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Though fiction, by definition, is made up, to succeed it must be believable. Even fantasies must make sense. Once the reader has accepted your premise, what follows must be logical. Effective research is key to adding the specificity necessary to make this work. When my character uses a weapon, I learn everything I can about it.
Accurate details add flavor and authenticity. Get details wrong and your reader loses confidence—and interest—in your story. Consult Atlases and World Almanacs to confirm geography and cultural norms and find character names that align with the setting, period, and customs.
If your Middle Eastern character flashes someone a thumbs up, be sure that means the same in his culture as it does in yours. YouTube and online search engines can yield tens of thousands of results. Just be careful to avoid wasting time getting drawn into clickbait videos Use a Thesaurusbut not to find the most exotic word.
People love to talk about their work, and often such conversations lead to more story ideas. Resist the urge to shortchange the research process. Add specifics the way you would add seasoning to food. Choose your point of view. The perspective from which you tell your story can be complicated because it encompasses so much.
The cardinal rule is one perspective character per scene, but I prefer only one per chapter, and ideally one per novel. No hopping into the heads of other characters.
What your POV character sees, hears, touches, smells, tastes, and thinks is all you can convey. Most novels are written in Third Person Limited. That means limited to one perspective character at a time, and that character ought to be the one with the most at stake. First Person makes is easiest to limit yourself to that one perspective character, but Third-Person Limited is most popular for a reason.
Read current popular fiction to see how the bestsellers do it.
Then he finds out that person told someone else something entirely different, and his actions prove he was lying to both. Begin in media res in the midst of things. You must grab your reader by the throat on page one.
It means avoiding too much scene setting and description and getting to the good stuff—the guts of the story. The goal of every sentence, in fact of every wordis to force the reader to read the next. The reason is obvious: Your job as a writer is not to make readers imagine things as you see them, but to trigger the theaters of their minds.
Give them just enough to engage their mental projectors. Want to download this step guide so you can read it whenever you wish? Now, everything he does to get out of that terrible trouble must make it progressively worse.
They give a private eye a nice car, weapon, girlfriend, apartment, office, rich client. Rather, you should pull out from under him anything that makes his life easy.How to Write a Novel 10 Steps from New York Times Bestselling Author Michelle Richmond. Download your free Novel Planning Worksheets & First 20 Pages Checklist.
T he first thing you need to know. The 5-Step Writing Process: From Brainstorming to Publishing. Every writer follows his or her own writing process. Often the process is a routine that comes naturally and is not a step-by-step guide to which writers refer.
47 thoughts on “ How to Write Your First Novel: 6 Pieces of Advice ” Writer87 February 20, at pm. Hello Steve, I have also talked about, thought about, planned, started, stopped, and wanted to write my novel. Lately I’ve been side tracked on writing a family history/memoir. Go step-by-step through plotting and writing a novel.
Learn how to find and develop ideas, brainstorm stories from that first spark of inspiration, develop the right characters, setting, plots and subplots, as well as teach you how to identify where your novel fits in the market, and if . If you’re anything like me, writing a novel will prove the hardest thing you have ever done.
If it was easy, everyone would do it. But with this repeatable plan, you can learn how to write a novel. Write a novel in a month!
Go step-by-step through plotting and writing a novel. Learn how to find and develop ideas, brainstorm stories from that first spark of inspiration, develop the right characters, setting, plots and subplots, as well as teach you how to identify where your novel fits in the market, and if . But you only have to know about the small section of the iceberg above the water to get that first book written! Here are the basics. [If you want to get started right now, check out my course: How to Write a Novel: From First Draft to Finished Manuscript.] (1) Understand what you’re writing and why. A synopsis is a summary of your book. Literary agents and editors may ask to see one if you’re writing an adult novel, a memoir, or a kids novel (young adult, middle grade). The purpose of a synopsis request is for the agent or editor to evaluate what happens in the three acts of your story to decide if the characters, plot and conflict warrant a complete read of your manuscript.
Track your progress. Get pep talks and support. Meet fellow writers online and in person.