6 Ways To Get More Fanfic Readers

Good morning! Thursday morning and let’s kickstart this day! First week of September and we shall embrace fall 2018 with open arms. Now, sit down and bring a hot cup of coffee while together going through the topic of today – ”How to get fanfic readers?”


How To Get Fanfic Readers?

A few days ago I stumbled across my very first written fanfic. I tried to remember if I happened to be a bored teenager with an overly dramatic sense of daydreaming, or if fanfics back then tended to be just like that. I would probably say it is a combination of both. However, the story caused me to cringe and I had barely any courage to go on reading. This is obviously also because I have written it myself, and I carry this fear any person I know would find those stories. The freedom of writing precisely what goes on in my mind caused me to create different anonymous accounts, which I later carefully examined and compared.

I noticed very fast that some stories, some categories and some OTPs are attracting way more readers than others. How can that be? Let’s dig into this and I will share what I have learned through my years of both reading, analyzing and writing fanfics.

If we are out there and struggles with getting a higher number in readers on the fanfiction sites, I think I do have some genuine advice. After creating my very first account (which account containing stories I now cringe to) – I did rather quickly get my head around about what works and what does not work. So here it goes:

Engaging Summary

This is crucial. Also, admittedly a great way of learning how to pitch stories is to pretend our fanfiction is one to sell. The summary must be engaging and attract the audience right away. I cannot emphasis the importance of writing in perfection. If we forget a letter here or there, a misspelled word or odd sentence, we give the readers a reason not to open our fanfiction already there. Because, if we cannot even manage to spell 384 words correctly, then how could we possible be able to spell a story containing thousands of words? It is simply not believable.

I know the pride, the excitement and eager when finally posting our very first fanfiction. But by writing ”First fanfiction written by me,” it will result as nothing but a fun fact. It is definitely not something that in most cases do attract readers. Because a pro is a pro, knows what it does, how to deliver and very often do – deliver. If this is our first time out – it will probably be amateurish because we are – amateurs. By writing this as early as in a summary, we surely do lose a lot of traffic without even getting a chance of showing our written story. When we read stories, we can take a moment to analyze our behavior. Chances are high others work in the same ways. ”Why waste time reading clichés and misspellings, when I can go on to a professional author with experience?”

My personal favorite, “English is not my native language.” Another statement meant to scare readers away. I go more into this in another post, but this is pretty much nothing but an excuse in a tryout of pushing aside possible comments about what a bad grammar, language or amount of typos that exist. By saying this we kind of prepare to reply to an angry reader, ”Well, I told you it wasn’t my native tongue!” Like it is the reader’s fault we cannot bring out a proper sentence. Better to step up our game if we want to try writing in another language. And if we are ready to welcome a lot of constructive criticism to grow as writers, this is perhaps the way to go. But it definitely does scare readers away.

And then we can scratch a bit on the surface about how to write a proper summary. Let’s just assume we were to summarize Titanic. Most people have seen it and knows what it is about. We present it as either:

”Two members from different social classes fall in love aboard the ship during its ill-fated maiden voyage.”

And then I turned to my boyfriend and asked how he would sum up the movie.

”Two people meet on a ship.”

Now my boyfriend is a fantastic seller, but let’s face it, if we heard these two pitches – we would pick the first movie. Not the second, even if this happens to be the same one. To summarize the story well is so important. I cannot emphasis it enough. Another classic trap is the following:

”Two people meet on a ship, and things happen.”

Even worse:

”Two people meet on a ship, and things happen. What are they going to do?!?!?!?!”

(Oh, my god. Can’t you tell me?!)

The best way according to me is to within one sentence (three tops) being able to tease the conflict of the story/the concept and in this part reveal the genre, as that should be engraved within our words. We should get a bit of the tone, feeling and not being able to browse past this story. We must feel the need to open it and check it out. This is the only task the summary has.

Concept Is Enthralling

To pull a reader straight into our stories, we must have a bomb ass concept. It should be unique and differ from all other stories. Truly, any reader would get bored reading the same concept all over again, written by various authors. It simply gets boring.

For writers strolling with imagination of coming up with new concepts, an advice can be to write the precise opposite of what others do. It creates a curiosity among the audience and surely they will click on the story and wonder what the nut we are all about and where we will bring this one.

”The graver the conflict, the better the story.”

