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Creative Writing Share your fan fiction, stories, poems, essays, editorials, song lyrics, or any other related written work. All written must be your creation. Start a new thread, and keep replying to that thread as you add on more chapters. Anyone can join in at anytime.

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Old 01-28-2005, 07:54 PM
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Default READ FIRST: Fan Fiction Rules and Resources

Pokémon Fan Fiction Rules

Golden Rule to follow: Anything up to PG13 or a Teen rating (13-15) is fine.

If you happen to be a new author, I highly recommend reading "Taking Your Writing to the Next Level" in the next post in this thread. Also, it would help if you read some other fan fiction by the other well-known authors.

1. First and foremost, TRY PUTTING SOME TIME AND EFFORT IN YOUR FAN FIC. Stories aren't written in five minutes. Take your time and think about what you want to write. Stop for a day then re-read it the next day, maybe you'll find mistakes or think of something else to add.

2. When posting a Fan Fiction story, please make sure that the story is Pokémon related. All other stories should be placed in the Other Fan Fiction and Roleplay board. All formats of fan fiction are welcome here, whether it be narrative, script, or poetry.

3. Please try to keep vulgar and offensive language in your stories to a minimum. If you have to use those words, use **'s to block them out. Post a warning beforehand about explicit language.

4. Nothing higher than a PG-13 or Teen (13-15) rating is allowed. If you write an R rating, the story will be checked out by the Mods to verify if it's safe.

5. No posting in someone's story thread unless the author has allowed permission to do so. Otherwise, all comments, suggestions, and questions about other member's stories should be posted in the Fan Fiction Feedback.

6. Do not keep re-visiting your story so your story's "view" number increases and solemnly receiving attention for your story to be reading. I'm sure people will eventually read your story.

7. Chapters should be AT LEAST a full post long. A few paragraphs does not count as a good length for a chapter.

8. If sexuality is present in a fic for no reason at all, it's not allowed. If the sexuality is something like in the PG or PG-13 range, try not to be too graphic with it.

9. Do not link your stories. It will be DELETED if you do so. Simply copy and paste your story on the forum.

10. DO NOT ask for other members to sign up as characters in you Fanfic. This is not an RP board.

11. At the start of all stories, you should have a Rating and it's Genre listed. For example: PG, Comedy. Or... PG-13, Horror.

12. Have fun writing!

by: Hoenn Mirror Girl

1st example - I admit that it's good to receive praise. However, there are SOME people out there who like to go overboard and just praise everything in sight. You can't just go around saying "I like your story! Can't wait for more!" to everything you see. You are giving the authors a rather false sense of confidence if you don't point out the BAD points as well as the good. Also, WHY do you love the story? Give some reasons.

2nd example - Same as above, but more on the negative side. Constructive criticism isn't 100% negative, but it shouldn't be totally positive either. It should TELL THE AUTHOR HOW TO IMPROVE AND WHAT HE/SHE IS DOING RIGHT.

3rd example - It's somewhat constructive, but it's not enough to be called a review. Sure, it's telling what wrong with the fic (the dialouges), but HOW did the dialouges turn you off? Were they too long? Too short? Did it seem unfitting for the character who is speaking? What can the author do to avoid having this problem again? Because of that, the score is rather unjustified.

4th example - This is just plain mean. As a matter of fact, these are the LAST type of reviews that I or the other mods would want to see. Not only is the reviewer not telling the author how to improve the pacing, but the comment of "you're pathetic" might result in a flamewar. If I see ANY of these "reviews" around, they WILL get deleted and you may end up banned.

Now, there are some authors who give good reviews which point out what is good about the story AND how the story can be better. And, no, a review doesn't have to be three paragraphs long. Just don't make it like the four above examples. If you like the story, TELL WHY. If you think the author can improve, TELL HOW. Anyone who gives a review that is something along the lines of the examples WILL BE TOLD TO EXPAND THEIR REVIEW.

Seriously, if you get worthless praise like that and you try to post it at sites like Serebii and PokeCommunity, guess what? You will NOT get the same "respect" as you do here. The last thing we need is spoiled authors with extremely low standards breeding from here.

Essay on Constructive Criticism
Advice for Aspiring Critics
Please read those links, for you have no excuse not to read them. They are the keys to being a better reviewer.

Last edited by Jack of Clovers; 02-14-2007 at 04:06 AM.
Old 01-28-2005, 07:55 PM
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Default Re: Taking Your Writing to the Next Level

Taking Your Writing to the Next Level

A Warm Welcome to You

First off, I would like to welcome you to the Pokémon Elite 2000 Fan Fiction Guide, entitled Taking Your Writing to the Next Level, which has been planned, designed, and created by this forum’s greatest authors to help both new fan fiction authors as well as providing advice to both those of intermediate and advanced skills. No matter where you stand, this guide is meant to help you in the creation and beautification of your fan fiction and all your future writing.

