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Old July 2nd, 2013 (2:20 AM). Edited August 16th, 2013 by Phantom.
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Phantom Phantom is offline
Uh, I didn't do it
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Minnesota
Age: 26
Gender: Female
Nature: Brave
Posts: 1,189
You're asking a pretty loaded queston there.

My two bits about characters:

Character need to be realistic. It's sensible for a hypothetical person to think like your character thinks and do what your character does in the fic, and "sensible" includes being consistent both with the character's other actions and thoughts and with the character's background and experiences. This is the core of characterization. I highly recommend that for main and major characters in your story, you make up the character's background story, whether you actually feel it necessary to include that background in the story or not. Then you just need to go psychological: how would the things that happened to your character in the past affect the way he or she is at the time the story happens?

Though avoid Mary Sue at all costs. Know their weakness and flaws. A flaw is something that makes a character less perfect. It can be anything from personality issue, appearance, lack of cleverness, anything. A weakness is something that makes a character less powerful. Maybe they have a bad leg, or are stupid, a sort of kryptonite if you will. A weakness is something that be used against you, a flaw is something that someone can judge you on.

Look at any great character in history, say Achilles. Ever heard of an Achilles' heel? Achilles was the perfect warrior. He was literally unstoppable. But he had one weak spot. His heel. One shot to the heel and he's down and out for the count, but that's not what ended him. Instead it was his own hubris (pride) that got the better of him. His heel was a weakness, his pride was his flaw. See how that works?

There are some things that I'd like to point out that most new writers have a hard time with.

1. Format

Fanfiction isn't written like a book. Fanfics are read online (mostly), which means your reader will be looking at a lit screen while reading your story. You want to make it as easy as possible for the reader to follow. Standard format for a fanfiction is to put a full space in between each paragraph. For an example, look at a story from an experienced writer and follow their lead.

2. Grammar

We're all human, and a good number of us don't write for a living. Typos happen and no one expects a fic to be completely grammatically sound. They do, however, want to read a work that is at least grammatically acceptable. Use spellcheck.

3. Dialogue

Learn how to punctuate and write dialogue. It can be confusing at first, but you'll be better for it in the end. Some people, like yours truly, can really get taken out of a story by bad dialogue, and especially bad dialogue punctuation. (Spellcheck helps a bit)

4. Avoid 'perfect' characters

Or Mary Sues. Avoid them.

5. Perspective

Perspective is how the reader associates with the story. There are quite a few different perspectives, but the main ones would be first and third person. The one most people used to is third person.

If you're new to writing just start writing in a perspective that is comfortable for you. Just make sure you stick with whatever perspective you've chosen throughout the entire fic. Tense goes here as well.

6. Reviews

Don't beg for reviews, it will do the exact opposite of what you want.

7. Get a Beta Reader

Even the greatest authors have beta readers. A beta can help you from simple editing, to helping you through the creative process. A beta will be an experienced writer that will take time out of their schedule to help you, and it's free!

Now a few tips on posting your story:

THE SUMMARY: Your summary is the way to attract new readers, it is what will make people want to read your story in the first place. A summary that says little or a poorly-written summary will turn people off.

IMPORTANCE OF FIRST CHAPTER: The first chapter is BY FAR the MOST IMPORTANT in the entire story. Especially when it comes to fanfiction. Trust me. I have one main story that's currently the seventh most reviewed in its particular fandom. The first chapter? It has THOUSANDS more views than any of the other twenty chapters. Most readers, if not enthralled by the first chapter, WILL NOT CONTINUE THE READING. It doesn't need to be the perfect most awesome thing ever, but it does need to have some sort of hook to keep readers interested.
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