Personally I simply love to put out a grave conflict, and make it is as profound as possible. That way I really must use my creative side of my mind and solve the problem I caused in the storyline. However, the deeper the conflict goes, the better. This is known among screenwriters and I was happy not long ago when I came across the line. It really does point out so much within a simple sentence. Pretty much what a summary also should do.

As mentioned before, conflict is the story. And shall be mentioned teasingly in the summary. Sometimes a reader will follow the ride of our story simply because of the fantastic writing. But without a fantastic concept, the chance that the readers gets bored is huge. Also, revealing a great concept in the summary gives us more opportunities to ”fail” inside the story without losing the reader.

Note: In another post, I will go on about structuring the story.

The concept saves our butt when we by mistake have a typo, miss out on a character or simply are too slow to reach the presentation of the conflict. The opening pages are a first impression (or second, as the summary is the true first impression). Do not waste that impression. Really, do not.


Obsession Over Shipping – Know What Your Readers Want

I remember how it was in my teens. I have a friend who totally shipped two characters from Harry Potter. Another one had two members of One Direction as OTP and then myself, shipping people from this adventure franchise. To know what is “hot” out there and what people obsess about, is a great factor to increase our traffic as a fanfiction writer.

Another thing to consider is whether we want to have different accounts for different categories, or if we want to have various stories from different movies/books and franchises under the very same account.

A pro regarding to stick to one category:

  • Readers who worship the same movie/book will find that we are an expert within the section, therefore bigger chance of them following us. We are niching and when they follow us they get exactly what they want, and never alerts from other stories coming from other movies they are not really interested in reading.

A con regarding to stick to one category:

  • The audience may differ from when movies are released and be less in between. This means we fall out on an audience to other books or movies that are in their prime time.

It is good to have in the back of our mind that when people obsess over their OTP, they will literally go nuts and we will become their “idol” during that time. That is to say if we manage to gain them as readers. One important thing too is to know what people obsess about when it comes to sorts of concepts and shippings (not just books etc). Because chances are higher the audience is huge within that section. Knowing what people wants is the key.

Cliff-Hangers And Surprises

By leaving every single chapter with a major cliff-hanger we may irritate a reader. Unless it is done the right way. I think something we shall just cut out at once is the “dun dun dun,” moment. Honestly, it gets too over dramatized. We need to create a page turner, but nothing is worse when the chapter is plateau until the very last sentences just to lure the reader to the following chapter.

Now, we need to surprise the reader instead. Lead the reader one way and leave clues with the creative input of making the reader not really notice the clue. When the solution comes, the reader will be surprised – and impressed of the author. Suddenly we rise in their eyes and chances are bigger they will return for our next installment.

One thing to look out for is cliché cliff-hangers. Like we cause a major problem at the end of every single chapter and easily solves it at the beginning of the next. It should go slightly (much) deeper than that. I personally think a story can get very exciting with cliff-hangers but they always have to reach a solution. I think the greatest skill of art an author has it when it leaves the end as a cliff-hanger, making readers interpret the ending as a happy one but they cannot actually say it out loud as a fact. This leaves the audience into wanting more – and according to my opinion – it is the greatest compliment.


First Impression – Let the story take off from start

As mentioned in the summary, we have a first impression to make good. Suggestion is to let the story take off from start. Knowing where we are going and remember that we are judged by the first period of our story. Of course the story shall be one hundred percent right through, but the beginning is extra important. By reaching a turning point at the start, this will engage the reader at once. If another post, I will go through turning points and how we can achieve best possible result from this guide.

To emphasis the headline – “Let the story take off.” It is rather cozy and lovely with a depicted introduction. Of how beautifully it rains and all. We get a chance to guess the character and feel the tone of both the story and the skills of the author. However, when someone skillfully brings us just right into the story in a smooth way – I am beyond impressed. This is often real page turners. The tease is even more important, but jumping off right at once to dig the conflict deeper is what usually pulls the reader into continuing reading. This way the person will not be able to open the fanfic and go “Nah,” after the first few words. A mistake would be to think that once we have pulled them into opening our fanfic, they will simply stick to the finishing line ‘just because the summary was fantastic.’

Commitment

Decide to update frequently, or at least in the loop of a certain amount of time. Readers want to know we will not leave the story hanging forever. They want to check our status every once in a while and see an actual update. There is simply no apology for updating six months later and believe we still have the crowd intently following us. They will move on, and chances are even that whatever they were shipping has passed. For a new reader finding us, they may also give us up even before starting, as they see our low activity.

