Disclaimer: This is my personal guide on how to write and any tactics that I employ may not work for you and if you think I’m some authority on writing magical girl literature, you’re a fucking loonie. Also, any advice I give is worth jack shit because I don’t follow my own advice over half the time.
Chapter 0 – HOW THE FUCK DO I WRITE? _______________________________________
There comes a day in every writer's life where they tell themselves, “I want to write about magical flying girls in frilly dresses.” But the question is—how? The answer to that is FUCK IF I KNOW, FAGGOT. Nobody knows how to write properly. I sure as hell don’t. That's not important. The most important part is that you tell yourself that you will and then you actually do.
Oh, you already know how to write? Well, why didn't you just say so? Here's the 【ADVANCED GUIDE】 to make a successful story!
【ADVANCED GUIDE】 Step 1) Write well Step 2) Keep writing well Step 3) Keep writing _______________________________________
Okay, there you go! Good luck!
...What? I thought you said you knew how to write?
Just before we start, I'm not here to teach you how to make a story that’s good. If I could do that, then I'd be out writing my own fucking good stories.
Chapter 1 – WHERE TO START _______________________________________
Where to Start on Where to Start
Oh, man. Where to begin? Writing is the most convoluted, grueling process known to man. Writers spend eons in their little black boxes, planning every fucking micro-centimeter—no, millimeter—of their characters, settings, and plots.
OH WAIT, NO THEY DON'T.
I'll tell you right now: I am not even close to being either the most prolific or the most eloquent writer on the site. I, however, do have a special writefag talent: I don't fucking think twice before I post or publish anything.
Have you written anything for fun? Because you saw that amazing fanfic of your favorite ship (which is shit, by the way) and you absolutely needed to follow up on that? Chances are, you have. Now, have you slapped that shit onto THP or fanfuckers.net? DOUBT IT, BECAUSE YOU HAVE STANDARDS. But I'll tell you now: Take those standards, cherish them, and tuck them safely in the deepest crevices of your heart. Your first story (or the story after that or even the story after that or the story after [...]) will not be God's gift to mankind. It might not even be good! It might be dogshit. Don't let that discourage you because you're on this site—you're already dogshit!
Go ahead. That terrible idea you had about a fairy protagonist rising up to defeat a Mecha-Reimu gone haywire? Post it. The overly-specific fetish smut adventure that you and two other people find hot? Go nuts. The story where you take all the characters in Touhou and replace them with their OC daughters? Die in a fire.
Now you're ready to write.
Myths to Consider
Just kidding. First, we have to go over some background. Yes, this is the shitty exposition and yes, you have to listen.
1) Writing is fun
We need to first dispel the idea that writing is fun. Writing is like taking the biggest shit you've ever had, except when you're done, all you feel is the vague, empty feeling that you’ll have to do it again. There is this image of a writer feverishly rattling off a thousand pages through a stream of genius. They sit down and, after much struggle and turmoil, they dish out their magnum opus. This image is wrong, wrong, wrong. You’re always going to have distractions, and therefore, I guarantee that you’re always going to be tempted to distract yourself. Face it—there are a fucking million different ways that you’re going to distract yourself. We have the power of the motherfucking internet at our disposal: thousands of articles, games, and other THP stories are all at your fingertips and can be accessed in a matter of seconds (that is, of course, unless you have dial-up).
2) Writing comes in bursts of inspiration This is somewhat related to the first myth, but I must stress this: Writing is a slow and arduous process. Sometimes (read: most of the time), it’s hard to find the right words for what your brain wants to describe. Maybe the sentence is too long. Maybe a word feels out of place. Maybe you don’t know whether a paragraph should even exist. Ultimately, writing speed is completely up to you—but if you’re dishing out five thousand words in an hour, you are one of these things: the world’s most prolific writer, a Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing speedrunner, an author with no proofreader, or fucking batshit crazy.
3) Writing must be original As a wise man (and the dude who copied him) once said: “Good artists copy. Great artists steal.”
