So, you want to write a book, but don't know where to start
You had a great idea for a book, or you have a wealth of knowledge on a specific subject, and you're thinking of writing a book. You sit down in front of your computer, but nothing happens. You frantically start typing away, but realize you don't know what you're doing. That's OK. Writing a book is a lot harder than you might think.
I am not any sort of expert. I am not an editor. I don't work for a publishing company. My only qualification is that I've written multiple books, the first of which will be published this year.
I am not going to tell you how to write your book. Everyone has a different process. What works for one person, may not work for someone else. The way I write a book may not be the same way you write your book. But what I can do, is give you some tips and tricks, resources, information, to help get your started. In the end, you're the one who is going to write your book. These are my suggestions to get your started, nothing else.
Most book ideas start with the "what if" question. What if this happened? What if there was suddenly magic in the world? What if the zombie apocalypses happened? What if Germany had won WWII? What if a dragon-shifter fell in love with a human? There are infinite "what if" questions.
You need to take that "what if" and build on it. Even if you've read a book, or watched a movie that has this same "what if", you have to remember that you will bring your own perspective. One writing prompt given to ten people, will result in ten different stories. Unless you are completely scamming off a book/show, using the same "what if" will result in a different book.
But where do you go from there?
Easy! Expand on that idea. There are three things that make a good story/book.
You will want to build these things equally.
Too much plot leaves out character development and growth. You have too much happening back to back, the readers won't be given the time to care about your characters. They won't care that these things are happening to them.
Too much character development will slow down your story. It's great that your character is learning a valuable lesson, but why did they have to learn it? What happened to them to facilitate that growth?
World building is a big topic. There are authors, and I'm sure you can think of a few who go way too hard, who put WAY too much information. If you took the excess world building out of their books, I'm sure it would cut the book in half. While world building is important, you don't need to spend PAGES on the history of a place or person. This slows the book down.
I have blogs that help you start to build your world and your characters, so I'm not going to go too deep into it here. But if you want to read about different world building considerations, or the foundation for character building, go check out my other posts.
For my non-fiction writer friends, you may be reading this, and thinking, this doesn't apply to me. And you're right. Depending on what kind of non-fiction you are writing, you may not have characters or world building. You're writing in the real world! But don't worry, I've got you.
While this is great to start with, you're probably wondering when I'll get to the good stuff. How do you WRITE the book!?
Well, the beginning process will be discussed in the next blog! Don't worry, I won't make you wait for it. Go check out, "Are you a pantser or a plotter?"!!