Finish what we start, even if we think it sucks. We can always do our best in saving our work by changing parts of the story. Always have a notebook where we can write down the important scenes we want, certain dialogue or other crucial events in the storyline. These papers I always have beside me whenever I write, to know where I am heading and what emotions I need to build up for whatever event. If I want to achieve an intense breathtaking event by chapter 10, I always have it mind right from the very first word presented.

Another common thing is writer’s block. To avoid it or to get out of it, find it important to continue writing anyhow. If we are facing this page of our story when we feel uninspired and simply cannot put the words out right, skip it to the next chapter and write there. Eventually we will feel inspired and it will be much easier getting back and fill in the missing piece. That is what I do. If there is a part I just cannot get right, I skip it. Another thing I want to emphasis is the mental work discipline. To write even when we do not feel “motivated” or “inspired”. Sometimes we need to awaken this feeling ourselves. Also, by frequently uploading chapters – we will end up a lot on the first pages of the fanfic section. As this is the first thing many readers see when opening the site, chances are higher they will come across ours.

I also want to discuss the matter of keeping the characters in character. Some are OOC (out of character) and we may say so from the start. But nothing can be more annoying for a reader and eyerolling when finding the most stable character completely over-dramatizing. Character development however is king.

We follow the wave of our character, keep it within the lines and at the climax something makes the character go out of it in their development. Such moments make people go insane, in positive ways. They think suddenly their character did something heroic, romantic, heart-breaking or sad. It simply puts them to amazement. But by from the start making an otherwise stern iron person into an emotional wreck? While there may be someone liking this, I dare to advice that the great amount of readers will feel repellent to these types of stories. If they have a favorite character or OTP, they probably want to read about this and not a complete other thing. AU and OOC are great when clarifying it. If intending to not write an AU or OOC yet ending up like one – this does not look too good in the eye of a reader.

In the end of the day, fanfiction is as quoted “to unleash our imaginations.” But I think we owe it to each other to really do our best, do some research and put a lot of effort into this. At least if we want to publish it online for others’ enjoyment.


Now, off to write and we’ll see each other in another post next Thursday! 🙂

Love, E

8 Fanfic Mistakes Almost Everyone Faces

For some reason, it seems as fanfic readers all the time come across the very same mistakes. They are executed all over again, no matter if the fanfic is from early 2005 or written a week ago. Here they are. Throwing in an advising tone, I recommend a fanfic writer to think about them and if we may deserve to be accused of actually being guilty of this.

We are in 2018 and when by mistake coming across one of my first written fanfics, I noticed the 2010 mark. Meaning that I have been an active writer for eight years by now. Wow, time passes indeed. Therefore I would like to claim that I have my fair experience within the area and can thereby share what I have learnt when it comes to mistakes.