If you can steal, fucking steal it. Yeah, that’s right. It pays to be original, but swiping up all the good ideas yields dividends. If you liked how an author used a particular phrase or word, eat that right up. Chances are, you might use it for your own purpose in your stories. Keep remembering all the things you’ve stolen, and eventually, you’ll build your own repertoire and style. Of course, do not abuse your copy-powers: Use the things you’ve imitated sparingly because you will not grow if you only copy. You’ll just become a worse version of another author.
Also, plagiarism is bad and you should never (I repeat: never) steal entire excerpts.
4) Writer’s block (synonyms: The Bubonic Plague, Ultra-AIDS, The Devil’s Cancer, Video Games, etc.) The infamous disease. Intensity of ailments vary but the general gist is this: You have a hard time writing. Unfortunately, it’s such a prevalent issue for writers everywhere that we must clarify what the fuck it is—even if it isn’t really a myth.
If you’re out of ideas, force yourself to try one more time. Then, after that, if you’re really out of ideas, throw some words onto paper and hope something sticks. If that doesn’t work, then consider taking a break from writing and concentrate on something else (play some video games or something because that’s fun, unlike writing).
If you have writer’s block for a week, you’re in a slump.
If you have writer’s block for a month, you’re just lazy. Yeah, that’s right. Get the fuck back to writing, you peon. All jokes aside, there is a clear difference between writer’s block and burnout. Burnout is simply mental fatigue—you’ve written too much and too often that it makes you too exhausted to wrack your brain for any more ideas. Now, when you’re in this state, you may feel an insufferable desire to keep writing. Don’t. Rest is a part of writing.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to finish my video game backlog because I have writer’s block.
>>15059 >How do you tell the difference between burnout based fatigue and a temporary thing that you should be just powering through? Good question. It's pretty hard to tell because everybody's threshold for burnout is different. There are people who can go through a thousand words a day and be just dandy and there are people like me who can't get through five hundred words without feeling like they lost a part of their soul. However, there are some obvious indicators of burnout such as:
1) Having multiple ongoing works (or one very lengthy one) and feeling the compulsion to update all the time. 2) Feeling the need to at least open your documents and try to get a few words in. 3) Thinking about writing all the time, distracting you from other business. 4) Wanting to write but feel immediately exhausted when you actually start.
Of course, these are not always signs of burnout but they are the most common and the most obvious. Believe it or not, I had a hard time struggling with burnout before I decided I needed to take a break and unwind. inb4 >Moral >ever updating enough to get burnout
>>15060 I see, I probably have a case for that then. I'm not writing well and falling behind on things that I want to do (both writing and otherwise), but the idea of not updating fills me with dread. I also feel awful for prioritising one project over the one I have here, but inspiration is just easier with one versus the other.
>>15068 >TAKE YOUR OWN ADVICE YA GIT >Disclaimer: This is my personal guide on how to write and any tactics that I employ may not work for you and if you think I’m some authority on writing magical girl literature, you’re a fucking loonie. Also, any advice I give is worth jack shit because I don’t follow my own advice over half the time. YEAH THAT'S RIGHT I'M A HYPOCRITE AND THERE'S NOTHING YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT.
>>15069 I feel you, man. Sometimes words just don't come out for one particular project, but then they do for another. I wish I had control over my own occasional bursts of inspiration.
>>15056 >Step 3) Keep writing If you can make a thread like this while not updating, then I can keep not updating for another three months. I will not be directed by a man who denies other men their awoo.
The same upon a surface examination. A more intimate look, however, would reveal one of the two to have not bothered – or been bothered – to write since three months ago in May. This, in likelihood, has led the lazy basterdt the poor man in question to slowly lose interest in and, very possibly, motivation to complete the story as well. Might be, counter to his much better judgement, he is perilously fingering the idea of even more “Sekibanki,” even as we speak. Might be. All an uneducated, partial guess, of course. No way to tell for certain.
