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Descriptions or no?


Reader

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Hey guys,

I’d love to know everybody’s opinions about sneezefic character descriptions. Do you prefer the character to already have detailed descriptions or do you just like to make it up yourself? No wrong answers ~~

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beijoseternura

Hello :) 

It's great that you write a fiction, may I read it as soon as it's written? I think you should write how you feel about it, I like to read in many details about a character.
Their appearance, such as eye color, size, hair color, special or rarely cachets.
Also, the sound of the voice, certain habits that the person has
You could try to write in such a way that the plot slowly arranges when you write more than one chapter.
For example, if two characters meet for the first time, you could describe that they get to know each other, they describe each other with all their senses, yes, eyes can do that too, they pay attention to their partner's peculiarities - day by day a bit more.
You could describe a person through the eyes of another, I would write it this way.
But it depends on, if your story is written in the first or third persons view?
May I ask you - where can I post a fanfiction?
 
I hope I could help you.
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Depends on how detailed and how it's written. I'm not a fan of stories that begin with a physical description of characters. Nor if it's so detailed it sounds like a police sketch description, with exact measurements and height and stuff like that. (I'm guilty of this myself, most writers are, at least when they first start writing, and particularly when the genre basically is erotica :rolleyes: ). If it starts describing a female character's boobs, I'm out of there. I tend to stop reading if the age is explicitly pointed out as well, because even if they're beyond a doubt adult, they're still usually about a decade or two younger than my preferences. It didn't bother me this much in the past, as long as they were adults and the story was well-written, but nowadays, if a character is younger than I am, even by a year, it's an immediate turnoff. Go figure. :rolleyes: 

I think physical descriptions work best if they're snuck into the story and strewn out here and there. I personally like it better when the character's, well, character, is described, and I can create the looks in my mind based on how I view that type of character. 

When I write fanfics I rarely bother using any physical descriptions, sometimes I might add a picture, but usually people who read fanfics already know what the characters look like, or some prefer to just use their imagination if they're not familiar with the fandom. 

But by all means do detail the looks of their descent into sneeziness.. :twisted: 

 

^ Above opinions are simply opinions, and I'm well aware that I'm a hypocrite when it comes to several if not all of them at some point. :lol: 

 

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I agree with Chanel, I like when descriptions are subtly placed throughout the fic. A mention of hair color when the character runs a hand through it. Eye color when looking at someone else. I definitely like when we learn character traits from someone else's POV. Everyone will still have their own visual of your character either way. :)

I have done details but only in my drabble thread and physical details only hair/eye color and height.

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@beijoseternura  Hey!!! I started a story in original fiction last month. It’s called Nose and Mouth but fair warning...there are no descriptions besides basic stuff like height, gender, etc because my imagination is abstract and focuses more on emotions and lines. It’s in first person but there are two viewpoints at first. Recently there are more. But for my next story, I wanted to know what other people thought about my question. But can I just say, I am definitely going to use your method in real life when I work on my real book. That was such a huge help! To post a fanfic....go to the home page...click on obs, stories, and art...then stories...then Fanfiction and then it’ll say start new topic. I don’t know whether you’re using comp or phone so I went the long way. I’ll keep an eye out for it. 

@Chanel_no5 I was laughing so hard while reading this! It was hard to get through. Whew! Ok...Yes! I agree with lots. I usually skim through the police sketch stuff and then regret it when the author doesn’t give out a name till chapter three. I didn’t put any descriptions in mine and one reason why is because I saw that some authors just told ppl to make it up on their own so I was like sweet less work for me. I’m so out of there too and that’s why I tend to avoid reading stuff by men because it’s all about physical descriptions and they almost let their appreciation of the female form bleed into the pages when the people just looked at each other. The age thing makes sense for me in real life. It prolly happened three days ago when I was called ma’am for the first time twice in one hour. 

@Kaze wo Hiku oh my goodness that is soooo pretty and brilliant! Running your hands through hair and then mentioning some comparison. Even if it’s just mentioning running fingers through red hair as opposed to something symbolic...it’s still natural and smooth. I like what Chanel said too about mentioning character as opposed to features. It’s like an outline and you need to fill it to make it a story. But  you can choose how you want to do that...whether it’s character and personality or endless descriptions. 

Wow guys, Thankyou so much for your answers!! I almost tried to figure out how I could create a poll because I figured it would simply be a yes or no type thing but this is sooooo much better! 

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2 hours ago, Reader said:

I’m so out of there too and that’s why I tend to avoid reading stuff by men because it’s all about physical descriptions and they almost let their appreciation of the female form bleed into the pages when the people just looked at each other. 