1. Amateur Summary
How many times have we seen the sentence: ”English is not my first language,” in the summary? What it does is that it repels readers big time. Because those words reveal that if we obviously need to excuse the language, it probably means our story will be filled with bad grammar and basically a bad flow. So I would recommend that even if so be it, do not give that away as if we are writing it on our forehead. Simply do not. First of all, we scare readers away with those words. And secondly – what do we really want to say by telling people this? If we want an excuse for bad grammar, readers in general will never approve of that anyway. If it is bad grammar or a poorly written story they do not care how much of a native speaker we are or not.
Then we have the classic every section has tons of: ”Summary sucks, but I promise my story is better. Pls read.” So, we cannot write a proper and engaging summary in three lines but somehow want to convince the reader we are capable of writing a 50k+ story that will be thrilling all through? (I may go into a proper summary and how to attract readers in another post). But nailing a perfect summary is crucial to gain the greatest size of an audience – if that is what we aim for. A poorly written summary makes people go ”Nah,” and choose another one. Right now I checked in one of the categories which I tend to work within, and found this rather quick: ”*Liza* is a 10 year old seller. She’s manipulative and knows how to win debates. What happens when she joins a certain Mr Johnson on an adventure? (Description sounds cheesy but this story is going to be awesome, I swear).
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And maybe, maybe, maybe – this story is the one which could deserve the noble prize in literature. However, after spending more than two months searching among fanfics and obsessing about whatever shipping one may have – we figure out that when an author writes something like this, chances are about 99% the story actually will suck. So for the love of God, do not ever write down this in our summaries.
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Before going on to the next example I want to point out the ”Pls read,” part. When shorting down words like that it seems slightly amateurish too. Like we are chatting with a friend in desperation. Because writing ”Please read,” is desperate. Really, it does not work. If we feel that inwardly, that please let someone read this, the best way to go is having a spot on summary that just captures the reader at once. The reader simply cannot let the story pass but just have to check it out. Now that is how to write a summary, which I also will get back to this in another post.
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Another interesting one is ”REVIEW PLEASE,” by either having this already in a summary (which I find fascinating to press a reader to review before even knowing what there is to review), or in an author’s note. Again, it seems amateurish and desperate to write such in a summary. As if we need confirmation and have a lack of acknowledgement. Like a child on a family gathering walking among every relative to show off a paining it has made. ”Look Grandma, Grandpa, Daddy, Mommy and all what I have done. Isn’t it amazing?!” and everybody has to nod in agreement even if the image only contains an ugly drawing of a house but it really looks like an alien getting killed by a tree – everybody smiles warmly and encourages the child to continue drawing this fantastically. So this is basically the same sensation when people ask for reviews this way. Of course I am alright with authors asking for reviews, but there are different ways of doing so. Writing in caps lock sounds more of a demand rather than nicely putting out that you would appreciate it. But do not forget it is up to a reader if he or she decides to leave a few words.
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”Don’t like, don’t read!” I can admit I never read these types of stories. Because what those words literally say are: My story probably stinks and I do not want you to tell me about it, I just want you to get hell out of here. I find it kind of rude and at the time I did open those I quickly learned that the author had a negative tone. Typically the story was not the best either. If we do our best and write a proper story, chances are tiny that someone will come and tell us it sucks. Not many people enjoys being mean and spreading negativity, so the risk of receiving bad critic in a review is small. Usually when losing a reader they simply just leave without notice. I can admit that the only times I have crossed negative reviews have been in stories that are totally out of character, has no story line and simply makes no sense. Unless we do that and actually try our best at giving fans a story, they will not give us hate.
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Another one to look out for when writing our summary is ”This is my first fanfic.” It is no surprise that everything requires experience and to be a pro demands a lot of trying and failing. When I check my first fanfic I do a face-palm, because it sucks. Oh dear lord what it sucks. I have no clue what the hell I am doing, yet I remember well that when I wrote it I truly believed it was a masterpiece. This still happens to me as for today. After wrapping up a fanfic and with pride putting it out there, it takes a year or so before my nose twitches. We grow quickly and always increase our skills. The first fanfic will rarely be the best we write and therefore by marketing our first fanfic as the first, is in rare cases the best idea. Compare it to soccer and you are about to begin a game. Which player would you choose? The one playing since it began to walk or the one who has never seen a football before? When a reader is in search of a story I would bet my money that this person looks for one which seems to be well executed.
Alright, now I hope we know what to avoid when doing a summary to our masterpieces. Going on to…
2. Not Coming Up With Something Unique 
Too often when going through a category/shipping we find ourselves wrapped in the same storylines all over again. Everybody writes about the same conflict and in the end of the day we cannot separate the stories we have read as they all are quite similar. Often this happens when a franchise leave with a cliffhanger and the audience interprets in a particular way. Surely it is what is popular and probably what the readers want to see as well.
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An idea can be to put our own twist on it. By that I mean that we shall twist the conflict somewhat. For example I will drive the whole moment from Fast and Furious when we at the end of Fast Five found out that Letty probably was alive – man fanfics boomed in the category – and all wanted to write the stories of when Dom hunted her down. Many got quite similar with a start of Dom finding out, him freaking out and then tracking down the captured Letty to rescue the damsel in distress (which her character actually is the opposite of). After beginning the third story we all knew what was going to happen throughout the story and really did not need to finish reading it without knowing how it will dissolve. To avoid this I suggest to plan the story out well and have a few twists and surprises to differ from the other stories aiming for the same outcome.
The best according to me are the authors who manage to bring in something completely unique. A unique concept that we can sum up in one or two sentences and put in our summary. Usually those writers tend to be the most successful ones as far as what I have come across.
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In addition, I want to bring up the importance of having a clear conflict. What is the problem? Why are we writing a story? The better the conflict is defined, the better the story. Or rather, and I quote this: ”The graver the conflict the better the story.” (Do not remember the source but snapped it up from a screenwriter). And it is true. Not many people have the energy to read a story about our favorite character simply going grocery store shopping.

