Author Topic: The AKB48 Fanfic Community Advice Thread  (Read 10985 times)

Offline Hitobo

  • Member+
  • Posts: 72
The AKB48 Fanfic Community Advice Thread
« on: February 02, 2013, 09:11:09 PM »
The AKB48 Fanfiction Community Advice Thread

Welcome fellow readers and writers!  Join us in sharing advice to help others (including you!) improve their skills and stories.

Thread Rules:

1- Please leave all debate out of this thread.  We all have different writing styles and preferences.  If you don’t agree with someone else’s advice, simply ignore it; it is not mandatory to heed their words.
2- Please limit yourself to one main advice post.  If you wish to add or remove any information to or from your post, please refrain from making a new post and use the ‘modify’ button.  (We’re trying to keep this thread simple and organized.)  Of course, new posts are welcome when answering others’ inquiries.
3- Kindness is key; be sure to leave judgmental attitude out of your posts.  Example: "Try not to write long lists of details because they tend to distract from the story and are often unnecessary." NOT: "Don't write lists of details; it's just wrong.”
4- No name dropping unless granted permission by the author.  Example:  “I find it really confusing when writers use too many colloquialisms, like in           ’s story ‘          ’.”
5- Do not post excerpts from or link to a story unless granted permission by the author.
6- Questions are welcome and encouraged, but there is a catch: Before you ask a question, we request that you do everything in your power to find an answer.  (Trust us; you’ll learn a lot more this way.  There is no gain in having the answer provided for you every time.)  There is an abundance of great advice in this thread, as well as helpful websites in the “Quick Links” section below.
7- Do not use this thread as an editing service.  A list of willing proofreaders is provided below.
8- Have fun reading and writing!


How do they do it?  What do readers expect from a great story?  Tips and tricks from your favorite authors and readers:
Notice:  To ensure that your name appears in the appropriate list below, when you publish an advice post, you must PM Hitobo or seigus the following information:
(Please put "Re: My Post in the AKB48 Fanfic Advice Thread" in the subject line.)
1- The link to your post.
2- Whether you are an author or a reader.  (If both, apply under 'author'.)
3- If an author, no more than two titles of your fiction that you would like to appear beside your name.


Authors:
Authors' names are linked to their advice post.

Hitobo - Portraits (Atsumina), Majisuka Gakuen One Shots
Juribait - You're Not Here Anymore (WMatsui), Lonely Road (WMatsui)
katekyohit - AMNESIA (WMatsui, MaYuki), Love Capture (MaYuki)
LoyalFlutist - Disappearance (MaYuki), Wandering Ship
nori - Friend's Lover (RenaYuki, JuriYuki)
Sayuki - PJ48 Gakuen (WMatsui/MaYuki), Royal Love (MaYuki)
seigus - Dr. Watanabe x Nurse Kashiwagi series, MaYuki one-shots

Readers:

We are eagerly awaiting advice from readers!


Available for your proofreading needs:
Notice:  If you would like to volunteer your services, to ensure that your name appears on the list below you must PM Hitobo or seigus your information. 
(Please put "Re: AKB48 Fanfiction Editor" in the subject line.)

niineechan - no genre/pairing preference
nori - no genre/pairing preference

Quick Links- Helpful Writing and English Learning Sites
Notice:  If you have a site that you would like to add to one of the lists below, PM the link to Hitobo or seigus.  Be sure to state whether it is a writing or English learning site.
(Please put "Re: AKB48 Fanfic Advice [English/Writing] Link" in the subject line.)

English:

Online Dictionary (Thesaurus also available.)
Your Dictionary
Grammar Book
Grammar Monster
Memrise (Other languages as well.)
Word Reference Forums
Stack Exchange - English Language & Usage

Writing:

Lit Reactor
Marked by Teachers
"The Elements of Style", by William Strunk Jr.
Creative Writing Tutorial
Creative Writing Wiki
Write Words (Writing in past vs. present tense)
Writers' Treasure
Reference for Writers

FAQs: Do you have a good question but can't find a good answer?
(This section will develop with time as we must wait to see which topics are inquired about most frequently.)
« Last Edit: October 17, 2015, 07:30:08 AM by Hitobo »
Portraits (Atsumina)  l  Majisuka Gakuen One Shots
Questions? Comments? Bored? Find me here.
Non-AKB Yuri Fan Fiction

Offline Hitobo

  • Member+
  • Posts: 72
Re: The AKB48 Fanfic Community Advice Thread
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2013, 11:46:17 PM »
If anything below sounds familiar it is because I have copied my own words from previous advice posts.  I’m not too fond of this post in its current state so it will likely be heavily edited later.  I just wanted to get something posted as an example.

Hitobo's Advice for Writing Fan Fiction

So you just spent months reading all of the fanfics available here and you think, “I want to try!”  Before we get into the finer aspects of story writing, let’s start with the basics.

Punctuation:
       “Dialogue should always be in quotation marks,” Hitobo stated.   Sentences should begin with capital letters and end with either periods or exclamation marks.  A question should be ended with a question mark.  Names should always be capitalized.

Grammar:
     Proper grammar will develop with time.  (I’m a native English speaker and even my grammar is not perfect.)  To improve your grammar, please make use of the links in the initial post.  Please keep proper sentence structure in mind while writing.

Format:
       Good formatting goes a long way.  For your story to be enjoyable, you want to choose something that’s not too hard for the readers to read or understand.  Complete sentences and proper layout are a must.
       My preferred format is for my story to look like a published novel.  New paragraphs should start on the next line and be indented.  Generally speaking, this applies also to lines of dialogue from new speakers, though there are some exceptions.  However, as this site does not easily support indents, I must take the time to make all required indentations.
       Since that requires extra work, one may want to resort to what I believe to be the second best formatting option and place an extra space between paragraphs or lines of dialogue.   While this is plenty acceptable and won’t deter me from reading a story (as it’s the only format available on other sites), doing so can create a lot of empty space, can make posts longer than necessary, and can take away from the effects of certain textual visualizations and emphasis.  (Refer to my post here for examples, about half-way down.)

So you’ve got a handle on the basics; now what?

Details:
       When it comes to details, a writer must be careful- there is a fine line between too many details and too few.
       A successful story depends on details; they are what make a story memorable.  Simply writing line after line of dialogue or "chat room" speak, while quick and easy, can often be confusing to a reader.  Though you may be eager to share your idea quickly, take some time to let it develop.  Use details to set a scene; allow the reader to see what you see.  Is it cold?  Quiet?  Are the characters crying?  Fighting?  Is there a one-eyed cat with a crooked tail watching their every move?
       Describe some of the smaller actions the characters make in addition to their larger, more important actions.  A smile or a trembling hand can have a lasting impression.  (“She lifted her blood-covered hand slowly and shakily, cupping Nezumi’s pale cheek once more before breathing her last.”)
       To the other extreme, however, try not to become dependent on listing details.  Doing so can distract from a story and is often unnecessary.  (i.e., "Kojiharu and Yuko met at the station at the time planned.  Kojiharu was wearing a deep red miniskirt, fishnet stockings, and black pumps, with a skimpy white blouse and gaudy earrings and...  Yuko was wearing blue jeans and high-top sneakers with a plaid shirt that had a big picture of a puppy on the back...")
       Sometimes, a lack of details can work towards the writer’s advantage.  For example, when writing a suspense story you don’t want to give too much information, else the readers might figure out the twist earlier than desired.  Also, there are times when some details are better left to the readers’ imagination.

