Maybe you’ve always dreamed of writing a book or you’ve recently thought of the perfect storyline, either way it can be hard to take that first step towards actually writing the book. To help get the process started, here are 10 top tips for new authors.
1. Read other authors
One of the best things you can do as a new author is to read as much as you can. Surround yourself with the words of great authors, it will inspire you and remind you why you love writing. That motivation will come in handy down the road (see tip #8)
2. Know what you’re going to write
This may sound obvious but before you start writing the book itself, write out what the story will be. If you don’t know what story you are telling, you won’t have anything to write. Sit down and write out the plot line, then expand it to a one page outline that spells out the beginning, middle and end of the story. This will serve as a reference as you write the book.
3. Know your audience
Understand who your readers will be and write the book that will best meet their needs. Whether it’s a particular genre style or a certain topic you’re well versed in, knowing who your readers are is key to writing a book that will resonate with them.
4. Carry a notebook
It doesn’t have to be a physical notebook, these days almost all phones have a notebook feature. The point is, you never know when inspiration will happen or when you’ll think of a solution to a plot issue. Be sure you have a method to capture these thoughts, don’t assume you’ll remember it later when you’re home because you most likely will not.
5. Write every day
If writing isn’t your day job, this may seem impossible but it can be done! You don’t have to write a chapter a day, instead aim for something smaller. Just make sure you are writing. For example, set a goal to write 1 page per day. This will help you cultivate the habit of writing.
6. Remove distractions
When you sit down to write, make sure your focus is on writing. Turn off your cell phone or leave it in other room, don’t open the internet on your computer and make sure family members know you don’t want to be disturbed.
7. Feedback is Important
As the author, it is impossible for you to be objective about your book. Therefore, you must look for feedback along the way from others. Ask trusted family members or friends to share their opinions, hire a professional reviewer or join an author’s group
8. Motivation is key
Any author will tell you that there is a point during the writing process where you lose motivation. Perhaps you thought you’d be done writing by now or you question whether anyone will read your book. No matter the reason, you will probably feel overwhelmed at some point. Keep a reminder close by that will help you remember your passion and why you want to write.
9. Save editing for the end
When you are writing, don’t worry about anything other than getting the words down on paper. There will be plenty of time for going through and editing once it is finished.
10. Finish the book
This is another one that sounds obvious but countless books go unfinished each year. Writing a book, especially your first one, can seem overwhelming. But you have a story to tell, make sure you tell it. Once you have committed to writing a book, take all the necessary steps to make sure you finish it.
you finish it.