing teeth, clenching fists, etc)

Never overuse said. Use it only once if you have no option. Use other words such as replied, exclaimed, asked, questioned, explained, phrased, called, etc. There are many more than just that.

One thing to help you in your descriptions is the right grammar and spelling. Try using Microsoft Words spell check or if you dont have one, try using your email spell check.

I hope that the tips above have helped you. You can always suggest more by replying to this thread.

Frostweaver
August 19th, 2004, 02:42 AM
Pokemon Battling Scenes


Pokemon battling can be an important scene for your story. It has actions and can be very influential for the characters, such as winning a title. However, there is one thing to avoid when you're describing Pokemon battling- anime battling.

Anime battling- A way a fanfic writer describes a Pokemon battling scene, as if it is a battle from the anime. Anime battling relies heavily on trainer's commands within conversations, and usually lacks description in the Pokemon itself. Anime battling focuses on the trainers giving the commands, rather than seeing the Pokemon in action (as if you're watching the anime and you can see the Pokemon battle, so the writer didn't bother with much work in the Pokemon). The Pokemon trainers say an unnecessary lots, making the battling scene feeling very laggy and boring. Trainers also like to say "anime lines" (corny lines) such as "try to get up," "you earn yourself a good rest" and all other battling boring phrases.


Anime battling will be something like...:

"Go Alakazam!" exclaimed Trainer A as he throw out a red and white sphere. Alakazam came out and eyed his opponents.

"Go Tauros" shouted Trainer B. Her Tauros was let loose from the Pokeball.

"Alakazam, use your psychic attack!" said Trainer A as his Pokemon launched the psychic attack right at Tauros.

"Oh no Tauros hang on! Don't give up!" shouted Trainer B as her Tauros got back on his feet. "Alright now counter it with horn attack!"

"Alakazam use teleport to escape!" said Trainer A. Alakazam dodged out of the horn attack.

"You're doing great Tauros! Keep chasing it down with horn attack!" commanded Trainer B as her Tauros launched multiple horn attacks at the psychic Pokemon.

"No Alakazam we cannot lose this gym battle! Use your disable to stop it!"

<repeat crap like that for 60 more paragraphs>


As you see, the trainer does a lot more than the Pokemon which is terrible. We see them giving commands more than the battling itself. Very ugly... however, there are 2 methods on stopping yourself from anime battling.

a) don't use so much conversation commands

b) add in description (most important)

The above scene can be improved into something like this to escape anime battling...


A gym battle has begun in the city of <blank>, as the challenger Trainer A stepped up to the plate. At his call, a psychic Pokemon appeared on the scene, with its deadly psychic weapons ready to launch its fatal attacks. The gym leader reacted calmly at the intimidating scene, and summoned her raging Tauros out into the battlefield.

"Alakazam, use your psychic attack now!"

The Pokemon obeyed the command as he raised up his hands, and a purple blast of energy was shot forward from its two metal spoons directly at the helpless Tauros in the blink of an eye. The bull Pokemon was forced onto the ground at the sheer power of the attack, and slid across the gym floor as the gym leader gasped at the power of the devastating psychic attack.


It's still a Pokemon battle, and trainers can still give commands. But this way it's a lot more entertaining.

Anime battling is sometimes purposely used for one of the trainer in a Pokemon battle (usually the loser of the battle) to indicate the fact that this trainer is an idiot. It's pretty much the only time when anime battling is allowed: to mock a trainer.

Pokemon battling should pack descriptions regarding the Pokemon. Describe how the attacks look like, and how the Pokemon reacts to various situations. Don't use a heavy amount of text bubbles for trainer commands. You can easily do the same thing through narration as demonstrated in the example. You can also talk about the emotions of the Pokemon, or the status of the Pokemon during the battle (ex: tired, enraged at its opponent, afraid of its opponent, etc).

oni flygon
August 21st, 2004, 09:42 PM
Fanfiction Reviewing Advice


I'm assuming this topic might be closed, but I was looking through many of the fanfics around here and looking at other people's replies to them. I'm not going to mention any specific stories or names, but most are like...

"Wow, nice fic, can't wait for more!"

"Great fic!"

"You're an awesome writer! Can't wait to see what happens next!"

And these types of replies may come after a fic with obvious grammatical errors, story structure, plot holes, and the what-not. >.>;; Yeah, there may be the occasional suggestion, but these so-called "reviews" are about as weak as a Level 1 Magikarp.

Now, I know sugar-coated reviews are nice and yummy, but how do you expect to get better when you don't know what's wrong with your fic? Nobody's perfect, of course. But don't get me wrong, there are a lot of excellent fanfics out there, and it would be hard to place a finger on what's wrong with them. However, some fics are in need of constructive criticism, in order to make them better, as well as their writers.

You're probably telling me, "Geez, don't take it too seriously. They're only Pokemon fanfiction." But if you're taking it seriously enough to post it on a message board, let alone even write it in the first place, then you probably want to receive serious response. Also, if you want to pursue writing as a serious career, you'll want to learn how to get better. It'll also help you in school when you have to write reports and/or stories. :D

However, I've seen concrit gone wrong at times. Some people pick out the most silliest excuses for an error and blow it to enormous proportions. And then there are those who just downright dislike a fic because of their personal preferences. It'll be hard to pick out the good advice from the bad, and if people are sensitive, they just might get their self-esteem hurt by the bad advice. And speaking of sensitive people, some may be hurt by good advice, and may just want to halt their fanfic because of the criticism received. They may not want to work harder on their fic. I've seen it happen.

Basically, I'm trying to vie for more constructive and comprehensive fanfic reviews, that's all. *points at Shadow's fanfic rules sticky* It may be a bit of work, but it'll be good for the community. Not all of it is picking out problems, you can say what you liked about it and some plausible suggestions.

But also, there's another problem. Some fics aren't even getting any notice at all. I know it may be because of personal preference (or sheer laziness to read a long fic ^^;), but as a community, we should work together to give advice to each other and improve our works together. And that Level 1 Magikarp I mentioned at the beginning? Yup, it has the capability to evolve into a powerful Gyarados. I hope for the same to happen with our fanfics and reviews. (Heh, I just had to have some sort of symbolism chucked in there.) ^_~

Frostweaver
September 6th, 2004, 04:21 PM
Advanced Fanfic Writing Guide

What truly seperates a decent fanfic from a legendary fanfic is not related to plot, characters or settings, and these kind of "basic" elements. Surely they're all important for a fanfic, but a good writer can turn one of the most unoriginal ideas into a good fanfic, because of his or her writing ability.

By enhancing your writing ability, the quality of your fanfic will rise in direct porportion. There are a few other important aspects that are forgotton in the minds of inexperienced writers and readers. This guide will talk a bit on some of these aspects and various writing techniques...

Note: this guide is generally directed towards adventure/angst/romance genres... I'm so sorry that I can't write any fanfic outside of these 3 genres. I tried comedy with Another Way of Battling but eugh that was so difficult...

-Tone
-Setting (advanced)
-Foreshadow
-Mood and Atmosphere

And ultimately, almost everything within these 4 aspects are controlled by -- Diction (Diction: the manner in which an idea is expressed through words) Foreshadow, mood and atmosphere got no tricks to it at all, as they're all determined by diction and careful writing skills and writing setup, which can only be accumulated by writing and reading.


1. Tone

Tone: the general atmosphere of a place or situation and the effect that it has on people

Tone is related to the characters within a story, often in dialogues. But the narrator in a pros narrative will also be affected by tone. Even though you're writing a story and you cannot "hear" the tone of voice, the wordings of a dialogue is also part of the tone.

Tone can be used to show emotions, feelings, and can also function as an indirect part of character description. A good use of tone can also reduce the need to make huge long boring paragraphs dedicated to one character's description. Example...

a) "Why yes father, I have returned back home," said the young girl.

b) "Oh daddy, I'm home~!" exclaimed the little girl.

Both a) and b) means the same thing. But the difference of tone makes a big difference. The dialogue doesn't seem to be saying much, but the hidden factor of tone is saying a lot about the girl, and the family.

In a), looking at the tone, it is very formal. The girl addresses to her parent as "father" and very proper grammar is used in a dialogue. This suggests the possbility that the girl and the father are not very close. The formality also suggests the maturity of the speaker, how she's a mature girl, even possibility a very independent person. "Said" is used on top of the formality, as if the sentence is emotionless. This further backs up the analysis that the girl is really far apart from her father.

In b), the tone tells us that the girl and her father is a lot closer. The tone of voice is very warm, as very informal words are used, and perhaps even slang. "Daddy" compare to "father" not only suggests how the girl loves her parent, but she is either younger than the speaker in a), or she trusts her father a lot, being very dependent on him. She also "exclaimed" the dialogue, which is much more emotional and warmer than "said" which is very boring and emotionless. "Little" instead of "young" also backs up this hypothesis.

As you see, though the meaning is the same, there's quite a bit of difference in terms of the hidden meaning regarding the girl. Manipulation of tone in this manner will save you some length too, so you don't have to use narration to talk about the girl's family relationship and so on.

How to control the tone of a character relies on...
a) diction within the dialogue
b) what's the "action verb" following the dialogue?

a) Play around with the diction within the dialogue. Reword the dialogue yet keep the same meaning, and you'll be creating different tones. Generally, use your experience in the English language (note: this means that if your first language isn't English, you'll be having a lot of trouble with tone generally) and conversation in your daily lives, and apply it to your fanfic. Your brain naturally say things in a certain manner depending on who you're talking to. Pay attention to how people talk to one another, and "feel" what words are generally used in what situation. Practice in writing will also help with this, as eventually tone will come naturally and you'll write in a certain manner because it feels right.

b) the word "said/say' and all of its synonym influence the tone. In the example, "exclaim" had a different effect than "said." Adverbs can also help with this. Here is a very small list (because I'm doing this rather quickly) regarding what verbs will generally create which kind of tone... notice that some verbs do overlab in categories.

Monotone (no emotions)
-said (no adverbs following), stated, told, read, recited, requested (emotionless questioning), indicate

Curiosity/Excitement
-asked, wondered, thought, exclaimed, screamed, shouted

Harshness
-demanded, questioned, pressed, urged, hurried, criticized, refuted, corrected, roared, brayed, shot

Firm/Strong in belief
-stated, exclaimed, replied, said, shouted, roared

Ridiculing someone
-ridculed, snickered, laughed, mocked, grunted

Ease/Joking
-laughed, joked, gagged, giggled, teased, exclaimed

Displeased
-muttered, mumbled, murmured, grumbled, complained, uttered, grunted

Upset
-cried, wept, cooed, whispered, whimpered, wailed

A very short list... there's a lot more words than this. A few important and commonly used tones are missing, and they are innocent, young, old and "evil." But then these ones usually rely on mixing different emotions together and is a lot harder to have defined tones... so I'll leave these tough ones up to you XD;

(More guides later... on the other 4 sections)

Frostweaver
September 6th, 2004, 07:57 PM
2. Setting

Setting does more than just giving your readers a sense of reality by telling them where the story is taking place. Setting doesn't necessarily have to be a very "big" place, like a region or planet. Setting can range to include small stuff like "the blue tiles on the floor," the raining weather or anything as long as it's related to where and when the story is taking place.

Setting can contribute to mood, and describes something about an ongoing event as well. A certain kind of setting will generally evoke a certain feeling within us. It's part of our way of thoughts to think that a starlit sky is romantic, or hospitals must be white. Using these stereotyping and common feeling, you can manipulate the setting to help you in narrating the story.

This is why you have to choose the setting carefully at times, and give these "minor details" some major thoughts, as they can help you in explaining the story better, or even act as transition in a story (and it's not bad at it too.)

Once again, small lists regarding some common advanced usage of setting... first of all, the time of the day.

a) Morning
-signifies a new beginning, usually stuck in the beginning of the chapter/story. You'll notice that many Original Trainer fanfic leads off with the morning.
-signifies the end of the night, meaning the end of whatever happened at the night time

b) Dawn
-though it does have the same meaning as morning, dawn pacts a more negative and sad feel to it. It usually describes the end of the night more than anything.

c) Sunset/Evening
-as the sun which is the source of light for the world sets, it also means that the end of the good days is near... Sunset foreshadows an upcoming terrible event at night time
-serves as romance at times as well
-in terms of relationships (friendship or love), some chats between characters usually occur at the evening, and usually it never goes too well, or the conflict will not get resolved...

d) Night/Midnight
-being the opposite of day, night time signifies something bad or mysterious is happening

e) starlit sky
-whatever happens under the starlit sky usually lead to something romantic. Regardless of what happens, positive or negative, events during this time of the day will often result in the couple growing closer together in terms of their relationship

Another commonly "abused" setting is color... color is often used as an adjective, but color always serve more than just some words that fill us in in terms of visuals in our mind. Colors often represent many ideas behind it, especially on an original character's clothing (or an unoriginal character who got new clothes.)

a) white
-obviously, signifies innocense and purity, or even to the point of holiness
-for clothing, it often comes along with other adjectives like "silk"

b) black
-opposite of white, signifying evil and other forms of wrong doing...
-for clothing, it's leather (just look at Matrix! XD)

c) light red
-signifies romance and love, a caring nature
-if lip color is ever mentioned, it's almost always this color, and almost always for females only

d) dark red
-on the other hand, darker shades of red bends to the evil side... most well known is probably the infamous evil red eyes
-if high heels are ever mentioned, it's always either the dark red or black... as if women/crossdressers with high heels are always evil or has unknown intention

e) blue
-mysterious, with unknown intention... though this is changing as blue is starting to lose its meaning, just being spammed everywhere

f) green
-green is a calm color... usually comes together with good judgement.
-at the same time, green also represents envy to some extent

g) purple
-royalty color

h) yellow
-a "wealthy" color as we typically relate gold to yellow
-also the color for intelligence, or so some people say... though I really don't think of this one as true all the time

i) grey
-machinery and automation, usually talking about lifelessness or just lack of anything related to life (such as emotions or feelings)

Kylie-chan
September 22nd, 2004, 02:14 AM
May I please give advice? I hope it helps. I hope I'm not doing the wrong thing by posting here!!!

3. Character Portrayal [I][U]

To write a good story - narrative, etc. not description-type passages -, you need good characters, as the story revolves (or should revolve!!!) around your characters, and thus crumbles from the core if your characters aren't portrayed well.

I have seen so many wonderful stories die hard because their characters, who had so much potential, were portrayed OOC, etc.

To portray your character well, you need to understand your character, and get inside the skin, or shoes, of them/it/he/she, whatever pronoun it is. If you don't know your character, you can't manipulate it to do what you want to do.

I find that if you insist on giving a character a particular emotion, you need to have felt, or had close hand experience with, that emotion. It's hard trying to write about intense jealousy over a guy/gal/attractive-opposite-gender-member-of-your-species if you haven't felt it, or understand it. After all, try and imagine something that can only be really understood by experience; i.e. EMOTION!!!

So don't try and go beyond your limits. Your character has to be someone/something you understand, that you can use. Trying to use Tracey Sketchit, for example, when you don't know much or understand Tracey, is a bad idea, unless you're parodising him, which is a bad idea anyway if you don't understand him. For instance, one OOC story I heard of (Serebii.net, I think) had Tracey and Misty going out. Then Ash went out with Misty, or kissed her, or whatever, so Tracey... BURNED ASH WITH A METAL ROD??? Shame!!! Tracey would never do that! Talk about OOC portrayal!!!