Characters:
       The hardest part about writing fanfiction is that everyone has a different opinion of the characters (in the case of ~48, the members).  While you might see Lemon as secretly being a gun-toting bad ass, chances are that not very many others do.  In order for a reader to see your character as you want her to be seen, you must take the time to establish your image of the character.  This can be done creatively throughout the story.  (Details, remember?)
  (Note: It is my personal belief that in ~48 fanfiction the characters ought to maintain some semblance of the original members, else it might as well be a story with all original characters.  For example, maintaining Takamina’s leadership, Yuko’s playfulness, or writing a story in which they are indeed idols.)
       A character's... well, character, depends on the setting as well.  AU stories are likely to have members acting out of character.  If you are planning to illustrate a character as such, then please be sure to maintain this personality throughout the story.  Granted, a character can change gradually.
       Conflict helps to build a character.  Perhaps they’re seeking revenge, love, or the last slice of pizza.  Allow the readers a chance to follow them on the path to their goal.  Let them witness the characters’ growth and how they overcome hardships or fall in love.  However, do your best not to fall into a Mary Sue trap.

Organization:
       A little organization goes a long way, especially if writing a story with multiple chapters or characters.  (In the ~48 fandom there could very well be a story with 300+ characters and no members repeated.  Anyone out there up to the challenge?)
       We all know how to write an essay; introduction, body, conclusion.  Writing a story is just a little different.  You have an introduction, a body, and a conclusion (hopefully; nobody wants to read a dead-end story!); the difference is that in the body of a story there are characters, conflicts, emotions, etc.  In another word, life.  When you tell a story, you are bringing the characters and the tale to life.  (Again, details.)
       Anybody that has ever read my story knows that it’s long.  Writing a long story can be confusing and tiresome.  I’ve made countless outlines, relationship charts, and timelines, and highly advise that prospective writers do the same, no matter the length of their story.  Doing so can help to make sure that the story flows smoothly.  It also helps to already have an idea in mind of when and where you intend to end the story.
       Time skips, unless properly defined, can be confusing.  Sudden scene changes can be as well.  Using the horizontal rule break or some collection of symbols (i.e., *~*~*~*) to indicate skips or scene changes greatly helps to prevent confusion.

Critique Your Work:
       I am the biggest critic of my works.  My opinions of my stories constantly change between positive and negative.  I spend large amounts of time editing my works before I share them and I know that my stories can sometimes seem a little boring or slow. 
       When I first write a story I never like it.  Then I read it over a few times, make some corrections, and start to like my work.  When I go to submit a story, however, it never fails that I find new flaws, so I wait and make some more changes under the belief that the story is no longer so good.  When I do make an update, all the while I'm thinking that the story is not good enough.  Yet, when I read the comments and reviews, I think to myself, "What is it that these people see in my story?  Why do they like it so much?"  So I read my story again with the readers' comments in mind and I realize that, "Hey, this is pretty good!"  and, "They're right; what I wrote here really does help to make this story enjoyable."  Readers’ comments can prove very helpful in realizing which aspects of your writing you need to focus on improving or what you happen to be really good at doing.
       Many of you have very promising ideas in mind when you start writing your stories and you are rather eager to share them.  If you devote more time to developing them then they will prove to be even more enjoyable.  Nobody is demanding that you make an update every day (well, they shouldn't be, at least), so please don't rush your stories.  Read through your writing at least once before you post it and editing will quickly become a close friend.  If you’re still not confident, then please don't hesitate to enlist the help of one of the proofreaders in the list above.

Extra bits:
-Do not take the reader's knowledge for granted.  It's actually pretty hard to explain what I mean by this so I'll come back to it eventually.
-Try not to use smut as a crutch.  If you're unhappy with your story, ask someone to read it and give you some pointers before you resort to smut to "save" it.  That's not to say that there's anything wrong with smut, just that it should be used tactfully.
-While cliches can be useful in capturing a reader's attention, try not to become too dependent upon them.

Happy Writing!
« Last Edit: April 20, 2013, 03:49:46 AM by Hitobo »
Portraits (Atsumina)  l  Majisuka Gakuen One Shots
Questions? Comments? Bored? Find me here.
Non-AKB Yuri Fan Fiction

Offline Seigus

  • Team Oshiri ω
  • Global Moderator
  • Member+
  • *
  • Posts: 2926
Re: The AKB48 Fanfic Community Advice Thread
« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2013, 01:41:41 PM »
seigus' Advice Post (Posted on 3 Feb 2013)

"I was inspired. Now, I hope to inspire."

Hello, everyone! Before I start on the advice part of this post, please allow me to introduce a bit of my writing experience. I started writing anime fanfics about six years ago but had only posted two online while the rest have been stashed away in the recesses of my hard disk drives. This was because I was hardly confident of what I wrote and felt ashamed to show it to the public. Two years ago, I stumbled upon AKB48 and Jphip's AKBar48. At that time, the fanfic community here was much smaller compared to what we have now. While going through the fanfics on the board, I came across a superbly entertaining and well-paced multi-chapter and multi-character story. Because of that story, I emerged from my lurking status and posted regular reviews/comments for the writer's stories. The more I read, the more I was inspired to write my own AKB48 fanfics. Bit by bit, the desire to challenge that writer's level of writing grew and it finally exploded last July when I posted two one-shots to celebrate Kashiwagi Yuki's birthday. Due to the encouraging feedback I received from the lovely readers, I decided to develop my second one-shot into a multi-parter which is now known as the Dr. Watanabe x Nurse Kashiwagi series. The AKB48 Fanfics Forum at Jphip is where I rediscovered my passion for writing and I am forever grateful to this place and all the dear friends I've made :jphip:

Now that the introduction part is over, let's move on to my advice! As Hitobo has done a great job talking about the technical aspects of writing in his advice post, my main focus will be on the attitude and passion towards writing.

"Always give your 100 percent; if not, more."

I take pride in my writing and most of all, the effort I put into making each story a reality. I experience a huge sense of satisfaction when readers or fellow writers tell me they admire my writing and want to write like me because I feel like I am inspiring people to work harder and challenge their writing skills; just like how I was inspired by my favourite author here. Granted, I am definitely not the best writer around but I have very high expectations of my stories and always place quality over quantity and speed. What's the point in churning out a rushed piece of work when I am fully aware that it is lacking in so many areas? Will I be happy just because my readers enjoy reading another fanfic of their favourite pairing? No. I want them to enjoy my writing and not simply like the story because it is about their OTP. I want my stories to have a high reread value. Is being the fastest writer my goal? No. I find no satisfaction in that from a writer's point of view. It will be a great pity if a story is not stretched to its full potential just because I want to get it done and show it to the world ASAP. I am simply letting down a plot bunny that could have become so much more if only I had put in more effort. Therefore, my advice is to take your time and don't rush.

"It is never easy."

Writing is never an effortless experience for me. The key to improving yourself is to be aware of your strengths and weaknesses. My grammar has always been my strong point since primary school but that doesn't mean I can relax when it comes to grammar. I still face grammatical issues every now and then so I have to look up grammar guides online to check if what I've written is correct. I strongly believe that having proper grammar is very important in a story. It doesn't matter how great your storytelling is when you have grammatical errors in every other line of your fiction as they really distract the readers from the plot. Of course, I know not everyone has perfect grammar (heck, I don't too) but the main thing is to try your best to minimise such mistakes. One way you can achieve that is to make use of your computer's grammar and spell checks and the helpful links found at the bottom of the first post of this thread.