But, let’s stop talking about dork dark things! This thread is for yanking on Moral’s chains. I yank them hereby. Update, you updateless dog – else I call you Im-Moral!
>>15084 >You've only done two full-sized updates in seven months. This qualifies for the "not even trying" award. WELL I MEAN UH UM. ...you're right.
>>15089 I have all these ideas, see, and I'm writing another story, and my cat is on fire, and I need to make some progress on this script I made for THP, and I'm working 25 hour shifts and [more generic excuses here]. I'll get back to writing more A-Who, I promise.
>>15092 I used to like his quests on /tg/ when it was still Quest central. There were a few established series there before janitors went nuclear and told everyone to fuck off to /qst/ (which to this day has no quality control - an average shitpost here is better than an average quest there) and Anonkun that's now Fictionlive (which is for the most part on par with fanfiction.net's better "masterpieces", which is not saying much) such as MGNQ, Cyberpunk Idol Management Quest, Joker Quest, A.I. Quest, Shadow Quest and more. He did two quests on /tg/ and a one-shot on /qst/, if I'm correct, all of which were just fine.
Damn it, now I'm mad. Why did cuckchan have to kill off quests? Majority of them were very enjoyable to read and participate in. Awoo feels like something from that time, even if it's slow as fuck and even if it feels like something crucial's missing.
>>15093 >Damn it, now I'm mad. Why did cuckchan have to kill off quests? Majority of them were very enjoyable to read and participate in. I'm still butthurt that /qst/ killed all the worthwhile quests. Maybe one day, /qst/ will be good, but that day sure isn't anytime soon.
Overview Let’s face it: motivation is the hardest thing to muster because we’re all just lazy sacks of shit. It’s easy to say that today’s going to be the day that you finally get that awesome story going. You open up your document with all your cool ideas, stare at the screen for about ten minutes (maybe twenty, if you’re feeling extra motivated), and then exit to play the latest flavor of the month video game.
Has this ever happened to you? Chances are, it has. And if you say it hasn’t, replace “video game” with any other hobbies you have. If you still say that it hasn’t ever happened to you, congratulations. You are a liar.
Mindset Having a proper mindset is unsurprisingly important to find the proper motivation to write. Let’s take a look at what “motivation” means to the writer. At its most base form, motivation is what spurs the writer to continue their story. And writers, as all you readers know, are fickle beings. They get up on the wrong side of the bed and—welp, looks like the draft's postponed another week.
There are so many ways to trap yourself as a writer with your mindset—and all writers, newbies and veterans alike, should be wary of letting yourself fall to a negative attitude. Don’t write too much at a time and don’t write too little. The former leads to burnout and the latter leads to infrequent update reluctance. Infrequent update reluctance is a thing that happens when you put off a draft for too long. There are many reasons why a writer feels this way—maybe, after putting it off for so long, what’s an extra week delay? Or a month? Or maybe they have a day-to-day routine and, since they haven’t written for so long, their schedule will be thrown out of whack if they spend time to write. Maybe they even have this self-imposed expectation that the update should be perfect because they made the readers wait so fucking long and—oh god, it’s not good enough, fuckfuckfuck—ahem.
To end this section, here are some classic ways to motivate yourself to write. _________________________________________ 1) Like what you write. 2) Hate what you write. 3) Appreciate your characters/dialogue/plot/literally any positive thing you can find about your work. 4) Create a timebomb that increases its time-to-explode based off of your word count. 5) Read trashy young adult fiction and think to yourself that even you could write better. _________________________________________
Routine Remember that we are all slaves to routine. If you find that you are lacking motivation, try making an update schedule and, THIS IS REALLY IMPORTANT, stick to it. Now, this might sound a little weird to say in the motivation section of all places, but with proper routine and regimen, you don’t even need motivation to keep writing. Once you build a routine out of writing, it will feel weird not to write. Crazy, huh?
Now, establishing a routine is hard in itself. There will be distractions, circumstances, excuses— the list goes on. But E.B. White put it best: “A writer who waits for ideal conditions under which to work will die without putting a word on paper.”
