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How to Start Writing

May 29, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 139

How to start?

So, you want to write? Since the publishing of my first book, I've been getting a lot of requests; mostly asking me to help people write. If you're one of those people who always have an incomplete idea for your next book, this one's for you.

Starting is hard, rest is a piece of cake

Indeed, the hardest thing to do is to start.

So, you have an idea of what your next book might be about. A vague idea who the characters might be. And you wish more than anything to hold your book, finished in your hands.

All you need to do is start writing.

If you have a vague idea of the plot, there are a few tricks I learned to get you started.

  • Think of the place where the action takes place. Is it set in the 21st century? Is it in the Middle Ages? Is it a place that exists or is it an imaginary one, where everything is possible? This is usually how you should start a book; by describing the surroundings in which the story is set. If, for example, your character is ( like in "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" ) a poor kid, living with his whole family in a shabby old cottage in the middle of London, start by describing London in that time of the year. Then move closer, describe the street in which the cottage is located, the people walking through it, what are they wearing, are they cold? After that, move on to describe the cottage itself; is it old, what wood are the walls made of, are the windows clean and well taken care of, or are they dirty and cracked? Move on to describe the atmosphere in the cottage. Who's where? What are they doing? How do they feel? Are they happy and cozy or sad and lonely?
  • If this is not the way you want to start your book, you can begin by describing the event which started the whole series of events you are writing about. If, for instance, your character is involved in a terrible car crash and ends up immobilized, but later finds out that by being in that accident he becomes entitled to a fortune which makes him the center of interest for the most peculiar people, some of which the most powerful men alive, and that consequentially turns his whole life upside down, begin by describing the accident. Keep in mind that the first few lines or paragraphs are the first thing the reader is going to see. It has to be interesting and inviting. If however you start out by describing something completely irrelevant and boring, you are going to drive the readers away. Keep it simple, keep it interesting.
  • Think about your main character/s. The story is most likely going to revolve around them so think about what they look like. Are they male of female? Do they have long or short hair? Is it blonde, black, brown or perhaps purple? Are they brave, curious, smart or quiet? Do they have any family? Is their family relevant? How did they get involved in all of this? It should help to write down a portrait of the character. Even if you don't put every part of it in the actual book, it will make them clearer in your mind, you'll understand how they'd think, how they'd react in a certain situation, what they'd say. This is important. Your character has to always be true to himself, and if his personality isn't all worked out in your head, the book will probably be bad.
  • Think about the plot. Typically, there should be an introduction ( of the characters, as well as the plot ), a plot ( or where the whole situation tangles itself ) and a denouement, where it untangles itself, in a good or a bad way. Think about what the book is about. When the happenings...well, happen enough, think about what would mess the whole thing up. What would really make things hard for the main character? What decisions would he be forced to make? Who would he have to give up? If you want the reader to really get sucked in your book, make them like the character. Do the things that would really make the readers feel like they've become close with it. And then, a rule of thumb: kill the character. Metaphorically, of course. Or not. You could send them away, get them in a fight with the main character, or, if you like- kill them. It sounds cruel, I know, but think about it. Haven't you felt a bit angry with the writer for killing your favorite character, but it made you want to read even more? Take Harry Potter for instance, I believe we all cried when Dumbledore died, but did it make us stop reading? No. It made us love J.K.Rowling even more.
  • And lastly, think of the end. This is what everybody keeps telling me. You should think of the ending for you book. You have to know it the moment you start writing. Bullshit. When I was writing my first book, I had literally no idea how it would end. Zero. Nada. Writing the book was like reading one. I never knew what might happen next. I had a few ideas, but I never sat down thinking 'Now I'm gonna write about the part where he meets his true love'. No! I sat down thinking 'Okay, he woke up dreaming about her again. Let's describe that and see where it may lead to'. And guess what? It made writing a lot more fun! It was like watching a movie; you never know what happens next. I just saw words forming before me, and I was amused the whole time. Of course, at one point you have to think about the end, so you could fit the current events to the ending. So, yes. Keep the ending in mind, but don't make it your priority. Focus on what's happening now.

And that's almost all you need to start writing. Answer all the questions I wrote, plus some of your own and you'll have a beginning. Always keep the character personality in mind. If you do, you can never make a mistake.

For more information on How to Publish an Ebook, check out http://writingdisease.blogspot.com/2012/05/publishing-book-couple-of-years-ago-to.html where it's all explained nice and simple.

Source: EzineArticles
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