3. Abandoning The Story
This unfortunately happens too often and many experienced readers may not even open our story until a few chapters into it. They may also even wait to see the response of others and if it is well received. There are just too many authors giving up on their story and leaving it hanging. I find it highly important to finish whatever we start, as it shows our commitment and that the audience can trust us. By doing so, each time we finish a story, it will result in higher rates from the beginning of our following stories. As the reader knows we will upload until it is finished and not leave it at a cliffhanger after just one chapter. Or worse – in the middle of it. To avoid this setup I like to recommend having a notebook nearby or a program on the computer where we can write a short page with notes of the complete storyline. Starting a story without a plan is according to me impossible. At least if aiming for a good outcome.
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Before we start a story it can be necessary to sit down and make a detailed plan on what we want to achieve, a little dialogue and actions, some characteristic events and highlight the climax of our fanfic. How can we build up the thrilling emotion to its maximum? Also, this keeps our authors motivated to continue writing because we are so keen on writing this particular climax and give it to our readers. And we must not feel discouraged if the readers do not pick up the story at once. But keep going and deliver a good story. Readers may find this story years after it is published and fall head over heels in love with it in the future. Therefore my recommendation of reaching the end.

4. Typos/Grammar Mistakes
Not only can too many typos and too many grammar mistakes disturb the eye of a reader. It can also cause confusion at points when it becomes another word/meaning. Look out for this!
5. Do Not Tell, Show
As easy as the title. When a character constantly speaks what it thinks or what it feels… let’s imagine that happening in a movie? Do not those type of movies suck? It leaves absolutely no mystery at all and in general it is not believable. It definitely kills the vibe and thrill of a story.
So instead of doing this, show. Show by actions that a character cares for another one. Show by its behavior what it thinks and what the opinion of something is. Describe the person’s reaction rather than letting the dialogue do all the information we get. I think any dialogue should be when we cannot possibly cause a thrill without having a bit of dialogue. I agree with the opinion that dialogue should strengthen the events rather than the opposite.

6. Jumping Into It Too Quickly/Not Have A Plan
In another post I will help out with focusing on a proper plan, but I will shorten down the basics here. I suppose we all have opened a story and thought about how this is going to be such a great read. We hit the pillow to fluff it and let our back sink into it while keeping the phone, iPad or whatever readable item in a strong grip in front of our eyes. We have just come across the greatest summary, just what we searched for! But after the first few pages the story has reached its peak and the rest is plateau. It is apparent that the author misses a plan and just creates a bit of ”local” unnecessary drama and as result the storyline becomes worse than boring.
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Unfortunately, this seems to be not so uncommon. In fact I cannot count how many times I have met these… It is such a disappointment. Every time I notice that I have just faced yet another one of those stories I make a mental note to perhaps send this particular author a notebook and a working inc pencil. I cannot stress the importance of proper planning.
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Jumping into the climax of the story too quickly kills the thrill. With this, if we are writing a love story of an OTP, the readers probably want a good exciting story that keeps them on the edge of their seats. They cannot wait for that special kiss or when they finally end up together. Then it becomes too bad when we give them what they want right from start. Because when we have reached it there is no real point in continuing the story.
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An example from the daily life. We are hungry. We long for food. So we sit down on a restaurant and there are two hours until the main course is served. We are given small pieces of bread in the meantime to keep us there. So we will probably sit there those two hours in anticipation of this main course plus the hour in addition to finish the plate. Versus if we enter and sit down, get served right at once and we are probably out in half an hour. Do you see the connection I try to make? It is the same with writing. Because I dare to guess not many people will sit there for two and half hours just to stare after feeling full and the plate has gone to the dishes. Right?
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This also joins the problem of some authors writing either too long stories or too short chapters. Some writers just love the idea of going several hundreds of thousands of words and present new conflict after conflict. While some can be a cozy little soap opera episode kind of like, some stories just get tiring. We need to try to define what we want to deliver and say (again, referring to having a plan).
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Not much becomes more frustrating than short chapters. We can easy tell when an author wants to fish for reviews and I suppose splitting a story into more chapters ”than necessary” is a way to go. However it kinds of make one snap out of the the trance from the story when we constantly have to switch page. Some writers give chapters of 10k+ in words. I suppose that in my opinion the perfect chapter contains between 2000-10 000 words. But really, there is no right or wrong and everybody does of course as it pleases. Although if it can be to any help, writing too short are not even always within the guidelines on several fanfic sites. And another note from experienced readers is that the first impression of the author’s story can get destroyed by the thought of wondering how much an author really can manage deliver in such short chapters. Just a note!