We’re always waiting for our flash of inspiration, but what happens when it never comes? Are we going to be sitting around, idly twiddling our thumbs? Fuck that. We’re gonna be working on our current drafts in the meantime.
You (probably): “But how can I write well if I have to force myself to write?”
Ah, there’s the rub. My answer is: write badly. Getting words down on paper is good, even if it’s bad. Why? Because you can’t edit what doesn’t exist. A bad draft can always be improved, even if it means throwing all of it out.
After this chapter, go on a quest to find your perfect update schedule. Then multiply how long your update is expected to take by ten and there’s your real update schedule.
Sidenote: Types of Motivation Here are some common types of motivation that writers use. This is not a comprehensive list. If you know any more, feel free to post about it.
1) Motivation by Momentum This is routine on steroids. Writers use their fast update speed to bounce to the next draft while the story is still fresh on their mind. Be wary of burnout. Also, people who write like this are fucking bonkers.
2) Motivation by Novelty A writer may feel more inclined to update their latest story because it is more novel to them. This is to dedicated to the writers out there who have a thousand ongoing stories because they cannot resist the urge to write a story for every idea in their head.
3) Motivation by Self-Interest A rather vague motivation, but it is perhaps the strongest one. Those who are writing to improve their skills as a writer, or those who wish to tell a story for the sake of sharing it to others are inclined, by their own self-satisfaction, to write consistently.
4) Motivation by Popularity This is a rather self-explanatory motive. There is nothing wrong with popularity, but remember the number one rule: it’s only valid if you liked it before it was cool.
Sidenote No. 2: My infractions [✔] Be a lazy sack of shit [✔] Put off writing in favor of video games [✔] Had burnout [✔] Had infrequent update reluctance [✔] Never establish a good writing routine [✔✔✔✔✔✔✔✔✔✔✔✔✔✔...] Countless other misdemeanors
This will slip into unironic territory for a bit. Do keep reading this.
People like you that attempt to say things to motivate themselves first and others second are scum. Public spaces, in a perfect world, exist as a medium to exchange meaningful ideas, useful and possibly entertaining information. They exist as an alternative to interpersonal communication - say you want to talk to others in private, you're welcome to influence them however you want, you're welcome to make them get to know you how you want. In a public space, there are standards to be kept.
This place acts as a middle ground between the two. We get to know the writers by their scribbles and there are separate set of standards to be kept. This is obvious. This is obvious and good - we get to keep benefits of a public space without losing most of what makes communication between men good. It's what keeps this place from being something like a thrice-damned guest book on some restaurant site where you can't write "SPECIAL SAUCE TASTES LIKE CHEF JERKED OFF INTO IT, 9.5/10" without getting removed post-haste.
But then I see the other side of this and wonder why. Just why in general. Why are we still here? Just to suffer? Tripfag-kun made one full-sized update fifteen months ago, one update ten months ago and one update now. During all this, instead of WRITING MORE, IT'S WHAT YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO DO, he makes a long and elaborate shitpost disguised as a beginner's guide. This is fine. This is okay. This brings your own baggage in an imageboard. But you're a tripfag and a writer. This is okay. It's a funpost, so that makes it okay, right? Sure. It's this thing that isn't. >>15390
You've just made this post to motivate youself instead of leaving something for other people. Just a bunch of superficial advice to make yourself care more. Will this work? Fuck no, this never did, it's just treating the symptoms. There's no point in getting seriously invested in something like this, right? No point in caring about things like those at all, is there? It's all nothing serious, rite, another thing to put in a box to do tomorrow, maybe the day after? The day after the day after? Ooh, maybe you have work on this day, maybe you've got sick. Maybe there's people that got together to play games, it'd be a waste not to join in instead of writing, that makes sense, right? Yeah, you just, you'll just make sure to update tomorrow, right?
Tomorrow it is, then.
