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  • Wow, Smogon clearly posted that legal hacks are okay so long as it is announced beforehand (F***; that means I created an unneccessary fiasco). LOL!
    Thanks for the post. The issue was resolved a long time ago and the comment you posted pretty much summarized their comments towards me. :p
    Just woke up from my little nap...Thanks for the post. I love the support the community gives to people in these sort of situations.
    Don't worry, I'm all for the Targaryens. I just am moving from house to house. Next is the Starks.
    Oh, that's okay, I've been doing the same! I got a part time job for the summer, yay! It's been keeping me surprisingly busy. It's nice having a little spending money too.

    Oh, cool! Dreams with your characters are awesome; I don't think I've ever actually dreamt about a character before, my own or otherwise. Well, I'm sure there's some exception. Anyway, I recently got remotivated to continue working on my story. You know how I said the beginning was almost readable? ...I tore it apart again. Ahaha. I'm thinking that this time, I'm putting it back together the right way.

    That's awesome! Good luck, let me know how it goes!! =)
    Oh okay. Do what seems natural; sometimes we have to let go of pieces of our stories because they don't fit right, which is sad but necessary.

    Hmm, I think it's more so that the world doesn't gravitate unnaturally towards them. In a Pokémon fanfic, for example, a Mary Sue would probably be given some extremely rare legendary like Mew or something for a starter Pokémon, or rather Mew would come to her and give itself over, or something. Just illogical things, really. I think if your story makes logical sense, it should be fine!

    Oh haha, I only speak a very limited amount of Spanish other than English, so probably not! =P
    Oh, yeah it is early for a full-time job; I'm just looking for a part-time job for the summer to make a little extra money. =)

    Oh that sounds cool! I think it's a good idea that you limited it to just the one element; I think it makes a better story when the character has a limited power rather than a ton of power - it makes it more interesting!

    There's a discussion somewhere in the Author Lounge about Mary Sues, I think, and the definition I liked best from it was that a Mary Sue is one who pulls the world around her rather than being in the world. Those two things alone don't make her a Mary Sue - it doesn't mean she can't be a Mary Sue, but it definitely doesn't mean she is. Have you posted your writing anywhere? I'm not very good at keeping up with long online stories, but I would be willing to read some if you'd like!

    That's what I like about writing; it never has to be my career for me to keep doing it. =D I don't have anything posted here right now (at least, nothing current; there might be one ancient thread or something); I'm kind of waiting until I get something drafted well enough that I can ask for beta readers. But nothing's really in a viewable mode yet; everything is kind of getting torn apart so I can stick it back together. =P
    I'm a little bit nervous about that as far as mechanical engineering goes, though; there are a lot of people in that, too, at least at my college. And I have trouble getting jobs apparently.

    There's pretty much anything you could think of haha! I'm in a marching band and a group that supports the bands, and then I'm on and off involved with some environmental groups. Next year I'll be in charge of recycling and other sustainability things for my dorm! I still would like to get involved in drama/theater or something; I just don't have time unfortunately.

    Oh, cool! What kind of novel are you writing? I haven't written in so long; I have to get back into it.

    Oh haha! I... actually don't know what happened to my site. o_o The address isn't working, and I know it's not my host's website because hers is still there haha. I was kind of done with it anyway, though... I don't think I'll really have time to update it anymore sadly.
    Oh man, so this is a really delayed response haha. Sorry about that!

    Since we last talked, I've chosen a major - I'm majoring in mechanical engineering now. I don't really know what specifically I want to do yet, like what kind of job I want to get, but I can do pretty much anything engineer-y with a mechanical engineering degree, so it seemed the way to go. If I knew where I wanted to work, I could choose a major that would fit it perfectly, but since I don't know where I want to work, I chose a major that will apply to the most jobs, basically!

    Oh, that would be a good thing to do! Even if you don't want to officially join because of having to get your card again and pay a yearly fee, maybe there's another group around you that you could join?

    There are so many different activities at my college. I had to be careful not to get involved with too much, since there are so many different things that interest me. Unfortunately, I don't have that much time. =P

    So how have you been?
    Oooh, then we're going to disagree massively. The minimal state maximises personal freedoms and creates an arena for personal successes :p
    Hmm, Thatcher is my political idol: why don't you like her? Though I'd tend to agree that Bush and military dictatorships are a bad thing.
    I'm not annoyed! Sorry; I've been sick with the flu for like a month and forgot about the PM! If I don't respond to it in some kind of timely fashion this time you can poke me again.

