History Literature / HowNotToWriteANovel

25th Jul '17 8:58:55 PM DoctorNemesis
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

* {{Hypocrite}}: The author of the example in "The Fig Leaf" clearly enjoys visiting strip clubs but is vaguely aware that this is something that shouldn't be boasted about, so combines a lovingly detailed description of the club and the ladies working in it with the viewpoint character sniffily declaring how above it all he is in a transparent attempt [[IJustWriteTheThing to cover his tracks]].
25th Jul '17 8:49:07 PM DoctorNemesis
Is there an issue? Send a Message


** "The Fig Leaf", where the author lovingly describes some vice but has the viewpoint character sniff and pronounce it disgusting. Discouraged because no one will be fooled; if your work is going to indulge in smut, you might as well be honest about it.

to:

** "The Fig Leaf", where the author lovingly describes some vice but has the viewpoint character sniff and pronounce it disgusting.disgusting, implicitly because the author's trying to distance themselves from their own kink. Discouraged because no one will be fooled; if your work is going to indulge in smut, you might as well be honest about it.
22nd Jul '17 9:56:44 PM Famfrit
Is there an issue? Send a Message


** In "El Foreigner", a Spanish speaker reprimands a Korean's (supposed) ForeignLanguageTirade by saying, "Hijo de puta! Hold the tongue!" "Hijo de puta" is Spanish for "[[HypocriticalHumor son of a bitch]]".
*** It's used similarly to "son of a bitch" in english but actually translates to "son of a whore".

to:

** In "El Foreigner", a Spanish speaker reprimands a Korean's (supposed) ForeignLanguageTirade by saying, "Hijo de puta! Hold the tongue!" "Hijo de puta" is Spanish for "[[HypocriticalHumor son of a bitch]]".Whore]]".
*** It's used similarly to "son of a bitch" in english but actually translates to "son of a whore".
22nd Jul '17 9:51:28 PM Famfrit
Is there an issue? Send a Message


** In "El Foreigner", a Spanish speaker reprimands a Korean's (supposed) ForeignLanguageTirade by saying, "Hijo de puta! Hold the tongue!" "Hijo de puta" is Spanish for "[[HypocriticalHumor son of a bitch]]". **It's used similarly to "son of a bitch" in english but actually translates to "son of a whore".

to:

** In "El Foreigner", a Spanish speaker reprimands a Korean's (supposed) ForeignLanguageTirade by saying, "Hijo de puta! Hold the tongue!" "Hijo de puta" is Spanish for "[[HypocriticalHumor son of a bitch]]". **It's
*** It's
used similarly to "son of a bitch" in english but actually translates to "son of a whore".
22nd Jul '17 9:50:01 PM Famfrit
Is there an issue? Send a Message


** In "El Foreigner", a Spanish speaker reprimands a Korean's (supposed) ForeignLanguageTirade by saying, "Hijo de puta! Hold the tongue!" "Hijo de puta" is Spanish for "[[HypocriticalHumor son of a bitch]]".

to:

** In "El Foreigner", a Spanish speaker reprimands a Korean's (supposed) ForeignLanguageTirade by saying, "Hijo de puta! Hold the tongue!" "Hijo de puta" is Spanish for "[[HypocriticalHumor son of a bitch]]". **It's used similarly to "son of a bitch" in english but actually translates to "son of a whore".
11th Jul '17 11:39:27 PM Chariset
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* AccidentalInnuendo: "The Deafening Hug" features a scene with a brother and sister hugging. The brother describes his sister in such unintentionally erotic terms, that the reader can only infer [[IncestSubtext incestuous subtext]].[[invoked]]

to:

* AccidentalInnuendo: "The Deafening Hug" features a scene with a brother and sister hugging. The brother describes his sister in such unintentionally erotic terms, terms that the reader can only infer [[IncestSubtext incestuous subtext]].[[invoked]]



** "The Fig Leaf", where the author lovingly describes some vice but has the viewpoint character sniff and pronounce it disgusting. Discouraged in that it doesn't work; if your work is going to indulge in smut, be honest about it.

to:

** "The Fig Leaf", where the author lovingly describes some vice but has the viewpoint character sniff and pronounce it disgusting. Discouraged in that it doesn't work; because no one will be fooled; if your work is going to indulge in smut, you might as well be honest about it.