As you probably already know, there is a reason why you write stories. You write because you want to, because you have an idea, thought, or experience that you want to share with the rest of the world. Or maybe it’s just with yourself, just so you can reflect on your own memories. However you want do it, constant practice can make you a master.

Every single person has the potential to become something great. And yes, every master starts off as a beginner. No one starts off knowing everything. You learn it through the actions and advice of others, as well as trying your absolute best and having that same drive to get up and keep going even when you’re knocked down. Becoming a great writer involves the same steps. The race is long, and in the end, you’ll find out it’s only with yourself. You race against no one, only your own will to constantly improve.

Writing takes time and skill to master, but anyone can do it with enough focus, determination, and the right attitude. Like in all things, no one was born with the skills to write. With the right dedication, you too can also join the many authors who have excelled to their highest performance. After that, it’s up to you to write down your dreams and ideas, and lay them out in just the right words so everyone can enjoy what your imagination has brought to life in its fullest potential. This guide can help you achieve that if read carefully and acted upon while you hone your writing skills.

Formatting Your Story

The first step toward understanding how to get your story on the forum for others to read and enjoy is to understand that the formatting of your story is essential to make your story look presentable for others to read. Having a well formatted story will look much more inviting for others to take a look at and will be easier on their eyes.

The best means to type a story out is to do it in Microsoft Word, which is vital, if not required, in order to write an outstanding story. Typing your work in MS Word gives you many advantages over typing it in the message box in the forum:
  • Allows you to view much more of your story as you type it out.
  • Catches spelling mistakes and many grammar errors, and allows you to correct them before anyone reads it.
  • Allows you to replace words with synonyms that will allow your story to sound much more powerful, vivid, and professional.
  • Allows you to save your work, and preserve it for later use.

Tabbing – Unfortunately, making indentations using the Tab key doesn’t work on a forum, so don’t bother using it to indent your paragraphs.

Paragraphing – To separate your paragraphs to make your story look presentable as much as possible, press the Enter key twice and the end of every paragraph, which will separate your paragraphs into blocks on both MS Word and on the forum.

Caps Lock – Only use this feature if someone in your story is shouting.

Forum Code – Though not required, I find it’s better to place forum code, such as that used for bold, italic, and underline, and many other formats while writing your story. This allows you to give certain words emphasis without having to backtrack after you’ve placed your written portion in the message box.

Character Limit – Note that the character limit per post for the Pokémon Elite 2000 forum is 10,000 characters. Write your stories with this in mind, and know that there will be points when you need to break your story into 10,000 character posts. I recommend writing with that limit in mind, and giving the end of every post a good and meaningful finish to keep the reader wanting more.

Copying and Pasting

In order to get your story from MS Word to the message box in the forum so you can post it, you need to copy (don’t cut) and paste it.

To do that, first, highlight the portion of your story that you would like to post using the mouse. Then, press and hold the Ctrl key and then press the C key. Doing this copies your selected portion. Now, return to the message box on the forum and make sure your cursor is flashing in the message box. Now press and hold the Ctrl key and then press the V key. Your story should appear in the message box and will be ready to post if this was done correctly.

The Preview Button

Always preview your story before actually posting it. This feature allows you to see how your story will appear once you post it. Once you press the Preview Button and you examine your story, ask yourself one question: “Is this really how I want my story to appear as everyone reads it?” If anything looks wrong, this feature allows you to go back to the message box to fix it before someone else actually reads it. Trust me, even master fan fiction authors make some mistakes from time to time that need to be corrected after proofreading their story.

The Preview Button also allows you to see bold and italic words as they should be. If any loose code fragments, such as a [/b] or [/center] appear, or if something looks bold and shouldn’t be, that means the other end wasn’t completed successfully or the code fragment was added on by accident. Definitely make sure none of these appear when you go to post your story, since they look pretty ugly and are often distracting to the reader.

The Birth of a New Legacy

”Inspiration is the seed of creativity, which then blooms into remarkable things.”

Where does inspiration come from? It comes from what we see, from what we hear and touch. Our surroundings give us the truth, but it is the “What if?” that comes to our mind that makes us want to think differently and begin to imagine what it would all be like if this “What if?” were to be “It is.” Because of this, we think in a new dimension, a realm where truly anything is possible. Writing a story is one of the means that allows us to tap into this precious resource called inspiration, and produce a legacy that inspiration gives birth to and imagination raises to maturity.