    Cliché doesn't matter! Well, it matters a little, because you can get the audience going "oh, is the author really going to do this. Really." but you don't even get that reaction if you just write it interestingly! It's all in the presentation! You can breathe life into even the most cliché'd plots there are with good writing and characters, it just takes some work. You'll also notice the opposite happening to people - their plot is totally unique, but the story is super-boring anyway, sometimes to the point where you don't even notice the uniqueness because you put the book away as quickly as possible to save yourself from falling the sleep, but someimes so that you have the audience complaining "Oh, that was such an interesting idea, it's a huge disappointment that the author didn't do much with it." Because it's not the idea that matters so much as how its told.
    Oh, that was just a quote from Skyrim...

    Being born good is too single-layered. From a writer's perspective having a character that has a rich history is more interesting to write and to read.

    Even Commander Shepard has to punch a few reporters in his lifetime.
    Story-wise, I think it's good to have multiple villains! It can add more depth to the story when the main characters aren't just fighting one person - it makes it easier for the villains to be able to be real people with their own thoughts and motivations if there are multiple! If there's just one villain, they tend to get pushed into the rule of ultimate-world-destroying-evil in order to make the characters' struggles seem worthwhile. The bad things about the villains can be divided between them if there's more than one, while still having a significant force for the heroes to fight against, and then every big battle doesn't have to be a repeat with the same hero and the same villain! Too, having multiple allows for some to even sort of be possibly good guys, or become good guys, without taking away the foundation of the plot - if the single villain turns good, suddenly there's no one for the heroes to fight anymore! (that's okay if your story also has person versus supernatural or person versus nature or something like that - actually it'd be interesting to have a story where they're struggling against a villain but then they join forces to stop something worse - but if it's just person versus person, it's pretty much over when the one villain turns over a new leaf) It's silly to have extra villains just for the sake of having extra villains, of course (as then they jut pointlessly fluff up the story), but there are reasons why more villains can be good!

    Character-wise, I find that if I just start writing a character and something's wrong, the wrongness fairly quickly bubbles to the surface and you can change them! Characters tend to take on a life of their own, and they really dislike it when you write them the wrong way, and they'll fight it! If you want to you can quell their arguments and just force them to act how you want, and authors do sometimes do that, but the character always always turns out sounding flat as a result. It's sort of strange that that happens, since you'd think if you make up the character you get to, well, make up the character, but anyone who's written for very long at all will tell you that that's just not how it works! (I'm sure you've noticed it yourself.) Because of that, it would probably help you decide to just arbitrarily pick some traits and start writing (possibly in a short story if you're not keen on experimenting in the main one), then see how that goes! Usually the traits I assign characters in the beginning like their gender and sex and name just stick to them and turn out to somehow be correct, but sometimes a character fights that! And they'll definitely fight something like "cruel" if it's wrong - try writing that for a while and see if the villain ends up that way or if they keep feeling in you head like they're cringing at it! I had a character for a while who I inserted because I needed a sort of villain and someone who knew what was going on in the fantasy world and would inadverdently pass some of that information to the main character; but it turned out that he's really really secretive and would never do that; and that while he is sort of a jerk, he's not actually evil, just one of those people who's rough to people they don't particularly like or know; and that his name was not Jack, no matter how hard I tried to push the name onto him; and that the person he was being the hugest jerk to was actually someone he was in love with! So that was just a complete mistake in about every way, but after writing him for a while I finally realized he really wasn't like that (I was stubborn back then, so it took a couple of rewrites to figure out why nothing was working), and then I could write him properly! And some of the mistakes led to other story developments, like thinking about why he'd be so horrible to someone he was supposed to be in love with and it turns out there's actually a good reason for it! Anyway, just pick some things (either whatever appeals to you the most at that particular moment, or maybe flip a coin), and try writing! If it's wrong you'll probably figure it out!