My weakness is my limited vocabulary. Somehow, writing with beautiful words just doesn't come naturally to me. I am often stumped when I need to describe a scene in detail. Whatever I write just seems forced and awkward a lot of times. Lots of deleting and rewriting happens during the writing process. To make my stories more interesting, I have to put in extra effort to vary the sentence structures and the words I use. As I write, I always reread what I have written to make sure there are no words that have been used too frequently. My best writing buddies are dictionary.com and thesaurus.com and when I need more help, I consult Google :grin: However, please note that I don't just pluck any word I find in the thesaurus. I always double-check its meaning in the dictionary to make sure it's suitable for the character and the situation. It's not just about throwing in bombastic words. The tougher and more time-consuming part comes when you put everything together to make the story and the characters come alive. It sounds like a tedious process and it actually is. But I love writing so I am willing to go to such lengths to make mine as good as possible. I have received compliments on my vocabulary and they make me very glad because it shows that my hard work is paying off. Certainly, this doesn't mean I can rest on my laurels as I still have a long way to go. In fact, it spurs me to work even harder to surpass my current self. There is room for improvement for everyone, even the greatest professional writers out there.

"Respect your readers. Be responsible."

I love AKB48. That's why I write fanfics of them. I totally understand the fun in imagining our favourite idols in all sorts of situations and relationships because I do that all the time. Anybody who can look into my mind will surely be overwhelmed by the crazy number of plot bunnies hopping all over the place. The gears in my head never stop spinning and many times, I find myself smiling like an idiot in the middle of nowhere as a result of my OTP fantasies. While it is very tempting to share all these ideas and little scenes with the community, I have to stop myself from posting them on impulse because I haven't plotted the stories yet. It is unfair to the readers if I post a teaser or pilot chapter and don't ever revisit it due to the fact that I haven't even thought of how to continue the story. As a reader myself, I understand the frustration of reading a promising start to a story and being all excited about how it will progress only to get my hopes shot down when I realise the writer has already abandoned the story. I don't like the disappointment so I don't wish to subject my readers to the same thing. Hence, I limit myself to posting only one multi-chapter story at a time and the occasional one-shots. Yes, writing is supposed to be enjoyable and free for the writer but as I am posting my works in public, I can't help but feel responsible towards my readers. In short, your readers are your supporters. Respect them by offering them the best that you are capable of.

"I am my own reader and critic."

My motto when I write - "I am my own reader and critic." I've mentioned to some before that I spazz over my own fanfics and characters. It's a little embarrassing to admit this but I use my own spazz level to do a quality check. If even I don't feel much for my stories and characters, it just goes to show that they haven't reached the desired level of quality. It is a principle that I live by to never post a piece of work that is not up to standard.

That's all I have to share for now. I shall leave you with my 2013 New Year wish for Jphip that I posted on 1 Jan 2013 in The General AKB48 Fanfic Discussion Thread. Thank you very much for your attention and I hope you find my advice helpful! :deco:

My New Year Wish
I love Jphip forum a lot and I've made very dear friends with some of the people here. I only wish for the best for this forum and especially for the AKB48 Fanfic Board because this is where I started. I wish to see the fanfic community develop as a whole even as we welcome new writers and readers. We continue to share our stories, yet at the same time, we don't forget to strive to improve our writing and make this forum the go-to place for AKB48 fanfics :jphip:
« Last Edit: February 03, 2013, 01:56:51 PM by seigus »

Offline Juribait

  • Insane Fangirl
  • ecchi
  • Member+
  • Posts: 129
  • Just a little ghost who write fanfics on free time
Re: The AKB48 Fanfic Community Advice Thread
« Reply #3 on: February 05, 2013, 05:41:53 PM »
Juribait’s Advice post


English is not my native language and because of this I don’t have confidence to write.

Is really usual we see fanfiction writers that English is not they native language and because of this they don’t have too much confidence in their writing skills, because of my own experience I know how is not have enough confidence to write a fanfiction and I learn that the best way to gain this confidence is: practicing.
When you start to write a fanfiction in another language you will face a lot of difficulties like: the poor vocabulary, trying to form sentences, confusing words with different meanings (example: forgive and forget, they are similar but different) and others. But after some time your skills in this language will increase and your writing skills too because of the practicing, I recommend to you always use dictionaries while you write to improve your vocabulary and read a lot in English because they both will help you to increase you vocabulary and give a better notion of how to form some phrases and what words fit more in certain sentences. For this reason practicing is the best way to you improves your knowledge on English and your own confidence to write.  :jphip:
But if even after this you still don't have to much confidence, try to ask for some friend with a good knowledge on english to help you ^^


I hate when I commit some grammar because I’m too much self critic.

First, relax, nobody is a pro, and even the ones who write fanfictions for years commit mistakes too, sometimes is because you are writing to fast or because for some reason you always thought that word was write in that way (I don’t know but I was writing the word: Writing, with two T's the right is with One), for this reason is good you read the old fanfics that you wrote some time ago and revises and edit them, will be hard because nobody like to know that make some mistake and a lot of people saw it or because you think that the story is too “silly”, but this will help you to improve your skills into write and create new stories and will help to you deal better when you commit some grammar mistake.   :twothumbs
I hate make grammar mistakes too but every time that I read my stories and see something wrong I go there and fix it.  :yep:


If you feel that you need, ask for help.

Everybody have some friend that knows English, if you think that your fanfic need to be reviewed but you don’t have enough ability to do this by yourself, ask a help for a friend who is good on English language to review the chapter and fix the mistakes, this will increase the quality of your fanfic for the readers and you will be able to see the mistakes that you did and on the next time you will not do the same mistakes.


I think that the “characters” of my story is too much OOC (Out of character)

This thing OOC is complicated because will depend on the type of fanfiction that you’re writing, normally when the fanfic is AU (Alternative Universe), is complicated to say is too much OOC because the universe that the “character” lives will affect they personality too. So I think is most easy you be too much OOC in the fanfiction that are not AU, so if you don’t want to your "characters" be to OOC,try to learn about the idols that you are writing about it, how is they personality, things that they like or hate, things that they normally do, even the little things about them will help you to build they “character” on your fanfiction, even the more simple simple things about her personality can make a great difference to the fanfiction.
I normally write AU fanfictions but I always take care to not be too much OOC, so I always prefer write about the idols that I know more than the other that I don’t know almost nothing, this is my way to avoid be too much OOC.  :lol:



Lack of inspiration and ideias for the fanfic.

Is really complicated when you finally have time to write something but you don’t have inspiration, so my advice is: listen music.
Music have the ability to open your mind and make you go to another places, feel another things, so she is the perfect tool to you get inspiration to write.
Other thing important thing: When you have an idea make a little note about it and keep it, because when you have time to write you already will know what you have to write and what type of music can help you to develop this plot on the chapter that you are writing. After all everybody sometimes have that great idea in the middle of something but forget if not make a note about, so try to always have paper and a pen with you.  :thumbup


Always have fun.

The main thing about write and read fanfictions is have fun, is a hobby where you can relax and release you imagination, of course that write something take time and efforts but don’t forget to have fun while you do this, because if not, you will feel tired and will not be able to enjoin the great feelings that is seeing people like and follow your story and the happiness when you have time and a great idea to write.
So while you write don’t forget to enjoin what you’re doing and have fun too.


That's all of what I can think to share with you guys, if you still have some doubt you can take a look on others writers advices on the thread :jphip:
Thanks fo the attention and I hope for soon I be reading you work  :twothumbs

Offline nori

  • ecchi
  • Member+
  • Posts: 281
Re: The AKB48 Fanfic Community Advice Thread
« Reply #4 on: February 05, 2013, 10:33:50 PM »
Nori's Advice

It's pretty short at the moment but I'll be adding more as I think up of more but for now let’s just start with this:

Have I checked this word in the thesaurus and dictionary?
This way rather than using “said” or “look” you can use many other words which can also add more detail to the situation, but make sure you double check since “suggest” and “reveal” both come under say but you would rarely use both of them in the same context.

