There are a lot of people out there who want to write a book. In 2014, 325,142 people signed up for NaNoWriMo, or National Novel Writing Month. As you can gather, that means that 325,142 people wanted to try to write a novel in one month, and that doesn’t even include all the people who want to write a book but don’t or can’t try NaNoWriMo. But how many people actually do it? If you’re one of those people who wants to start writing a book but hasn’t yet, here’s what you should know from someone who has been there.
What You Need To Know To Start Writing a Book
You need a plan – There are people who write by the seat of their pants. They do exist! While I think that it’s definitely possible to write a lot without a plan, in my personal opinion, it isn’t possible to write a full 50,000 words without a general plan. In order to keep going without getting stuck, I strong suggest having an idea of where you’re going. I used the Snowflake Method to outline TLM (the novel I’m currently working on), and it was so helpful. I think at the very least you should know bare bones of your plot.
It’s not going to be easy – Writing a novel is hard work, but it’s so worth it. Again, there are 50,000 words in a novel! Even if the first 30,000 words are easy, you’ll hit some struggles at some point. That’s just what happens. Which sometimes means …
You will hit writer’s block – Every single writer hits this. It’s just a part of writing. So here’s 5 ways to beat writer’s block and another 7 ways to combat writer’s block. Everyone deals with it differently, so find what helps you and just persevere. How people respond to writer’s block separates the writer from the published author. Some people hit writer’s block and end up abandoning their book. Others stick with it even when it’s difficult and end up finishing their novels. You have to remember what your goal is (finishing your novel) and do what needs to be done to achieve that goal.
It’s doable – It is absolutely difficult. There is no doubt about it. But it’s also completely doable! You need to find what works for you to stay motivated. At the end of the day, you just need to sit down and write. No matter your writing experience, you are capable of writing a novel and you shouldn’t let anyone stand in between you and that novel. And that includes yourself!
When writing your first draft, try to get the words out without spending too much time nitpicking them – It’s so tempting to spend a lot of time writing the perfect phrase. But if you’re not careful, you’ll drain your excitement for your novel and your focus. Don’t worry about getting the words just right. No matter who you are or your writing skill, your first draft will suck. It’s just a part of the process. So I advise getting the words out, getting the story out, so that you can turn a sucky first draft into an amazing book.
If you’re thinking about self-publishing, check out my series Self-Publishing Sunday for everything you need to know!