Whether you want to write a book as a beginner or are an experienced writer, starting a new book can be daunting. In fact, even the most seasoned writers can feel like they're back at square one when it comes to starting a new book. Fortunately, there are some things you can do to ease the transition and make the process of writing a book as smooth as possible. Here are a few tips on how to start writing a book:
1. Know Your Genre
When I first started writing my first book, I had no idea what genre I was writing in. I just knew that I wanted to write a story of a sixteen-year-old girl who deals with the dysfunction of a parent-less family and the thrills of new love, all set in the rural countryside of Montana. So, I wrote and wrote and wrote, not really knowing what I was doing. It wasn't until I finished the book and started shopping it around to agents (prior to deciding to go the self-publishing route) that I realized that my book didn't fit neatly into any one genre. In fact, it was a bit of a mishmash of genres, which made it very difficult to market.
Eventually, I figured out that the best way to sell my book was to market it as a "coming of age" story. But I have to say-- if I had been known my genre inside and out, it surely would've made my life a lot easier in the long run.
It's always critical to know the conventions of your chosen genre inside and out. For instance, if you're writing a mystery, it's important to know the basics of clue-planting and red herrings. If you're writing a romance, you need to know how to paced the relationship between your hero and heroine. And if you're writing a fantasy, well... good luck with that. There are so many things to keep track of, from world-building to magic systems to character arcs. It can be enough to make your head spin.
So before you start writing your book, take the time to familiarize yourself with your chosen genre. It'll save you a lot of headaches (and embarrassment) down the road.
2. Outline Your Book
When it comes to writing a book, there are two different approaches you can take. You can either wing it and hope for the best, or you can sit down and outline your book before you start writing. If you're thinking of taking the latter approach, then you're in luck!
Outlining your book will help you stay on track, help you avoid plot holes, and ultimately increase your chances of success. Once you have a outline for your book, you'll have a clear roadmap to follow. This will help you to stay focused and avoid getting sidetracked as you write. You'll know exactly what needs to be included in each chapter, and this will save you a lot of time and effort. Additionally, an outline will make your book much smoother and more enjoyable to read.
3. Write Every Day
If you're anything like me, starting a new book can be both exhilarating and terrifying. On the one hand, you have this blank slate to fill with whatever story you want to tell. On the other hand, that blank slate can be pretty darn intimidating. The thought of putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard) and crafting something that people will actually want to read can be daunting, to say the least.
That's why I think it's important to write every day when you're starting a new book. Even if it's just a few hundred words, getting something down on the page will help you to get a better feel for your story and your characters.
When you make a commitment to write every day, even if it's just for a few minutes, you're more likely to get those ideas flowing again. And once you start writing, it's often easier to keep going. That's because writing is like any other skill - the more you do it, the better you get at it. So if you're struggling to get started on your new book, pledge to write a little bit each day, and before long you'll be back in the flow of things. Who knows - you might even surprise yourself with how much progress you can make!
4. Set Word Count Goals
It's no secret that writing a book is a daunting task. Not only do you have to come up with a compelling story, but you also have to find the time to sit down and actually write the thing. And let's not even get started on editing and revisions.
But one of the most important things you can do when starting a new book is to set a word count goal. This will help keep you focused and on track, and it will also help you gauge your progress. After all, there's nothing worse than getting halfway through a book and realizing that you're only 10,000 words in.
So if you're looking to increase your chances of actually finishing that book, make sure to set a word count goal. And then try your best to stick to it.
5. Find Your Writing Space
There's something magical about finding the perfect writing space. It's like the universe is saying, "Yes, this is where you're meant to be." Of course, it doesn't always happen that way. Sometimes you have to search high and low for the right spot. But when you find it, it's worth all the effort.
Your writing space should be comfortable and conducive to creativity. It should be a place where you can escape the outside world and focus on your work. But more importantly, it should be a place that inspires you. Maybe it's a cozy nook in your apartment or a secluded spot in your backyard. Wherever it is, make sure it's somewhere you feel comfortable spending a lot of time.
So if you're starting a new writing project, take some time to find your perfect writing space. It might just make all the difference in the world.