What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

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    Master Nerd ninjanerd's Avatar
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    Default What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    I am currently writing a fanfic. It's about Giovanni. And Team Rocket. And Gardevoirs. (Well, one very odd Gardevoir, anyway.) So, I was wondering how you authors start off a story. I get the hook part, but I've written a couple beginnings that I don't like...

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    I feel so much spring... Cabaret's Avatar
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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    Well there's:

    - the Prologue: sometimes a flashback, sometimes a flash forward. Regardless, it might have little to do with the actual beginning of the story, but then make sense later on in the fic.

    - the Introduction: for fics where your narrator is all "Hi, I'm ______ and I want to be a pokemon master!" and stuff. generally try to avoid that if possible. It comes off as childish sometimes.

    - Dialogue: dialogue that throws us into the action.

    - Description: see Description.

    These are just examples of a few ways you can start a story. They're all effective in their own way, but certain stories might call for certain introductions.

    If you're referring how I start a fanfic, well I think of the opening as a first impression. First impressions mean everything. if it's good, they'll keep reading. If it's bad, then forget it. I spend a bit more time developing a beginning then I do the rest of the first chapter.

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    is obsessed with Noivern! Zekurom's Avatar
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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    If you mean starting from the barebones, an idea has to come to me first. But it seems like you already have that, and are just looking for guidance on how to write the beginning.

    How I usually start is the camera-angle thing a lot of movies do. Give a description of the setting, at least in some detail. Then, branch off in one of a few ways:
    • The "in medias res" approach - get right into the action of the plot. Many fanfic critics claim that this method is underused and underappreciated, but I disagree. It's definitely an interesting way to start, but doesn't always carry that same sense of "beginning" that you may want for your fic. Still, it's not out of the question, as fanfics tend not to have to do all the previous development that original fiction does.
    • The "outside-in" approach - get a scene from a character that's outside of the main plot (or even a supporting character) first, or the main character(s) doing something ordinary in their day. This is technically still part of the setting, but is more event-oriented. If you do it this way, you gradually move into the main plot instead of jumping in right away and risking leaving readers completely lost.
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    Registered User Caitlin's Avatar
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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    When I start something new, I usually drown myself in pointless information and grand schemes. This always seems to explode in my face and never get me very far.

    So my advice? Start simple and stay simple.

    My real father lost his head at King's Landing. I made a choice, and I chose wrong. ~ Theon Greyjoy

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    C'est ne pas un Cutlerine Cutlerine's Avatar
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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    For my part, I usually pick a point at random where I think the story starts and begin to write; if that doesn't turn out well, I put it to one side and start again. I usually end up with a motley collection of about three in media res openings, two or three openings that carefully build up a sense of stasis and calm before shattering it, and one or two ones that start about half a minute before the action does and are variations of each other. It's from those ones that the beginnings of my stories are usually drawn, after one or two more rewrites. Openings are the part of a story I spend longest over; I could take weeks to write them, and then just a day or two writing each chapter. My advice, then, would be to try lots of different things and see what works, especially if you're fairly new to writing, which I'm guessing from the fact that you're asking this question that you are.

    Hope that helps in some small measure.

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    ◓Gypsy Vanner Horse Kyuuketsuki's Avatar
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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    I try to start by defining the main character. Whether it's a Prologue or a First Chapter, I think knowing who the character you'll be reading about helps more than knowing the story they are involved in. I also try to establish a connection or two, even if it is a very faint and faded connection, I usually do it with parents or Pokémon, as it also helps in creating the main character, and is a good enough way for me to introduce the supporting characters without having them be the core of the story.

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    The benevolant creator ArceusAlpha493's Avatar
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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    For me, it depends. For example, in the curren fanfic me and AlexK2011 are working on which is a Pokemon/Zelda crossover, events of the story takes place a century after the events of our previous crossover. I describe the Land of Hyrule and what has changed including the movement of the Hyrulean landmass northeast and combined with the Southwestern portion of Sinnoh forming a new continent. All of this will give the audience a summary of what the setting is and how much has changed. Then I would be the quote, "This is where our story begins" which a got the idea from Paper Morio,
    I have posted a Pokemon/Zelda crossover. If you are a fan of both series, please check it out and review. :)

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    http://bmgf.bulbagarden.net/f227/pokemon-legend-zelda-twilight-princess-pokemon-zelda-crossover-124285/

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    Master Nerd ninjanerd's Avatar
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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    Ha, thanks. I kinda got impatient and wrote the beginning, a prologue, without reading this. But it turns out (long story) that I have to rewrite the prologue anyway! So, thank you all. I'll keep your advice in mind as I proceed.
    Follow a former Rocket Executive as she searches for Giovanni! Wait, a male Gardevoir? This and more on my fanfic:
    http://bmgf.bulbagarden.net/f227/where-world-giovanni-pg-15-a-124521/

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    Let's get funky! Gama's Avatar Former Head Administrator
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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    Personally I plan the story from beginning to end before I begin writing. In a fair amount of detail too. I like to know what all the main plot points are going to be as the story progresses so that I'm not going to come unstuck when I get to writing them or discover midway through that the story isn't going to work and something near the beginning needs to be changed. It's also nice to do it like that because you can put in foreshadowing. Everyone loves foreshadowing!

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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    With getting an idea, I first plan out where I'm going with the story. If I plan every last detail I end up getting bored. I plan where I want to go with the story (like key scenes, plot twists, character outlines etc). Getting there is a mixture of conscious thought and improvisation. That way, it stays fresh for me.

    In terms of my actual writing, I have the first chapter as the hook. It needs something that draws the readers in. Chapter 2/3 is when the exposition gets going.

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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    for me i generally start with a prologue, or preface and then go head-first into the action. i sometimes may start it off with an interesting quote, or a character narrating their story (this isn't always a best idea, but i manage to not start it off with "i'm blah blah and i do blah blah here's my story blah blah." i get into it at a different angle.

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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    I plan and plan, do research, then start out by writing on lined paper by hand: once I've gotten a couple of paragraphs in, I transfer to the computer and continue from there.

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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    I used to just lanch headfirst into writing, not thinking about plot, pacing, or even characters.

    Thankfully, I don't do that anymore. What I do now when starting a fanfic is plan. I try and figure out what my basic idea isand rhen I try and figure out what I want to tackle. After that I add the skeletons that represent the major events, after I've puzzled those out. Finally, I send all of this to someone who can ask me questions and critique the material.

    Once that's done, I go nuts on researching all aspects of the world and characters. That...takes quite a while 'til I'm satisfied.

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    How puzzling! Protopost's Avatar
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    Default Re: What do YOU do when starting a Fanfic?

    The first thing I do is dream something up.....might sound weird but most of my favorite story ideas came to me while I was day dreaming or just lying in bed trying to sleep. Once I get an idea I just can’t get out of my head, something that keeps tugging at my thoughts, and then I take out my idea book and write it down. Most of the time the ideas are just too small to survive on their own so I keep them there in case I want to use them within another story, but when I get an idea which I think could make a decent story I just dedicate a few pages to it and plop down a very basic outline, or skeleton as I call it. Afterwards I just think about what I want to happen in the chapter and just jump in, though I have never written a first paragraph that I like….

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