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I hear you!  I haphazardly use my commas sometimes!  I find people that learned English as a second language have better grammar than native speakers.  Probably because they took the time to learn the rules properly.  My dad's grammer was amazing!  Mine....not so much lol !

this is what I do:

" blah blah blah" Sheldon said.

or "blah blah blah."

If there is something after the quote I put the period there.  If not I put it in the quote .  I'm not sure if that's right though.

As many times as I read something before publishing, I always find stuff to correct after.  Ugh...bane of my existence!

You should give that 100 word drabbles a shot.  It's fun!

For dialog, you use a comma when someone has spoken and then you're going to add the description, as in your first example:

"Let me get you a hot beverage," Sheldon said.

You would use a period is there is nothing to come after the dialog:

Sheldon said, "Let me get you a hot beverage."

Any other punctuation, like a question or exclamation mark, would take the place of the comma if you're adding a description afterward:

"Would you like a cup of tea?" Sheldon asked.

 Catching such mistakes is another reason why I always advocated the use of a beta reader whose function is basically as an editor.  An impartial set of eyes can catch mistakes we overlook ourselves, because we know what we meant to write and think we're being clear.  I think that very few people will go back and reread a corrected story unless substantial plot changes have been made and you make some kind of big announcement that you've changed what they've already read.

 I would rather make sure I have it exactly the way I want it the first time, rather than being in such a rush to post it that I overlook things.  This can also help with having to go back and correct plot points, as going over it with your beta can help you think through the overall plot.

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When I first started writing I was hesitant to write in sex scenes so I delayed it for a loooooong time. I read a lot of M fictions in a lot of different fandoms to get the feel for the mechanics of w

I just completed my first Shamy FanFic over the labor day weekend and am in the proof-reading process before publishing.   The story includes sexual innuendos and material.  I had to be very delicate

I want every couple I write about to be sexy - the only ones I haven't tried from the main couples are Lenny and Rajily - did a bit of Howardette that was fun for a change! The way I see it, they are

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For dialog, you use a comma when someone has spoken and then you're going to add the description, as in your first example:

"Let me get you a hot beverage," Sheldon said.

You would use a period is there is nothing to come after the dialog:

Sheldon said, "Let me get you a hot beverage."

Any other punctuation, like a question or exclamation mark, would take the place of the comma if you're adding a description afterward:

"Would you like a cup of tea?" Sheldon asked.

 Catching such mistakes is another reason why I always advocated the use of a beta reader whose function is basically as an editor.  An impartial set of eyes can catch mistakes we overlook ourselves, because we know what we meant to write and think we're being clear.  I think that very few people will go back and reread a corrected story unless substantial plot changes have been made and you make some kind of big announcement that you've changed what they've already read.

 I would rather make sure I have it exactly the way I want it the first time, rather than being in such a rush to post it that I overlook things.  This can also help with having to go back and correct plot points, as going over it with your beta can help you think through the overall plot.

Interesting.  Thanks for the reply.  For your first example:

"Let me get you a hot beverage," Sheldon said.   - I've never used a comma there before.  It looks strange to me, but I guess it must be correct.  Good to know, I didn't know that rule.  Your other two examples makes sense to me completely.

I'm not a fan of using a Beta reader.  Now I know that is probably not a good thing, they add a huge amount of benefit for catching little mistakes, grammar etc.  I'm just a horribly impatient person!  Lol....working on that one!

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Interesting.  Thanks for the reply.  For your first example:

"Let me get you a hot beverage," Sheldon said.   - I've never used a comma there before.  It looks strange to me, but I guess it must be correct.  Good to know, I didn't know that rule.  Your other two examples makes sense to me completely.

I'm not a fan of using a Beta reader.  Now I know that is probably not a good thing, they add a huge amount of benefit for catching little mistakes, grammar etc.  I'm just a horribly impatient person!  Lol....working on that one!

My first few TBBT fics were posted without a beta and when I look back at them, I see things I could have done differently and might have benefited from a beta reader.  My sister helped me with a couple of them and I can see the difference.  I have certain bad writing habits that I don't always catch.

 I have a great beta reader now and I really trust her feedback--and she's very quick.  I can usually get feedback from her within a day.  The only thing that slows me down is my own slowness as a writer and a decision-maker.

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Interesting.  Thanks for the reply.  For your first example:

"Let me get you a hot beverage," Sheldon said.   - I've never used a comma there before.  It looks strange to me, but I guess it must be correct.  Good to know, I didn't know that rule.  Your other two examples makes sense to me completely.