Oh, and yeah, like Oni says, use the Thesaurus. Many times, it has helped me. Green became, for me, which has extended my vocab by miles, verdant, lush, emerald, jade... get the point?
Hope I wasn't doin' the wrong thing, just trying to help, mods!

Kiri
September 22nd, 2004, 04:30 AM
Does it count as being horrible to other members if you give a really, really mean review?

Mr Cat Dog
September 22nd, 2004, 10:06 AM
Well, if you give a really horrible review of things, only point out the bad bits, say nothing and basically flame the fic - then yes.

But if you you point out the bad things, tell them what they could do to improve them, and also praise them on what they've done well, then that's a nicer way to say that your fic needs work, but you have done other things well. It still implies criticism, but at least you can say what they've done right. ^_^

Kylie-chan
September 23rd, 2004, 10:12 PM
Well, if you flame someone, it is being nasty, as it's not constructive critiscm. Here, I shall aid you with some examples.

Something like this is plain old flaming criticism:

"That was stupid, boring, and annoying."

"All your characters were OOC. It was dumb. Shame on you!"

"You idiot, you can't write a story for nuts!"

"Your spelling is so bad it makes me sick."

Now this is CONSTRUCTIVE critiscm:

"OK, I was bored, but I think if you livened up the dialogue, you would grab me in. Great plot!"

"Brock was OOC, but with your talent, you can fix it easily, by slipping in a romantic scene, where he falls in love. However, I think your story is great!"

"I think if you put your manuscript through a spellchecker, and left an extra space between each paragraph, it'd be better. Aside from grammar, I think the way you portrayed Ash Ketchum was terrific!"

"It was pretty good, just a bit more description, OK? Keep the good work up!"

See? Praise, then you can be constructive. Point out the good things, and point out the bad things, but tell the author how they can fix the bad things up! If you don't know how to fix it, stay by your own standards and don't point it out!!! :)

Also, here is a bit to add on Frostweaver's guide to weather/colour/time, correct me if I'm wrong.

Sunshine
- An easy, mellow mood
- A bright outlook
- Some good news on the way
- Joy, amity, companionship
- Energetic mood

These are some of things we relate to sunshine, as many people are livened by sun and good weather.

Light clouds

- A calm, peaceful day

Just a nice, mellow, sunny day with a speckle of white fluff in the sky. Not much more I can really help you with.

RAIN -

Sunshower

- Generally happy
- Associated with summer (summer rain)
- Light, joyful dancing
- Followed by rainbows

A sunshower is a light, short thing. If the good news came in the sunshine, you could celebrate in a short burst of sunshower dancing!

Dark, grey clouds, no rain

- Thunder, lightning
- A broody, miserable mood
- Good for a mystery or romance like the one in Darkness of my tears (by me. I haven't read many fics, so I can't give many examples)

A dark, grey, and gloomy outlook, ready for a full-on burst of rain. Similar to RAIN.

Light rain/drizzle

- Light/mild sadness


Rain is associated with cold, grey gloom. Can't help much with drizzle. Gentle tears, perhaps.

Heavier rain

- Dark feelings and mood
- Weeping
- Terror, panic (fear of lightning)
- Gloom and depression
- Brooding
- Passion and anger

Ah. My specialty. Heavy rain is, well, see above. A dark, rainy night is a cliched, but nevertheless a useful, setting for a mystery. Also good for running away, or rage (thunder/lightning) and passion. Could be a good time for the villain to scheme or whatever, as dark rain sets a cold, miserable, somewhat darker, and more terrifying, mood.
Hail is not really a specific thing unless you're dead set on a flood, such as in DoMT (yeah yeah roll your eyes, but this is not a plug, it's just a story I know that I can effectively compare with rain as the whole feeling of it is heavy rain)

Well, can't think of any more. Good luck, aspiring authors! :) ;) OMG, I feel like a moderator, the way I've been talking, *Mock horror* Hahahaha... That's better.

Mr Cat Dog
September 28th, 2004, 11:42 AM
MCD's guide to reviewing FanFiction

Well, here it is. The guide!!! But... yeah... anyways: There are 3 main bits to reviewing people should concentrate when giving their final review. And... here they are:

1) Read the story thoroughly

Firstly, read the entire fanfiction from cover to cover. If you decide to review when the fic has about ten or eleven chapters, commenting on the last one won't exactly let the reader know you've read them. They might even be offended that you gave a review based on one chapter. I certainly would be!

Also, this helps you understand some of the techniques the author has used - if they have used any that it - and by doing that, you will be able to comment on how well they've done that certain bit of the fic.

2) Praise

Unfortunately, only frosty has the right to mindlessly flame fics. The rest of us have to say something good in order to keep our reputation points green. Even if the fic is complete and utter trash (of which some are on this forum... no names), at least try to break it gently to them by saying something that is good with the fic. It shall leave the author knowing where he/she is going right, so he/she does not have to concentrate on it when he/she posts his/her next chapter. Praise lets the reader know where he/she is going right basically, and leaves their self-esteem intact.

3) Constructive criticism

Not to be confused with flaming, constructive criticism (CC) is also an essential part to good reviewing. Like the opposite of the above, even of the fic is ny on perfect - no one is perfect. There will be some flaw in the chapter(s), and the author won't know it until someone tells them. CC is the only way for an author to improve. If everyone went around going - this fic is great... I love you... here's 20 reputation points - then we'd get nowhere with writing. CC is the basis of improvement in fanfiction, and writing in general.

The difference between flaming and CC is that with CC, you can help the author to improve. Flaming is just stating out the bad points and leaving it at that. CC allows you to help the author by suggesting ways of improvement and advice.


Well, there you have it... the three essentials to good fanfiction reviews. If frosty or oni would care to add anything to this, then be my guest by all means. The more the merrier! ^_^

oni flygon
September 28th, 2004, 02:45 PM
Merge time!
*hums the merge song even at the depths of his own depression*

Lily
September 28th, 2004, 02:48 PM
Merge? *is confused, hands oni a peach* o.o;

Nice reviewing guide MCD! It feels funny to review a review but...XP Anyway, kudos for the guide. I enjoyed reading it. ^_^ I would add some, but I really need what the other people add. Plus, I can't even review so meh. x.X

Ty.....:3~

oni flygon
September 28th, 2004, 02:55 PM
I merged the stickied thread that is the "Basic Fanfiction Writing" thingie with MCD's tips. His tips are in his recent posts...so...*trots along*

Frostweaver
September 28th, 2004, 03:43 PM
Unfortunately, only frosty has the right to mindlessly flame fics. What do you mean mindless... I support myself! So let's reword it to "Unfortunately, only frosty has the right to open fire upon his free will at all fanfics." XD

And as for Lily, merging is when 2 threads are merged into one. ^_^ (lol and Oni went through a technical mistake and messed up with the title during the merge too)




MCD's Guide to Review Fanfics- expansion (by Frosty)

MCD summed it up very nicely, but allow me to expand just what is "read the story throughoutly." This instruction is currently a bit too general, so let's tag on some details about just how to read any story, any fanfic.

This also helps with writing as well, as now you know what the most picky fanfic reviewer is looking for... XD

If you're dedicated to do a good review, always read the chapter/fanfic TWICE. If the story is too long or if you're lacking on time, just re-read the crucial scenes, but re-reading at least one part of a story is a must do. You gain a lot more insight from the 2nd reading in comparison to the first time you read it.

Titles
-Before you start reading, always look at the title, and predict what is the story about reasonably. Keep this prediction in mind as you keep reading. Do the same for the chapter titles, if any. When you finished, see if the prediction you made is somewhere along the line of the actual plot, or if it's related to certain themes within the story/chapter. If the prediction and the actual things are totally different, then the title is obviously insufficient and irrelevant. Inform this to the author right away. Titles "must" be as perfect as you can make it to be, as it's the first thing that your reader reads, and it determines rather the reader is going to stay behind and read your story, of just move on to find another story.

Grammar
-tell the author if there's grammar mistakes. All stories are bound to have some somewhere, so it's alright if they make one or two occassionally. However, if it's to the point that it affects readability, or if the same types of mistakes are often reoccuring, then tell that to the author.

-the usage of punctuations and paragraphing always seem to be the most common of all grammar problems.

Narrative
-always check if the narrative is consistent and is appropriate for the fanfic at hand. For example, if the narrative changed from 3rd person to pros narrative suddenly, then you know that something is wrong.

Repetition
-if you seem to have read something that you've read before already earlier in the story, then immediately stop, and find where did you read that same thing earlier. When repetition occurs, the author is emphasizing something, or is saying something to you in an implicit manner. Stop and use some time to find out what it is, so the stories will be even better and more meaningful. It is only a fair trade if you spend just as much time in reading the fanfic for the writer who used many hours to write the fanfic for your enjoyment.

Tone and Diction
-when you're reading, if the wordings are unusually funny or awkward, then there's something wrong with either tone or diction. It's either done on purpose to once again tell you something in an implicit, indirect manner, or some mistakes are made by the author. Try to find out, and if you can't find anything, ask the author what happened there.

-adjectives often uses colors, and color itself is the easiest thing for readers to find out the author's skills in terms of diction. With the exception of skin and hair color, all usages of colors should be automatically assumed to have implicit meanings attached to it. Find out what they are and see what they're trying to say, especially the eyes, color of flowers, and the sky.

Character Description
-every fanfic should have this! Though depending on the genre, character description can shift on focusing mainly on emotions to mainly on physical appearance, or implicit to explicit, but you know that there must be some form of character description in every fanfic save the mindless, humourous ones that are only meant for a laugh. If you honestly cannot find enough/any at all, inform the author immediately. Look for this especially in anything that resembles adventure, action, and/or emotional fanfics!

OOC
-always check if a character is OOC. If the character changes in behaviour and emotions without any valid reasons, then inform this to the author immediately. It is fine for writers to have a character to change and not tell why, but be sure to drop off hints here and there that "something happened, hence, this happened."

Setting Description
-just like character description, not every fanfic needs this one (some are perfectly fine without any setting description), but always keep an eye out for it. Though some rare fanfics do not need it, a vast majorly will require some setting description. Keep an eye out for it to see if they exist, or if they are appropriate.

-for Pokemon battling, these battling scenes also require description of their own, and Pokemon battling can be very difficult to write at times. Tell them what you think of the battle scenes.

Boring Scenes?
-always be honest about it. If some scenes seem to be slow, uninteresting and boring, tell the author. It is true that perhaps you feel this way because of personal preference, but tell your author anyway. If the author sees that the majority thinks of some certain same scene regarded as boring, then something is wrong... if just one out of a majority thinks that a scene is boring, then the author will know that s/he is to ignore that anyway.

Themes
-at the end, think carefully to see if the author is showing any themes or major ideas within the fanfic. This is certainly not necessarily, and for those that have one (or even few), then you know that those are professional writers ^_^ Though rarely does a fanfic have themes, always check for it anyway so you know that you aren't missing out on a great fanfic.

Other Literary Devices
-check for the usage of literary devices, ranging from sarcasm and other more obvious devices to the greater ones that are much harder to detect, such as irony. If the author planned his or her fanfic out so carefully that it has many literary devices along with a theme, then you should also use some time to pick them out one by one carefully.

oni flygon
September 28th, 2004, 04:33 PM
I just noticed that...DARN!...
Oh well...I'm too lazy to re-do things. XP

Lily
September 28th, 2004, 04:51 PM
*gasps*

Another review thingy! o_o; Yay. Thanks for typing it out.

I have a question. About the themes, doesn't every fic have to have a major idea?

Frostweaver
September 28th, 2004, 04:58 PM
*gasps*

Another review thingy! o_o; Yay. Thanks for typing it out.

I have a question. About the themes, doesn't every fic have to have a major idea?
No. Theme isn't necessary for fanfics aimed to purely entertain. OTs usually have no theme as well. It's just travel, beat this trainer up, beat this gym up, then beat the E4 up. No themes necessary for adventure fanfics in this manner as well.

Some of the fanfics have themes, but they're so explicit, so shallow that I'm not sure if it even counts... when the theme is so weak and terribly mentioned/supported, I just treat it as if it didn't exist in the first place.

Mr Cat Dog
September 28th, 2004, 10:59 PM
What do you mean mindless... I support myself! So let's reword it to "Unfortunately, only frosty has the right to open fire upon his free will at all fanfics." XD
*Whistles to self as frosty comes at him with his pitchfork* XD But... yeah... frosty's just elaborated the actual key elements of the constructive criticism part... Also - shouldn't this be restickied since it is kinda the most improtant thing in the forum... :/

Fixen
September 30th, 2004, 07:42 PM
I have to find some time to read all of this. This thread is treasure. ^^;;

1313666
October 1st, 2004, 04:06 PM
It sure is. This is great for the people who want to try a fanfic as a test.

oni flygon
October 4th, 2004, 03:53 PM
There we go...thread renamed...

Frostweaver
October 13th, 2004, 04:51 PM
Prologue Writing


Many fanfic writers are interested in writing something called a "prologue" as an introduction to his or her fanfic, as it's certainly a rather good way to begin for a story... that is, if it's done properly. Lately within PC, there are *many* fanfic writers who just can't wait to write a prologue, and eventually the supposed and expected effect of the prologue backfires. Instead of luring the readers to be sure to read chapter 1 and the rest of your story, the prologue turned the readers away. This is because those prologues have done some of the things that should never appear within a prologue...

A little "hit-list!" of what not to do within a prologue, and what you should be doing in a prologue instead.

1. Don't ever include the word "summary" in a prologue

It is completely tiring to see "This fanfic is about" or "The summary of this fanfic is." That is NOT the point of a prologue. That's called a synopsis (a fancy word for summary.) The purpose of a prologue is to give readers some necessary background knowledge that took place prior to the beginning of the story, and/or to create a glimpse of the story that quickly ends with a cliffhanger effect so your readers will be motivated to read the first chapter.

The "glimpse" of the story is NOT a summary. It is not the description about what to expect, and what will happen in the future. It is a very short scene that is used to "show off" your awesome writing skill, that quickly ends with a cliffhanger or some ways to evoke the curiosity within your readers so that he or she will keep reading. The purpose of this type of prologue is to prevent the ignorant readers from leaving a story just because chapter one looks so long. Another usage is possibly giving the readers prior knowledge about an important event that the story will be building itself on top of.

So, don't ever mention the word "summary" in your prologue, as when you're revealing too much of the plot, why would anyone want to read further? They already know what's going to happen... so why bother reading?

Example: For those of you who remember "Mewtwo Strikes Back" (Pokemon the 1st movie), everything that happened before showing the movie title is the movie's prologue. You're striving for something like that...

2. Don't say "This is a prologue."

Do not insult your reader's intelligence. If they read a prologue, they will know that it is the prologue. Prologue has its own uniqueness that will allow your readers to be able to identify them. Saying "this is a prologue" or anything highly explicit and direct like this will result in annoying your readers to the extreme. It is also unprofessional to say something like this. If you do not believe in this, try saying "This essay will be/is about..." on your next english paper as the first sentence, and the 50% will prove my point.

However, to just title it "The Prologue" is fine, as if how you'll label a chapter "Chapter 1- <chapter title>" in the same way. Just don't ever make a sentence saying "this is the prologue." And a prologue doesn't necessarily need this title as well... Prologues can also be posted together at the same time as the first chapter of a fanfic as well, or even, be incorporated as part of the first chapter...