So, how does relate to Pokémon fan fiction? The most highly praised, the most outstanding and the most inspiring Pokémon fan fictions that have ever been produced all have one universal attribute. In all cases, the author of that fan fiction took a concept such as Pokémon, and pictured it in a completely new and original perspective. They took everything they knew about Pokémon, and thought of it in a way that breaks and shatters the boundaries of the ordinary, and then they dreamt a new realm where Pokémon is still thriving, but now they exist within the realm of the author’s imagination, a place where in fact anything is possible. What becomes of it after that is solely up to the author alone. Finally, in order to capture that realm so that it can be experienced by others, the author needs to become the translator from their own imagination to the words written on a page. I cannot stress enough how critically important it is to do this to the absolute best of your ability to retain as much of that imagination experience as possible when you write your story.

So where do most of these ideas come from? What inspires many of us to write a fan fiction about war, love, passion, determination and conquest? It comes from everything around us. We see movies, we hear songs, we play games, and we have memories of many experiences that we have dealt with ourselves that we look back upon. What would happen if we took bits and pieces of those past experiences and applied it in a whole new way to Pokémon? What would happen if we took a vision or experience from our dreams and made something new break the surface? We then begin to create, craft a new legacy by living a new conflict, taken by a drive and a desire. We create a new world, nothing like anyone has ever seen. Those who master this to the greatest of their extent and then translate it into carefully crafted and professional writing are the ones who will always write the greatest stories. There is nothing stopping you from doing just that.

The Planning of Your Story

The first step toward the creation of a quality Pokémon fan fiction is planning. With every fan fiction you write, time needs be taken out to think about how you want to approach and design your story, and by time I mean at least a week. The best novels and Pokémon fan fictions weren’t thought up at the very moment the author sat down to write it out. It’s often tempting to jump right into writing a story after an idea comes to mind, but it is essential to take the time to develop it further, and let it grow into something even more fantastic.

During the time you use to plan your story, there will be a few things that need to be considered, such as perspective and how your story is going to develop.


The perspective of your story deals with the viewpoint that your story is going to use. You can only make this choice once, and it will affect how your story will develop. I highly recommend thinking hard about your choice unless you’re accustomed to a particular style already and you feel comfortable with it.

First Person

In this format, the story is told through the eyes of a particular character, the one who will have the most impact on the events that take place during the story’s duration. Making your story in first person also creates the illusion that you were the one who went on this adventure. If you decide to write a story in this format, you need to pretend that you are the main character going through the events in your story, such as their actions, their emotions, and their personal thoughts regarding what is happening around them. When writing in first person perspective, the main character is given more depth since now the reader knows exactly how they’re acting and what they’re thinking. However, the thoughts of other characters are left out since the main character cannot feel them, and the main character can not see anything outside their viewpoint.

When writing in first person, you should find yourself using sentences similar in style to this:

“I only wish there was something I could do about it.” I replied to Martin, who was looking downcast besides me.

We needed to get across the river, and I had no idea how to do it. I looked to see the river was constantly raging at a furious pace, and I just shook my head in frustration, trying to think of a way the three of us could get across.

In this instance, the author places themselves at the scene as the main character, and retells the story as if it really happened to them.

Third Person

Writing a story in third person gives the reader an objective view of the story, which means rather than looking through the eyes of a single character, they now look down upon all characters as a spectator. Rather than going deep into a single character’s emotions, a story in third person covers all characters at once, possibly both the protagonist and the antagonist. This approach can tend to do better if there are many characters, where as first person is meant for only a few.

When writing in third person, you should find yourself writing sentences similar in style to this:

”I only wished there was something I could do about it.” James replied to Martin, who was looking downcast besides him.

James knew he needed to get across the river, but he had no idea how to do it. He looked to see the river was constantly raging at a furious pace, and he shook his head in frustration, trying to think of a way the three of them could get across.

In this case, you can see how the first person example suddenly becomes an objective view of two characters, rather than viewing the situation from the eyes of one of the characters.

Last edited by Dog of Hellsing; 05-08-2010 at 07:27 PM.
Old 01-28-2005, 07:57 PM
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Default Re: Taking Your Writing to the Next Level

Putting the Pieces Together

Now that you’ve decided what perspective you would like to write your story in, I’m going to go over the necessary elements that needed to be decided on before you actually begin writing.