7. Over-Describing A Character
A wild guess – when a reader comes across our story and has clicked on it, chances are high that this person is obsessing over a shipping. He or she is going through a period of time when he or she will spend nights awake reading fanfics until sunrise. Maybe even forgetting to eat (not good!) that when someone calls that dinner is ready, this person will bring it on a plate into its bedroom to bunker up. This means that it probably knows all about the characters and the universe, unless we write an AU (Alternative Universe). Spending several paragraphs depicting every single little detail of a character or environment are two unnecessary things. It is here among tons of other rules that an original story differs from a fanfic.
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One typical thing when describing the overly hot character is telling the reader about what kind of clothing the character wears, what make-up or hairstyle etc. Remember that ”hot” is defined in various ways. As they say, attractiveness lays in the viewer’s eye. One afternoon when I for example sat on a beach near the ocean on a towel, I was reading a fanfic that had caught my fullest attention every free minute I had over during the past days. Suddenly out of nowhere the author decides to inform about how this hot well known character looks like. Note that it did not precisely agree to how it looks in the movies. As the author presumably described the hottest version of this one, I could not agree less and had to stop reading. Because it completely destroyed the mental picture I had over the story.
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Therefore I register to describe them with cautious fingers typing on the keyboard. Just saying that someone appears in a certain way let the readers get an image in their minds which is true to them. And so on the story becomes the best version it possibly can be. That way it is different, unique and what everybody wants to see for each individual reading it. A mistake would be to put out every single detail – according to my opinion. I think it is better to leave a little to the person’s imaginations. Additionally, the majority of the audience knows the characters as the back of their hands. No need to point it all out because it is ”unnecessary” facts.
8. Out Of Character
Following the previous title I quote again, ”Fans know the characters as the back of their hand.” Which means that they will notice at once when the character is not following its pattern. Nothing makes a story worse than when a character is not acting like itself. Unless there is a reason why. Keeping the character in character is an art and talent, yet the most important task when wanting to achieve a bombass fanfic.
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A fan can tell rather quickly if we know the characters/fandom well or not. A major checkpoint to this is definitely if the characters are true or not. To give us a good example I can inform about the many times I have read fanfics which takes place in 1700s France. The F-word simply does not suit. And the general way of how we speak and utter words today occurred differently back then and to make the story believable I think one should follow what was suitable back then.
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Not only dialogue is the single focus but also actions. What is believable for a character to execute during the 1700s? This can be switched the opposite way. Is is believable that a character is acting like one from the 1700s when she or he lives in Manhattan during the 21st century? It can really be something to look over. Different genres, universes and characters require different language in our stories.
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Another thing worth mentioning is character development. Something I have examined extra carefully lately as I have dug into screenwriting. Without really thinking over it before I noticed that my stories actually do have it. And I figured out the pattern that the better character development, the higher success my stories had. In another post I can go through the whole stage-points I think every writer should know about. But here I can let you know this wrapped-up-information I think every/most stories should contain:
  1. Introduce character.
  2. Conflict.
  3. Debating on the offer.
  4. Deciding to do it.
  5. Everything goes well.
  6. Everything seems to go wrong and all readers wonder how in the world we as writers will solve it.
  7. The character must face and overcome its weakness to achieve its goal.
  8. The end.
It can sound cliche, as most feel good stories go down this road. But there is a reason why. It works. And the best stories in my opinion are the ones managing this pattern with a twist, with surprises along the way and such a grand surprise at the end. Those who have the talent, or are well planned ahead, that when readers are at point 6 they sit there and musingly rub their foreheads – wondering if they really will reach a happy ending. Because how can possibly the author solve the grand problem it has caused? And then the reader should have missed the tiny traces the author has left along the story to be able to wrap it up graciously towards the end, resulting in the reader having its jaw on the floor in awe. THOSE, are the best authors if you ask me.

To Sum Up
There is no right and wrong and we must not get discouraged of this text. It is supposed to help us to grow as writers and everybody can always get better. Including me. From my very own experience these are my words in forms of advice and tips of how to increase better skills in writing, particularly fanfics. Good luck and go writing!
Love, E

Kickstarting Fall 2018

Kickstarting Fall 2018
and things to look forward to

While many I know definitely feel the rush of adrenaline when summer is approaching, I have always preferred fall. Fall is my absolute favorite time of year. Not only because of my birthday coming up in late October, but the season seriously brings a lot of nice events!

