It occurred to me the other day that some of the slang that writers use isn't always easily understandable to the uninitiated. Therefore, here are a few simple terms and phrases to help you navigate writers' websites, chat rooms, and other sites:
Beta reader (or betas) - (n) readers who give critiques and advice on a writer's work in progress. This step usually takes place when the book has been completely finished, but before it is sent off to a publisher or agent.
Dialogue tags (or speech tags) - (n) those bits of description that are conjoined to a characters dialogue. For example: "But, Henry," Kristen said with tears in her eyes, "I thought you liked yogurt."
Fan Fic - fan fiction (n) a type of fiction written by fans of pre-existing stories, especially those in a television series. For example, many people who enjoy Star Trek and The X-Files write fan fic about the series.
Genre - (n) a subcategory or type of fiction such as fantasy, historical romance, horror, etc.
ISBN - International Standard Book Number (n) a unique identification code for books that are published internationally.
MC - main character (n) the protagonist or main character in a work of fiction. For example, Ishmael is the mc in Herman Melville's Moby Dick.
POV - point of view (n) the perspective from which a book is written. First person and third person points of view are most common; however, second person pov is also possible.
Scifi - Science fiction (n) a genre of literature usually involving, although not limited to, space and/or time travel, advanced technology, interplanetary exploration, etc.
Voice - (n) the tone and style of a story, oftentimes the thumbprint of the author. Voice includes such things as word choice, sentence length, pacing, etc.
WC - word count (n) the number of words in a particular story or book.
WIP - work in progress (n) the manuscript(s) that the author is currently working on.
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