3. Don't ever include a character list

There is absolutely no reason why you need one. I don't see Matrix leading off with character profiles about who's Neo, who's Trinity, what's the Matrix and so on... the movie will lead the readers into seeing these characters. It makes the character list redoned and completely useless. Also, it is a way of telling your readers this:

"Hey, guess what... I can't write. I have to rely on a crummy character list to introduce my characters, because I can't fit them into my fanfic at all."

4. Do not talk as the author

Author's words are called "author's notes," not the prologue. Get that straight. Don't make the prologue into something as if it is your speech and you are about to read something out to your readers... though this rule is broken sometimes in rare occassions, but author's words should be precise, short and quick. Your reader comes in to read your fanfic, not to hear you talking on and on and on without shutting up... Also, author's notes always go to the very beginning or the very end anyway. Shouldn't be anywhere within the prologue... either before the prologue, or after the end of the chapter/oneshot.

5. 1000 word Prologue!

No... Prologue are meant to be short and quick, nice and easy. Prologue is the reverse of the fanfic chapters. Fanfic chapters got a generally preferred word length minimum, while prologues got a word length maximum. No reason for any prologue to last more than 500 words approximately, and even with that number it feels kinda lengthy already... *Generally* for a prologue that is meant to hook up readers, < 100 words seem the most effective, as you're revealing close to nothing, yet enough for the readers to say "so what's with everything else then? Hmm let's read on..."

Some prologues that are involved with giving prior understanding about certain events can be longer though, without any certain clear cut line for word maximum limit. But remember, a prologue can never be longer than a chapter, so keep that porportion in mind as you write the chapters.

6. "The prologue isn't that good, but I promise you that later chapters will be better."

Absolutely an easy indentication for everyone to see that you are not putting that much effort into a work. If later chapters can be done better, then how come the prologue can't be made just as nice as the later chapters? Makes no sense... Save these kind of talk as reponse to reviews/fan opinions in author's notes. Also, it's much easier to make empty promises than promises that are kept, so really you're better off not saying something like this...

Example of a poor Prologue:

Okay let me layout the main stuff and give you the audience the idea of what im trying to do. This saga was inspired by the soap opera The Bold And The Buetiful (obviously). Ill add on more stuff as i go along and more people are welcome to help me write, just pm me. Okay heres the main stuff:

-Location: Pallet Town
-Present Day 2004
-pokemon replace the humans(so everyone is a pokemon)
-the pokemon will talk in english
-they will have houses just like normal humans would and some pokemon may live together
-there will be no cars and pokemon may not have pets
-theres no such thing as pokeballs or pokemon trainers

this is all i can think of right now as for the sagas reality, ill come up with more stuff as the story unfolds.

Main Characters: Pikachu(of course)(male), Nidorino(male),Butterfree(female),Marill(female),S nubbel(male)
Other Characters: Chansey(female),Pichu(male),Mudkip(female),Raichu( male),Treecko(male),Charmelion(male)
ill have more characters as time goes on.

Okay now its time for the prelude:

In the quit town of Pallet Town, Pikachu is a sports writer for the local news paper and reports on pokemon battles. Marril, his wife, stays at home and takes care of their son Pichu. Nidorino is also a pokemon battle reporter and doesnt take kindly to Pikachus new promotiuon.He was once Pikachus best friend. Butterfree is a next door niehbor of pikachu and marril. Snubbel is a merchant and freid of Nidorino. Chansey is the nurse at the pokemon center. Mudkip and Treecko are freinds with pikachu and marill. Raichu is Pikachus father. Charmelion is the local detective for the pallet town police.

The first episode will be written in probly a day so i can get the story straight.Like i said just pm me to help me write the saga which will probly consist until there is no more to be writen.

(title of the work will remain hidden, because that'll be "flaming PC members" on Frosty's part then)

Example of a good Prologue:

"Cold, so biting cold. As she hugged herself around her slim shoulders,
folds of her ice-blue cloak blew out in front of her by the biting winds
at her back. She stared out at the black tumbling waters of the vast
ocean. From her perch upon a seaside cliff that seemed to be made
entirely of ice, she remained silent and still, even as her high heels
seemed to hold her unnaturally steady upon the sheer slippery surface.

Cold to suit her frozen soul. It was what she was after all. To tell the
truth, she didn't know how she could still be alive with her very heart
unbeating, a block of ice.

Sea-green eyes blinked once. She could sense them coming. She reached
within her cloak to remove her small spectacles and put them on
carefully.

She watched.

And waited." (Pokemon Master, ch.10... not an actual prologue, but definitely qualifies to be one)

AttackRage555
October 13th, 2004, 04:54 PM
oh..I see what i did worng.
Thanks frostweaver for the FAQ!It's wonderful!XP

Kylie-chan
October 31st, 2004, 10:46 PM
Right may I help some more?

Also you might wanna, if it's a really emotional fic that you need to get inside the character, make a prologue first-person, like mine. (Which sucks.)

Anyhow...

Similes and Metaphors

Ah, useful literary tools indeed.

Simile - a form of comparison used to liken something to another, e.g. red as dying sunset (like, as, etc.)

Metaphor - saying something is what it isn't, saying it isn't like something but IS something - a stronger form of simile, e.g. the path was a ribbon of moonlight stretching out to the horizon (it's saying the path is a ribbon of moonlight. was, is, etc.)

Comparison - compares something. (I suck at that bit, I'll fix it later. Sorry.)

All helpful descriptive literary tools used to help the reader paint a picture.

Cliches and poor similies - examples

dark: Dark as night, dark as midnight, etc.
brightness: Bright as the sun, bright as sunshine, bright as a lamp, etc.
black: Black as jet, black as midnight, etc.
white: White as a sheet, white as sugar, white as salt (heard that a few times), white as paper, white as snow, etc. (Been there, done that.)
blue: Blue as the sky, blue as the sea, blue as the lake, etc. (Some seas and lakes are red when the sunrise is above 'em ;)) (OU.)

There are plenty more.

Try and be original.

oni flygon
November 1st, 2004, 08:32 AM
Cliches and poor similies - examples

dark: Dark as night, dark as midnight, etc.
black: Black as jet, black as midnight, etc.

What do you expect authors can compare to other things black?
Black as stone? Black as my keyboard? Black as my pencil sharpener? Black as sewer water?

blue: Blue as the sky, blue as the sea, blue as the lake, etc. (Some seas and lakes are red when the sunrise is above 'em ;)) (OU.)

Yes, but generally, aren't they portrayed as the color blue? Like I said above, what do you expect authors to compare blue with? Blue as a Winows XP toolbar? Blue as bed sheet? Think, dude. We might be creative but it's sometimes important to use your so-called "cliched similies."

Try and be original.

...right...
Black as my battery charger. Black as the fence.

Iveechan
November 1st, 2004, 10:58 AM
I like oxymoron settings. That is, opening a story with a bright and sunny days but somethong horrible happens a moment later, or a trainer who is excited about going to professor Tree's place to get a new Pokemon but it's a gloomy and rainy day. Just as in real life, the environment can contradict the mood. Like how it was sunny yesterday but I had a lousy day at work :/.

Frostweaver
November 1st, 2004, 05:26 PM
Smilies and metaphors are rather lower level language skills that don't really contribute to major ideas or themes. They're just stepping stones to achieve those goals.

First of all, all of those things that you listed are smilies, and smilies are so drilled into our head that they just come out naturally really. I didn't even count them as lit. device for part of the bonus when I review, because they're that common. They've been worked into our culture to just be part of our "normal conversation." Unless the similie is an oxymoron, contradiction or anything out of the particular, we really don't need to keep an eye out for them, even.

Metaphor is just as easy to write, but a lot more difficult to use a metaphor effectively, and is very often important if it is used effectively. However, I really don't see too many of them in use here.

Kylie-chan
November 2nd, 2004, 01:12 AM
Argh. Go and argue with my English teacher.

She'll knock ya down.

Like I said, I. Have. Had. A. Bad. Day.

I don't need a hat-trick of tears.

Try debating with some kids in my class.

I don't need this blow in the guts after the day I have had.

Black as your battery charger. OMG.

Use the English language properly.

Whoops, there's the hat-trick! I'm crying right now!

Hope ya are happy.

Someone's smiling.

Someone's crying.

One's got the really low end of the deal.

(I wonder who that was...)

Find yourself someone else to hit. I don't need this. I'm tired, crying, and depressed.

Black as your pencil.

Actually there are some very nice red pencils out there... *rolls eyes*

Signing off with a splash of tears,
D *tear smudge* P

emeraldslay
November 26th, 2004, 09:24 AM
I have a question about fan fics. What are one shots and hoennshipping fics? I have absolutely no idea.

oni flygon
November 26th, 2004, 11:03 AM
oneshots are the equivalent of a short story

Hoenshipping is BrendanxMay stories. Unless you learn the basics of what shipping is, you won't understand, of course.

emeraldslay
November 27th, 2004, 06:31 AM
Right... so what is a shipping fic then?

Lily
November 27th, 2004, 07:49 AM
Shipping fics is when you believe aa certain relationship pair up should occur.

Like, if you believe Ash and May should go together, it'll be => Hoennshipping. Kenta and Marina => Questshipping.

Take a look a oni flygon's sig. He believes Yellow and Green sohould go together, and Yellow x Green => Feelingshipping.

Dun ask me how they made up these names...because I mainly just picked them up. XP

Dragonfree
November 27th, 2004, 11:10 AM
Isn't Ash and May Advanceshipping...?

Frostweaver
November 27th, 2004, 11:29 AM
got the shipping mixed up, Lily ;p


Most Common/basic fanfic shippings:

Pokeshipping- Ash (Satoshi) / Misty (Kasumi)
Gymshipping- Brock (Takeshi) / Misty (Kasumi)
Hoennshipping- Brendan (Yuuki) / May (Haruka)
Advanceshipping- Ash (Satoshi) / May (Haruka)
Questshipping- Kenta / Marina (NO I refuse to tell you what are their TERRIBLE dub names!)


Hmm... Lemme do some research, along with major copy+paste from pokespecial.tk and make a small list of all shipping? =p

Lily
November 27th, 2004, 11:35 AM
okay okay, I admit.

I'm not an advid shipper of any sort...all I remember is the hoennshipping. How do you remember these things? XD

lol kthx..

emeraldslay
November 29th, 2004, 09:50 AM
Thanks! Finally, I know! *dissapears*

.::t w i l i g h t::.
December 1st, 2004, 09:53 AM
A real living example of this ugliness is Yuna the Umbreon.
:confused: :dead: :nervous: :(


um....I'm really sorry?


...hey, I'm not ugly!

-_-; um...please don't ban me or anything....bye...

Yamato-san
December 18th, 2004, 09:59 PM
Narrative C: Script narrative

This is usually discouraged because stories in script narratives are either absolute trash, or its definitely worth reading. Currently, I havent come across a good one yet...

hey Oni, I was just looking through this thread again and notice this line. Assuming you read my fic, and had as many good things to say about the writing as every other person to review it, would you mind editting it?

Neo Pikachu
December 18th, 2004, 10:23 PM
hey Oni, I was just looking through this thread again and notice this line. Assuming you read my fic, and had as many good things to say about the writing as every other person to review it, would you mind editting it?

It's usually discouraged because that's not the way most actual books appear. Also, in my opinion, it's a lot more touch and go, whereas a narritive style book usually touches base more on feelings, emotions, thoughts, environment, and considerations. Script is also used a lot more for humor purposes, and from seeing your fic, it's a lot more on the serious side.

Fan Fictions in Script can be quite good though, Hoenn Mirror World is a good example of a nicely written fan fiction in script format. Yes, it's your fic and you decide what you want to do with it, but I'm sure Oni is just trying to point out to new authors that Script format really shouldn't be used as a crutch to write a fic faster.

Yamato-san
December 18th, 2004, 10:58 PM
are you calling Houen Mirror World's scripting better?

Frostweaver
December 18th, 2004, 11:09 PM
Actually, in terms of scripting, Houen Mirror World is more of a hybrid scriptfic-narrative , as Houen Mirror World still has narratives. I did try to read Houen Mirror World, but I'm terribly picky on scripting formats because I just can't stand a scriptfic without stage directions >>; If you must insist on judging Houen Mirror World's format, it's either classifying it a hybrid, or call it a 6/10 for format correctness... missing out on the stage direction is a terror for a scriptfic, and it just instantly loses a lot of its meanings...

Script-fanfics are no way forced to humor, and in fact most professional script-novels have very serious themes. Miller's "The Crusable" done almost entirely in script besides the background context talks of religious fear, which is quite a controversial and serious topic (along with sexual immorality, manipulation, and many other themes). It's a script, and it's serious.

When a script fanfic is written nicely enough (almost impossible in a fanfic skill level of writing though), it conveys much more than what a 3rd person narrative can do.

1st person excel in first hand feelings and giving readers a sense of closeness. Script convey to us a theme/themes as we analyze the action of a character and how this theme affects whatever they do. 3rd person is the mixture in between. Narratives are more personal, while script always look on an issue as a whole, but both can talk of character emotions just as well.

Geometric-sama
December 27th, 2004, 04:09 AM
I decided to read through all the rules 'n' stuff, and there's a lot of it that I definitely dispute. These are just my rebuttals from my long (prize-winning) experience as a writer:

-Oneshots (stories with just one chapter) should be at least 1400 words long
No way. They can be as short as you want them to be. There's no point pulling out certain stories to three times their original length. The story stagnates and becomes ultra-boring. Better to keep it simple but moving along properly.

-Always have descriptions! This is not a movie. Your readers rely on your words to "see" whats happening. The more detailed your story is, the better.
Oh no you don't. See what I wrote just above. Description is good, yes, but most people tend to overwrite and again, the story stops moving. I hate reading stories that stop moving. Action is always more important than description, except in a certain type of writing that focuses only on one very small occurrence. If you write your action properly, it serves as description as well. I can't be more specific than that - types of action often describe a person's personality. "Creeping" is different from "plodding", for example.

Dont use "said" without adverbs. "Said" is the most boring verb in any Fanfiction. Use adverbs to help out, or use alternative words like commented, asked, exclaimed and so on.
Never overuse "said." Use it only once if you have no option. Use other words such as replied, exclaimed, asked, questioned, explained, phrased, called, etc. There are many more than just that.
This is actually a much-believed myth. Don't get pulled in. As a kid I used those words a lot, before I realised they really made my writing seem overwritten. "Said", if used properly, is more poignant than many other words. Using one of the "non-said words" really wrecks the flow in some cases. What's more boring than something like...

"Hello," Ash said quickly.
"Oh, hi," May said shyly.
"Look at the stars," commented Ash. He put his hand on May's shoulder.
"Oh, wow! They're bright," exclaimed May.
"Do you like astronomy?" asked Ash.
"I love it," replied May with sparkling eyes.

That could be rewritten to sound more interesting:

Ash glanced around. "Hello."
May smiled shyly. "Oh, hi."
"Look at the stars," Ash said, resting a hand on May's shoulder.
"Oh, wow! They're bright," exclaimed May.
"Do you like astronomy?"
"I love it," said the girl, the stars reflected in her eyes.

