13 Steps to writing a GREAT novel
Good morning my dear readers! I have decided to write a novel. I have started many over the years to put them aside and not finish. So after much research, I have devised a list of great tips on how to start and FINISH writing a novel!
IT IS A DELICIOUS THING TO WRITE, TO BE NO LONGER YOURSELF BUT TO MOVE IN AN ENTIRE UNIVERSE OF YOUR OWN CREATION.GUSTAVE FLAUBRT
Tip #1 For writing: Determine what you want to write about for writing a novel
If this is your first novel, pick something you are familiar with. You have to know something about what you are writing. If you want to base your article in a small town in Maine but have never been to Maine then you might have a problem. See where I am going with this?
Tip #2 Determine your outline.
Write down your beginning, middle and end. This will help keep you on track with your novel.
Tip #3 Create your characters.
Who is the main character? Or characters? Make sure you are introducing in each character in detail. You want your reader to feel like they know them.
Tip #4 Develop a plot.
What is the main idea of your novel? Make sure that it coincides with your characters. For instances, do not make your 90 year old grandma the main character who just won a bull riding contest. I mean I guess that is possible but highly unlikely.
Tip #5 Chose your point of view.
Who is telling the story? The main character, a narrator? It is going to be told in first, second or third person. Once you decided continue this through out the entire novel.
Tip #6 Research.
Even if you are writing about your own home town do some research. Maybe it was 20 years ago the last time you were there. A lot may of changed since then. If you are 40 but your main character is 20 then you really need to talk to some 20 year old to learn their slang, favorite music, what they like to do. This is the little meat and potatoes to fill your pages.
Tip #7 Use your resources.
Use a dictionary, thesaurus, and atlas. You want a large word bank so you are not using the same adjectives and adverbs through out the entire book.
Tip #8 Start the book with the main problem.
Your first chapter should introduce the conflict. This way the readers attention is immediately hooked. Now be careful. You do not want to give it all away in those first 15 pages or so but definitely introduce the idea. From here you can build on the plot and introduce characters along the way.
Tip #9 Again, make sure you have an outline.
Know where your characters are starting, what is going to happen and where you want the novel to end. Even give yourself a rough estimate of how many chapters to allow to the beginning, middle and end.
Tip #10 Set a schedule.
Set aside a time each day to work on your novel. Set a word count to complete each day. Most novels are approximately 10-15K words.
Tip #11 The Cover must be great!
No one is going to pick up a book if the cover does not catch their eye! Make a great cover!
Tip #12 Edit, Proof, Edit again.
Have a trusted friend or family member read your novel. Get their honest opinion and make changes as necessary.
Tip #13 Now get it out there!
Start sending it to publishers, put it on amazon as an Ebook. Release small inserts on your blog to pique interest. It will not happen overnight but do not give up.
I hope you find these tips helpful. I also use a website, Grammarly, to help with sentence structure, grammar, and punctuation. It makes the process just a little easier.
Please check out these two posts related to my short story! I hope you enjoy it!