I'm not a fan of using a Beta reader.  Now I know that is probably not a good thing, they add a huge amount of benefit for catching little mistakes, grammar etc.  I'm just a horribly impatient person!  Lol....working on that one!

I wouldn't use a comma there and then quotations, it just looks weird

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I agree.

I use a comma, wherever the speaker pauses, say to take a breath.

in the example given, there isn't a pause, because the statement is complete.

It's not about taking breaths or pausing in the case of indicating who is speaking: "blah blah blah," Sheldon said.  That's just a rule of grammar and would be found in pretty much every book that's been published.

Yes, if a speaker is going through a long speech or whatever, commas would be appropriate in certain places, but in your sentence above, "I use a comma, wherever the speaker pauses, say to take a breath," your comma usage is incorrect.  Commas are used to set apart phrases and certain parts of speech, not just randomly.

I had a friend in high school who didn't use commas properly, so when the teacher graded her paper and said she hadn't used them when she should have, she then put too many in her next paper because she was using them somewhat randomly, not really understanding how or when to use them.

In your sentence above, it would probably be more proper to write, "I use a comma wherever the speaker pauses, say, to take a breath."

A comma is used there. Here's a link to a puncuation guide that explains further.

http://theeditorsblog.net/2010/12/08/punctuation-in-dialogue/

That is an excellent guide!

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A comma is used there. Here's a link to a puncuation guide that explains further.

http://theeditorsblog.net/2010/12/08/punctuation-in-dialogue/

Thank you so much.  

I was an English Major in College, and  the use of commas were what I struggled with the most and still do.   I think I overuse them.    I am constantly going back into my FF and fixing mistakes, especially in my dialogue.    This is going to be extremely useful to me.

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A comma is used there. Here's a link to a puncuation guide that explains further.

http://theeditorsblog.net/2010/12/08/punctuation-in-dialogue/

That is awesome.  What I find funny is reading a book by a famous author and finding many mistakes that missed them and the editor.  I guess if it sells, who cares about the grammar...

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I have a question about "M" scenes.

So, far I have two in my latest story, and I feel compelled to write a third in my next chapter.   

I'm not trying to write 50 Shades of Grey or a Harlequin novel, but I am trying to show Shamy's development on the side of intimacy.  I covered the initial coitus, then a poignant moment resulting from Sheldon being a competitive jerk, and now I want to show a softer side of him as a result of his growing feelings for Amy just because he wants to.

I don't know whether to allude to it and move on, or go through the motions from beginning to end like I have done in my prior chapters.

Is this too many, in your experience, or do people like reading them?   I know I do because I know we won't get them on screen, but I'm sure not everyone feels that way.

I do not write a lot of graphic details, nor do I use obscene words, but I put enough in the scenes for the reader to know what is going on.  I actually went back into Chap 9 and replaced some of the wording in the scene after getting some feedback from SH about the use of the actual names of genital parts being a turn off in the bedroom.  When I went back and read what I wrote, I saw his point.

Perhaps any of you who have read my stories can provide me with some feedback on what you like/dislike in "M" scenes in general.  Too little?  Too many?  Too long?  Too graphic, etc?  More detail?

I know other FF writers also struggle with this, wanting to write "M" scenes but being too timid to do so not really knowing how, and the guidance is appreciated by all who have more experience in this area.

I have Chapter 13 written, but this one area is what is holding me back from publishing.

 

Oh, I keep trying to tackle Lenny, but I'm not there, yet.  I figured since my story is a Shamy FF, I've put the majority of my focus on their escapades.

Edited by jenafan

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I have written risqué scenes for other fandoms.  I do not do it any longer.  I used to read some very smutty stories than did more than just allude to the actions.  For personal reasons I do not read them any longer. 

From being in FF writing and reading since 2007, I would say that many actual like what is termed smut especially when it is tastefully done.  Is there such a thing as too much of a good thing?  I guess it depends on the writer and the reader. 

Is "bonk his brains out" an expression used in America?

If not, what would be a suitable substitute?

Not that I've heard.  "Screw his brains out" would be our substitute...

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Is this too many, in your experience, or do people like reading them?

I think people love reading them.

Some of my most enthusiastic reviews, have been in response to sex scenes, and, it seems, the rule is, the hotter the better.

I know I do because I know we won't get them on screen, but I'm sure not everyone feels that way..

You will never satisfy everyone (I'm sorry, what pun? :icon_biggrin: ), so write the story you want to write, and let the readers choose whether to read it or not.