And see, I used one adverb - and not with a "said" - only one "exclaimed", two "said"s. And that sounds much better than the one with two "adverb-said" combinations, a "commented", an "exclaimed", an "asked" and a "replied". Not that the fragment was particularly interesting in the first place, though.

Also, try to use as many adjectives in order to make your descriptions a bit more colorful.
Overuse of adjectives ruins a story. I look back at some of the writing I did as a seven-year-old fourth-grader (that received top marks) and I wince, just because of the number of adjectives.


*giggles* OK, that's enough nitpicking for now. Just tell me if you want me to pick on you more... you horrible ex-pair, you. :P XD *chases another ex-pair (Alex)*

oni flygon
December 28th, 2004, 02:29 PM
Frosty wrote the first post, not me. I just posted it using my account...

Lily
December 28th, 2004, 06:53 PM
No way. They can be as short as you want them to be. There's no point pulling out certain stories to three times their original length. The story stagnates and becomes ultra-boring. Better to keep it simple but moving along properly.

I think he means by one shots in general, but not all the time, since majority of the one shots can be quite detailed and long. Certainly short one shots are possible, as long as the meaning and point is taken across.

Oh no you don't. See what I wrote just above. Description is good, yes, but most people tend to overwrite and again, the story stops moving. I hate reading stories that stop moving. Action is always more important than description, except in a certain type of writing that focuses only on one very small occurrence. If you write your action properly, it serves as description as well. I can't be more specific than that - types of action often describe a person's personality. "Creeping" is different from "plodding", for example.

Again, descriptions in general. Many people prefer stories that are descriptive, although of course simple description is perfectly fine, as long as it's legitimate and satisfactory. =D

About the whole issue with 'said,' I was given the impression it meant something like:

"Hello," Marie said.
"Hey," Sam said.
"It's a nice weather today," she said.

...something like that, probably implied as overusage?

I suppose ya better ask frostweaver. o.o;

lex
January 2nd, 2005, 06:08 PM
I dont know if this is the place to ask but what is a fanfic? Im sorry if there is another thread for this but can someone tell me

Lily
January 2nd, 2005, 06:28 PM
Fanfictions are simply stories over the internet that you make, based on characters with disclaimers, such as Pokemon, anime, TV shows and Video games.

Your own original idea isn't a fanfiction though.

lex
January 3rd, 2005, 01:18 PM
Oh thankyou very much! But why is'nt your own original idea a fanfic?

Dragonfree
January 3rd, 2005, 01:38 PM
Because then it's not a *fan*fic; a fanfic is always based on some other, existing work.

lex
January 3rd, 2005, 04:01 PM
Ohh thanku now I get it! Imma try it out ^^

Aiya Quackform
January 22nd, 2005, 06:12 PM
Woah, "Drop" got listed as a good example! COOL!!! *is very happy now*

This is an excellent guide, with several universal rules. I do however, feel that some things that were stated as rules are really only guidelines. For instance, the oneshot 1400 'rule' can be totally obsolete depending on the desired impact.

Also, I strongly disagree with the avoid using "said" rule. In fact, using too many adverbs can be a sign of poor writing. The dialogue itself should say enough about tone, without the need for fancy adverbs.

I'm going to come back later and post some of my thoughts on writing characters.

O
February 6th, 2005, 02:04 AM
Japanese words.

Grass or Bug
Midori [Green]
Hana [Flower]
Niwa [Garden]
Happa [Leaf]
Haru [Spring]
Ki [Tree]
Yasai [Vegetable]
Kooen [Park]

Fire
Aka [Red]
Daidai [Orange]
Hiru [Daytime]
Atsui [Hot]
Karui [Light]
Taiyoo [Sun]
Hare [Sunny]

Water, Ice
Ofuro [Bath]
Nomimono [Beverage]
Ao [Blue]
Samui [Cold]
Tsumetai [Cold]

These are a few examples. I can give some to A Pokmon specifically. Just Ask

oni flygon
February 6th, 2005, 03:07 PM
Uh...Omega...what's this supposed to be? >.>

Lily
February 6th, 2005, 03:35 PM
Some people can't think of Pokemon names, I guess, and Omega wanted to just present a list of names and help out. XP

{What'd ya say Oni-chan...should I sticky or let it be? o.o;}

oni flygon
February 6th, 2005, 04:08 PM
Let's just merge it to the How to write fanfic thingie...>.>
I'll merge it...

O
March 19th, 2005, 02:54 AM
I wanna ask, if you're doing a crossover would you put it in Other Writing or here?

Frostweaver
March 19th, 2005, 11:38 AM
If Pokemon is part of the crossover element, you *can* put it here and/or other writing. Of course, being a smart writer will put it in both, because then you got double the chances for it to be read and critiqued.

Aiya Quackform
May 12th, 2005, 09:42 PM
I noted this a little before, but here's my full thoughts on this:
-Dont use said without adverbs. Said is the most boring verb in any Fanfiction. Use adverbs to help out, or use alternative words like commented, asked, exclaimed and so on.
No offense to whoever wrote this, but this is totally wrong! "Said" is a lovely invisible verb that does not distract from flow. If you're constantly using "shouted," "yelled," "cooed," "screeched," "commented" and the like, not only do these words lose their effect, but you distract and bore the reader! Sure, you do want to use these on occasion, along with "asked," but adverbs should only be put in when absolutely necessary! If you can't tell tone of voice by the words, you probably need to rewrite the dialogue.

For instance, take the words, "Yeah, sure." Without an adjective, this could mean a dozen different things:

"Yeah, sure," she giggled.

"Yeah, sure," she said with bitterness.

"Yeah, sure," she said in a flat tone.

But if your intention was for it to be said with a bubbly, happy attitude, you could go with this:

"Oh, definitely!" she said.

So here, I used the simple little word said with the tone I wanted without an adjective. The thing is, "said" is invisible and therefore is not boring, it's simply an unnoticed, not distracting word.

Dragonfree
May 13th, 2005, 04:58 AM
I don't agree with the guide, but I don't agree with Aiya Quackform either.

"Said" is not a word that should be avoided, and yes, it is invisible.

However, I frankly disagree even more with Aiya's post. So you're supposed to rewrite the dialogue if the words don't say all that adverbs could say? Uh, right. So what am I supposed to do if, say, my character is speaking slowly? Make two vowels instead of one?

And what if my character SAYS "Yeah, sure"? You're basically telling me that I should replace it with "Oh, definitely!" or something, but don't try to tell me you've never in your life said "Yeah, sure". If you can use it, your characters can use it. And what then? Maybe I don't want to rewrite the dialogue. Maybe this character says "Yeah, sure" in a giggly tone, not "Oh, definitely!" Whee, I'm faced with the ultimate choice of making the character OOC or avoiding all this stupid trouble and just writing '"Yeah, sure," she giggled.' Guess what I'll pick.

Just plain "said" without adverbs is the appropriate word when there is no definite tone in the character's voice. An exclamation mark can also negate the need to explain it (which is actually what happens with the "Oh, definitely!"; it sounds just as neutral as "Yeah, sure" when you remove it). And most of the time, people don't speak with much of a definite tone, making just "said" appropriate very often.

When you should rewrite the dialogue is when what is said sounds completely flat and the alternative/adverb for said actually seems to be adding tone that isn't there. But I frankly find it distracting when I see a line loaded with emotion that just ends in "he said". It feels like something is missing. It makes the character seem like a bad actor repeating his lines instead of a proper character. It depends on how much emotion there is, of course, but if there is a lot of it, by all means don't just decide "The readers can tell it's supposed to be said angrily" and use nothing but "said".

This doesn't just apply to "said", you know. It's just a question of using the appropriate word, that's all. If you always wrote "giggled", for example, it wouldn't always be the right word to use. Neither is "said".

Aiya Quackform
May 13th, 2005, 06:24 PM
Perhaps I did overstate my opinion. There are certainly times when you'd want to use "Yeah, sure," but you also want to make sure that words give some sort of tone without adverbs.

Georgie Porgie
July 10th, 2005, 04:40 PM
y cant people like me do writing just becuz we cant write good its not fare that only smarter people can write things and make threds

Lily
July 10th, 2005, 04:44 PM
1) I am not smart.

2) In fact, I am quite dumb.

3) Of course you can write good, if you just listen to what people are saying. ^_^ They wish to help, and no one said you were bad at writing. Read yoru reviews carefully and use them to improve. If you don't make an effort on improving or listening to constructive criticism (aka helpful reviews), then what's the point?

4) If you have trouble, you can ask someone to beta read it, who basically revises your story before you post it. Or you can share ideas in the fanfiction lounge if other people's opinions are needed.

5) If you're desperate, PM me. I'll see what I can do. XP



EDIT: by the way, you put the tag around the url of the picture you wish to put in your signature. For example, if your picture's URL is www .picture. com (bad example), you simply put: [img]www.picture.com <- that.

22sa
July 10th, 2005, 05:09 PM
2) In fact, I am quite dumb.
Rofl :laugh:

Agreed! J/K

No one who takes up the the artistic responsibility of writing can really be dumb. You make the deductions, you can't be dumb, Lily. XP

y cant people like me do writing just becuz we cant write good its not fare that only smarter people can write things and make thredsYou can write, so as long as you know 1) why you are writing, and 2) what is required of you to write.

No consulting of other people is necessary, unless you do not know something you need.

Also, your writing is something only you can select, so do what you want. Don't worry if you're new, because you'll get better as the days pass. Don't worry if you're unsure about your writing--and don't be in a hurry to correct yourself. Give yourself time. You can't become a genius writer in one day. There's a lot of people helping here, but I doubt that would help much. It's mostly about your own selection and curiousity (and goal!).

oni flygon
July 10th, 2005, 05:12 PM
I'm so flattered when you called me smart... XD

Lily
July 10th, 2005, 05:15 PM
I'm so flattered when you called me smart... XD

Is that all you think of when you read people's posts? XP

22sa- But I am! =)

oni flygon
July 10th, 2005, 05:17 PM
No, not really...>>
I just wasn't thinking... XD

Lily
August 10th, 2005, 08:24 PM
Second version, by frostweaver, of course. This will be made into a new thread. o.o;






Pokemon Fanfiction Writing Guide v2 ^_^
By Frosty <3




These are general guidelines, which will aide you in your upcoming career of Pokemon fanfic writing. Though these guidelines often contain exceptions, it is recommended that you will follow through with these guidelines until you've gained much understanding about Pokemon writing.

This guide should cover all aspects of Pokemon fanfic writing, or at least most of everything. Every question is written in FAQ format.

This guide does not include tips on writing a fanfic in a script form.


Table of Contents

Preparation
-What do I need?
-What should I write on?
-What qualifies a fanfic to be a 'Pokemon fanfic'?
-What do I have to consider about when I'm writing?
-What is 'Stream of Consciousness' writing?

Plot and Acronyms
-What are the stereotypical plots in Pokemon fanfic?
-What is the 'most welcomed' type of plot?
-What are the 5 conflicts?
-What are the Acronyms used in Pokemon fanfic writing?

Narrative Manner
-What is narrative manner?
-What is 1st person narrative?
-What is 3rd person omniscient?
-What is 3rd person limited omniscient?
-What is 3rd person objective?

Prologue Writing
-What are the common errors to avoid about Prologue Writing?
-What is a Prologue? Do I need one?
-What should be included in a Prologue?
-How should I write a Prologue?
-Is there a sample of an 'ideal Prologue' and a 'terrible Prologue?'

Titles and Names
-What are the common errors to avoid about Titles and Names?
-What should I do about my fanfic's Title?
-What should I do about the title for this chapter?
-What names should I use for Characters in my fanfic?
-What nicknames should I use for the Pokemon in my fanfic?
-What names should I use for my original Pokemon/Places/league?

Characters (Humans and Pokemon)
-What are the common errors to avoid about Characters?
-How do I introduce my Characters?
-How do I write the dialogues for my Characters?
-How do I add physical descriptions for my Characters?
-How do I add emotional descriptions for my Characters?
-When is it suitable for a story to have no character description?
-What is a minor character
-How is the narrator a Character?

Setting
-How should I handle the time aspect of setting?
-How should I handle the landscape aspect of the setting?
-How should I handle the mood aspect of the setting?

Pokemon Battling
-What are the common errors to avoid?
-How do I describe a Pokemon attack?
-How do I make a Pokemon battle interesting?

Coherence and Clarity
-What is Coherence? What is Clarity?
-How should I make my story Coherent and Clear?

Diction
-What is Diction?
-How should I handle Diction?
-How do I find the denotation of a word?
-How do I find the connotation of a word?

Tone
-What is Tone?
-How do I portray Tone?

Literary Devices
-What should I do if I want to emphasize something?
-What is a symbol?
-What is an allusion?
-What is foreshadowing, flashback and in media res?
-What is a motif?
-What is a repetition?
-What is alliteration, consonance and assonance?
-What is a theme?

Story Structure
-How do I write the beginning for my fanfic?
-How do I write the rising actions for my fanfic?
-What is a climax?
-What is a denouement?

Fanfic Promotion/Improvement
-How do I become famous?
-What is a beta reader? Where do I find one?
-How do I attract more readers to read my fanfic?
-How do I attract more reviewers to review my fanfic?
-When should I update my fanfic?
-How should I advertise my fanfic?

FAQ

Preparation

What do I need?
-A very basic idea about what you want to write for your fanfic
-Spell checker/grammar check if you're doing this on the computer
-A thesaurus and a dictionary

What should I write on?
-Up to you to decide, as this is where originality comes in
-Be flexible, as a Pokemon fanfic do not have to be about Pokemon journeys
-You do not have to follow the format of the Pokemon game, anime or manga
-You don't even have to include any Pokemon (if you're talking about characters from the show/manga)
-You don't even have to include any characters from the Pokemon media (if you're talking about Pokemon and only)

What qualifies a fanfic to be a 'Pokemon fanfic?'
-Either of the following conditions must be met (not all, but at least some):
1. Story takes place in the world of Pokemon
2. Pokemon must be in the story
3. Characters from the Pokemon media are in the story
4. The concept of Pokemon is mentioned in the story

What do I have to consider about when I'm writing?
-Basically, everything that's mentioned in this guide

What is 'Stream of Consciousness' writing?
-This is to write without any pre-planning or thinking about your work. Just write whatever comes to your mind. It doesn't even have to be in story format.
-Advantage is that it maybe original, and can be used as inspiration for many ideas
-Disadvantage is that it will always need to be processed in order for it to become a fanfic, and it may not always lead to somewhere

Plot and Acronyms

What are the stereotypical plots in Pokemon fanfic?
-Note: stereotypical plots can be combined with one another

-'Original Trainer' A new trainer(s) set off on their own journey to be a Pokemon Master, similar to what the anime and the game has already. Traditionally, most new writers tend to jump to this type of plot first, and it is stereotyped as 'bad' fanfics.

-'Back to School' Pokemon characters go to school and this usually involves romances more than anything.

-'Dark fanfics' World of Pokemon is in huge chaos, and needs to be saved. The innocence of the Pokemon world is taken away, only to be replaced by the dark deeds that exist in the real world as well, such as murder and betrayal.

-'Team ____' Perspective is taken at a character that's on the dark side instead of the usual heroes who fight against these teams, such as Team Rocket/Magma/Aqua.

-'Pokemon Perspective' The fanfic is through the eyes of a Pokemon rather than the usual human characters. Usually, this involves the entire story dedicated to the feelings of the Pokemon towards what the Pokemon world is like, and most of the time, this type of fanfic is filled with angst, easily tied with 'Dark fanfics.'