* TheDogWasTheMastermind: A literal example -- the writers observe that unless the protagonist's cat Bartok is the one solving the murder mysteries, Bartok should receive about as much attention in the narrative as the couch he is sitting on.

to:

* TheDogWasTheMastermind: A literal example -- the writers observe that unless the protagonist's cat Bartok is the one solving the murder mysteries, Bartok should receive about as much attention many words in the narrative as the couch he is sitting on.



* FootnoteFever: Appears in the sample of "postmodernist" writing, which the book discourages because postmodernism and other gimmicky stuff is hard to do well.



* IJustWriteTheThing: "The Fig Leaf". Discouraged, in that it rarely works and just makes the author look a bit hypocritical. The advice given in that particular case, but which can probably be applied to other examples of the trope, is that if you ''must'' include your AuthorAppeal in the work (and you usually don't) then at least be honest and up front about what you're doing, since no one's going to be fooled anyway.
* IKEAErotica: They even have a name along similar lines: "Assembly Instructions." One of the scenes in "The List of Ingredients" deserves a mention as well.

to:

* IJustWriteTheThing: "The Fig Leaf". Discouraged, in that it rarely works and just makes the author look a bit hypocritical. The advice given in that particular case, but which can probably be applied to other examples of the trope, is that if Discouraged. If you ''must'' include your AuthorAppeal in the work (and you usually don't) then at least be honest and up front about what you're doing, since no one's going to be fooled anyway.
* IKEAErotica: They even have a name along similar lines: "Assembly Instructions." One of the scenes in "The List of Ingredients" deserves a mention as well.


Added DiffLines:

* TheLawOfConservationOfDetail: Underwrites a lot of the book. The details you provide will set up reader expectations about the plot, characters, love interests, etc. If you add too much extra detail, or direct the reader's attention to something and don't follow up, your novel will be dead no matter how good it is.
26th Jun '17 8:36:35 AM KingLyger
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* GambitRoulette: "The Riddler" - ''Wherein the nefarious plot is more complex than string theory.''

to:

* GambitRoulette: "The Riddler" - ''Wherein the nefarious plot is more complex than string theory.'''' Naturally, they discourage it, because it will make your story way too hard to follow and make your villain seem [[VillainSue way too competent to be believable]].



** "Asseverated the Man" highlights the unusual tendency for beginning writers to avoid using the unadorned word "said" at all times, when experienced authors know that it is in fact an "invisible word" like "the", "a" or "it". Using flowery synonyms as speech indicators or using too many adverbs will only draw attention to the writing and break the reader's immersion.

to:

** "Asseverated the Man" highlights the unusual tendency for beginning writers to avoid using the unadorned word "said" at all times, "said", when experienced authors know that it is in fact an "invisible word" like "the", "a" or "it". Using flowery synonyms as speech indicators or using too many adverbs will only draw attention to the writing and break the reader's immersion.



* ShownTheirWork: "The Research Paper." "...But the glories of the Calvin cycle, and the further intricacies of the Krebs cycle, essential to cellular respiration, were little comfort now that...". While research is good, the author should not show off to the extent of confusing most readers.

to:

* ShownTheirWork: "The Research Paper." "...But the glories of the Calvin cycle, and the further intricacies of the Krebs cycle, essential to cellular respiration, were little comfort now that...". While they encourage doing proper research is good, on any subject an author wants to include in their story, the author should not show off to the extent of confusing most readers.



* StylisticSuck: The examples, obviously.

to:

* StylisticSuck: The examples, obviously.which are claimed to be submissions from beginning authors, but actually {{Deliberately Bad Example}}s that show off the misuse of the tropes they discuss.
26th Jun '17 8:32:47 AM KingLyger
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* GayBestFriend: "Priscilla, Queen of the Clichés". Discouraged, as examples tend to be one-dimensional stock characters which can seem rather patronizing and insulting.

to:

* GayBestFriend: "Priscilla, Queen of the Clichés". Discouraged, as examples tend to be one-dimensional stock characters characters, which can seem rather patronizing and insulting.insulting.
-->A lot of authors create this type of character, assuming the snappy, witty dialogue will write itself. Needless to say, this is rarely the case.