Yeah, I prefer to read about female characters if they're written by a woman (and re: sneezefics, I only read female fics). There are male authors who write ladies well, but in general, they tend to add too much of boobs and booty. I guess it's just not as fascinating to me since I have those features myself. What I want in a sneezefic is a TYPE of character I like, a setting I like, and then cue the sneezing. :lol:  When it comes to non-fetish fiction, I still prefer to read female characters if they're written by a female author. They tend to let the character be more like a real person, with more layers. HOWEVER, Dolores Claiborne and Susannah Dean are two of my absolute favourite characters of all time, and they're both created by Stephen King, so...  :lol: 

2 hours ago, Reader said:

The age thing makes sense for me in real life. It prolly happened three days ago when I was called ma’am for the first time twice in one hour. 

Oooh, I had that happen to me for the first time a couple of years ago. I was like "WHAAAAAT?!" But I found it flattering. I mean, I don't exactly feel like an adult and I always get surprised whenever I have to say my own age out loud, but I have no problems with it. I like getting older. And I think a couple of wrinkles only enhance life experience, and therefore beauty. ^^

Back on topic; the amount of description also depends on the target audience. I sometimes throw in some physical descriptions in the draft I post, but when I wrote it for myself, I didn't bother, because I already knew what the character looked like, so it seemed unncessary. :rolleyes: 

 

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I won't even read stories (for pleasure, at least) that start out with physical descriptions of the characters, to be honest. I've found that 95% of the time those stories are written by unskilled authors and not worth my time. I'm sure there are exceptions to this rule, but I really haven't found very many. "Show, don't tell" is good advice almost all of the time, even when it comes to fetish stories. 

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1 hour ago, Jejune said:

"Show, don't tell" 

I was watching this tv show and a man and woman were running happily through the streets whooping and hollering. A few seconds of that scene was in slow motion and the camera zoomed into their faces and you could just see the secrets to eternal happiness on the man’s face as he looked at her. Then you see someone in a window looking down at that same street muttering about the noise from the happy man running, whooping, and hollering alone. That was the time I cried and realized ‘show don’t tell’ needs to be every content creator’s motto. I’m like getting choked up because the man that was running...treated ppl for what the viewer finds out he had all along. But yea, I’m glad books give a few pages of preview because I am a serial DNF-er. 

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@Chanel_no5 I should adopt your attitude about age. I think having to change my age range on the forum got me a lil sad. But the funny thing is...I don’t want to be younger. I want to stay the same age hahahahaha (24 is too young for ma’am right?) 

Wait......you write for yourself?!!! That’s so cool! I should do that! I never thought about it. Back on topic lol yea I go on a lot of rabbit trails when I talk to ppl. I noticed most of the general discussions is like a question and then the poster disappears so I get a lil self conscious replying back even though I want to. 

I agree about the female author stuff too! I’ve never read Stephen King before besides maybe starting one that got turned into a movie. Something with a hotel? Feel free to suggest one for me to read. 

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There was an article on the female reception of the portrayal of women by male authors on the site of the New Yorker just recently, if anyone is interested: How Women See How Male Authors See Them. It contained some good points (and some hilariously funny answers from female twitter users to the prompt "describe yourself like a male author would").

Concerning character descriptions: I love and prefer to slowly get to know a character, just like the others have said before, even though I can see why it might be a benefit to give character descriptions at the beginning of a story. Additionally, some vagueness in description with room for own insertions makes the story feel a lot more "alive" to me. If there are too many details given, I get overwhelmed trying to picture the exact image the author tried to convey - and if there's too much information, my brain is so busy trying to remember how many freckles were there on their face in what angle and right to which wrinkle that paying attention to the actual plot becomes almost impossible.

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If I'm reading a story with character descriptions, I copy and paste the story into a google doc and delete the descriptions. I'm unusually picky, though, and most descriptions are bound to have something that turns me off. (Even descriptions that would be good for most people can be turn offs for me - for example, the main character of a fic I was reading recently was described as tall and I was like "nah.")

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@Selene those comments were so funny but also on point. And I agree...like when they are describing a face and mention so much stuff and I end up picturing Quasimodo. I do like certain words even though I don’t know what it looks like ie Roman nose. I also like cleft because it’s a startling word to me. Not too sure I would like it in real life but story wise nomnomnom

@skater well first I’m laughing about freckles and then can’t even catch my breath as I read your comment. Too funny! And yea wow what do you do for actual books? I just went back and laughed again...for the third time. You’ve probably never requested a story either right? 

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Wow... after reading these I realize I probably shouldn’t have put such a long description of the characters in the last fic I wrote...:lol:

Usually when I read a fic, I look at the physical character descriptions that the author provides, and if I like those description so I imagine them with that look, but if I don’t like the description, I just imagine someone else(usually either my current crush or a celebrity) in their place. Actually, now that I think about it, I usually end up imagining the latter😂

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@Pixieflower I’ve never imagined a celebrity in a fic but I definitely want to now! If others comment then maybe we will see if other ppl like the descriptions before the story starts or told by the narrator when the characters first meet. 