How have I formed my sentences?
Sometimes when you’re talking about a character going through a series of actions it’s easy to say “She went into the room. She saw her friend. She spoke to her friend…” Start by trying to change what each of these sentences start with “She went into the room. Then she saw her friend. Afterwards she spoke to her friend…” This makes it flow slightly better and the character doesn’t look like a robot following orders. Once you’re comfortable with that maybe take the next step and merge it together into one sentence. “As she went into the room she noticed her friend and spoke to her…” This sentence looks slightly better than the first but more importantly, it is easier for the reader. Rather than having to stop every few words for a pause the single continuous sentence allows them to read at their own pace.

How am I controlling the reader?
This may sound strange at first, especially since I just mentioned letting the reader at their own pace, but sometimes this trick is essential. For example you are writing about the characters in a dark scene, a cave or haunted house, and you want to increase the tension and panic you might write “Suddenly there was a scream. Shocked we looked back and there was nothing but darkness. Then there was another scream but this time it was closer…” Now this isn’t a bad description to use when you’re trying to create fear but it could be better. This time rather than increasing the number of words you get rid of them and split apart the sentences. “A scream. Quickly turning, we saw nothing. Only darkness. Another scream. Closer this time…” By making sentences shorter and faster it speeds up the pace of the scene. Also by not forming proper sentences it makes everything feel rushed and panicky, when you’re scared by something you wouldn’t take your time to speak in proper sentences right? To slow down the pace of the story the opposite can be done and you can write using longer sentences, though I would personally say that the method of using shorter sentences to increase tension is far more effective.

Finally some shameless self-promoting
I’m sure you guys are bored of this but make sure to always read through your work. No matter what there will always be a little mistake somewhere in your work and I sure as find it really satisfying when I spot it. Also if you can send it to someone to check through it for you, they don’t have a personal attachment to your own work so they may be able to spot more mistakes and they may even have some good ideas to add. This is where I do my shameful plugging. If you haven’t got someone you trust to proofread for you, or you want another person to double-check, send it to a proofreader. This thread was made so we can share advice and help each other but it was also set up to try and gather proofreaders so if you guys have something you want proofread go ahead and send it to me! I promise I want bite :)

Thank you for taking the time to check this out and I hope you guys find some of this useful  :thumbsup

Offline Sayuki

  • Wmatsui and Mayuki loyal shipper <3
  • ecchi
  • Member+
  • Posts: 118
  • I'm just a fallen guardian angel for everyone
Re: The AKB48 Fanfic Community Advice Thread
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2013, 08:45:00 AM »
Sayuki's advice corner

Well since the other people have covered most of the necessary things to know about how to write a good fiction, I'll just add some tips that I'm using currently to attract readers.




My story seems to be so common, how can I attract readers with it?

In my opinion, no story is common because every author has different ideas even though the theme of your storyline maybe similar. If you think the theme you choose for your story is too common, here are some tips you can do with your work.

1. Combine different themes together. For example: Crime theme with polices and criminals but among the polices there are vampires, werewolves or even angels. So by doing this, you can make your story become unique and brand new.

2. Add mysteries into your story. Make your readers keep begging for new update to find out the mysteries you are hiding. This requires you a GOOD PLAN because you MUST know how to SOLVE your mysteries LOGICALLY. Or else, you will disappoint your readers and that is the LEAST WANTED thing an author would ever want to happen.

3. Use your imagination. It's fiction, don't lock yourself in the narrow reality though. Just let your imagination flow freely then you will know what to do for your story.



I have good ideas but how can I turn them into a good story?

First of all, you have to know how to express your ideas via your sentences RIGHT. Maybe you have a good ideas, good storyline but your sentences are just a mess then no one can read your story even though it is unique. The first rule of being an author is READERS ARE GOD! So be careful with your sentences. You don't have to make it good or perfect in vocab or grammar. You just need to make it easy to read and understand. If your readers can't understand what you write then you just simply fail.

So understandable writing is the most essential thing when you start your author time.



Finally, some reminders about respecting your readers.

DO NOT update a messy work! No matter how long your readers have been waiting for your update, if you don't have any mood or inspiration to put 100% of your effort into your story, DO NOT WRITE ANYTHING. I know it's unfair for the reader to wait for so long because I'm myself a reader too and there are many stories that I have been waiting for new updates but also as an author, I know how it is hard to update. The worst feeling to be an author is when you read all the comments of your readers, begging for your update but you know you can't write anything now. It is the worst feeling, not for only me but many other author that lose their inspiration in the middle of the story, to see how useless you are for not able to fulfill your readers' wishes.

But as an author, you can NOT disappoint your readers even when they wants an update so badly so ONLY write when you have mood! A crappy update will only increase the disappointment of your readers. Your readers will never blame you for anything if they really like your stories and they will be willing to wait for you because they know you would never turn them down and never give them trash to read.

Keep this in mind. :)



Thanks for reading and I'll give more advices if someone asks any not-yet mentioned questions. :)

Offline katekyohit

  • ecchi
  • Member+
  • Posts: 235
  • My heart beats for Yukirin <3
Re: The AKB48 Fanfic Community Advice Thread
« Reply #6 on: August 06, 2013, 06:00:11 PM »
Katekyohit's Advice

I'll just focus how I get my "ideas" and how I write my fanfics! That's the only thing I'm good at (that's why).  :nervous





How can I create an interesting plot?
1. "Life is far more epic than drama" ---> that's my favorite quote. Anything that happened in your life can turn into idea. Or you could pick something in the field you're interested! I do like medicine field, so I write a story based about doctors and hospitals. Write something that's close to you, because you will be very familiar and understand the "feel" of the situation. Pick some stories that actually happened in your life and put your characters in your shoes instead.

2. "Eh~ If this happen...how interesting would it be?" ---> I imagined a situation that it seem weird/unique. For example from my "Sweet Silence" one-shot, I thought that... "How would it be to fall in love with someone who couldn't/wouldn't speak to you?" that's how I came up with the idea of one of my characters being mute. (Not really that easy to write it!) When I want to come up with ideas, I imagine any interesting situation if it were to happen to myself. Some ideas might repeat with others such as romance between senpai, teacher, childhood friend, rival, etc...but what makes things interesting is what you're going to put after that. Just create your ideal situation that will make your heart go doki-doki (and have fun writing it).

3. "The harder the idea is the more fun it is to write it!" ---> I believe everyone has their own insane ideas that it's might be REALLY hard to write. But if you can do it it will be one of a great fanfic! When it's hard, I imagine what if I successfully finish this, it would be a really awesome fanfic! (In my perspective) So that's why I feel on writing it. (Must have fun writing it!)





Techniques to write?
1. "Be the character and join the game!" ---> From 1st person point of view, you don't have to describe anything much, only from the main character's eyes only. Just imagine yourself telling/complaining your own life story to someone. That's the flow I often use. I describe the setting around me from "character's" eyes and explain the my feelings if I were to be in the "character's" shoes.
How would I feel if I'm THAT particular situation. Sad? Happy? Anger? Pain? Loved? After that, exaggerate your emotion and that would help lead the readers to feel the same way as you do.

2. "Be the audience, tell what you see" ---> From 3rd person point of view, things get more complicated a little. Some people might find this easier than 1st person point of view. It's similar to the first one but you elaborate things more. You could say you're telling a story of what you're seeing. You're not part of the drama but you're the audience, how would you elaborate how the story went? That's how I write my fanfics. I tell the story based from what I'm seeing, as if you're a part of the story, but at the same time, you're not.