The M Rating is there to indicate the story is hot/sexy/smutty etc., and allows people who don't want to read that type of story, to avoid it.

I know other FF writers also struggle with this, wanting to write "M" scenes but being too timid to do so not really knowing how, and the guidance is appreciated by all who have more experience in this area.

Personally, my approach to writing M Rated scenes is, I write the hottest/most outlandish thing I can imagine, read it over a couple of times, then, if I feel it necessary, tone it down, because I find it is easier to tone it down, that to tone it up.

Oh, I keep trying to tackle Lenny, but I'm not there, yet..

Me too.

Also, I find it easier to write Penny, than Lenny, so, in scenes involving Lenny, Penny has most of the dialogue.

She's also the person Sheldon or Amy tend to talk to, because she's a close friend to both.

Edited by Stephen Hawking
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I would say that many actual like what is termed smut especially when it is tastefully done.

Agreed, although, IME, it doesn't even need to be all that tastefully done. Many people just love reading about other people having sex, hence the popularity of the "Readers Stories", in Adult Magazines.

Not that I've heard.  "Screw his brains out" would be our substitute...

Cheers for that. I've replaced the word. 

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I have a question about "M" scenes.

So, far I have two in my latest story, and I feel compelled to write a third in my next chapter.   

I'm not trying to write 50 Shades of Grey or a Harlequin novel, but I am trying to show Shamy's development on the side of intimacy.  I covered the initial coitus, then a poignant moment resulting from Sheldon being a competitive jerk, and now I want to show a softer side of him as a result of his growing feelings for Amy just because he wants to.

I don't know whether to allude to it and move on, or go through the motions from beginning to end like I have done in my prior chapters.

Is this too many, in your experience, or do people like reading them?   I know I do because I know we won't get them on screen, but I'm sure not everyone feels that way.

I do not write a lot of graphic details, nor do I use obscene words, but I put enough in the scenes for the reader to know what is going on.  I actually went back into Chap 9 and replaced some of the wording in the scene after getting some feedback from SH about the use of the actual names of genital parts being a turn off in the bedroom.  When I went back and read what I wrote, I saw his point.

Perhaps any of you who have read my stories can provide me with some feedback on what you like/dislike in "M" scenes in general.  Too little?  Too many?  Too long?  Too graphic, etc?  More detail?

I know other FF writers also struggle with this, wanting to write "M" scenes but being too timid to do so not really knowing how, and the guidance is appreciated by all who have more experience in this area.

I have Chapter 13 written, but this one area is what is holding me back from publishing.

 

Oh, I keep trying to tackle Lenny, but I'm not there, yet.  I figured since my story is a Shamy FF, I've put the majority of my focus on their escapades.

Well, just speaking for myself, I like a good M scene!  I'm not sure which authors you read, but in Hazelra's story, The Caustic Cohabitation Conundrum (Sheldon 5), the sex scene actually made me cry...and I don't cry easily.  It was graphic enough...but not too graphic.  The scene she painted was so vivid, and I could feel the emotions that were built up between the two of them.  She really is a powerful writer.

I do like graphic scenes done well.  There are a handful of authors that write this in a detailed, but beautiful way,

I gotta tell you...I'm biting my nails about writing my scene in my story!  I'm committed to it...the whole story is about them having sex!  BUT, I think, I'll inject enough humour and light heartedness into it, that it's not too awkward for me to write.  Still nervous about it.  I'm a writer, that likes to paint the situation, and then left the nitty gritty details left unsaid.  This will be the first time I will try to write the "unsaid".  Oh boy....  I have a feeling I will not be overly graphic, but just enough.

If you want some examples of scenes I thought were really great M scenes, PM me!

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Well, just speaking for myself, I like a good M scene!  I'm not sure which authors you read, but in Hazelra's story, The Caustic Cohabitation Conundrum (Sheldon 5), the sex scene actually made me cry...and I don't cry easily.  It was graphic enough...but not too graphic.  The scene she painted was so vivid, and I could feel the emotions that were built up between the two of them.  She really is a powerful writer.

I do like graphic scenes done well.  There are a handful of authors that write this in a detailed, but beautiful way,

I gotta tell you...I'm biting my nails about writing my scene in my story!  I'm committed to it...the whole story is about them having sex!  BUT, I think, I'll inject enough humour and light heartedness into it, that it's not too awkward for me to write.  Still nervous about it.  I'm a writer, that likes to paint the situation, and then left the nitty gritty details left unsaid.  This will be the first time I will try to write the "unsaid".  Oh boy....  I have a feeling I will not be overly graphic, but just enough.