-'Parody' Pokemon/Pokemon Characters join part in various TV shows, or other well-known programs in the real life world, and see how will the Pokemon Characters handle each situation. Usually this type of fanfic is comedic.

What is the 'most welcomed' type of plot?
-Generally, anything but the Original Trainer because Original Trainer is stereotyped itself to be a 'bad fanfics of low quality.'
-However, some authors prefer to work against their odds. By writing a good fanfic with a plot idea that's stereotyped as 'bad fanfics,' an author can become famous easily.

What are the 5 conflicts?
-'Man vs. Man' deals with conflicts between 2 human beings. The protagonist and the antagonist/s compete against each other in order to reach their own goal first, while often trying to stop the others. This is the most common conflict. All forms of rivalry is based on this conflict. It is possible that it is two organizations going against each other, and this is still classified as 'man vs. man.' Pokemon are included as a 'man' here, so any fanfic that deals with the struggle between a Pokemon and a specific trainer will also belong here. Team Magma and Team Aqua's grudge against each other is a form of 'man vs. man' although there aren't any distinctive two individuals. 'man vs. man' is considered to be the weakest and shallowest of all conflicts.

-'Man vs. Supernatural' is where a character challenges that of a legendary or supreme being, or the power of the unexplainable, such as ghosts and strange voices. Both the man and the supernatural may or may not be 'good.' This involves with a struggle between those with limited power against those who are suggested to have no limits in strength with no signs of weakness. Often, in Pokemon this is a battle between the trainer/organization against a legendary Pokemon (usually, Mew, Mewtwo or Kyogre/Groudon.) Man may borrow or rely on the strength of other legendary or supreme being/s in order to try to win the battle. Legendary Pokemon are considered to be supernatural for the Pokemon World, making this conflict to be the 2nd weakest and shallowest of all conflicts.

-'Man vs. Nature' is where a character faces the harshness of the natural environment. A character may be stranded in the wilderness, and must fight against the natural world in order to survive. Man and/or Pokemon must rely on his own resourcefulness and various talents in order to survive. Sickness and diseases are also considered as part of the natural world. For the purpose of a Pokemon fanfic, wild (non-legendary) Pokemon are considered to be part of 'Nature' but any Pokemon that has been captured is considered a 'man.' This conflict is considered to be one of the higher level conflicts.

-'Man vs. Society' is where a single or few character/s must face the challenges from the wide public. Often, this conflict deals with characters who must fight against the set orders and rules within the world which they live in. Another possibility is how an individual tries to maintain their individuality. In Pokemon, this often deals with a Pokemon character trying to change the Pokemon world's concept of capturing Pokemon for battles. This conflict is considered to be one of the higher level conflicts.

-'Man vs. Self' is where a character battles against himself. He must make decisions which are difficult for him, and fight against his own desires/beliefs and reason with his own mind. The character embarks off a spiritual journey in order to define himself in his ability, strength, identity and beliefs. This conflict is considered to be the pinnacle of complexity, being most welcomed by readers over all other conflicts. At the same time, it is also the most difficult to write without being considered 'corny.' A good 'man vs. self' conflict is enough to place any fanfic's plot as an excellent one. If supported by other conflicts, your readers will definitely be enticed.

What are the Acronyms used in Pokemon fanfic writing?
-OT (Original Trainer- describes the Original Trainer type of fanfic)
-Oneshots (short stories that will not have any updates)
-OOC (Out of Character- describes how the story portrayed in the fanfic is unlike the character in the Pokemon media, and therefore is unreal)
-PM (Pocket Monster, another name for Pokemon)
-Note: acronyms are only used in reviews and shouldn't be used in the story

Narrative Manner

What is narrative manner?
-It is the way the story is presented/narrated. It is how the narrator gets involved with the story.
-Considered as one of the 5 components of story writing (plot, character, setting, theme, narrative manner)

What is 1st person narrative?
-The narrator is a character from the story. Story is told through the viewpoints of this one particular character.
-Story is told using 1st person's viewpoints. 'I' and 'we' are used.
-The story may not be truthful through the 1st person narrative. It is possible that the character who's acting as the narrator is lying, or is unreliable (ex: narrator is mentally ill, or an alcoholic.) In these cases, readers must try to discover the true story through diction, and little hints that the narrator has left behind unintentionally. Perhaps sometimes the narrator just briefly mentions something because it is unimportant to that character, but this 'minor detail' maybe implied for something only the readers have realized (therefore, creating dramatic irony)
-Character description regarding other characters can only be revealed by the narrator (who may be biased, however) or by absolute precise choice in diction and tone.
-Story sounds a lot more close, as if the readers and the characters are on a personal level
-Also greatly empowers the character component of the story, but is only strengthening the protagonist.
-Is one of the harder narrative to write a story on.

What is 3rd person omniscient?
-The narrator is told from a side point of view. The narrator does not have any role in the story. The narrator is not involved in the action.
-The narrator is all-knowing. He knows exactly what all characters are thinking, and is capable of sharing this knowledge to the readers. Being all-knowing, the narrator is completely trustworthy and accurate in details.
-Character description is easily accomplished, as the narrator can say anything accurately.
-Increases the power of the character component of the story in general, but is not as effective in strengthening the protagonist as the 1st person narrative
-Easiest narrative to write a story on, and is the default setup.

What is 3rd person limited omniscient?
-Exactly the same as the 3rd person omniscient, except that now the narrator is limiting his own knowledge.
-Only one character's mind is known and described at a time. Though the narrator knows exactly what all characters are thinking, he will only talk about one at the same time, where the fully omniscient character will mention multiple characters' way of thinking at the same time.
-In terms of writing difficulty, this is the transitional stage between the 3rd person omniscient and the 1st person narrative.
-Its advantage is that a feeling of mystery can be made. One character's mind is understood (mostly that of the protagonist), and the other characters' minds are shrouded in mystery (especially that of the antagonist.) Yet the narrator may give us occasional glimpse of the other characters' minds, in order to increase the tension.
-Increases the strength of the plot component of story writing.
-The standard narrative for most fanfics, because the advantage of this narrative benefits the fantasy/adventure genre the most.

What is 3rd person objective?
-Narrator also talks at the sideline, not being involved with the story's mainstream plot.
-The narrator does not know any character's thinking at all. The narrator is objective instead of telling the story in the subjective manner. This is the main difference between this narrative and any other narrative.
-Objective voice only presents what is present, but will offer no interpretation. For example, the 3rd person objective narrator will tell us that a Totodile growled at its trainer, stomped the ground and then ran away. It will not tell us that the Totodile is angry at its trainer, but the evidence is present for the readers to safely interpret Totodile's emotions.
-Greatly strengthens the theme along with the setting component of a story.
-Weak for a fanfic because it relies on the reader heavily. If the readers are not keen readers and are only looking for plot, a 3rd person objective story will make absolutely no sense to these readers. In the fanfic world, there is only a limited amount of readers who may spend time to reread parts of the fanfic in order to find clues about the real story in a 3rd person objective narrative.
-Hardest narrative to write on, but it has the most strength at heart. It stands strong with the greatest influential power over the readers.

Prologue Writing

What are the common errors to avoid about Prologue Writing?
-Saying 'this is the prologue' as your readers aren't stupid
-Giving out your entire story, as this is only suppose to grab your readers' attention
-Writing a short summary instead of a prologue, as they are different
-Prologue fails to increase tension, or stirs interest in readers
-Saying to the readers 'this story will get better' (no reason for this, as your story should always be as good as it can be)
-Giving the readers a list of anything. That is boring.
-Talking as the author, as that is part of the author's note and not the prologue.

What is a Prologue? Do I need one?
-Prologue is a short introduction before the story used as a short review to attract readers to keep reading
-It is completely optional and not necessary for chaptered fanfics
-Not an option for Oneshots, or the prologue should be just integrated as part of the Oneshot itself

What should be included in a Prologue?
-What you regard as the most tense or interesting moment (usually, the moment is near the beginning of the fanfic, but this again is only a matter of choice)
-Introduction or background information regarding what is to come in the first chapter

How should I write a Prologue?
-Think of what you want to include in the prologue
-Most of the time, you want to give as little information as possible. Prologues have less description than any other part of the story.
-For prologue, it is generally shorter the better. End the prologue immediately if you think that you've succeeded in increasing the tension or hooking the attention of your readers
-Be sure that everything in the prologue is precise, and all details are pointing towards the same direction of increasing the tension. If a description is not meeting this goal, then it's best to save this detail for another part of the story.
-Often, prologues include the usage of cliffhangers to increase tension
-You can also use powerful/emotional quotes from your story
-Do not include any of the things to avoid listed earlier in this FAQ

Is there a sample of an 'ideal Prologue' and a 'terrible Prologue?'

The bad prologue: (no author name given as this isn't something to be proud of)

Okay let me layout the main stuff and give you the audience the idea of what im trying to do. This saga was inspired by the soap opera The Bold And The Buetiful (obviously). Ill add on more stuff as i go along and more people are welcome to help me write, just pm me. Okay heres the main stuff:

-Location: Pallet Town
-Present Day 2004
-pokemon replace the humans(so everyone is a pokemon)
-the pokemon will talk in english
-they will have houses just like normal humans would and some pokemon may live together
-there will be no cars and pokemon may not have pets
-theres no such thing as pokeballs or pokemon trainers

this is all i can think of right now as for the sagas reality, ill come up with more stuff as the story unfolds.

Main Characters: Pikachu(of course)(male), Nidorino(male),Butterfree(female),Marill(female),S nubbel(male)
Other Characters: Chansey(female),Pichu(male),Mudkip(female),Raichu( male),Treecko(male),Charmelion(male)
ill have more characters as time goes on.

Okay now its time for the prelude:

In the quit town of Pallet Town, Pikachu is a sports writer for the local news paper and reports on pokemon battles. Marril, his wife, stays at home and takes care of their son Pichu. Nidorino is also a pokemon battle reporter and doesnt take kindly to Pikachus new promotiuon.He was once Pikachus best friend. Butterfree is a next door niehbor of pikachu and marril. Snubbel is a merchant and freid of Nidorino. Chansey is the nurse at the pokemon center. Mudkip and Treecko are freinds with pikachu and marill. Raichu is Pikachus father. Charmelion is the local detective for the pallet town police.

The first episode will be written in probly a day so i can get the story straight.Like i said just pm me to help me write the saga which will probly consist until there is no more to be writen.

-Notice how it is full of spelling mistakes already. It shows little effort from the writer. It is overly revealing. Why will anyone want to read on further when they know half of the story already? The list is uninteresting and boring. It doesn't sound very serious or professional. The writer also treats the readers as if they're stupid, saying some of the most idiotic comments.

The good prologue: Pokemon MASTER, ch.10 (not used as an actual prologue, but this qualifies to be one)

Cold, so biting cold. As she hugged herself around her slim shoulders,
folds of her ice-blue cloak blew out in front of her by the biting winds
at her back. She stared out at the black tumbling waters of the vast
ocean. From her perch upon a seaside cliff that seemed to be made
entirely of ice, she remained silent and still, even as her high heels
seemed to hold her unnaturally steady upon the sheer slippery surface.

Cold to suit her frozen soul. It was what she was after all. To tell the
truth, she didn't know how she could still be alive with her very heart
unbeating, a block of ice.

Sea-green eyes blinked once. She could sense them coming. She reached
within her cloak to remove her small spectacles and put them on
carefully.

She watched.

And waited.

-The prologue is hardly revealing, and notice how the author didn't say anything himself. The lack of information stirs up the readers' feelings to read on forward in order to find out who is the mysterious woman, and what she wants to do. Tension is increased from the grave and serious tone of the prologue. Characterization is present already, laying down some bases of understanding for the reader regarding what is to come soon. There's also an incomplete sentence which succeeds in emphasizing the importance of the small phrase.

Lily
August 10th, 2005, 08:25 PM
Continues on...




Titles and Names

What are the common errors to avoid about Titles and Names?
-Cliché names are to be avoided (more explanations further on)
-Names that are from other series/TV shows/games/etc are to be avoided (it will suggest a crossover, a fanfic that is based on more than one media, unless crossover is what you want)
-Cliché titles are to be avoided
-Titles that are used by other stories are to be avoided
-Titles that are slightly alternated from the titles of other stories are to be avoided. Again, this suggests crossover. (ex: Pokemon 1/2 , and that is a direct allusion to Ranma)

What should I do about my fanfic's Title?
-It should be descriptive of your own story, either illuminating a theme in your story, or an important plot element in your story
-Avoid the word: 'journey,' 'adventure,' 'quest' and any other similar words as these are used too many times in titles. It doesn't make your fanfic stick out above the rest.
-Avoid the word: 'legend,' 'story', 'myth' and any other similar words as well. Use 'tales' if you must use a word of this similar idea. 'Tales' is the least used word in this category, so it will sound a bit more original.
-Avoid cliché/corny statements, such as giving your fanfic the title: 'Twist of Fate'
-If you think that your fanfic title can only describe your fanfic and no other stories, then it is a very well thought out title.
-Generally, a title shouldn't be too long, but there are exceptions as well. However, it's easier for beginners to come up with a good title that is short.

What should I do about the title for this chapter?
-Apply the same rules regarding the title for the fanfic
-Chapter titles allow you to use 'part 1' and 'part 2' naming systems. For example, if your chapter is named 'The Sieve and the Sand,' then you can always use 'The Sieve and the Sand, 1' and 'The Sieve and the Sand, 2' for the names of chapters that are related to the same idea but are too long to be combined as one chapter.
-Keep in mind that the option of having no titles for each chapter is also present

What names should I use for Characters in my fanfic?
-Don't use existing Pokemon character names for an original character. This will be extremely confusing for readers.
-Don't use existing famous anime/game character names for your characters. Again, this may suggest crossovers. Borrowing names from minor characters can be acceptable at times, but only because none of your readers remember this certain minor character from another series.
-Seems to be a trend where common names (such as John, Betty) aren't really liked by your readers if you use those names for an important character. Unless the name function as a symbol, or if the meaning of the name suits that character, avoid these names too. Honestly, I don't know why the Pokemon fanfic world hates these names, but they do.
- Professors can certainly have a name other than some random trees in the world.
-If you can't think of any names, use a name with a meaning that symbolizes something about your character. Another way is to translate a word that describes your character into a foreign language, then add or take a few letters away from that word to make an original name.
-Feel free to use names of sentimental significance, even if they violate all the previous rules. A disclaimer or a small note of explanation in the author's notes will solve any problems if you want to use a 'bad' name that means a lot to you.

What nicknames should I use for the Pokemon in my fanfic?
-Same general rule applies for Pokemon names as the ones for human names
-On top of those, don't use cheesy words for a Pokemon nickname. If a typical pet owner will not give a pet the name you're giving to your Pokemon, then it's likely that it's not a good name. (ex: Infernal the Torchic)
-Again, the foreign language trick works. You can look up the Japanese name of the Pokemon, give or take a few letters and call that 'original' name. However, this doesn't work for all Pokemon, such as Chikorita whose Japanese name is Chikoriita.