KEY: You need to have fun writing!
If you have fun writing your story, I believe the readers could sense the enjoyment from your fanfic. The best thing is that you enjoy writing it! Sometimes I disregard what others might think, I'm having fun writing my fanfic! I'm having fun being part of my fiction story world I created along my characters. I want to make my little creativity world become actual story. That's how I manage to continue with my fanfics. I always have a problem with never finish my fiction, but after I have many people who are up-to-date and support my stories...it really does give you motivation to continue! I'm sometimes craze over my own fanfic (as if i'm a fan of my own fanfic)~

To readers who wanted to start writing their own fanfic: It's challenging to take the first step to write one, especially the FIRST fanfic, but have fun with it! There will be someone that loves your fanfic out there~ I'm a reader for many months and I'm inspired to become an author because of many awesome authors in JPH!P  So I hope to write fanfics that can inspire someone if I'm good enough! XD  :deco:


I guess if any of you have any specific questions, feel free to ask.
I hope my writing approach could give people some techniques to write their own fanfics!

Offline LoyalFlutist

  • Flutist since 2007
  • Member+
  • Posts: 299
  • I write sins, not tragedies
    • animeminafans
Re: The AKB48 Fanfic Community Advice Thread
« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2013, 01:17:37 AM »
LoyalFlutist's Advice

After reading everyone's post up above, I suppose I could drop some of my own advice and stuff to what I do on a daily basis when I'm prepared to write my fictions. I'll also include certain concerns I always think of in regards to the fan fiction universe with my opinions. :)



1. Ceasing to continue fictions

Okay, this hasn't happened to me in this fandom (thank god for that), but I had that happened so many times in another forum when I started off for the second time after a a long hiatus with writing back three years ago. There are series that I have promised to continue updating yet they will forever be abandoned and sitting in the blackest pit of my brain, never to be heard of ever again. Worse, I probably don't even remember why I should continue on; uninterested in my plot alone.

It's hard. There are instances when we lose motivation to write or even lose any sort of ideas to progress the fiction smoothly from beginning to end; especially with fictions that are longer than twenty chapters long and have no sort of ending in sight! But the worst thing that any writers hate to face is seeing the lack of updates on a specific work or two extend its time range. Days turns to weeks, weeks turns to months, and months soon turn into years. Maybe because it's too long; maybe because we are beginning to lose enjoyment writing that sort of plot (which I must ask why you are writing it in the first place); maybe because you just want to stop and write something new with a fresh start. Whatever the reason may be, although it's highly unlikely readers will like it, we will respect the decision of discontinuing. Although it's encouraged to wrap it up, a messy wrap is even worse than not wrapping it up at all!

Personally, I would at least keep the plot short in order to avoid this crisis. Short and simple is mostly satisfying for us writers and easy to maintain without much worry. If it's going to extend past ten chapters, then start putting on your yellow hat and tackle your way through the plot till the very end. If giving up the series is the best choice at this point despite keeping it on hold for a long period of time, then it's technically a good idea to keep in mind with the next series to try to finish it to the very end. Adventures through the romantic progression of double Matsui or an angst ending of Yuria's and Kumi's rough childhood is usually the most pleasurable when the conclusion is made. And like the previous writers' advice from above, always respect your readers!

2. Maintaining multiple fictions

Now many of you know at this point I have four on-going fictions and two that are on a slow, but active, update. Not to mention the multiple one shots I'm juggling along with the other fictions only assisted by one brain and two hands.

Sounds a lot, right?

Of course it is! I myself am 100% sure that I'm rarely going to have a chance to sit down and type with my ideas the entire day! And I too am sure that writers out here won't even bother doing that. We all have a life and we need to tend to our health and needs. I sometimes even wonder why the hell I created a huge workload over the top of my head with other important life events.

Now each of us have our own ways of keeping up to date with our fictions. Some of us with three on-going fictions would like to evenly distribute updates with chapters for each one. Some would try to get rid of one on their list in order to focus mainly on the other two. Some would just update whatever fictions they have the most idea with at that current time. Whatever it may be, I personally recommend that it's best to evenly distribute the fictions. Though I have two other fictions that aren't on top of their game in terms of recent uploads, it's best to make note and tell them to the readers if you'll be taking your time and focusing on whichever fiction(s) you desire. The last thing we want is readers not knowing why "Hidden Truth" didn't even release a second chapter in months compared to the main four fictions I'm keeping focus on!

Since I had also asked this in the thread of Fan Fiction Discussion not too long ago, I did keep in mind to also revisit the plot of certain fictions. Switching one fiction to another with two plots that can't even be remotely related to each other is one easy ticket to getting the wrong idea with certain fictions in mind. If one were to write about pirates fighting each other to the death and romantic school comedic with multiple cliche scenario as two separate fictions, it can be quite embarrassing if a chapter about Mayu suddenly shifted from loving Jurina to killing her in merely one update! Always look back and be sure that you're refreshing your memories of the story's structure. That way not only will the readers be in a good mood but also avoid making you accidentally making any sort of mistakes in regards to your organization.

3. How can I type my fiction faster?

Alright, on a physical standpoint, you should attempt to touch type fast. I'm not trying to brag, but a small explanation to how fast I update to my luxury sometimes is thanks to how rapid I type (100 wpm on average). Not only do I spend less time staring at the bright screen of my laptop's and burning a hole on the frontal lobe of my brain but I also am able to deliver more out to my readers. It helps that when I think of a word, I'm able to instantly put it on the screen to my desire. So it's of your best interest to probably find some typing program online and hone your fingers to get use to touch typing on the keyboards if they haven't already. Although one will start off slow and might only go as fast as 15 wpm, with constant practice and years of experiences, you'll end up typing a decent sentence before you even get a chance to say 'wut!?' Even better, a 100 word drabble of AtsuYuu below five minutes with a great plot!

Now on a mental standpoint, you have to be sure of what comes next with your plot. Plan ahead and try to at least make a small timeline in regards to your storyline. Like one of the previous writers' advices up above, a story has a beginning, middle and end. With that in mind, you'll be easily tossing in what to fill in between the three main checkpoints of your fiction.

4. I'm unable to type my fictions, but I really really really REALLY want to!

This completely reminds me about the time I had my surgery in regards to my ganglion cyst on my dominant hand a few months ago. Though I'm off of it right now thankfully, I do remember how agonizing it was to sit in my chair with ideas streaming through my head as if there was no end; especially when I'm unable to even properly type without being in tremendous pain.

Okay, I'm sure not everyone is going to have to be sent to the operation room, get surgery and be stuck with this issue. Whether it's being away from the computer for a certain time limit or banned from touching any sort of laptops and computers till your little 'grounded' punishment is over, that sort of frustrating feeling is common to us writers. And it's one of those feelings we constantly will feel.

One way I deal with the time I'm mentally grumbling about having my cast removal delayed due to a certain doctor's vacation is to take this chance to overlook my entire fiction. I'll be able to one by one examine each one and criticize on what needs to be improved. Maybe I need a much broader range of vocabularies? Maybe I should try to build up more on Yuki's mixed feelings of loving between Rena and Mayu. There's always improvements that needs to be made. Fictions are never perfect and it's a little silly in my personal opinion and viewpoint for one to think that there's nothing needed to be worked upon. Sure, you don't have to work on the grammatical structures of your sentences but you could take a look at maybe changing a word or two you had planted in the OS? Fiction is another form of art and mostly we all know that art can always be improved upon. So keep note of it and when you return your fingers back on the keyboard, you'll be able to make improvements on your next update.

Another way I deal with this agonizing boredom is simply using this time to read more. Read more novels and articles whether hard copy or on the internet; it'll vastly improve the number of techniques to use for your stories. You could end up trying to use that new second-person perspective technique you've been reading from that one book for your next OS. And finally, sort out your fictions! Picture how the next chapter will be organized and if you're going to end it with a cliffhanger. Or maybe you'll be looking into how you might want to deepen the relationship between the two midgets in the 48 Group.

It's all up to you on what you'll be doing in this time.