First, before you think of any event or character or setting, choose a time. Will your story be in the everyday world that we know and have grown familiar to, or will your story take place during the high tech future of tomorrow? Or will it all happen before the safeties and security of the modern world even existed? That is up for you to decide. You’re probably asking, why start with the time before all else? The time period that you choose will shape everything in your story. It will shape every aspect of your story from your setting to your characters to your storyline. Certain events and situations may only be possible in a particular time period, so choose carefully.

Second comes your setting, which is also a very difficult part to conjure up. Setting can also change many times during the course of a story. Will your story take place on the familiar world we know as Earth, or will it take place in some other fantastic world, where what wasn’t possible on our planet now becomes an everyday part of life? Will it be a world that involves the computers and machines of today or involve the secret magic of a fantasy setting? Will your story take place around the big cities or in the rural farm towns, or will your characters travel far and wide? Once you thought of some ideas, then, you have to think of the culture. What do the people of this place do as an everyday form of living? How do they live, work and play, and how does it intertwine into a part of their daily lives?

After doing this, you’ll then realize that, yes, you indeed have created your own world, just one of the many advantages that writing a story can have when it comes to displaying your own creativity. Now it’s time to focus on the citizens of your story’s world, and create important characters that will be undertaking the journey you have planned. Of course, the best character to start off with will be your main character.

First, give the main character a name. Then, make that character reflect the kind of society and culture that he or she lives in. What are their interests? What about their history and their personality? And then, what about the main character makes them different from everyone else? The main character is the person or being that must have the most development during the course of the story. You may even have multiple characters with the same role, but there has to be someone who acts as a leader for them, and your main character is perfect for that. This character can have several friends who start off with him or he can start off alone or gain the friendship of others as the story progress. Or you can have a combination of both. That’s up to you.

You’ve created your own world, and you know how it functions and how its citizens live their daily lives, and you have an idea of the person or being that is going to be the main character. Now, to get a nice plot warming up, try to think of something that would be a threat to that society or to that one character. There are so many millions of possible threats, and you don’t have to be limited to just one. The people in the world you have created have to fear something and have some sort of weakness that they can be exposed to.

There are two options. One, you can have a threat that involves many people at once, such as a natural disaster, war, or many other threats on a high scale. Or, you can have a personal threat that would only involve a small number of people. Maybe the main character’s sister is kidnapped, or they are fighting a personal enemy. Either way, you can have an exciting and epic story arise from either situation. And, even better, change the threat or have other threats during the course of the story that can surprise the reader, but don’t make it too obvious and don’t do it too often.

Let’s look at some movies, perhaps ones you have seen or heard of, and you’ll realize what I’m talking about…

High Scale Threats

Lord of the Rings – The Dark Lord Sauron and the One Ring
The Matrix – The war against the machines

Personal Scale Threats

Scarface – Tony’s own struggle to power
The Godfather – Michael trying to gain power in the criminal world

Again, movies and games can be great sources of themes, ideas, and storylines, but you must take care not to exploit that too much. If you like a movie’s storyline or ideas and you wish to use something similar to it, a good approach is to either use a different time period, make the characters significantly different, change the events or resolution of the conflict in several ways, or making the setting different. And even better approach is to use a combination of these or all of them at once, therefore cloaking the fact you got the idea from a movie or game. If you don’t do this and use a very similar setting to that of the movie, your readers have a good chance of picking up on it, and may then conclude that your story isn’t being very original. Intertwining Pokémon into the scene will definitely help, but it’s not going to do everything.

Last edited by Dog of Hellsing; 05-08-2010 at 07:30 PM.
Old 01-28-2005, 07:57 PM
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Default Re: Taking Your Writing to the Next Level

Understanding Plot

The plot means just about everything to your story. It is the universal system that all written novels and stories follow, even though how story approaches this system will be as vast as the possibilities are. You may already know about this system or this could be your first time exposed to it. Either way, it’s a good idea to get familiar with it when you write your story.

Since the trilogy Lord of the Rings is known to most people, I’ll be using it as an example for plot. Even if you’re never read the book or seen the films, you can still grasp a good idea of what section covers by reading the LOTR (Lord of the Rings) example.

Here is what Plot would look like as a chart. For reference, each section is given a number, and that number corresponds with the numbered sections on this guide.

1. Exposition – The exposition is shown as a straight line. That’s mainly because nothing has really happened yet. In the exposition, you reveal the world you have created, as well as the beginning characters that are going to be involved and the environment they are in. Right now, the main character is unaware of the challenges that lie ahead. The problem or threat might be revealed to the reader in a case of third person perspective writing, but the main character should not be aware of it.

