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Friday, January 25, 2013

Tips for writing your very own book.

Writing isn't always as easy as it seems. Some writers easily have the story they want to write down in their head, but can't seem to get the words flowing out onto paper. I know I've had this problem a lot, especially  when I was writing my first novel, Victims of a Tragedy. Writing that novel taught me a lot about different writing strategies that I can now use today and am about to share with you. Just remember these are just tips developed by me from my own experiences, so they may not be the best for everyone. You just have to find what works best for you, but anyways, lets get started.

1. Write what you want to write
  • Choose a topic you will be interested in writing about for a long period of time. Choosing something boring to you will just most likely cause you to give up early and loose all that time you put into writing that manuscript.
  • Also, write what you want, when you want. A lot of people tend to think they need to write their book  all in order, but that's not necessarily a good idea. Write what you feel inspired to write about. If you write your entire book in order from first to last page, chances are that you sometimes are going to be writing about stuff you don't feel like writing about that day, and if you are writing about something you don't feel like writing about, then it probably won't be an enjoyable part of the book to your readers. If you feel like writing chapter 7 instead of chapter 4 one day, then write chapter 7 and do chapter 4 another day. You don't need to write the whole book in order because when you are finished with your book, you should be able to just piece your writings together.
2. Plan what you are going to write before you start
  • It's good to plan what you are going to write before you start putting pen to paper. When writing my first novel, I made no plan beforehand. I just went strait to my computer and started writing. I found myself sitting at my computer for hours at a time and only getting one or two small paragraphs written. This is because I had no idea what to write about. I would have to sit behind my computer and think about what would happen next, which got a bit frustrating.
  • I now make outlines to plan my stories. You can do the same, but there are many different ways to plan out your books before writing them down. You just have to find what works best for you
3. Get inspired!
  • Get inspired before you write. It's good to have that extra motivation when putting your ideas on paper. It just makes your writing that much more enjoyable to read. Before writing, I will read another book with a similar genre to the story I am writing at the time. I get inspiration from the powerful statements and ideas of other writers, but there are many other ways you can get your inspiration. I hear some people listen to music before they write and that seems to work great for some writers. You may also get inspiration from being out in nature, or exploring an art museum, and etc. You just need to find what inspires you, and use that to your advantage.

4. Write ideas down
  • When writing my first novel, I would come up with amazing ideas to put in my novel, but I would forget what those ideas were before I got the chance to write them down. Carry something with you everywhere you go that you can use to write ideas down, no matter where you are, as soon as those ideas pop up in your head. I now carry around a small notebook in my backpack to school everyday in which I write down any ideas i get throughout the day. I suggest you do the same.

5. Don't stress about the publication
  • I would always stress out about who I would go to to get my book published, or who would even want to publish it. Stressing out about that really gave me lots of doubts about my book before I even finished it and that made me want to give up. This is why it's important to not stress out about this when you're still writing your book. It's great to do a little bit of research into publishers around, but don't freak out about it because it will really affect your writing. Just have fun writing your book, finish it, then you can stress out about the publication.

6. Do not write on a schedule
  • Some people might argue with me on this one, but in my opinion it's a horrible idea to write on a set time schedule. If you simply don't feel like writing at one time, but do it anyways because it is your scheduled time to write, you won't have fun writing it, and your readers won't have fun reading it. Or if you feel like writing because you are full of inspiration, but put it off because it's not your scheduled time to write, you're making a huge mistake. You could have tons of great ideas to put into your story, but aren't because it's simply not your time to write. I suggest you write whenever you feel like it.
7. Do your research
  • If you are writing about something you're not so sure about, do your research. Don't just guess. This saves a lot of time in the long run, especially during the editing process. For example, if you are writing about a court case and have no idea how a court case works, research it! Get to know everything about the names and terms in a court case, how the debate of a court case works, and anything else you can find.
  • Another example is from when I was writing my novel, Victims of a Tragedy. The very first part of the book I wrote about a girl struggling to get her prom dress on. During the editing process, my editor told me it didn't sound like a girl was talking at all and she could definitely tell that it was written by a boy. I wasn't offended by this because, well, I am a boy and I don't wear prom dresses, but it was something I had to go back and research a bit and rewrite during the editing process. It saves a whole lot of time if you just do your research right away. Just Google it!

8. Don't give up
  • Don't give up on any story that you start. In the end it's something you can be proud of. Don't let any doubts about your writing hold you back.
  • Also Don't quit writing after the first book, keep on going! Most authors are embarrassed by their first book, I most certainly was, but writing a book is a huge accomplishment whether it's published or not. Just learn from the mistakes you've made writing your first book and start fresh with a whole new book under all new circumstances.
I really hope these tips help you out. Remember though that these tips are all developed by myself through experiences of my own, so they may not be the best of advice to everyone. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment or use any of the resources from my contact info to get a hold of me. 

Thanks for reading, and good luck writing!