5. No one likes my fiction!

Not everyone is going to like your fiction(s). And for sure, not everyone is going to agree to a single pairing in your story. (I'm sure Saeyuki/JuriMayu lovers aren't too fond of seeing Mayuki and vice versa.) But overall, there's going to be at least one person that will LOVE what you are doing.

My main concern though is the reason why you're writing fictions. Are you writing because you have a passion for writing and love to share the idea to the entire net community? Or do you write for the pleasure of seeing countless members hit the 'Favorite,' 'Like' or 'Thanks' button and comment on your fictions? I'm going to be blunt and this is entirely based on my sole opinion and viewpoint alone (sorry if it's a little harsh) but whenever I see certain individuals state on some writing websites that they'll only continue their fiction with the next chapter if everyone comments and raises the number of views to a certain amount, I can't help but shake my head and mumble with distaste, automatically turned off with reading their work. The goal of writing is the express your joy and fantasy of placing favorite characters in specific situation that won't be possible in reality, not rewarding your readers with an update just because they managed to give you 25 'Thank You's. Although it is great to see individuals give up their time to comment and like your work, try not to be solely relying it as a motivation of your fictions.

Well, that's at least how I think about the purpose of writing. Comments and likes are just bonus brownie points for working hard on your fictions. Just remember that some readers, especially on the net, are shy and like to stalk/stay silent for whatever reason. There might be a secret fan just in the distant that isn't able to comment! :)



Now here are the steps/rules I proceed with when I write my fictions. All are fully based on my sole opinion. :)

1. Ideas!

What's a fiction without ideas? That's basically a blank word document before you!

Ideas are the root of my fictions. And thanks to my wide range of imagination that can go into a state of haywire in seconds, it's not hard to start bursting up one that could possibly become a series. Start jotting down your ideas and who is the likely candidate for being the main star of the story. Or if you're more like a mental person that likes to keep everything in your head, you might like putting the pieces together of the plot one-by-one in your head. Now there are inspirations that can give us even more ideas than expected. Seeing a music video of a human that actually, in reality, is a dog in reality might spark one's imagination of rewriting that scenario with a pairing or two. Music can indeed play a huge role here. Then there could be, out of the blue, a great plot just slapping you upside the head while you're taking notes in your history class.

The main point is to keep on creating ideas!

2. Motivation and Dedication

So we have a dozen luggage or two filled with ideas that are on the brim of exploding if we don't do something about it. Now it's time to sort through them and choose one (or a small number of) ideas that you'll want to work with. At least that's how I operate. I rummage through each one and think about two things: Motivation and dedication. Am I motivated enough to write countless chapters or spend hours to days just thinking about a single fiction? And do I have the dedication to stick with the fiction till the very end? This will easily let me lose those ideas that are just barely suited for drabbles.

3. Pacing

I've already explained pacing in a discussion, but I'll try to shorten it here.

Beginning, middle and end. That's what makes up a fiction or a story in general.

There's that juicy section in the middle that we're allowed to fill up to our heart's content without ever having to worry. However, there's that little worry that makes us wonder if we're rushing or dragging certain parts too often. To me, I pace myself by thinking about the readers. Will they throw out multiple questions that should be answered if I add enough details? Is it too slow to the point that even I, the writer myself, am falling asleep while typing down the section? Those are the questions I keep in mind while I put down chapter after chapter. It's very helpful when you imagine yourself being the reader; revising and reading through a chapter as if you have absolutely no idea what's going on. Although the element of surprise is diminished and tension won't play so well since you already know what you're doing, think more about the context of the details. I'm sure the last thing I would want to read is Rena step-by-step clean up in her bathroom for five extremely long paragraph when it's in regards to Rena trying to give Jurina a call during the clean up! (Exaggeration intended) Not to mention that it's best to add details in appropriate timings and spots in the story. Again, I most likely won't want to be reading long dialogues of how much they love each other between Sae and Yuki when they're actually under attack with a titan at their hometown! (Shingeki no Kyojin/Attack on Titan reference) 

It's all about how well the details are placed and used. That usually is the main point that drives the pacing of the plot.

4. Characterization

Characterization... We all like to have our characters be as colorful, right? Black and white is something we try to avoid (unless we intentionally and purposely want someone painted like that.)

It's somewhat hard to explain since I could end up ranting FOREVER on this topic. But I will at least state the main points that should be noted in regards to making characters stand out with their personality and make an impact on the readers.

Connection: There has to be some sort of connection. Whether it's about the tragic past of divorced parents and angst-y self-harm all the way to falling in love with a certain someone and having many great times with friends in a baseball game, readers should be able to connect to at least one part of a character. And the connection doesn't have to stop with just their personality or past; it could be all about their emotions! Empathy is the goal here for the readers to our written characters. As cruel as it sounds, we like to wave cookies in front of our readers and guide them to the direction that we wish for them to take through the plot, letting them feel for the characters and believe in what we want them to believe in.

Emotions: I think writing about rocks trying to tell us how much they hate it when humans cut down nature over time is going to be quite difficult on a realistic standpoint. Same thing with characters. Writing one that is emotionless (unless they were like that for a good reason) is... hard. Try to put yourself in the characters' shoes and imagine the reaction that you would be doing if they got rejected by someone they truly loved for five years. I sure as hell know that I'm not going to be a happy camper and run around with sparkles, exclaiming how much love I'm feeling when being rejected! (Unless I aim for the character to have a personality of a lunatic)

Mary Sue: Enough said, it's my best advice to try to not write characters like they're Mary Sues. And why you might ask? Because a perfect character is... lacking. You know you hate them yet you can't. They don't have enough personality to be considered realistic because they can run around and perform amazing feats that even the most God-like creature can't act. Their smile and personality charms almost every men and women that lay one of the five senses upon them. They're like Gods/Goddesses! No wonder why we can't hate them at all! It's just impossible! And that is something that I don't really want to happen to my characters. Characters have flaws, not perfection. Even if they are perfect, maybe that is there flaw? It's complicated, but mainly it's best to avoid one writing Mary Sues even in a fantasy base setting.

Common Sense: This could weigh heavily in a realistic setting than a fantasy. Now let's take in an example: When there's danger of a man-eating werewolf, these options are most likely going through our head:

A. RUN LIKE HELLZ
B. Fight off that creature in order to save everyone! Like a hero!
C. Stand frozen in shock, knowing that... well... You're not going to make it out alive.
D. Perform some sort of Sailor's Moon magical girl transformation and save the day!

I'm sure the last option is silly since any common man both male and female are 99.99 with a infinite number of 9's running behind this % of the time is not going to happen. And looking at the choices, the first one seems like a reasonable action to take upon. Most run for their life. There's the other two below it that are also realistic and one of the many possible results that could be produced in a situation like this. Some who are brave will run off and protect those that they love while some might just stand in their spot, knowing that they're going to be flying up to heaven (or down to hell) in no time. Common sense needs to be thought of in order to make a figure realistic. They don't always need to be the chosen one!

5. Conclusion

Sweet! You've reached to a point where you can wrap everything up, smack them up with pride and step back with a satisfying smile.

Well... That is if you write a conclusion that ends the way you want it to end.

It's hard to conclude or even think about it when a long-running story of yours is finally coming to an end. And it's time to put the sprinkles on top of your cupcake or whatever sweets before popping it into your mouth. Since I only have finished two fictions (with two completely different outcomes that I wanted) in this fandom: "Disappearance (Mayuki)" and "Spending the Moment with You (Atsumina). It's a little unfair considering the difference of my skills after midpoint with "Disappearance," in comparison to the other fiction, I'll still be judging it as though they're released at the same time.