If you want some examples of scenes I thought were really great M scenes, PM me!

Thank you, nibbler.   As one of my most detailed reviewers, and someone who reviews every chapter I write, I appreciate your feedback very much.   I'm waiting for Shamours' to come next on my latest chapter.  You two seem to follow each other on my review page.

Sex has been a significant part of my latest story because it's something that has yet to be explored with Shamy on screen. My imagination has run wild with all the conversations they could be having, Penny's obsessions with knowing everything, etc.   While it exists now, Sheldon still struggles to accept that what they are doing is normal, and that he is normal for wanting it.   In my last chapter, I really brought out his annoying side to show that he is still conflicted, but in Chap 13 I go inside his head a bit more in his conversation with Leonard to show that things aren't what everyone seems with him.   So, when he goes back to Amy, the reason for his interest has changed, and I want to paint that picture.  However, I don't want people to go, "Oh my God, can they  get out of the bedroom, already?"    At the same time, when people start having sex for the first time, that's usually where the spend their time in the beginning.  

Still, I want to write what I want to write, but I don't want overwhelm the reader with too much, either.   To be honest, the last reviews scared me a little because my last chapter did stir some emotions up, but then everyone says they look forward to another, so perhaps they are seeing if I will fix where they think Sheldon went wrong in Chap. 13.  It seems that even though Amy was okay with the way things turned out, because she understands how Sheldon operates, some readers weren't as forgiving.   So, I succeeded in my efforts to show that Sheldon may be getting better at some things, the man can still be a tough pill to swallow.

The reason I post on the thread and not PM, is because I feel others can benefit from whatever response or feedback I get from my concerns. Perhaps they have the same ones.

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I'm frustrated with my latest story for a similar reason. Plus although they were a canon couple I'm afraid it won't be too popular with fans.  I'm trying to write a Penny/Kurt celebratory 'coupling' after they've been cast in "Serial Ape-ist 1". I tried to make it rather animalistic even acrobatic (given Kurt's physique I thought it would be his 'jam') with little emotional connection ( I thought that was what was missing from Penny's relationships prior to Leonard) but it's coming out too tab A into slot B.:girlwerewolf:

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I'm frustrated with my latest story for a similar reason. Plus although they were a canon couple I'm afraid it won't be too popular with fans.  I'm trying to write a Penny/Kurt celebratory 'coupling' after they've been cast in "Serial Ape-ist 1". I tried to make it rather animalistic even acrobatic (given Kurt's physique I thought it would be his 'jam') with little emotional connection ( I thought that was what was missing from Penny's relationships prior to Leonard) but it's coming out too tab A into slot B.:girlwerewolf:

Penny and Kurt would be an interesting read!  I don't think I've ever read that one yet.  If you like writing a bit of comedy, I think that one will be a good one for it, with Kurt being a bit on the dim side.  It would be funny if Kurt was taking Penny's cue's all wrong, and they get into a bit of a funny situation.  I think you hit the nail on the head with the lack of emotional connection with Kurt.  That is something special she shares with Leonard.

Here's a question:  What's your FanFic pet peeves?

Mine:

1.  Unfinished stories - Lol...now I'm guilty of that too now (temporarily), but promise to finish it later sometime.  In general, I like it when stories get completed.

2.  Overly Texan Sheldon - I don't mind it creeping in a little bit, I don't like when he goes full on Texas Ranger.

3.  Penny written just as a sex object.  I don't like her written vapid and stupid....she has a strong personality.  Sex scenes with her are fine, but if she's only in the scene so Leonard can get his rocks off, it annoys me.

Ok, I have a lot more, but I'll stop there for now.

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My pet peeves:

1.  Characters written OOC.   I don't mind non-canon anymore, as long as the characters are themselves in the story.   If a character trait is going to change, then provide some background as to what caused the development to make it believable.

2.  Dialogue without details to show the setting or mood of the one speaking.   He said, she said, he said, she said, he said, she said just doesn't cut it.

3.  Extremely long paragraphs that make a story hard to read.   As I work for a European company, I've learned that when you have an international audience, it's best to break things up so that people who don't read English as a first language can better understand what they are reading.