LOTR Example: In the beginning of Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Shire is a peaceful place, and nothing seems wrong. The characters Frodo, Bilbo and Gandalf are introduced, and the setting is laid out. The reader (or viewer…) learns about the ring, but the problem that lies within it has not been revealed.

2. Conflict – The conflict is the area at the end of the exposition and just before the Rising Action. This is the exact point where the main character learns of the problem that is at hand. Other characters might already know about it, but the main character needs to find out that the problem exists before the conflict stage is reached. It then becomes clear that the main character now has one main objective. That objective can slightly change in nature as the story moves along, but it must be the main objective. It is here where the main character leaves behind the world they are familiar with to embark on the journey they must take.

LOTR Example: Frodo learns from Gandalf about the power of the One Ring that Bilbo had for so many years. Fordo also realizes that the evil influence of the ring has been rubbing off on Bilbo, who has become very possessive of the ring. Gandalf tells Frodo that the ring holds the spirit of Sauron, and it needs to be destroyed. Frodo then leaves behind Hobbiton with Sam by his side and embarks on the journey to destroy the One Ring in the fires of Mount Doom.

3. Rising Action – The Rising Action is undoubtedly the longest part of the story, usually taking up at least 85% of the story’s length. The rising action includes all the trials and obstacles that the main character and his or her companions must overcome in order to complete their objectives, as well as the actual journey they undertake. Anything between the Conflict point and the Climax is all Rising Action. The line moves upward to show that the intensity of the story is rising as well as the change that in taking place in the main character.

LOTR Example: The Rising Action begins when Frodo and Sam leave The Shire and the Rising Action ends when they finally reach the last platform before the fires of Mount Doom. Yes, the Rising Action is that big. All the conflicts and battles that the members of the Fellowship of the Ring encounter are all Rising Action. The story changes and grows in intensity when the rest of Middle Earth realizes that the fight against Sauron and his dark army grows to a fever pitch. Frodo also changes in the story, slowly falling under the influence of the ring, as well as the exhaustion he suffers from during the long journey.

4. Climax - This is where the whole situation changes. The Climax is the one critical moment in the story that will determine if the main character will succeed or fail. It is here where the main character finally finds a way to destroy the threats that forced him to depart on the journey, or the forces find a way to defeat the main character.

LOTR Example: The Climax in LOTR is when Frodo, Sam, and Gollum struggle and fight over the ring on the platform above the fires of Mount Doom. This is the last critical moment of the story because the ring is on the verge of being destroyed or saved. The quest will succeed if the ring falls into the fire, but the quest will fail if Gollum escapes with the ring.

5. Falling Action - This is where the story beings to close. The final conflict has been resolved, and either the main character has proven to be victorious or he or she has failed. The line moves downward because the intensity from all the events of The Rising Action is beginning to fade away. The problems that the threat presented are disappearing, but the line NEVER falls back to where it began. The presence of the threat will not be forgotten, and some of the problems that it presented may have left scars on the main character or the force that defeated the main character.

LOTR Example: The Falling Action in LOTR begins the very moment the ring sinks into the fire, and Sauron is destroyed forever, along with his orc armies. The threat of the orcs and the evil powers of Sauron are gone, but his actions have still scarred the lands. Many humans, elves and dwarves had died in the struggle against the dark armies. Fordo too, is also scarred and will never forget the experience. The wound he received from the Witch King will never completely heal, and he still has signs of exhaustion even after the ring is destroyed. He even mentions that while they did save the Shire, it wasn’t saved for him. He can never return to the way things used to be.

6. Conclusion - This is very last part of the story, where the plot beings to close. The reader (or viewer) is shown the world after the situation described in the story has taken place. Every character has changed from the events, and they each prepare to embark on the life that awaits them after word, forever affected by the events in the story.

LOTR Example: Frodo leaves on the ship that will be leaving Middle Earth, and Sam finally settles down with his family and carries on the story that Frodo left behind.

Making the Characters

Your cast of characters is the engine block to your story. Their choices, their actions, their thoughts, and their emotions are what give them depth and uniqueness. Also, without characters, it wouldn’t be a story, it would just be a depiction of scenery, and there would be no plot whatsoever.

Characters can be all shapes and sizes, and they don’t always need to be human. After all, Pokémon are always non-human characters, but a very high percentage of them are usually very minor characters, and are mostly used for short battles. Writing a story focused on a non human character can be a more enjoyable and rewarding experience, but you need to make sure you compensate for the difference. Whether you center your story around a human character or not, both types can be very well done, and both can be very poor when it comes to quality. It all depends on the implementation.