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beijoseternura
2 hours ago, Reader said:

I’ve never imagined a celebrity in a fic but I definitely want to now!

hello, 

have you always used OC in your stories until now? I myself have never written a story with an OC, it was always about celebrities, such as Footballers or one of the Harry Potter Saga charakters. I think you can be inspired by this person's life, or career, and include them in your own story? What I wanted to add for you, it was already mentioned, a nice way to describe a person will be through the eyes of the other protagonist.
 
For example, you could write:
 
- only now he noticed that her fingernails were painted in a summery shade of red
 
- gleaming tears moistened her blue gray dappled iris and he wondered if the sadness in her eyes was his blame?
 
- he eluded himself from her bitter sweet embrace and her eyes rested on the faded, fine scars that contrasted with his sun-tanned skin.
 
Sorry for my english.
This way I guess, you can avoid long enumerations and lists and it is always possible to play with details. They color your story 
I hope it can help you a bit? I wish you lot of fun and success in writing :) 
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24 minutes ago, beijoseternura said:
 
Sorry for my english.

Sorry? Sorry for those beautiful examples??? UM NO!!!! That echoed through my soul! This sentence right here....gleaming tears moistened......blame? That was deep and I cannot wait to read your work! And then the sentence with the scars....the characters played off each other so well in how the narrator describes their actions. I love it! 

I’ve only written two stories. One was a fanfic one-shot request of Minene from Mirai Nikki and the other is the one I’m still writing. But yea never a celebrity. If I did write a celebsickfic then it would have to be Jake from Scandal! If you want it to be a surprise then let me know and I totally understand but what character were you thinking of writing for your fanfic?

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beijoseternura

:) thank you very much for your words. No one told me before and I am glad you liked it. I try to post maybe one part of my fiction tomorrow or the next days. Yes, you told me about your story, I would like to read your one-shot.

Okay, I can tell you, I am writing a fanfiction about Portuguese footballplayer Cristiano Ronaldo, now it is over 100 pages long - but why I chose him as my male main charakter has a very personal background. You know, I stopped writing for over one year now because some people did not liked my work. They tore my pages or told me not to keep writing, it's just a waste of time, or they insulted me - so I lost hope and did not pursued my fictions. Maybe it is different here and I can publish something for you? Thank you for your reply. 

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3 hours ago, beijoseternura said:

:) thank you very much for your words. No one told me before.

I would like to read your one-shot.

Okay, I can tell you, I am writing a fanfiction about Portuguese footballplayer Cristiano Ronaldo, now it is over 100 pages long - but why I chose him as my male main charakter has a very personal background. You know, I stopped writing for over one year now because some people did not liked my work. They tore my pages or told me not to keep writing, it's just a waste of time, or they insulted me - so I lost hope and did not pursued my fictions.

Maybe it is different here and I can publish something for you? Thank you for your reply. 

I’m shocked no one has talked about your writing. If it’s just about grammar, that’s an easy fix. What’s harder to do is to write so well that someone else feels for your story. They take an interest and want to know more. They drink the words of your story because it’s that sweet and they just read with bated breath because the moment is so tender and that’s how I felt when I read your examples. 

It’s in the fanfic and it’s titled Minene Urryu. It’s somewhat recent so you won’t need to scroll down too much. 

I don’t know him but I’ll learn about him from your story so I’m not worried. You might have stopped writing because the character, himself, was so important to you for personal reasons and the jerk just walked all over that. 

No one will tell you that here. They might not reply at all but they won’t say anything negative. If you ask for constructive criticism, then it’ll be polite but constructive. I really want to read it!! I’ll give you feedback!

Ps. I asked a staff member about information on beta reading. From what I know, someone just proofreads the paper for grammar errors. I just don’t know if we can do it since I’m only a poster and you’re still validating. If I can and you want me to, I’ll definitely do it! 

 

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beijoseternura

hello, :) thank you so much, you are very kind, no one told me before.

I haven't thought about it yet but you are probably right and the character won favor with me a lot.
I hope nobody will write this again, yes.
You'll probably get to know him through the story, don't worry.
Thank you for your supply, a beta reader would be great, as english is not my first language, but I can not receive any pm.
I wanted to translate small parts and then publish them for you.
Do I always have to start new topics fot it?

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Hey @beijoseternura 😊

I’m still mad at the jerk 😤 but you’re welcome! 🤗

If it’s all one story then you keep it in one topic. Anyone you tag will get a notification immediately, anyone who follows you will see a silent black star next to the post when someone comments, and lastly other ppl will just check it periodically to know if there’s a new update. 

Hahaha yea I thought the beta thing was like some secret club you got access to but was told it’s just something through pm so we will do that once you’re validated! 

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beijoseternura

okay :) thank you for your help, so I think I have to translate the whole story first - by the way it is a one shot about 7 - 9 pages long and perhaps next week I can publish it, this weekend I don't have enough time to write. 

I hope you are fine :) 

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