No, this entire site is just a gigantic funpost anyway, you can't take it seriously. It's almost empty, anyway. This will end in apathy. You can't change it, too. You're unable. It's a waste to try.
Laugh at Malor if you will - actually, laugh at him regardless - but this applies to almost all writers on this site, including future ones, if any. This is what will happen.
And be wary of those who lie to themselves on daily basis, justifying it with excuses like "It's not serious", "I'm funposting", "It's all a joke" and "It doesn't matter anyway". If all those things are true, they are calling themselves another piece of irrelevant biomass that is set to die without expecting to accomplish anything of note in a really roundabout way. There are many like this. They have mostly given up. Will you?
>>15392 I originally wrote this to encourage more people to write. Maybe it'll come off as a shitpost, sure, but hey, if it isn't helpful at least it'll be fun to read (or that's what I hope). Of course, it was also to motivate myself but is that really a bad thing? I had a whole myriad of reasons not to update the past year but those are just excuses and I won't bring them to light here. Is this superficial? I don't know, maybe to you it is. Is this superficial to me? Heck no. I like this thing, whatever it is.
>During all this, instead of WRITING MORE, IT'S WHAT YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO DO, he makes a long and elaborate shitpost disguised as a beginner's guide. If you truly think that, then I'm sorry. I didn't do my job well enough if you thought that this was just some shitpost. I should have done my due diligence and be thorough with my points. I only brushed over them but if anybody had an opinion, I could respond to them about it. That's what I like about this guide, if you can even call it that. We can talk about it and my opinions are my opinions and yours are yours. Nothing's set in stone because I'm just blabbing about my own experiences and thoughts.
>There's no point in getting seriously invested in something like this, right? No point in caring about things like those at all, is there? It's all nothing serious, rite, another thing to put in a box to do tomorrow, maybe the day after? The day after the day after? Ooh, maybe you have work on this day, maybe you've got sick. Maybe there's people that got together to play games, it'd be a waste not to join in instead of writing, that makes sense, right? Yeah, you just, you'll just make sure to update tomorrow, right? THP (myself included) loves to joke about this a lot. Yep, I was and will always be a big offender of this. But I'm human too. Spare me some leeway, yeah? But not too much. I'll take advantage of it. Though, it's not like I don't care. If I really didn't care, then I would have fucked off years ago. But I still update! And I'll continue to update. I'm more free than I ever was in the past few years.
It's been a long time since I've been here, but this site was once a place I visited frequently, being inspired by a lot of the things written here. It might have been something on ten years, though - back when I visited pooshlmer, too.
...But I want to write, again. I never put anything up on this site, but... I want to do something. I'm in one of those moods where I long for days that have gone past and regret how things have turned out... so I'm putting this post here maybe get a reply or two that might change the course of how things go. Maybe if I start talking with you guys here, I'll be able do something soon.
On that note, this guide is useful and I recognize a lot of it from when I used to write more often. It's a very good review for me.
>>15435 >Ah, it's nothing so much as me waiting on anything to happen as more trying to interact a bit and get comfortable before I start trying to write. Go for it. We always need more writers around here. Just don't get too comfortable because then you'll be a failure like me.
>>15443 If you know me from *this* name you're probably one of only a handful of people - and so I can guess pretty easily who you might be.
That said, definitely planning out something. Not sure how amazing it'll be, but I'm using a process that should hopefully bring better results than just vomiting from head to paper, so I'll see how it goes.
An Addendum to Motivation _______________________________________
This isn't a lot of content, but I feel like I should add to this segment where I stated: "Now, this might sound a little weird to say in the motivation section of all places, but with proper routine and regimen, you don’t even need motivation to keep writing."
Oh past me, you are right, but you are also so very wrong. To get words onto paper, I believe that you need both motivation and discipline. Discipline is the greatest supplement to motivation, or something like that. Without motivation, all you'll get are forced, empty words. And without discipline... well, you'll get me. So if you have the motivation, don't be lazy and especially don't be me. Be disciplined.