First, the reason why you create a character is because you want them to fulfill a role in the story, whether it be from being a villain or a hero or a supporting character. Most stories start off with only a few characters mentioned, and as the story progresses, more characters are added to fulfill more roles. It’s important not to create a useless character who just hangs on for the ride until the end. They need to be doing something that at least supports either the hero or the villain, even if it is only minimal.

Also, don’t create too many characters, otherwise readers are going to easily forget who is who, and it’s going to be even harder for you to explain what all these characters are doing at the same time. If it becomes necessary, remove them through various ways such as death, saying goodbye for good, or some other means. Just keep in mind that there needs to be a logical reason why they do so, and you must prepare to deal accordingly with the event. If a supporting character dies, it’s definitely going to have a significant impact on the other characters as it would in real life. It’s honestly better that you avoid creating too many characters in the first place, rather than find yourself trying to think of ways to get rid of them.

Lastly and most importantly, give each of your characters a highly detailed personality and stick to it unless they’re supposed to change from the experience. If all of your characters act in very similar ways, it’s not going to be very interesting to the reader, and it’s not going to seem very realistic. Some characters can be strong and determined, others will be arrogant and aloof, some can be funny and whimsical, while others can be silent and concealed. There are many, many different types of personalities, and taking advantage of a wide array of them will give your story much more variety and will seem much more interesting to the reader.

Last edited by Dog of Hellsing; 05-08-2010 at 07:30 PM.
Old 01-28-2005, 07:58 PM
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Default Re: Taking Your Writing to the Next Level

The Events That Happen and Why

Events are like the landmarks in your story, points in your story’s plot that turn characters, aspects, and situations in different directions. Without them, the story doesn’t really go anywhere, so it’s important to know when to use them and how to use them well.

First off, everything happens for a reason, whether it’s on purpose or accident. Whether it’s from a battle, a change in the main character, a disaster, a meeting, there’s a reason why things took place at those moments. Some of these can be accidents or unexpected trials that make the journey even harder for the characters, while others can be expected or anticipated events that were expected to take place. In order to have a good story, you need to make sure those events have a purpose and use them in combination with each other. If something happens for no reason and there’s no explanation for it, the reader is going to assume there was some hidden meaning and unknown significance for it to happen when there really wasn’t. Something like that can be awfully distracting, and later make your reader think it was supposed to happen in relation to the plot when it really wasn’t.

When it comes to flow, the story should change from event to event smoothly like quicksilver. There will be times of conflict, and there will be times of peace. Even if your story is focused around a war and your main characters are on the frontline, there would still be times of ceasefire in between battles. If battles run too long, they’re going to get tiring and the sting and shock of death is going to lose its significance. Periods of long peacetime are okay since it gives time for characters to prepare for the road ahead and develop further, but don’t let them run really, really long, otherwise it’s going to seem like the original threat that spurred the characters to embark on the journey disappeared or wasn’t really that big of a threat in the first place…

Lastly, try to avoid having the same events happen again and again and again. If it happens on more than one occurrence for a reason, such as a villain using a particular means to kill his enemies since it’s effective or it’s to his personal liking, then it’s not a problem. But, if it’s blatant coincidence that causes the same event to take place again and again, the story is going to lose much of its variety and will be rather predictable and uninteresting to the reader. Trust me, readers love variance to a story that is clever and unpredictable with plenty of new surprises. Keep them fresh and new as much as possible.

Painting the Picture

Description is the vital element that makes your story come to life for the reader. It is the very lifeblood and the flesh of your story. Without it, your story is just skin and bone. It is extremely critical to have good description in order for the reader to get an idea of what is happening. Undoubtedly, a good or bad description will make or break your story. If you fail to provide a good description of characters, their surroundings, and the situations taking place, it will immediately lose that touch that makes the story stand out and be unique from every other story out there.

Since you are the author of the story you are writing, you can already grab a mental picture of what is happening and the environment that you have created. However, the reader has no idea of what you have been imagining this whole time for your story. The clever use of description will illustrate to your reader what you have been thinking of, and will be able to give the reader a feel for what is happening. If your reader can accurately picture and imagine what is going on for themselves, then congratulations, you’ve done your job. It’s incredibly vital to keep this aspect alive as much as possible for as long as you can.

Here is one example of what a story looks like with barely any description or development:

Ken looked toward the sea.

“I guess I will have to leave soon.” Ken said, “I will have to leave upon the ship.”

“Yes, I guess you’re right, Ken.” Sarah said, “I will miss you.”

Then, Ken left her behind and headed toward the ship.