* LikeRealityUnlessNoted: Is given as the reason why research and thorough world building are needed for historical fiction, scifi or fantasy.

to:

* LikeRealityUnlessNoted: Is given as the reason why research and thorough world building are needed for historical fiction, scifi sci-fi or fantasy.



* NoYay: "Last Tango in Santa's Village".[[invoked]] (Yes, it's exactly what it sounds like). If you have a non-sexualized character in your story, for the love of God give him some sex appeal ''before'' making him someone's boyfriend. Otherwise your readers will just be bored, confused, and/or disgusted with the relationship.

to:

* NoYay: "Last Tango in Santa's Village".[[invoked]] (Yes, it's exactly what it sounds like). If you have a non-sexualized character in your story, for the love of God God, give him them some sex appeal ''before'' making him someone's boyfriend.them hook up with someone. Otherwise your readers will just be bored, confused, and/or disgusted with the relationship.



* PetTheDog: "[[EvenBadMenLoveTheirMamas But He Loves His Mother]]". Using this to make a one-dimensional villain seem human is a bad idea; better to make the villain ''not'' one-dimensional and make his evilness believable.

to:

* PetTheDog: "[[EvenBadMenLoveTheirMamas But He Loves His Mother]]". Using this to make a one-dimensional villain seem human is a bad idea; it's better to make the villain ''not'' one-dimensional and make his evilness believable.



* UnspokenPlanGuarantee: Dealt with in "Deja Vu;" more specifically, the plan should always go wrong if spoken, otherwise the author has essentially spoiled their own story.

to:

* UnspokenPlanGuarantee: Dealt with in "Deja Vu;" more specifically, Vu." Specifically, the authors state that any plan should always go wrong if spoken, otherwise spoken out loud; otherwise, the author has essentially spoiled written a spoiler into their own story.



* ViewersAreGeniuses:"The Crepitating Parasol." Discouraged, since it runs the risk of [[TooCleverByHalf being considered pretentious rather than clever]].

to:

* ViewersAreGeniuses:"The ViewersAreGeniuses: "The Crepitating Parasol." Discouraged, since it runs the risk of [[TooCleverByHalf being considered pretentious rather than clever]].



* YeOldeButcheredeEnglishe: "Yo, Charlemagne, how dost thy big war?"

to:

* YeOldeButcheredeEnglishe: "Yo, Charlemagne, how dost thy big war?"How Dost Thy Big War?" Discouraged for much of the same reasons as "The Crepitating Parasol;" it's all too easy to get incorrect, and it will break the immersion of your story.
23rd Jun '17 4:08:00 PM Mdumas43073
Is there an issue? Send a Message


->''We do not propose any rules; we offer observations. "No right on red" is a rule. "Driving at high speed toward a brick wall usually ends badly" is an observation.''

''How NOT to Write a Novel'' is a self-help [[BooksOnTrope Book on Trope]] by Howard Mittelmark and Sandra Newman. It deals a lot with tropes (and improper use of them), and even contains some tropes itself.

to:

->''We ->''"We do not propose any rules; we offer observations. "No 'No right on red" red' is a rule. "Driving 'Driving at high speed toward a brick wall usually ends badly" badly' is an observation.''

"''

''How NOT to Write a Novel'' is a 2008 self-help [[BooksOnTrope Book on Trope]] by Howard Mittelmark and Sandra Newman. It deals a lot with tropes (and improper use of them), and even contains some tropes itself.
27th May '17 3:46:29 PM Chariset
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: Read the title-now guess what the book's about.

to:

* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: Read Subverted: While it's a tongue-in-cheek guide to writing a bad novel, the title-now guess what actual purpose is to teach the book's about.writer how to avoid the obvious mistakes and (hopefully) produce a good one.



* LittleProfessorDialog: The example of ''Sock Puppet'' has a group of plucky kid detectives speaking in the same voice as the narration.

to:

* LittleProfessorDialog: The example of ''Sock Puppet'' "Sock Puppet" has a group of plucky kid detectives speaking in the same voice as the narration.
This list shows the last 10 events of 180. Show all.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Literature.HowNotToWriteANovel