"Disappearance" has an ending where I want to shock the readers. I want to startle the readers and try to make it seem as though I have settle the entire plot down to its final moment. But I like surprises and I want to make a somewhat satisfying ending that is a bit on the cheerful side (since some of my readers cried over the entire plot, LOL. Gomenasai!) But for the other fiction, "Spending the Moment with You," I can clearly admit that it was rushed. The entire plot from the first four chapters got instantly mushed into a puddle of weird mess at the finale. I personally am not proud of it at all and did not expect how bad it was.

Finally, remember that it's best not to leave messy wrap ups in the end. Disappointing readers is usually the last thing on an author's mind.

6. Season 2?

"Oh yes! We all want that continuation of Yuko's final confession to Haruna! They finally reciprocated their feelings to each other and are now considered a couple! Will they marry each other? Will they adopt a baby then? I want to know more! SEASON 2! SEASON 2! SEASON 2-"

Okay, let me just stop there. A burning question and request that many writers will always be faced with at least by one person is a season 2/continuation of a plot that have already completed. Whether it's a OS or a series, it will happen.

But how will we know if that's... the right choice to make? Is it appropriate to even continue the plot?

It honestly depends upon the author. Will you be able to recreate an entire new plot based on the past one? Or will it be somewhat of a spin-off that revisits the flashbacks of all our favorite characters? Sequels take all sort of shapes, sizes and forms. And remember that this is another fiction that will have to run through the entire process of starting a story from scratch! It's no easy feat and requires even more brain powers compared to the first (expectations from readers might be high this time). Most likely we all like to see more and even better plot line after the first season!

Then there are some fictions that will be best remained alone and leave it as it is. Some fictions that continue will only grow worse rather than get better. Ideas can run short easily and the main plot will lose their point from the previous (unless it's a spin-off, etc.) season. But like I said, it all depends on the author themselves. You get to decide if you want to continue it or not.



That's a lot to cover, but if there's any questions or concerns, I'll be happy to answer! :)



EDIT (11/11/13)

[Genre]

I'll do my very best in this section to explain about how to write the genre in my perspective with a few tips. Of course, it will take time until I am able to fully cover everything. I will add more in the near future when I am fully sure I am able to write them without much trouble. So please look forward to more updates in this section! :)

---------

1. Angst

Oh LOVELY. Angst... One of my favorite genre to write in, easiest to and of course, what many readers/writers would know me as... "Angsty LoyalFlutist" as quoted by Tii. It's almost obvious that I'm going to start talking about this.

Now there are a few tips that I can give out. So we shall go with the first tip that pops to mind.

Tip #1: Definition of Angst
In order to at least understand how angst works, you might as well learn the definition of it. And of course, with trusty Google search browser at hand, we get this:

Search Results

    angst
    /aNG(k)st,äNG(k)st/
    noun
    noun: angst
        1.
        a feeling of deep anxiety or dread, typically an unfocused one about the human condition or the state of the world in general.
        "adolescent angst"
        synonyms:   anxiety, fear, apprehension, worry, foreboding, trepidation, malaise, disquiet, disquietude, unease, uneasiness


Alright, so we now have the definition/meaning at hand. Technically "angst" always revolves around sadness, worries, heartbreaks, deaths, and all of that fun words and events that would make just about anyone want to cry and smack their head against the wall. Literally. Okay, maybe not literally to many of us, but you can get what I'm trying to say there. Angst = Sadness and torturing the readers/writers with many heartbreaks. Simple as that. Just remember that this isn't a place where you get to see happy-go-lucky pink ponies leaping around with rainbows spurting out from its behinds. No no, this is the land of tears and fear of striking a sensitive core of your heart strings.

Tip #2: Experience yourself in a world of Angst!
...Yeah that doesn't sound quite right. But think about it. Let's say you're going to read manga for the first time ever.

Those manga that are translated in your language, yes, but it's your first time ever having one at hand. You've always heard many reading it and those that have enjoyed it... Now it is in the palm of your hand. Yet... When you crack open up the book with one turn of the cover by the right side... You're faced with an anime character holding up a sign, warning that you're reading the wrong way. Sighing greatly, you decided to flip it over and noticed that you have to start reading it the other way. Then upon flipping it correctly for once, when seeing the first couple panels... You're already lost. You've been used to reading left to right. Now you're forced to read right to left. Just how confusing could it get!? Where do you read?! Up first or down first? Right to the bubble first or that text box right below it?!

Ah, please tell me at least one of you had this sort of experience before. At least if you were from a country or area where reading mainly consist of going left to right. (I personally had that trouble when I borrowed Prince of Tennis manga in my middle school.) But anyway, you can see that the first time you enter into the realm of reading manga, you're utterly lost. But that's okay! I'm sure there are more titles and books to read in this manga world. Soon after a couple titles... You'll get the hang of it. You'll adjust into it and feel a bit more comfy in this topic.

The same will go with angst. If you don't normally read nor write angst, you're not going to get the feel of it. And not getting a feel of it will pose a difficulty and even possibly a barrier against writing in this genre. It's just going to be really hard to trend through the unknown unless you know what exactly you're waddling through on that one path. Start off by even watching some film. How about reading a sad poem that will stir something from deep within your emotional world? Or even listening to a heartbreaking story on the radio?

Whatever you do, it's best to start getting into touch with the angsty world that you will soon step forth and write in.

Tip #3: Write! Write! Write!
Nothing more needs to be said. It's best to be writing in this genre as much as possible.

Writing is like practice. As I myself am practicing to writing fluff with other fellow writers (and sadly failing on a huge aspect since I like to input angst for some unknown reason), I gain more and more insight on the techniques and scenarios occurring in the genre. Just as if you were to play the sport of baseball, you would want to practice swinging your bat and hit as many balls as you can before the actual game. You'll gain skills and increase the ability of being able to hit a homerun over time.

Now instead of making homeruns and being in a baseball stadium, you'll be staring in front of your laptop/computer/tablet/phone/whatever technological device, typing away and burning a hole of your frontal lobe due to the bright screen. Maybe earn yourself a ticket to the eye doctor and get yourself a prescribed glass.

Oh. That sounds quite pleasant, doesn't it? It may feel like work and heck, even I personally feel like this is work at times. To force myself to stare at the screen and type away as I churn out more and more words. Soon though you'll come into terms and start enjoying what this genre and the writing style it presents. I can tell you for a fact that the writing style is much different from others. (Just like action means quick basic details and short sentence structures.) For this genre, long sentences with many details pertaining to the emotional state of the characters are very important to keep note.

Tip #4: Get in touch with your Heart
Now how I write my angst is not just from personal experiences but putting myself in the shoes of my characters. And yes, it's that cliche saying again that is always given as an advice to every writer. "Put yourself into the shoes of your writers." Of course. Who doesn't think of that, Sherlock? As common as the saying goes, it's crucial especially in angst.

Angst heavily deals with emotions. We're not talking about action pace where you want to see how blood is shed and scroll down the page with a sense of hyperness and need to see how Sae would comeback against the king of all boxers in the ring. Not at all in this part. Angst is definitely a slow-paced genre. We are dealing with the human's emotions. And of course, emotions are a very interesting and unique part to our life. Each and every one of us portray and feel them differently. No one can feel the same as another (unless you were clones that are programmed to have same feelings in any stimuli, then I really wonder who you are... a cyborg?).

So let's start off with something simple: Your parents died in a car accident.

Simple yet a very sensitive topic to many. Ask yourself this: How would you react to this? How would your character react to this?

Pretend you are the character themselves. Pretend you are Yuko and blending in your own being with her. Pretend you a viewing a horrified vision of a car crash with your parents inside of that vehicle colliding just a second ago. Before your eyes, you could only be dumbfounded at the scenario of ambulances rushing in and out of the scene, dragging dead corpses that is so-called your parents into their emergency vehicle. And you know for a fact that they're merely sent to the hospital for a fact that they would be determined and recorded as the car crash being the cause of their death.