Plainly put, it’s awful. If the words “sea” and “ship” weren’t even there, you wouldn’t be able to tell where they were. Not only it is impossible to make a mental image in your mind from reading that, but in essence, the characters have lost all emotion and feeling, and practically aren’t even human, they’re more like lifeless puppets.

And now, here’s the same situation, with much more dedicated description:

Ken’s lowly, brown eyes gazed toward the setting sun that was slowly sinking behind an ocean with the colors of the horizon painted all over it. A small gust of wind had blown past him, moving through his brown hair and covering his body with a cool breeze. He stared at the rippling ocean for some time, and then he slowly turned toward Sarah, who was standing only a small distance away from him.

“Sarah, I’m sorry but I have no choice,” Ken told her with a feeling of regret, “I was the one who volunteered to be in the Navy. This is what I have to do. It won’t be long now before I have to board the battleship and head off to sea.”

“Ken, I’m sorry that it has come down to this, I know this isn’t what you wanted.” Sarah responded with the look of desperation in her eyes, “Please keep in mind that I will never forget you. Never.”

Ken had heeded Sarah’s words as he put his arm on her shoulder to comfort her. Sarah then quickly hugged Ken as firm as she could, grabbing onto Ken’s navy blue uniform tightly before she decided to release her grasp. Then, Ken had kissed Sarah on the cheek softly before he looked at her one last time. He took a deep breath and said goodbye to her.

Soon after, he walked down the old, wooden pier and then headed toward a long and black metal platform that lead into the awaiting battleship that was docked in the harbor. He had joined many other Navy officers dressed in the same uniform he was wearing as they walked down the long metal plank that lead to the inside of the enormous vessel. Just before Ken had disappeared into the dark, black hull of the massive battleship, he turned around and waved Sarah goodbye one last time.

Obviously, now you can tell what is happening much more clearly and most importantly, why it’s happening. The characters seem far more like humans, with detailed characteristics and have a much more significant display of emotions. Now, you can see how description makes all the difference…

Yes, I will not deny that packing a story with description will make it longer and will take you more time to write it. That really isn’t such a bad thing and it will be worth it in the end. You just need to be patient with it. Don’t rush through your story just to get to the one event that you want to have happen. Don’t blaze through a scene that will make the story easier to understand for the reader about what exactly is going on just to get the main character in another gunfight.

The core foundation of using outstanding description is to be able to visualize yourself what is happening. Imagine what the scene that you’re thinking of would look like in real life. What would people be doing and how would they act considering the situation they are placed in? What would be around them, and what would those things look like? Then, you need to use the right words to describe those actions and surroundings. What words will create the same image that you created in your mind upon being read for the first time? Once you think you’ve found the right descriptive words, use them in union with the surroundings and people you have created. Then, read it over one more time. Can you get an idea of what you were thinking about? If not, then try adding more words to each aspect. Maybe take more pieces of the world around your character and bring them to light.

Keeping these aspects in mind when writing will definitely give you a better idea of what it takes to provide your readers with the rich and colorful world that you have created. Making a reader see exactly what you had in mind will make the experience of reading your story far more enjoyable than before. They will remember your story with much more clarity.

Also, as one last note, keep a story moving while you are describing everything. Don’t make an intermission in the story just to describe one object unless it’s very important for the reader to know what it looks like if it has a great significance in the story (i.e. a powerful artifact or the like) or if its something that doesn’t exist in the normal world, and the reader will have no general idea of what it looks like (Like a new creature you created for the story). Again, notice how the example of the story between Ken and Sarah kept moving along in pace while still adding description. Describe the biggest and most obvious pieces of the scene first, and save the smaller pieces for when they become important and after the story has moved on a bit. Notice how the pieces of the battleship were only explained later on when Ken was boarding it, rather than in the beginning. Make the reader aware of its presence, but only go into detail if it is involved with the story. Describing something like a flock of seagulls in the distance would have been unnecessary, and would have only slowed the story down for unnecessary reasons. But mentioning their presence in the light of the sunset would have been perfectly fine, and would have added to the scene if they were really there.

Last edited by Dog of Hellsing; 05-08-2010 at 07:30 PM.
Old 01-28-2005, 07:59 PM
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Default Re: Taking Your Writing to the Next Level

Final Considerations

In closing, I definitely want to say that listening to the feedback of your readers is important. While you have already imagined the scenes before in your mind and have written them down, the reader is only seeing it for the first time, and the experience is completely new to them. The ability to post your own written story on a forum is an excellent way to get other readers to give your writing a performance appraisal, which can dramatically help your writing. And, if you’re having difficulty getting other people to read your story and evaluate it, try reading the work of other authors and give them your evaluation. Many authors will likely return the favor if they see you’ve written a story as well. Not only can this help you find others to evaluate your work, but it also lets you see how other authors write their own stories with their own different styles.

