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(US News)   'Fifty Shades' author to publish writing guide. This is like Nickelback offering piano lessons   (usnews.com) divider line 61
    More: Stupid, Nickelback  
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626 clicks; posted to Entertainment » on 11 Mar 2013 at 12:06 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-03-11 11:20:15 PM

Felgraf: Didn't she steal huge chunks of it from twilight fanfics people had posted online, or something? I swear I remember hearing that, though it could very well have been a rumor.


Not exactly. It started out as a Twilight fanfic, but the author changed the names and such before publishing it.
 
2013-03-12 12:28:36 AM

FriarReb98: Charlie Chingas: "Within no time, I could feel the shiatty magician's wax oozing from my soft tight anus and all over my clap flaps. Hours of farking like this would leave any girl's fishy flaps looking like a ripped out fireplace, and I was no different! The slamming makes me pour my sex wee all over his ramrod. He munched on my spam castanets, even though I'd had the painters in for the best part of a week. Inserting a footlong fudge bullet into my clunge pool got me splurging spaff faster than a greased weasel shiat."

I'm sorry, but this can't possibly be the work of John Travolta in Drag E.L. James.  That's because she wrote an entire trilogy about being a sex slave that didn't ever get farked.


I've only read the infamous tampon scene online, but she is definitely a sex slave who gets farked.
 
2013-03-12 12:44:29 AM

FriarReb98: Charlie Chingas: "Within no time, I could feel the shiatty magician's wax oozing from my soft tight anus and all over my clap flaps. Hours of farking like this would leave any girl's fishy flaps looking like a ripped out fireplace, and I was no different! The slamming makes me pour my sex wee all over his ramrod. He munched on my spam castanets, even though I'd had the painters in for the best part of a week. Inserting a footlong fudge bullet into my clunge pool got me splurging spaff faster than a greased weasel shiat."

I'm sorry, but this can't possibly be the work of John Travolta in Drag E.L. James.  That's because she wrote an entire trilogy about being a sex slave that didn't ever get farked.


Seriously? I never read the books, but you're seriously telling me there's no farking in a book that's supposedly about BDSM? Does the Dom guy lock her in a chastity belt or something, then go and fark all of her friends? That's the only way I can see it working.
 
2013-03-12 12:47:44 AM

XMark: I haven't read it, but I know it started as a Twilight fan-fiction and later had its Twilight connections removed for the official published version.

The internet is practically inundated with thousands upon thousands of horrible erotic Twilight fanfics. There's something to be said about how one managed to stand out above the rest. It must be good in some way or another. I'll never know, though.


It was the world's tallest midget, apparently.
 
2013-03-12 02:59:17 AM
I read the first three chapters since it was available for free.  Reminded me of what a bright creative writing student would produce in their sophomore year of college; a couple interesting bits, but runs on at the mouth far too much and the author is way too in love with the sound of their own voice.  Worth checking back in on in about five years or so, in case she's doing something interesting by then.  However, by no means is it deserving of the absurd amounts of batshiat insane love that has been poured upon it... much like the original work it was based upon.

Oh, and the fact that this series has sold 70 million copies and counting makes me want to begin vomiting and never stop.

/former creative writing student
//something's wrong with my grapes, they taste bitter
 
2013-03-12 04:35:27 AM
Reposted for every 50 Shades thread...

Everything you need to know about 50 Shades of Gray:

#: of occurrences of literary device

41: characters roll their eyes
35: Ana bites her lip
16: Christian's lips "quirk up"
17: Christian "cocks his head to one side"
15: characters "purse" their lips
50: characters raise their eyebrows
80: references to Ana's anthropomorphic "subconscious"
58: references to Ana's "inner goddess"
92: Ana saying some form of "oh crap" (including "holy crap", "double crap", or "triple crap").
81: Ana says "Jeez"
72: Ana says "oh my"
125: Ana "blushes" or "flushes" (including 13 that are "scarlet," 6 that are "crimson," and one that is "stars and stripes red.")
13: Ana "peeks up" at Christian
9: references to Christian's "hooded eyes"
7: references to Christians "long index finger"
25: references to how "hot" Christian is (including 4: "He's so freaking hot.")
10: Christian's "mouth presses into a hard line"
199: characters "murmur"
49: characters "mutter"
195: characters "whisper"
21: characters "clamber" on/in/out of things
34: characters "smirk"
46: characters "gasp"
18: "breath hitches"
124: "grins"
124 "frowns"
And orgasms are always described as intense, body-shattering, delicious, violent, all-consuming, turbulent, agonizing and exhausting

And this is only book one.
 
2013-03-12 06:40:24 AM

Ishkur: #: of occurrences of literary device


In all seriousness this was something the (now) famous reviewer Katrina Lumsden did to keep herself sane.  As a measure of bad writing, the book length (380 pages) and "device" need to be taken into account.  If Ana "bites her lip" 35 times that's less than once per ten pages on average.  Not too bad unless the lip-biting comes in bunches.  Someone "whispers" almost 200 times, which is more than every other page but maybe they whisper a lot.  It's a word, not a "literary device".  Again, not a sign of good writing by any means, but depending on the work some words will be used more than others, and if people whisper a lot in erotic fiction I'm not going to be shocked.  "Inner goddess", on other hand, is a metaphor that should never be used EVER, and even in bottom-of-the-barrel trashy writing only a few times at most.  The count by the end of the first book was 58; that's running gag territory.
 