Let's look at the question I've asked earlier again: "How would you react to this?"

Some would react very violently to this case and blame the God up above (if they aren't atheist). Some would become numb; unable to form any other sort of emotion and struck with denial and hallucination along the path. Some would just cry on the spot and feel hopeless. It all varies. And that, my dear fellow writer, is your first step into the world of angst. You must feel in touch with your own emotion and tell yourself that even if you were never in this sort of situation before, how would you react to it?

Let's take a look at the second question I threw from up above: "How would your character react to this?"

Please... Please please please! I highly advise that you please remember that you are writing your character, not yourself.

If you decided to make Yuko a very rowdy person who likes to pick fight (like the Yuko we all know in the Majisuka Gakuen drama series), then we wouldn't want this girl to suddenly become numb and pretend that this entire ordeal didn't exist. Unless that is what you're aiming for for the sake of the plot, it wouldn't really... fit her character well. Rather it would be best if you imagine yourself being angry in that situation. Although some of us know for a fact it's hard to imagine being angry and violent in such situation, then congratulation. You've earned yourself one step outside of the box and away from the safety net in order to experience and write something new for your benefit.

Tip #5: Angst sometimes doesn't always have to be Angst
Oh... Wait wait wait. What the heaven are you talking about, girl!? How the... What the... Why are we talking and reading about angst when in the end... "Angst sometimes doesn't have to be Angst"?! You have got to be kiddin' me!

Okay, before I am going to be attacked by a swarm of pies, leeks, pencils and frying pans, I must state that this is almost always true in my personal opinion.

Let's think about it. Fluffy genre fictions don't technically always have fluff, correct? There's at least a conflict in there, thus creating tension and progress the fiction forward. And that means there is a slight "angst" in the fiction. The same would go for the angst genre here. It doesn't always have to be angst from beginning to end in order to make the piece of work be labeled under this category. Maybe there are some fluff occurring in the middle! Or maybe at the very end? Beginning even maybe? Or all three of them?

Hm... Let's make an example right on the spot:

1. Characters are introduced
2. Problems are introduced
3. Atsuko realized that Yuko was lying the entire time and was cheating on her
4. Atsuko had gotten drunk while Yuko was feeling guilty
5. Atsuko blindly went on a drunk date with Takamina
6. Realized that Yuko had thought Atsuko broken up with her due to going out on a drunk date with Takamina by accident
7. Atsuko and Yuko has a small conflict, but made up
8. Atsyuu came back together
9. Takamina comes in and ends up making Atsuko love her without being drunk
10. Yuko feels hurt
11. Yuko gets into a big fight with Takamina
12. In the end, Atsuko interferes and expresses that she truly loves Yuko in the end and no one else
13. Atsuyuu made up once again and officially became a couple
14. THE END


So we got a simple (okay, maybe not so simple) outline here of a story. As you can tell, there are a couple conflicts and even fluff moment inserted into the piece. Now... Let's just imagine that this is angst all the way and remove all of the fluff with possibly a very different ending.

1. Characters are introduced
2. Problems are introduced
3. Atsuko realized that Yuko was lying the entire time and was cheating on her
4. Atsuko had gotten drunk while Yuko was feeling guilty
5. Atsuko blindly went on a drunk date with Takamina
6. Realized that Yuko had thought Atsuko broken up with her due to going out on a drunk date with Takamina by accident
7. Atsuko and Yuko has a conflict
8. Yuko feels hurt
9. Yuko gets into a big fight with Takamina
10. All three of them ended up being placed in separate path, never to see each other ever again


...Yikes. Talk about... a very angsty piece. Now I'm obviously not saying it's forbidden to write such plot, it's just... angst throughout the entire piece. A little variety wouldn't hurt to spice it up.

Tip #6: Please remember that this is a fiction, not real life
"...And thus... You... shouldn't have... died for me..."

Kumi whispered with anguish as she stared at the injured Kanon from up above her figure. The younger girl has widen her eyes upon hearing for a fact that... Kumi was destined to die all along. The snipers and assassins hired by the government wanted to kill Kumi ever since she was born. It was a surprise that she was still alive to this day into adulthood. Yet she holds the greatest secret that Kanon never knew till she was on the verge of death.

Yagami Kumi was never human to begin with. She was a special being that, if she lingered any longer, hold the ability to destroy the Earth by the time she passed the age of 21. Now at the age of 20, many civilians and fighter squads were frantically on the search to eradicate her life for their own safety. Until Kanon came stumbling into the picture, she would never imagine Kumi being this dangerous. The high school student that first met Kumi a year ago... She had protected Kumi as Kumi has protected her... But never would she realize that all the time of Kumi rejecting her love to Kanon... To always scold the younger girl of protecting Kumi... was because of this reason.

Shakily she formed a small smile as she felt her body collapse on top of Kumi. The bullet wounds that she had sustained were a danger to her life. And sadly, despite blocking the bullets, they went right through her body and into Kumi's. Two figures becoming colder as each second passed by, Kanon then uttered in a weak, raspy voice with what remaining strength she has left.

"I... I wanted to... protect you... because... I love you..."

Kanon at this point didn't care what sort of being Kumi was. All she cared about was loving Kumi. Loving the girl before her that cared for her the same. The one that always would sacrifice herself for Kanon's safety. The girl that would crack up random jokes that only Kanon would get and laugh about. Yagami Kumi was the person that she truly loved no matter if she reciprocated the feeling or not. And sad enough, she wasn't able to stay conscious long enough in order to hear Kumi's answer. Her vision failing and sense of hearing muffled out; an annoying ringing sound resonating into her eardrums. Soon darkness enveloped her.


...Did I make you sad just yet? No? Oh well, whatever it is, you must all understand and at least take into consideration that this is ONLY A FICTION. Remember that fictions are based on a fantasy and imagination of our brain. Unless we all based it on a true life situation where a member is heartbroken at her friend's scandal, then remember that this doesn't occur in real life. It's understandable to feel terrible, but don't take it to an extreme level where you think the member has died a tragic death in reality. If you haven't noticed, both Yagami Kumi and Kimoto Kanon are still well and alive today, LOL.

Remember! Writing fiction is for the joy of expressing joy and the pleasure of having such imagination to the public world. :) Not to predict and spread the fact that the world is going to end at 2012 (which obviously didn't happen). :nervous

----------

2. Action
Coming Soon

« Last Edit: November 12, 2013, 01:27:24 AM by LoyalFlutist »

"Perhaps this is what it means to be bound by sin. To spin in the same circle, looking for where the sin lies, and at some point losing sight of the way out."
HIATUS: The Virus | How Far Are You Prepared To Go? | Sanity | Hidden Truth | Disappearance (Season 2) *Tumblr-only*
ACTIVE: Majisuka Gakuen OS | OS | Vengeance
REMAKE: Disappearance S1 | Wandering Ship | Hidden Truth
COLLABORATIONS: Phantom Pain w/Llyloo
Tumblr: http://loyalflutist.tumblr.com | Twitter: https://twitter.com/animeminafans

Offline olive29

  • ecchi
  • Member+
  • Posts: 407
Re: The AKB48 Fanfic Community Advice Thread
« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2014, 03:55:44 PM »
Hello... I just want to give a little advice here.

There are lots of fics that I read that often mistaken the difference between the words "your" and "you're"
It's probably just a small mistake, but sometimes it could ruin the enjoyment of reading.
I still have to improve my English skills as well, but with this, I hope we could learn together.

So, here's some sites where you could learn the difference between "your" and "you're"

http://www.grammar-monster.com/easily_confused/youre_your.htm
http://www.grammar.cl/english/your-you-are.htm
« Last Edit: September 24, 2014, 11:38:35 AM by olive29 »