Lastly, keep on writing and keep the passion to improve. If you don’t enjoy what you write, it’s going to show and your readers aren’t going to enjoy it either. If you do come across a situation where you find you need to stop the story for some reason or another, then do it, but then try to discover the reason why it happened, and how you can avoid it from taking place in the future.

Finally, I’d like to thank you for taking the time out the read this guide, and I hope it has satisfied your passion to improve your writing in many ways. Like in all trades, if you keep that passion and you don’t back down no matter what tries to stop you, then you’ll be able to accomplish much of what you previously thought was impossible for you to reach. In all, good luck, and I hope you were able to take away something beneficial from this guide.

~Neo Pikachu

Please respect the original work, concentration and dedication that went into the creation of this guide, and not copy, duplicate, or edit it and claim it as your own work. If you want to use any piece of this guide, please seek my permission first.

Last edited by Dog of Hellsing; 05-08-2010 at 07:31 PM.
Old 06-29-2005, 12:33 PM
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Default Re: Things you should avoid in a fic...

Anime Warnings
I never really understood why the Pokemon anime was hated to death until recently. Although the anime has some faithful viewers, it should be left alone in fan fics. If your fic has one of these, then it's very likely to fail.

-Having a trainer wake up to get his/her first Pokemon from a professor
Basically, it's been over done. If you plan to use this, I pray that it has a plot that'll blow everyone away.

-Characters (especially those being too perfect) that lack personality and different traits from each other
Almost every character in the Pokemon anime has this problem. Avoid it at all costs.

-One sided battles
Try to make the tide of the battle shift every now and then.

-The hero/heroine gets too many "lucky breaks" every time he/she is about to lose
Luck is good for the hero, but every time things look grim can be annoying.

-Pokemon pulling a stunt that breaks the game's rules to win a battle (ex. never-miss moves like Swift and Magical Leaf being dodged other than by Fly or Dig, Electric attacks damaging Ground-type Pokemon, etc)
Remember all the times Pikachu's attacks could do heavy damage to Ground Pokemon? If you don't know that Ground-types are immune to Electric attacks by now, you shouldn't even bother writing a Pokemon fan fiction.

-Too much dialogue, especially in battles
Unless you're writing a script fic (which I highly recommend reading Pocket Monsters Chronicles to get an idea of how it should be done), there's no reason for dialogue to dominate your fic. In a battle, try to describe the battle.

"Oh, no! Volbeat!" Karen said.

"Let's finish this," Jason said, "Aerial Ace, Meowth!"

Meowth used Aerial Ace on Volbeat.

"Oh, darn," Karen moaned, "I lost..."
becomes this:
The battle was not in Karen's favor. Despite two weeks of training her Volbeat, Jason's Meowth, who wore a sumg grin, had the upper hand. With a combination of Jason's stragety of surprise attacks and Meowth's speed, Karen had a strong opponent on her hands.

Jason chuckled, knowing that victory was within his reach. "Let's finish this." He pointed ahead of him. "Meowth, use your Aerial Ace attack!"

After leaping into the air, Meowth raised his paw, and three sharp claws were revealed on the cat Pokemon's descent. Before the Volbeat knew what hit him, he felt the pain of a scratch on his side. The firefly Pokemon collapsed on the ground as Meowth landed behind his fallen opponent.

"I lost," Karen said sadly.
-Same thing always happens in every chapter
Take a look at the anime fillers: Ash and friends meet Pokemon and trainer, Team Rocket tries to make trouble, and Ash and friends save the day. Gets boring, does it?
To avoid this, add in some character development chapters or make some other plot twists to prevent this.

-Traveling group without a major purpose (not everyone has a goal to strive for, etc.)
Again, look at the anime. In Kanto and Johto, Ash has his Gym Battles while Misty and Brock sit on the sidelines. In Hoenn, Ash has Gym Battles, and May has Contests. However, Brock and Max don't do much.
If you have a group, give everyone a role in it that would affect the plot. Perhaps give them an individual goal. Here are some examples:

-The character is lonely and needs to join a traveling group so they could see the many wonders of the world before he/she can go home.
-The character needs some place to be and the group is heading there.
-The character shares a similar goal with the group (excluding being the best Pokemon trainer/coordinator)

Whatever the case, make the group worth something.
Sorry, but after some thinking, I decided to leave PE2K for good.

Last edited by Hoenn Mirror Girl; 08-09-2005 at 05:16 AM.
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