    Good luck with your characters!
    Linear and non-linear approaches can both be good! It just depends on which way you prefer - and on how much rewriting you can stand to do. If you're planning to publish, I think it would be very very difficult not to have the ending planned out in advance by the time you get your first book published; once it's out, you can't go back and change anything! If you realize you really messed up and now the plot you've discovered will be really broken and difficult to pull off, too bad, you're stuck with it. Before publishing, though, you have as much time as you want to rewrite and fix things! I personally prefer beginning at the... beginning, and writing and writing until I get to the end. It's much easier that way to have natural character and story progression, as you're writing linearly and adjusting as just the right speed! Too, you don't run into the problem of changing something early on and having to change it later, too, because you haven't even gotten to the later part yet. I also find that jumping around has the problem of sort of excusing the boring parts! If a part's boring when you're writing non-linearly, you just skip it, and eventually it becomes a big problem where you just avoid that scene for ages. If you're writing linearly, you have to write the scene so that you can get to the interesting parts; it's motivational! Some people have a really exciting scene that they're dying to write, and that keeps them writing everything before that so they can get to the scene, instead of just writing it immediately and then losing steam with everything else! Non-linear story writing has its own advantages, though. It tends to be easier to plot and piece things together, because you're not trapped in old stuff - you can just toss a piece out and write a new version if it's bad, because all the jumping around tends to create a lot less tangling - you can divorce yourself from the writing more easily, and take it apart, because you started with it being taken apart. It's kind of like if you're building a house and suddenly realize you want to change something about the bricks! If you were just building small pieces first and making lots of plans and seeing what everything looked like before putting things together, you could just do new pieces with the new bricks! If you've already stuck everything together, you'll have to take it all apart to change how the bricks are. And if a part is hard, you can just drop it for the time being and focus on something else! So sometimes that makes it easier to stay interested in the story, since you could have less trudging through. Also, last November I wrote myNaNoWriMo non-linearly as an experiment, and I found that although I was jumping around a lot in the beginning, I eventually went back and finished all the dangling chapters, and then I ended up with everything sorted out and was writing linearly again from there! It was also neat writing later parts and realize "oh, I should do that over in this earlier chapter so that this makes sense!" and then I'd know what to do with the earlier chapter and I could go back and finish writing it!

    Relating to your particular story - if the child part isn't as interesting to write, are you sure it's entirely necessary? It seems to me that the parts that are less interesting to write and read tend to also be parts that could be dropped or heavily edited! If you're supposed to read the child part first, are there things you could change in the teenager part so that that's unnecessary? Alternatively, what is it about the teenager part that makes it more enjoyable, and could some of those things be applied to the child part? Is she just more interesting as a teenager? Does she have a more exciting adventure? Do you like the other characters that she knows as a teenager better than the ones she knows as a child? It can also be easier to write teenagers in general, just because being a child was a longer time ago, and it's a lot harder to know how children act and think and step into the character of one! I've found writing children characters comes a lot more easily since my smallest sister grew into one - I'm very familiar now with how she acts and thinks, and even if my characters aren't the same, it still makes it easier! I can see how much she's learned in the years she's had, and which concepts she still struggles with, and how much practice it takes her to get good at things, and her emotional depth regarding certain things, and what she as a kid cares about! (She's kind of special in that she's always been extra clever and interested in the world, and extra empathetic, and she has tons more initiative and planning skills than a lot of adults, let alone other eight-year-olds. But she's still a kid!) Maybe you could think about if that's a problem, too, and figure out if there's any way to interact with kids a little more and see if that helps!
    Hi, sorry for the late reply! (also this is going to be three VMs sorry for flooding your page!)

    Are you still on your break! You probably shouldn't try to take too long of a break, or else you stop thinking about it and then it's hard to get back into the story! Also if you're at a point where you feel like you need to think things through, maybe you could work on writing down what you're thinking instead of having it just float aimlessly in your head! Then you'll kind of have a plan and you'll still be working on the story!

    It is a lot harder to edit; you never want to ruin things or mess things up, and sometimes you have to make a huge edit and make everything else fit with the new thing, and then you really may as well rewrite if it's that big of a change (and some changes that seem small can turn out to be pretty big). It's not always the best thing to rewrite, though, just sometimes! If the story's going pretty well and is accurate to your vision, then maybe it's not time for a rewrite! I've been looking at the story I wrote last November and wondering if it really needs to be completely rewritten (some parts do), or if it just needs editing and for the ending to actually be finished. I actually had a plot outline for that one, so it's not quite as much of a mess as my stories tend to be!

    I pretty much always find flowery language really dull, but sometimes it's good or even necessary - rarely, though, I think. It seems like it takes a really good writer to turn flowery purple prose into something the average person would be interested in reading (ie someone who's not already interested in flowery writing). I also don't think that people always try to sound flowery, though! A lot of people just grow up reading the flowery books and think that's how writing is and that's just how it comes out! I used to struggle a lot with sounding stuffy and formal all the time once I realized it was a problem. Now I guess I get teased for sounding too simplified, but I really prefer it and it's on purpose, not because I'm not good enough to be formal, which is I guess what people think. Also it's probably hard in law, when you have to make things sort of complex or else people will find loopholes!
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