2013-03-12 10:19:08 AM

dragonchild: If Ana "bites her lip" 35 times that's less than once per ten pages on average. Not too bad unless the lip-biting comes in bunches.


I think that's a pretty bad ratio, actually. Generally, you want to establish a character trait early in order to give your reader a sense for their mannerisms and quirks, then get on with the story, using that quirk or trait only in a key scene or two later. Three or four lip bits in the first 1/4 of the book, then one, maybe two, in a key later scene. More than that and you've veered into obnoxious and lazy.

dragonchild: Someone "whispers" almost 200 times, which is more than every other page but maybe they whisper a lot. It's a word, not a "literary device".


Even if they whisper a lot, you don't need to say it every time. Once we know a character whispers a lot, it's taken as a given that they are speaking in a low voice most of the time. And you don't always just use "whisper," either. There are a dozen, two dozen ways to say it. Part of your job as a writer is to make the repetitive and mundane seem interesting.

I think what it really is, though, is probably overuse of dialogue tags. All those "mutters" and "whispers" and "murmurs" seem to indicate to me (450 of them total!) that this writer just loads every conversation with them. Totally unnecessary. If your characters have a voice of their own, you shouldn't need a load of dialogue tags. The conversations should be clear from the context, and reactions like muttering and whispering can/should be evident from the context and/or description of their actions.

I know you're not saying this is good writing, I'm just arguing that these signs probably indicate worse writing than you suggest.

Not that anyone reads stuff like this for the writing...
 
2013-03-12 10:41:14 AM

shoegaze99: And you don't always just use "whisper," either. There are a dozen, two dozen ways to say it.


Hey, she also used "murmur"! >:D

Seriously though, there are two dozen ways?  Because beyond a half-dozen or so, what comes to mind sounds very forced.  SMeyer was rightly criticized for trying to cloak her bad writing with copious (and sometimes laughably blatant) abuse of a thesaurus.

I feel compelled to put in a disclaimer that I'm not defending the book; I just wonder if the word count thing is getting a life of its own.  My suspicion is that the repetitive words indeed came in bunches, perhaps as much as 20-30 times in a single conversation, making the word counts worse than they look.  Not every conversation is going to be the same (even in this trash), and as you say, once the context of a conversation's established there's no reason to be redundant.
 
2013-03-12 11:14:45 AM

dragonchild: Seriously though, there are two dozen ways? Because beyond a half-dozen or so, what comes to mind sounds very forced.


Sure. The trick is, you wouldn't just use dialogue tags, you'd also note how the characters are acting, what they're hearing, what others are hearing, etc. A simple, brief description of the scene can be the equivalent of saying the characters are whispering without actually saying it. This would be the preferred ways of noting the whispers rather than finding the 14th obscure synonym for "whisper," and the possibilities are infinitely longer than finding other words to use in its place.

Even simple dialogue cues can do it.

"Keep your voice down! You know they're listening."

"Sorry, I don't know where my head is."

From that point forward, you know they're talking in lower voices, no dialogue tags needed.

dragonchild: I feel compelled to put in a disclaimer that I'm not defending the book


No worries, you're not coming across like that at all.
 
2013-03-12 11:39:25 AM

dragonchild: Seriously though, there are two dozen ways? Because beyond a half-dozen or so, what comes to mind sounds very forced. SMeyer was rightly criticized for trying to cloak her bad writing with copious (and sometimes laughably blatant) abuse of a thesaurus.


I picked up one of the Twilight books in a bookstore once. I picked a random page and started reading, promising myself to stop when I encountered the first instance of didactic imagery.

I stopped 14 pages later -- I couldn't find any. I gave up and put the rubbish down.

The books are seriously seriously BAD writing. Wretchingly bad. Just the very structure and composition of the writing itself makes me cringe and squirm to the point where I want to grab a red pen and start correcting mistakes. It reads like some teenage girl's intimate diary full of pronoun prose and clumsy descriptions but no vivid imagery. There are NO LITERARY DEVICES in it at all. No creative imagery, no metaphors, no similes, no allusions, no symbolism, no clever euphemisms, no evocative descriptions or settings, and the word usage is severely limited. She has a stunted vocabulary and an extremely juvenile writing style. Every page reads like "then this happened, then this happened, and he said this, then she said this, and they went and did this"...there's just no color or life in the writing, it's just flat, drab, straight-forward uninteresting prose.

I understand its meant for preteens, but good god, I read Christopher Pike when I was young and he was way more expressive and engaging than this Meyer twit. JK Rowling is motherfarking Tolstoy next to Stephanie Meyer.

And it seems, with indie and self-publishing on the rise, we're going to see a lot more of this pulp writing. In fact, editors and publishers are all looking for the next Twiligh/Hunger Games and they often urge writers to cut the metaphors and imagery and write straighter and more plain. As if fanfiction.net was scary enough.
 
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