What names should I use for my original Pokemon/Places/league?
-Location names can be rather simple, as readers are lenient about it.
-Keep in mind that it's not necessary to name your towns the way Pokemon named it. Not all the towns in one region have to be named after flowers, or colors.
-Original Pokemon naming requires heavy amount of creativity. Don't use overly obvious combination of words to make a new Pokemon species (ex: fire + ball = 'Fireball'.) Instead, use more complicated words as your basis for word combination.

Characters (Humans and Pokemon)

What are the common errors to avoid about Characters?
-Making your character 'one dimensional' like the Pokemon anime characters, especially those Ash and Misty replicates. They'll turn out to be a 'flat character' then.
-Characters have no sense of personality, or just only one personality and only
-Forget to describe what each character is like (physically and emotionally)
-Never explaining what is on any characters' mind, or the way in which s/he/it thinks
-Jumping in transitions too quickly without a reason, especially for romance
-Introducing many characters too quickly, to the point that readers can't follow with who is who

How do I introduce my Characters?
-When you're introducing, don't start off with a whole block of words that describe your character. Always include some minor action (a verb of some sort, besides 'is' and the likes) so the paragraph isn't too boring when you're introducing the character.
(Ex of what not to do: 'She is a very bright girl at the very young age of 10. She has shoulder-length hair with dark green eyes, and she always wears her green skirt. She looks so beautiful, yet her odd behavior scares other children from talking to her'
(Ex of a decent, but still needs a lot of refining introduction: "yet the young age of 10 does not suppress her vast wisdom. Though there is nothing more than the average shoulder-length hair along with an ordinary green skirt, there is a mysterious sense of beauty upon the girl. Regardless of her charm, she is deemed as a 'monster' by the neighbors, because she acts too differently than the traditional practices of the town. Whenever she walks by, the other children quickly evacuate from the street and hide inside their home" This example isn't bad for 1 minute work, but it's too long and the sentences don't flow very well. It'll be ideal to insert in some events in the middle of this character description paragraph so the plot doesn't come to a halt. Some diction changes can be made to this example as well so the sentences will flow smoothly.
-When a character is introduced, check if the flow of the story's plot is put to a small halt because you're describing the character. If there's a halt, then you probably have to redo that section over again. The plot shouldn't stop for a character, as the characters are supposed to help the plot.
-You probably don't want to tell the readers everything about this particular character the moment s/he/it is introduced. This will be too lengthy and boring. Information should be distributed throughout the story, as if the readers are finding something new about the character every now and then, revitalizing their interest in the story.
-Physical descriptions are almost always given to the readers very early when the characters arrive. Behavioral description is given at the beginning as well, but only enough to give the reader a certain image about the character. This image can very well change through the addition of more behavioral description as the story progresses.

How do I write the dialogues for my Characters?
-Tone should be consistent for the character, so characters do not go 'out of character' (unless the character changes)
-Make sure that the words they're using are reasonable to what words they should know
-Unless explaining a side-story, background, a concept, or conveying a formal speech, dialogues generally shouldn't be longer than 5 lines worth of typing on Microsoft word. If it's over that length, double check if the length is really necessary. Long dialogues may result in boredom.
-Dialogues are also a way to describe your characters. By adjusting and planning out what a character say, it is indirectly telling what a character is like. For example, a character may often questions and panics about what is going on and what to do. The readers can interpret that this character is weak-minded and dependent on others, perhaps even a bit of a coward. Yet none of this is told directly by the narration. Emotional descriptions are in fact best shown by dialogues and action, instead of the narrator saying 'he is a weak-minded boy who lacks courage.'
-Check if a dialogue is actually necessary. If it doesn't contribute to the story, or if it doesn't demonstrate anything, then cut it out, or rework on that dialogue. (Ex: Narration just talked of how Team Rocket is taking off in their Meowth-balloon with Pikachu, and Misty said 'Oh no they're taking Pikachu away!' This is a repeat of the narration. The readers already know this. This dialogue doesn't show us anything about character, setting or anything to the slightest degree, so why bother having Misty say this line?) The only exception to this rule is those that are meant to be used as transition from one part of the story to another, or a tension release.
-Tension release dialogues are meant to be non-serious, or a small joke. It doesn't have to be funny, but just enough for a small snicker. They often come after a tense situation, and usually ends a section of the chapter so another scene/chapter can start.

How do I add physical descriptions for my Characters?
-You can add physical descriptions for your characters anytime you want
-Many authors even start introducing physical descriptions before the characters introduce their names, or before they permanently interact with the story
-Describe what you see for your characters in your mind
-Be sure that the physical descriptions are precise and detailed. Always have a reason in mind why you portrait your characters in such a manner. Physical description often symbolizes a character trait/emotional description for a character
-Actually, you do not necessarily have to describe all aspects of a character physically. You do not have to force yourself to describe hair, eyes, face, the shirts, the pants/dress and so on. Just describe what you see as necessary, and what is contributing to the story.
-Avoid listing (Ex: She has green classes, blue eyes. A beautiful red dress and long hair.)
-Again, be sure to include some minor action/verb in character description, so the story doesn't come to a complete halt.

How do I add emotional descriptions for my Characters?
-It is preferred that the narrator (1st person narrative exceptional) does not do all of the emotional description. (ex: She is a lonely woman, who often relies on her own strength. She is a very dependent person.)
-Leave some of the emotional description within actions, or the tone of voice/diction, and let the readers interpret them.
-Characters act differently depending on their personality. Different characters' responses towards the same action is an example of a way to portrait emotional descriptions without the narrator bluntly saying it out loud.
-Most emotional descriptions are shown by seeing how a character thinks, preferably through their dialogues or action. However, it's nearly impossible for the narrator not to take parts of the responsibility in showing emotional descriptions for your characters.
-Make sure that the descriptions you have for your characters isn't 'out of character.'

When is it suitable for a story to have no character description?
-When you want a tense or mysterious moments, then you want some characters in the dark. To do this, you may want to hold back on character descriptions so your readers only know a limited amount about these mysterious characters.
-Generally, characters who are acting as the focal point for the narrator will get much more character description than those who are not.
-'Bad guys' usually have less character descriptions than 'good guys,' especially on the physical level, in the beginning of the story. However, by the end, both sides should have equal amounts of description.

How is the narrator a Character?
-If you're using the 1st person narrative
-A narrator's diction and tone also contributes to the story, similar so a 'real character's' dialogue

Setting

How should I handle the time aspect of setting?
-Choose the time of the day carefully. It's guaranteed to be treated as a symbol.
-Pokemon fanfics usually don't have time eras to deal with, but if your fanfic do, be sure to have a reason why you choose a certain time era. What makes this time era suitable? Think about what unique quality does one era have over another that makes you choose this era. If you can't think of it, then perhaps there's a better choice elsewhere.

How should I handle the landscape aspect of the setting?
-If this part of the story takes places in a canonic part of the Pokemon World, then describe the pre-made setting accurately. For example, if your characters have traveled to Fortree, then the unique tree-houses should be described.
-If this part of the story takes place in an original setting, then picture what it looks like in your mind, and try to describe it.
-Colors are almost always symbolic, so choose them carefully.
-Pokemon fanfic world isn't too picky about naming a new region or new city. Just use your common sense and check if the name sounds good to you. Remember that cities aren't restricted to be named after colors or plants. Try to avoid a real word as the name of a region though.
-Plan carefully about created towns and cities. What famous sights and landmarks are there, if any? If there are, then something should take place in these places (or some form of relevancy.) If not, then why make them in the first place?

How should I handle the mood aspect of the setting?
-Mood is created together by the landscape and time. How you control the landscape and time will directly affect the mood.
-Similar to tone, the mood must be fitting for the scene and the plotline.
-Mood can also portrait the exact opposite feeling that a character is undergoing in order to create irony.
-The effect of mood is usually defined by common European sense. Since English is originated in Europe, the European ideas are used as the basis for all English writing. This includes Pokemon fanfics, although Pokemon is first started in Japan.
-For example, a thunderstorm is usually a bad sign for something terrible to happen. Gentle rain is romantic, and/or is a sign of rebirth. A clear, sunny day is usually a good sign. A morning is a symbol for new beginnings. Use basic understanding you've learnt from reading to assist you.

Pokemon Battling

What are the common errors to avoid?
-Basing the battle to be very similar to the game, as if it is a battle log entry
-Having little description about what is going on
-'Turn based' battling, as if this is the Pokemon game (exception: humor/parody fanfics)
-Unrealistic moments (ex: Lapras 'quickly' dodges all the Slash attacks from a Ninjask)

How do I describe a Pokemon attack?
-See the battle within your mind. Try your very best to portrait what you see with words.
-You can describe a Pokemon's movements in order to carry out the attack.
-The attack doesn't always have to fit in with the attack animation from the game. As long as your description of the attack is logical, it is acceptable. Confuse ray doesn't necessarily have to be a ball of light heading towards your opponent while the world turns red and blue for a short period of time.
-Remember that not all the time does the Pokemon attack at the commands of a trainer. Pokemon is capable of attacking out of instincts, self protection or disobedience.
-It is also possible that a Pokemon understands a trainer's commands without the trainer actually announcing the name of the attack.
-Logic prevails over Pokemon game stats or mechanics. Vine Whip is usually considered to be a physical attack and not a grass attack in the fanfic world, for example. Reconsider each attacks with logic appropriately with this in mind when you're designing your battle scenes.

How do I make a Pokemon battle interesting?
-Make your battles realistic and life-like, similar to how the fight will be like in the real world.
-Pokemon shouldn't need to take turns (again, parody/humor fanfics are exceptional)
-Pokemon should be acting realistically according to their pokedex information/details, and their skills should be roughly based on the game. For example, Swellow in the game has a very high speed, so in your battles, Swellow should be a very speedy Pokemon as well. However, this doesn't mean that a Fearow cannot outrun the Swellow, even though the game stats specify that Fearow is slower than Swellow by 20 base speed points. This example shows that as long as the stats are roughly followed, it is acceptable. Just don't make an ordinary Sharpedo withstand 5 hyper beams from an ordinary Slaking and still emerge unharmed (Sharpedo has one of the lowest defense out of all Pokemon).
-The availability of different moves can be altered by the fanfic writer in a Pokemon battle, but make sure that it's logical. Pikachu cannot use Megahorn no matter how you look at it.
-Be creative and abuse the special quality of battles being 'life-like' outside of the gameboy games. Interact with the environment, or use a combination of attacks to achieve a goal (ex: Tangela uses constrict to pull in its enemy in order to release Stun Spore)
-Pokemon attacks don't necessarily have to have the identical effects as they do in the game. For example, String Shot doesn't have to lower speed. It can also be used to stop the opponent from any movement, thus stopping any direct attacks. Many authors also like to use supersonic as a counter towards other sound attacks, as the two sound waves 'cancel' each other out. Again, this is not something supersonic can do in the game, but the writers have given supersonic this secondary ability.
-Most battles are interesting if one side can go against the odds in order to turn the tide of the battle with a clever solution to the problem.
-Spellings of attacks can be capitalized, but it's not required. This is up to the fanfic writer. If any review criticize a fanfic because of this, then ignore that comment. This also apply for Pokemon species name. The canon never specified about capitalization, so the fanfic writer can decide.

Coherence and Clarity

What is Coherence? What is Clarity?
-Coherence is how consistent you are with the details in your fanfic. If your main character is said to have blue hair in chapter 1, and then he suddenly has green hair in chapter 3 without any forms/reason of transformation, then the fanfic is not coherent. Another example is that two characters are siblings, but the next chapter say that they are not.
-All details within a fanfic must be consistent, or if there is a change in detail, then there must be some form of metamorphosis or a reason for the change in detail.
-Verisimilitude is the accuracy of a fanfic to historical figures. For a fanfic's purposes, this points towards the accuracy to the Pokemon World's pre-made facts. For example, if your ordinary Magneton in your fanfic is a fire type, then this damages your fanfic's verisimilitude.
-Clarity is about how easy it is for readers to understand your fanfic. It is the same as readability. If your sentences are really long and wordy, then it'll damage the fanfic's clarity. Also, using a font that is how to read is also damaging. It's best to use any forum's default font.
-If you want to be really professional, then use Arial or Times New Romans. These two fonts are psychologically easiest to read, more than any others.

How should I make my story Coherent and Clear?
-Check if your details are all consistent by proofreading your fanfic.
-Check if your fanfic's Pokemon characters' actions are roughly based on their Pokedex information.
-Check if the Pokemon World map is similar to yours if your fanfic takes place in an existing region.
-Check if your characters are similar to the anime/manga characters if you're not using original characters.
-Usually, a sentence shouldn't be any longer than 3 lines long when you are typing your story on Microsoft word. Sometimes a long sentence damages clarity even though they are grammatically correct. Break a long sentence into multiple short sentences.
-Think if you can replace a phrase with just one word in order to reduce wordiness.
-Hire beta readers so they can help you in checking over the fanfic.

Lily
August 10th, 2005, 08:26 PM
...the heck is this. ;-;

Diction

What is Diction?
-The choice of words used in a sentence.
-Every word in the English language is different. Every word has a connotation and a denotation. Words may have similar meaning, and some authors treat these words as completely interchangeable. However, if you want to exceed, these minor differences will make a difference to the knowledgeable readers.
-Different words have a different effect on the story, depending on its denotation and connotation. They will create a different tone of voice as well.
-Different wordings can indirectly reveal different aspects of an event or a character.
-For example, a young boy who addresses to his parent as 'daddy!' has a different effect than a young boy who addresses to his parent as 'father.' One of them suggests a much closer, and warmer relationship, while the other is on a much more formal basis. Diction here reveals to the readers the strength of the family bond, yet the narrator did not say such a thing directly. Nowhere does the narrator say 'the relationship between the son and the father is _____.'

How should I handle Diction?
-Check for a word's connotation. Check the connotation for words with a similar denotation too. Out of those that you check, choose the best one.
-Use a thesaurus in order to look for these similar words.
-Also rely partly on instinct. Sometimes, a word will naturally sound 'nicer' to you out of all the possible choices. This is because diction will become a built-in skill as time goes on.

How do I find the denotation of a word?
-Denotation is the word's literal meaning. It is possible that some words have the identical denotation.
-Readers either know the denotation or don't know the denotation of the word. There is no interpretation necessary.
-Use a dictionary to find the denotation of a word.

How do I find the connotation of a word?
-Connotation is the implied message or idea behind a word. This implied message or idea will have a definite effect on your story.
-Skills involving diction and choosing the right word with the connotation that you want are developed by reading. The more your read and analyze what you've read, the easier connotations will come to you.
-Some online dictionaries or encyclopedias show how a word is used in a famous literature when you're looking up the denotation of a word. This is probably the easiest way to check for connotation. See how the professionals use the word, and try to understand the sentence which is being quoted. Afterwards, you'll understand how the word is used, and now you know if the word is suitable for your situation.

Tone

What is Tone?
-It is the manner of expression in words. Tone is created by diction in the narration or a dialogue.
-Tone will also portrait a character in a dialogue. The way a character talks is portrayed by tone. Tone will add to the character description in order to make a character more imaginable by your readers, as if the characters are real.
-The narrator's tone (excluding 1st person narrative) will create a certain feeling within the readers. The narrator's tone together with the setting's mood will evoke your readers to feel a certain way. This is easily seen in intensive situations where characters have to face life and death. Why do readers regard these scenes as 'intensive situations?' This is partly because of the plot, but it is also because of the tone's assistance. If the tone is improper, then the good plot will be wasted.
-Real life experiences and reading will help you in portraying tone in your fanfic.