Halloween

Since my birthday always occur during Halloween days, I used to have masquerade parties as a young kid. Now, as a grown up I appreciate getting invited to others or simply having fun disguising myself and celebrating.
Personally I think it is a fun and good excuse of dressing up like Sleeping Beauty, a pirate or as if I lived in the 20s. Of course, confident people may be able to dress like this any day of the year – and that is something I am myself working on. But usually I sort of dress the same way – skirt and a proper shirt in a toned down color.
Additionally I find it exciting to encounter all friends in disguises. Last year we had a couple dressed up as The Flintstones and they had gone all in. Theme parties are just too funny but it is important that we go all in. Wearing the same outfit as always and simply topping the head with a witch hat is not accepted in my book.

Weather

Regardless of how people often curse when pulling the curtains aside and facing a rainy scenery, I LOVE IT. Any sort of climate can be shifted into a positive one with the right mindset. If it rains, I see a very good ”excuse” to remain inside with a lit candle, soft music and a handful of writing. Perhaps a bit of reading too.
Every person does not need an excuse for this, naturally, but I try to simply see for positive outcomes from everything. A rainy weather also means different clothes. The earth needs a bit of rain and it becomes greener outside. Even if fall is usually famous for the colorful trees – it only grows better with a bit of rain.
Sitting inside coffee shops, either with friends – ar alone! – is also kind of cozy when it is ”bad weather” outside.
When it rains, it is easier for me to actually see my TV without any sunlight reflections in it. The same goes for my Iphone and MacBook. No matter the great abilities all these electronics have, a strong sunlight does disturb somewhat. A cloudy weather definitely helps. Therefore, my Netflix account is on immensely more during fall and wintertime.
We also have dinners indoors. While sitting outside during summer days, there is a bit of a mood to sit inside. I think the sensation is a bit more romantic and intimate. Maybe because there is less to lay our eyes on. When sitting outside, it is easier to get a bit distracted by all surroundings and people walking by. When remaining inside it is a bit of more focus on the company at the table – according to my experiences.

Anyhow, the moment every year when I for the first time feel the cold air hit me – I feel so warm inside. It is the first real sign of fall and I just want to smile widely at this.

Setting Long Term Goals And Back To Routines

Here, I find it highly important to have routines that we enjoy. A common habit I have seen is that many sigh at the thought of routines. Like, when speaking of summer vacation as the highlight of life and then mumbling ”Back to routines” as if it means death itself – I cannot help but to twitch my nose. Surely, summer vacation should be an amazing time. I agree to that. But I think that it is almost more important that the every day life should feel better. Because… we live it daily? This summer was actually one of the first summers where I felt that it did not really matter if I was on vacation or home, working. Because I fully enjoyed being abroad and traveling around Europe. But I also nowadays love my daily life. During spring I built up my daily life very carefully. I decided that when I return from summer vacation, I shall look forward to it. And I did. I do love my daily life and the routines to it.
An important note can be that this may take a long time to build up. But let it take time. There is nothing as important to be able to live every day with a great feeling of satisfactory and happiness. It is truly worth it in the end.

When it comes to long term goals I have decided to never set too much of short term. Often it ends up with me not managing one of them and therefore stressing about it. Better to have a few long term and slowly making a bit of progress every day. If I see a major goal on the next page in my calendar, I will feel panic if I am not anywhere close to the finish line. If I instead create this into a daily routine, I will for example write a little bit on my screenplay every single day instead of waiting until deadline and by then being awake until 7 am to fix the last into perfection. At least, forming long term goals into routines helps somewhat.

Family Dinners

This may be different compared to where in the world ones lives, and what kind of family we have. I speak for myself here, but I do have quite a few family dinners coming up during Fall. Many people are back from vacations and are in work mood. This results in having it easier to gather them all and forming a lovely dinner together. With darkness outside, perhaps a bit of rain, it even increases the cozy factory of staying inside together. We all wear warm clothes and help each other out when preparing dinners. Just a lovely time of the year!

Of Course, there are tons of reasons to love fall. These were a few suggestions of why I happen to be in love with the season. It is different for everybody but one thing I want to deliver is to the ability to always, always, always be able to shift everything into a positive outcome.

Love, E

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