4.  Any male, whether it be Leonard or Sheldon being portrayed as not knowing what he is doing with his woman in the bedroom.   If I am going to read or write a sex scene, the man better know what he is doing or there's no point in reading it.   I realize that some writers have the gift of writing awkwardness in sex scenes and bringing in the humor by doing so. I just don't particularly enjoy reading them.   (One exception:  I read a FF where Sheldon was reading the back of a condom wrapper during the moment to try to figure out how to put it on, and Amy got impatient and ripped it open with her teeth.   That was hilarious, but I digress.)

5.  Unfinished stories, too.   It's difficult to like a story that you never know how it will end.

Edited by jenafan
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My pet peeves:

1.  Characters written OOC.   I don't mind non-canon anymore, as long as the characters are themselves in the story.   If a character trait is going to change, then provide some background as to what caused the development to make it believable.

2.  Dialogue without details to show the setting or mood of the one speaking.   He said, she said, he said, she said, he said, she said just doesn't cut it.

3.  Extremely long paragraphs that make a story hard to read.   As I work for a European company, I've learned that when you have an international audience, it's best to break things up so that people who don't read English as a first language can better understand what they are reading.

4.  Any male, whether it be Leonard or Sheldon being portrayed as not knowing what he is doing with his woman in the bedroom.   If I am going to read or write a sex scene, the man better know what he is doing or there's no point in reading it.   I realize that some writers have the gift of writing awkwardness in sex scenes and bringing in the humor by doing so. I just don't particularly enjoy reading them.   (One exception:  I read a FF where Sheldon was reading the back of a condom wrapper during the moment to try to figure out how to put it on and Amy got impatient and ripped it open with her teeth.   That was hilarious, but I digress.)

5.  Unfinished stories, too.   It's difficult to like a story that you never know how it will end.

Agree with everything you wrote....except perhaps #4 for me.

I'm going to attempt #4 with my latest story.  Sheldon isn't going to be horrible, but he's definitely not going to be an expert.  I wanted to write it somewhat awkwardly and sweet...I wonder what you will think of it when I write it.  Interesting!  Hopefully you will read it, and let me know what you think.

Oh I thought of another one

1.  Stories that are overly long with no point and the main plotline ended 20 chapters ago.  If it's long and still plot driven then ok. 

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Agree with everything you wrote....except perhaps #4 for me.

I'm going to attempt #4 with my latest story.  Sheldon isn't going to be horrible, but he's definitely not going to be an expert.  I wanted to write it somewhat awkwardly and sweet...I wonder what you will think of it when I write it.  Interesting!  Hopefully you will read it, and let me know what you think.

Oh I thought of another one

1.  Stories that are overly long with no point and the main plotline ended 20 chapters ago.  If it's long and still plot driven then ok. 

Yes, I was probably a little harsher than I meant to be with #4.    Let me clarify. I didn't mean to imply that men have to be an expert at sex in FF.   However, they should know how sex works and where everything is supposed to go, especially as scientists.   I don't care for a 30+ year old man being portrayed as a naïve teenager who needs a map to know where to put his body parts, or loses control of himself just because he sees a woman's naked breast for the first time.  I prefer for the guy to have some dignity.

I think your M scene is going to be wonderful, and I love the way you are developing it so far.

Edited by jenafan

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Yes, I was probably a little harsher than I meant to be with #4.    Let me clarify. I didn't mean to imply that men have to be an expert at sex in FF.   However, they should know how sex works and where everything is supposed to go, especially as scientists.   I don't care for a 30+ year old man being portrayed as a naïve teenager who needs a map to know where to put his body parts, or loses control of himself just because he sees a woman's naked breast for the first time.  I prefer for the guy to have some dignity.

I think your M scene is going to be wonderful, and I love the way you are developing it so far.

Ooooh...sorry I misunderstood.  Yes I agree, he is not stupid and I'm sure understands quite a bit.  He's simply inexperienced, as is Amy.  I don't like when it's made that he doesn't have the slightest clue about anything!

Thanks!  I'm afraid I've made a bit of an obscure choice for Sheldon's costume, but I just love it so much that I'm sticking with it.  Thanks for the nice comment! = )

Edited by nibbler747

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In regard to Sheldon being inexperienced, I don't mind him being naive or a little uptight about how to actually do things.  I can see him doing something like reading up about it in the book they got him, but just like reading about how to swim or how to rock climb or how to drive, the reality is different and something he can't really anticipate, especially because he doesn't think about sex the way others do.

 On the other side of the coin, I hate when Sheldon takes one look at Amy's body and turns into a sex machine, knowing exactly what to do to give her multiple orgasms, etc..

 I think that writing sex scenes between Sheldon and Amy can be a difficult thing to balance, between their growing desire and their absolute inexperience.

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