How do I portray Tone?
-Think of words that are suitable for that particular character. For example, are the words you're using proper for your 8 year old character?
-Imagine the way they talk, and what words they'll use in your mind. Write it out in your fanfic.
-Use people of different personality around you in real life as guide lines to what a particular character will sound like.
-Use each word to its proper connotation.
-Short sentences, or even incomplete sentences usually portray a sense of importance, panic, shock or surprise. Long sentences are more relaxed and show the every common day-to-day practice. Use this to your advantage.
-Choose what part of the action to describe in detail, and this will have a different effect on the tone. For example, there is a severe and savage Pokemon battle of life and death, and the Machop is bleeding, yet he continues to battle. Now, do you want to describe the bleeding in detail, or just briefly mention it? If you talk about the bleeding in detail, then the tone heads towards a bloody or gory situation, foreshadowing death of some kind. If the blood is not described in detail, but you rather describes Machop's determined looking facial expression, then you're emphasizing Machop's courage. This will foreshadow Machop being victorious in the end instead, and probably the scene will end on a happier note. Notice the difference?

Literary Devices

What should I do if I want to emphasize something?
-Use different literary devices in order to stress on a point
-You may bold a text, but usually that is not the preferred method. Italics is more preferable.
-Italics is used for a sudden change in narration, but can be used for emphasis if it is rarely used.
-Put the sentence that wants to be emphasized in an incomplete sentence on purpose, especially if the action is continuous. An incomplete sentence isn't finish, and that definitely ties in with the continuous action. The fact that it's an incomplete sentence will catch the readers' attention due to its mistake. This in return, creates emphasis.
-Strange wordings can also catch your readers' attention. However, this is usually difficult to accomplish, so it's not recommended unless you are confident about yourself. Authors go for an attempt at this for emphasis, but they usually end up in a wordy situation with bad diction, yet failed to emphasize anything.
-Don't use emphasizing techniques too much. Doing this too often will lose its effect.

What is a symbol?
-Symbol is an arbitrary sign that has acquired a conventional significance.
-Something in your story may represent a certain important idea. For example, red roses are always a sign of romance. Your character may pick up a red rose on the floor on the way back home in pristine condition (one line is probably enough to describe this very short scene.) This can very well act as a foreshadow that this character will soon be involved in a romantic relationship, using the symbol of love from red roses.
-Authors can also use a metaphor to directly compare a character with something that symbolizes for certain traits. Those traits will now be inherited by the character due to the symbol in the metaphor.
-Symbols are very useful. They are very helpful in character description without everything being stated bluntly.

What is an allusion?
-Allusion is to mention something that is a specific reference to an existing piece of literature, movie or painting. For example, there maybe a mention of a picture of a woman who is always staring at whoever is looking at it. This is an allusion of Mona Lisa.
-Crossover is similar to an allusion, except that crossover's involvement is usually a lot bigger, and is not only involved with the story on the symbolic level.
-Allusion is usually involved with the text symbolically. Allusions tend to be short, and are usually 2 sentences worth in length at most.

What is foreshadowing, flashback and in media res?
-Foreshadowing is an indication by a sign or another event regarding an upcoming event. Foreshadow may give hints to the readers about what is coming in order to increase their interest in the story. Foreshadowing should be precise in terms of describing what is about to come.
-For example, if a boy is attending a funeral and is imaging about what his own funeral will be like, then it's a direct foreshadow for his upcoming death. Although the readers now know the fate of the boy, they don't know how it happened, so out of interest they will continue reading.
-A flashback is when a past event is recalled, and the story proceeds to talk about this past event. Sometimes, the entire story is a flashback. The characters are at the stage of the ending, and then the story about the past is shown as the main plot for the story.
-A flashback is helpful in terms of bringing out the antecedent action (actions that occurred to the characters before the start of the story)
-In Media Res is a classification when the story starts in half point. The story goes back to the past in a flashback, and then proceeds on forward again.

What is a motif?
-Motif is a reoccurring image. Motif appears constantly throughout the story. Its frequent appearance will promote and strengthen a symbol in its power. Motif is always important in significance to the story.
-a tool to strengthen the literary device that is being repeated as a motif.

What is a repetition?
-Similar to motif, repetition is the repeat of the same word over a short period of time. It will stress the connotation/symbol of the word that is being repeated.

What is a theme?
-This is always present in any story that is good. Theme is the central, main idea that is being suggested by the plot, characters, setting and the narrative manner. The theme is always a reflection on life, and is usually deep in meaning.
-Often readers and reviewers complain about a story being too straightforward, and that the characters are stereotyped. They demand some addition in complexity and a decrease in predictability. This problem happens because the story lacks a theme. Subconsciously, most readers will reject a story if the theme is bad/does not exist , even though they may not realize what the theme is exactly. Yet, they will sense the presence of a theme in the story.
-Some writers like to think of a theme first, then portrait ways to demonstrate the theme through narrative manner, characters, plot and setting. Yet some writers believe that if the other 4 components are well constructed, a natural theme will emerge from a story, without the author realizing it at all.

Story Structure

How do I write the introduction for my fanfic?
-Introduction should bring the protagonist into the story
-Basic character description should be lay down, but not absolutely everything should be revealed about the characters. Most of the time, physical description should be explained in this stage of the fanfic already for the protagonists.
-The time setting should be completely explained, unless your story stops and picks up again after a period of time
-Conflict should occur, but this may or may not be the main conflict. Authors don't have to introduce all the different conflicts here as well, but at least one conflict should start to take shape here.
-Basic structure of the setting should be lay out as well
-A reason for the plot to begin should be introduced. For example, if there is a journey, then the reason for the journey should be mentioned (but not necessarily explained completely).
-The antagonist/s should be mentioned, but is not required to enter into the story
-Story should be made obvious if it is chronological, a flashback or an in media res
-There is no specific length for an introduction.

How do I write the rising actions for my fanfic?
-Rising action is a process in the story where the tension slowly builds up
-Tension shouldn't continuously build up without stopping for chaptered fanfics. There should be short time in between to serve as tension release.
-There should be continuous character development. Characters may or may not change, but readers should find out more and more about each main character (and perhaps the supporting characters too.)
-All conflicts should be present and obvious to the readers by now.
-The usage of setting should be continuous in order to assist the plot and characters
-The theme should start to take shape from the combined effect of all other story components
-Be sure that the plot is not too predictable. Why will your readers continue reading if they can guess out the rest of the story?
-Rising action should be the longest part of your story, but no specific length is required.

What is a climax?
-The point of highest tension in the story, usually either the shortest or the 2nd shortest part of the story.
-Plot reaches the most intense part, where the protagonist must face with the main conflict and try the very best to resolve the conflict. The protagonist may succeed or fail.
-Especially important for chaptered fanfics that deals with an adventure. Oneshot places a much weaker emphasis on the climax.
-A decisive moment where it is the definitive factor in terms of how the story will turn out.
-May possibly be debatable in terms of what is the absolute climax of the story, but it must be present.

What is a denouement? Is it necessary?
-Denouement is everything factor the story reaches the climax.
-For Oneshots, denouement is the definitive moment of a story instead of the climax. The first author of short stories, Edgar Allen Poe, argue that the denouement is the only decisive factor for defining a good short story.
-Though generally most conflict is resolved in many stories, this is not a requirement. The protagonist may fail at solving the conflict.
-The theme should be completely present, making its most dramatic impact at this point of the story.
-Can possibly be so short that it seems to be inexistent, such as being one sentence long. But, it is necessary for all stories.

Fanfic Promotion/Improvement

How do I become famous?
-Write better, and keep writing.
-Communicate with other writers often, and make friends. However, be sure that you don't talk of nothing but fanfics. Try to blend in and make friends. When you publish your story, they'll come to read it because you're their friend, and not because they will feel bad to reject you should they ever refuse to read it.
-Don't do anything stupid to earn yourself a bad name
-Enter in contests if there are contests, and your story fits for it. Don't be scared to lose, and just try. At the very minimum, you've got yourself new readers (the judges). At the maximum, you got new fans who want to check out the 1st place winner.
-Post at many forums, and post your stories on fanfiction.net so that you can have places to link to, and befriend with other writers
-After you got fellow writers as friends, they may give you very helpful pointers that can help you improve your story in fanfic discussions.
-Help other new writers and give tips for writing. They will come to read your story to see how good you are, and through them they will spread your name around.
-Be patient and ask for reviewers whenever you can
-Don't ever get banned in a forum
-Review and comment on other people's stories. Even if you're not a talented reviewer who reviews in great detail, review and comment anyway. But do say more than 'this is a good story keep going.' As a minimum, a review should talk about what you like about it, and what needs to be improved on.

What is a beta reader? Where do I find one?
-They can proofread your work and give you feedback before you publish in public
-They may be able to pick up mistakes so you can fix it before they are published.
-Look for beta readers who are willing to be hired. Check for discussion threads in forums, or their signatures.
-Close friends who have free time and is interested in fanfics may also work as a beta reader.

How do I attract more readers to read my fanfic?
-a good title is the best way
-on fanfiction.net having a good short summary is definitely helpful
-advertise in signatures for forums (some like to do banners as well, but that is optional)
-if there are threads which allow advertisement, do so.
-in discussion threads, try to find a way to mention your fanfic while staying completely on topic (if you can't stay on topic while mentioning your fanfic, then forget this idea)

How do I attract more reviewers to review my fanfic?
-There are reviewers for hiring like beta readers. If you see them, invite them immediately
-If you see a reviewer is reviewing someone else's fanfic, but does not have anything written down asking for fanfics to review, contact them directly and try your luck
-Enter contests if your story fits the requirements, so the judges will review your fanfic.

When should I update my fanfic?
-If you made a promise, then fulfill it by being on time.
-If your story is already on the first page of the forum/fanfiction.net then don't update it yet (unless a promise is made)
-If there is a need to break the promise in order to secure quality, then break the promise after apologizing to your readers with a note.
-Update on a regular basis, then your fans may catch on and know exactly when to check for updates.
-On average, anything that's updated faster than once a week is definitely too fast and the quality of the fanfic drops. Take more time to edit your own work.
-Usually, once every two weeks or two times every three weeks seem to suffice on most forums and fanfiction.net

How should I advertise my fanfic?
-Use your signature! It's there to be abused. (some writer even use the time to make banners)
-Win contests and awards so your name is seen in public, but don't use it for bragging rights (it will produce a negative image of you then)
-Participate in fanfic related discussion so the fanfic world knows that you're alive. Not necessarily do you have to bring up the title of your fanfic. Your existence is all.
-Be nice and be helpful. Don't be stupid.
-Review other people's fanfics as well.
-Become famous

Lily
August 10th, 2005, 08:31 PM
New thread, so this has been unstuck. ^^;

Iveechan
August 11th, 2005, 12:43 PM
On the topic of "said", I think the only when it's an issue is when there is a conversation going on. Then the word stands out (I'm very anti-word repitition).

SBaby
October 12th, 2005, 04:59 PM
Awesome! You mentioned the cliche names. My biggest peeve with these names is the fact that they assume that the characters will act like their names imply, which is alright for characters that already exist in Pokemon, but if you create an original character, he or she shouldn't go by that rule. Of course, that's just my opinion.

Kudos on mentioning that.

Bluestar Jet
October 30th, 2005, 01:32 PM
This is going to be really helpful for me/other new writers. Impressive FAQ, it is really thorough.

SBaby
November 30th, 2005, 02:25 PM
I like the 'man vs self' style of conflict. I think I'm going to use that somewhere in my Fic... This is good stuff...

evilmetal2004
July 21st, 2006, 12:08 AM
thanks for this FAQ, with this i can start writing my ideas with no worries, thank you

ze_gobou
October 11th, 2006, 08:40 AM
The good prologue: Pokemon MASTER, ch.10 (not used as an actual prologue, but this qualifies to be one)

Cold, so biting cold. As she hugged herself around her slim shoulders,
folds of her ice-blue cloak blew out in front of her by the biting winds
at her back. She stared out at the black tumbling waters of the vast
ocean. From her perch upon a seaside cliff that seemed to be made
entirely of ice, she remained silent and still, even as her high heels
seemed to hold her unnaturally steady upon the sheer slippery surface.

Cold to suit her frozen soul. It was what she was after all. To tell the
truth, she didn't know how she could still be alive with her very heart
unbeating, a block of ice.

Sea-green eyes blinked once. She could sense them coming. She reached
within her cloak to remove her small spectacles and put them on
carefully.

She watched.

And waited.


Er... I have read that FAQ and i found it very interesting. But... when I read that passage (the one I quoted), I knew I would NEED to read the whole fanfic. Where can I find it plz ? Thanks in advance.

Lily
October 11th, 2006, 11:20 AM
It's a brilliant, popular fanfiction by Ace, and you can find it on google.

Here it is, anyway. =P ~ (http://members.iinet.net.au/~aceywacey/pokemon.htm)

ze_gobou
October 12th, 2006, 09:40 AM
Thanks you very much... Now I am gonna try to understand it ^^ (I am french)

Orange_Flaaffy
November 12th, 2006, 05:20 PM
It needs a little editting and rewording, most of all in the fact that certain parts are like "it?s" in place of "it's" :)

Lady Berlitz
August 3rd, 2007, 09:28 PM
Interesting... I am not much of a person who takes help by people on writing, because I like doing it my natural way, how it comes. The first writers, whoever those are being, must have became the first, and best at the time, by doing what they do best; writing.

Besides the point above, you are probably a very good writer, and a fellow writer, and fanfic author. Thanks for this, even though I will only read about what the fans like, thanks again.

If a writer doesn't want to write his story, he can't. If you force yourself to write, you will end up quitting once you get to the 2nd, 3rd, or maybe even the 4th chapter.

Konekodemon
December 22nd, 2008, 11:40 AM
This guide is to hard for me to figure out and understand, what I really need is a tutor

JX Valentine
December 22nd, 2008, 11:55 AM
This guide is to hard for me to figure out and understand, what I really need is a tutor

Have you tried The Beta Place (http://www.pokecommunity.com/showthread.php?t=147710)? People there are usually more than happy to help new authors.

Konekodemon
December 22nd, 2008, 12:13 PM
I'm not really a new author, I just suck is all

admin edit test, ignore this

Astinus
December 22nd, 2008, 02:04 PM
I'm not really a new author, I just suck is all
Even experienced writers aren't perfect, and still ask for help. My favorite professional writer, who wrote two books full of advice on writing, and teaches a class on writing, and has reached the New York Times best-seller list many times, still has questions about his writing. Whenever he writes a new chapter, he has people read it to make it sure it's all right. And even then, he has an entire Internet forum dedicated to pointing out his errors in his books, and to ask for help from.

So not just new authors need help. I ask for help and advice to improve. Everyone does need advice, no matter the skill level, because there's always something that they can't quite get right.

That happened to me just recently. I had a problem with a chapter, couldn't get it to sound right no matter what. So I posted the chapter, and one of my friends pointed out where the problem was and how to fix it.

So, you know, no making excuses. Off to the Beta Finder with you, because you can improve if you listen to advice.


admin edit test, ignore this
All right, Steve. Will do. *rolls eyes*

pokeguy9000
January 17th, 2009, 02:40 PM
Hey i want to write a fanfic but i'm unsure whether it would be a good idea for me to use made up Pokemon (fakemon). Any advice would help because i really want to invent a few new pokemon but not a whole lot.

JX Valentine
January 17th, 2009, 03:08 PM
Hey i want to write a fanfic but i'm unsure whether it would be a good idea for me to use made up Pokemon (fakemon). Any advice would help because i really want to invent a few new pokemon but not a whole lot.

General rules of thumb for using Fakemon:

1. If you're going to use them, please come up with a good reason for doing so. As in, if a canon Pokémon serves the same function and is based on the same concept, just use the canon Pokémon. For example, want a dream-eating tapir? Use Drowzee. Fire-typed dog? What's wrong with Growlithe or Houndour? Legendary guardian of the forest? Already there in the form of Celebi.
1a. The above rule can be bent for new regions so long as it's not obvious that you're reusing concepts. For example, every region has an easily available, highly prolific Normal-type Pokémon, so if you wanted one too, you can have one. But if you make this Normal-type be a purple mouse that evolves into a brown rat, we're going to start raising eyebrows. Likewise, if you make a white horse with fire as its mane and tail, that's going to call to mind the words "Ponyta" and "Rapidash," not the name of your Fakemon. Creativity is the key when it comes to Fakemon, and with all kinds of designs for even the same concept all over again (*motions to the three Normal-type cat lines*), it shouldn't be too difficult to come up with something different instead of just reuse the same exact concepts with the same, exact designs. Point being, a large part of the Fakemon creation process is creativity itself. Make sure you put a lot of thought into what you're doing and look up existing Pokémon to see if your idea hasn't already been used.

2. Describe, describe, describe. Remember, we've never seen these Pokémon before, and frankly, regardless of how great your art skills are, we'd rather see written description than a picture that isn't in the story. When you get to the Fakemon, remember to describe the thing so we can get a clear image of what it looks like. That way, we won't be in the dark when something that major suddenly pops up and decides to be part of the story from then on.

3. Please don't create an evolution or pre-evolution of an existing Pokémon for the sake of giving a canon Pokémon one. Usually, a canon Pokémon gets it for certain reasons (stats, adding moves to the movepool by abusing breeding, because the line's currently unpopular without sudden added attention, whatever). Sometimes, there are Pokémon that don't evolve for certain reasons as well. (Legendaries because they're already uber. Luvdisc because it's meant to suck. Sableye because it's meant to be a gimmicky Pokémon and not much more. That kind of thing.) Extra stages are not really given to Pokémon for no apparent reason, so don't do it for no apparent reason. Create a new line if you have to or just use the line as it is.
3a. Making a Pokémon more powerful than it already is is usually not a good reason unless you know what you're doing, can't come up with a way to get around a plot point without it, or are working with a plot that absolutely calls for it (because that part of the plot has focused on an evolution to begin with). The problem lies in the fact that by using a lower evolution, you're actually giving your characters more to struggle over because they don't have that extra boost in power. For example, if you have a Luvdisc fighting a Charizard, it's more impressive if the Luvdisc managed to outwit the Charizard, find its weakness, and exploit it like no other than it is if the Luvdisc suddenly evolved into Uberdisc and wiped the Charizard out with a Surf.

4. Obviously, you'll want to keep in mind your environment when creating your new Pokémon. For example, Hoenn is a tropical/desert region. A snowman Pokémon would probably not work for that environment. Sinnoh is a more temperate region. Don't go for palm tree Pokémon. (Alternatively, place your Fakemon where they would logically live.)

There's probably more, but that's all I can come up with right now. If anyone wants to add on, they're more than welcome to.

pokeguy9000
January 17th, 2009, 03:57 PM
hey thanks thats good help. my fakemon wouldn't have been totally orginal but ill put more thought into it now. so i hope you'll enjoy my story when i get the first post up. Hey am i allowed to swear in my fanfic, but only if its needed not overly used

Astinus
January 17th, 2009, 09:36 PM
You can swear, but only occasionally. No paragraphs of **** strewn about your fic. Then it's overkill and I'll wash your mouth out with nasty garlic-scented shampoo.

The Ebon Blade
January 18th, 2009, 08:06 AM
-jumping in transitions too quickly without a reason, especially for romance

I don't know how to quote individual lines yet so I just copied it. What do you mean by this?

Astinus
January 18th, 2009, 12:22 PM
Copy the line, hit the tags, insert the line between the tags with paste.

I believe it means that the characters change their views or the ways that they act too quickly. For instance, with the "romance" part Frosty mentioned, the character completely changes in an instant for their true love.

The Ebon Blade
January 18th, 2009, 12:24 PM
Copy the line, hit the tags, insert the line between the tags with paste.

I believe it means that the characters change their views or the ways that they act too quickly. For instance, with the "romance" part Frosty mentioned, the character completely changes in an instant for their true love.

k thank you...

testing it

The above rule can be bent for new regions so long as it's not obvious that you're reusing concepts.

alright it wrked!

Frostweaver
March 8th, 2009, 09:48 PM
For magical reasons I actually got a PM yesterday about fanfic writing, which obviously scared the heck out of me. I peeked in here, and wow the ancient fanfic guide I wrote with Lily is still floating around ^_^;

Really been years since I read fanfics in detail (university is evil, I tell you!) so I don't know where's the bar at for Pokemon fanfiction. The fanfiction lounge may really want to do some adjustment as I'm sure that part of the guide is probably wrong (I wrote it only as a high school student after all), and some of it may no longer be applicable due to the changes in time...

¡Chucho!
May 24th, 2009, 06:01 PM
Third person objective perspective really is difficult. Removing character's opinions can shorten paragraphs quite a bit and it's sort of intimidating when I compare my paragraphs to other people's penises stories. I'd try for third person limited, but it seems a bit icky and dishonest, unlike first person where the bias is less subtle.

JX Valentine
May 24th, 2009, 06:17 PM
Third person objective perspective really is difficult. Removing character's opinions can shorten paragraphs quite a bit

It's challenging but not necessarily difficult or impossible, and it doesn't have to shorten paragraphs. All you're doing is telling the story from an objective standpoint, which still requires heavy description in that you're giving the reader an eagle-eye standpoint. It's almost like you're giving them a tour of the setting without letting them gain psychic powers. This kind of view is useful when you want to keep the characters' motives secret or when you want to highlight what they're doing and saying.

In other words, yes, it's a challenge to keep reminding yourself to stay out of people's heads, but it's possible to pull it off and pull it off correctly, even if you're a mediocre author. As a result, you amplify the characters' motions, so every last thing they do seems even more important because the reader is forced to focus on their actions, rather than rely on their thoughts to make sense of what's going on.

I'd try for third person limited, but it seems a bit icky and dishonest,

...Did you seriously just call an entire mode of storytelling "icky"? O_o

Seriously, it's not really dishonest. It's just another mode of storytelling. Basically, it's like using first person, only you're still observing things from the sidelines, rather than getting inside the head of the character. In this manner, you can capture the thoughts of your main character while also giving the reader a panoramic view of what's going on. First person, as a contrast, tends to zoom in on only what the character himself would actually notice and what the character thinks of the events, so it doesn't really allow for much in the way of wiggle room for the reader to form their own opinions. Third person limited, meanwhile, might be best for a piece where you have one definite main character and bunches of side characters or characters who ultimately serve to support or antagonize a single character within the world of the fanfiction. The writer naturally assumes the mindset of the one definite main character and tunes out everything else so that the reader can say, "Okay, this guy is important, and we're going to follow him."

For example, it's great for OT stories because it forces the reader to narrow their focus to the trainer. That way, even the way the story is told highlights the fact that we're supposed to pay attention to a single person.

unlike first person where the bias is less subtle.

Actually, if anything, the bias should be pretty clear because you're only getting the opinions of a single character.

Don't get me wrong. First person POV has its advantages too -- advantages that, like other POVs, render it better in some stories than others, if that makes sense. Basically speaking, first person is when you want to have the reader essentially step into the shoes of the main character/narrator and experience the story from their eyes. (Contrast this to second person, where the reader doesn't assume the identity of a specific character.) As a result, the reader sees the setting, the situation, and the other characters from the viewpoint of the narrator. As a result, we come to understand the world from a ground-level point of view, rather than an eagle's eye. We're right there, and we come to sympathize with the person telling the story.

This has, of course, a pretty obvious downside. Everything we see can't be objective by definition. For example, if you have a character who doesn't appear as good or evil in a third-person work, in a first-person work, that character might actually definitely be evil because the world is defined by the character, not by an outside observer. On the other hand, this downside can serve to screw with the readers' minds... if you know how to effectively pull carpets out underneath readers. (This would be called an unreliable narrator.) In most first person fanfics, however, it doesn't, which really is a shame because that sort of thing really shocks a reader and makes a fic stick out in their minds.

Long story short, every point of view has its ups and downs, and every point of view has times when it's best used and times when you might as well use something else. It all depends on the story you're telling and the author's personal preference.

Feign
May 24th, 2009, 06:23 PM
I've liked third person limited and normal omniscient. Myself I find that I cannot write in first person at all, or rather that it does not feel right.

Nice guide btw ;)

¡Chucho!
May 24th, 2009, 07:25 PM
It's challenging but not necessarily difficult or impossible,
To me, challenging and difficult are about the same words. I'm going to look that up in the dictionary later.

and it doesn't have to shorten paragraphs.
Well, first of all, the writer can't infodump in the narration, give opinions in the narration... And that's actually it. The emotion can still be kept as actions, though some adverbs would have to be excluded, and the writer can still describe the setting and the physical attributes of characters. The last two I'm not good at since I have a cartoon-like imagination, but that's beside the point. But I think that's still something.

...Did you seriously just call an entire mode of storytelling "icky"? O_o
To write, not to read. Perhaps I could get used to it with practice. :/

First person, as a contrast, tends to zoom in on only what the character himself would actually notice and what the character thinks of the events, so it doesn't really allow for much in the way of wiggle room for the reader to form their own opinions.
There's still some. Doesn't the first post say that the narrator could be unreliable? Or at least really annoying? Because once I read this book and the protagonist was like "oh mai gawsh, i'm discriminated for being fat damn weight nazis" and I was like "SHUT! UP!" But I finished it anyway since I didn't have any other books on me. Then again, I don't think that was intentional.

(Contrast this to second person, where the reader doesn't assume the identity of a specific character.)
Uh... yes he does?

On the other hand, this downside can serve to screw with the readers' minds... if you know how to effectively pull carpets out underneath readers. (This would be called an unreliable narrator.) In most first person fanfics, however, it doesn't, which really is a shame because that sort of thing really shocks a reader and makes a fic stick out in their minds.
Never mind, you mentioned it. There weren't any plot twists like that in the book, though. It was just... urgh.

Long story short, every point of view has its ups and downs, and every point of view has times when it's best used and times when you might as well use something else. It all depends on the story you're telling and the author's personal preference.
I'm going to think about that later.

JX Valentine
May 24th, 2009, 07:44 PM
To me, challenging and difficult are about the same words. I'm going to look that up in the dictionary later.

They're close synonyms, but challenging implies something that's meant to be overcome. Difficult implies that there's a bunch of obstacles and that it's not meant to be overcome without too much of a struggle. Like I said, a mediocre writer could pull off third person limited if they put some effort into it. Difficult implies it's nearly beyond their capabilities.

Well, first of all, the writer can't infodump in the narration,

The writer isn't always supposed to infodump (or, if we're not on the same wavelength here, overwhelm the reader with too much information) in the first place. Or, for that matter (for a later point) abuse adverbs. Yes, limited POV means your writing is starker, but how is that supposed to shorten your paragraph if you're describing, for example, a character breaking into a building? (As in, you're describing their actions, and you can do that without getting into their thoughts while keeping paragraph length the same as if you did. It's all in how you say things.)

Or, in shorter terms, the narrator can still talk about the world around the characters and the characters themselves. (So long, as I've implied just above, that he only presents the necessary amount of information.) The only thing the narrator can't do is talk about the characters' thoughts. This doesn't necessarily have an effect on paragraph length because it depends on how it's being told.

To write, not to read.

Point still stands, actually, because I wasn't referring to reading there. I was referring to the fact that you were calling an entire mode of storytelling "icky."

There's still some.

I never really said there wasn't. I simply said there wasn't a lot of it. As in, mostly, you get the main character's view of things. So, if someone's evil, they're presented as evil to the reader because the reader isn't given any other view of them but one peppered with the narrator's bias.

Doesn't the first post say that the narrator could be unreliable?

Yes, and I've covered this with this bit of my original post:

On the other hand, this downside can serve to screw with the readers' minds... if you know how to effectively pull carpets out underneath readers. (This would be called an unreliable narrator.) In most first person fanfics, however, it doesn't, which really is a shame because that sort of thing really shocks a reader and makes a fic stick out in their minds.

In other words, you may want to read a post all the way through before commenting on it. (And yes, I noticed you noticed it too. I'm just saying.)

Uh... yes he does?

Perhaps I've worded my explanations a bit vaguely, at which point, I apologize and would like to attempt to clarify myself:

In second person point of view, the character that the readers assume is the literal you. As in, second person POV is designed so that the readers can place themselves into the action. There may be vague description of the "you" in a second-person POV, but the entire point is just to get the reader to feel as if they're the ones in the story.

In first person, meanwhile, there's a definite, solid character who's a part of the world of the fanfiction. For example, the narrator could be a guy named Mike. The reader isn't the one who's filling the shoes of the narrator because the narrator is technically already defined. So, basically, in first person POV, the reader sort of assumes the identity of a solid character who exists in the world of the story, whereas in second person, that character tends to be more fluid for the purpose of using that particular mode. (In other words, the narrator of a second person POV is usually meant to be nonspecific, whereas in first person, it's an actual figure in the fic's universe.)

¡Chucho!
May 24th, 2009, 08:05 PM
They're close synonyms, but challenging implies something that's meant to be overcome. Difficult implies that there's a bunch of obstacles and that it's not meant to be overcome without too much of a struggle.
Thanks for clarifying.
In first person, meanwhile, there's a definite, solid character who's a part of the world of the fanfiction. For example, the narrator could be a guy named Mike. The reader isn't the one who's filling the shoes of the narrator because the narrator is technically already defined. So, basically, in first person POV, the reader sort of assumes the identity of a solid character who exists in the world of the story, whereas in second person, that character tends to be more fluid for the purpose of using that particular mode. (In other words, the narrator of a second person POV is usually meant to be nonspecific, whereas in first person, it's an actual figure in the fic's universe.)
I've read the beginning of a Naruto story where it was in the second person, and there was a specific character, being the author's OC. I stopped reading it because it felt sort of awkward, since it was telling me how I felt, and the color of my eyes, and I don't know anything about Naruto.

JX Valentine
May 24th, 2009, 08:08 PM
Thanks for clarifying.

No problem.

I've read the beginning of a Naruto story where it was in the second person, and there was a specific character, being the author's OC. I stopped reading it because it felt sort of awkward, since it was telling me how I felt, and I don't know anything about Naruto.

There's also a difference between doing a POV correctly and just doing another POV with the wrong pronouns. XD

Joking aside, yeah, that's the problem with trying to clarify the narrator of a second-person fic. I wouldn't be surprised if it felt awkward to you because it probably really was. Clarifying the narrator like that really just doesn't work because it defeats the purpose of having the fic in second-person POV. It's like saying you specifically are a kid named (insert the OC's name here), which is why I really wasn't considering situations like that.