Tricks and tips on how to write a fiction book: where to find inspiration, how to build a plot, how to describe the characters
How to Write a Fiction Book: Tricks and Tips
Perhaps there is such a statistic that shows the relation between the quantity of writers who lived one or two centuries ago and are living now. However, even without it it’s absolutely clear: today there is much more writers than earlier. It makes no sense to look for a reason, but more and more people want to leave the signs of their being on this planet via writing.
And some of them succeed, but most – don’t. Too hard to compete, too hard to be noticeable and outstanding. Does this mean the one should not even try? No, on the contrary – write! If you cannot help but write.
How to start a book?
There is an ultimate tip: just start writing, but likely you would not be reading this post if it was so simple. Okay, then there are a few things you should keep in mind.
Don’t think much. Just skip all thoughts similar to “I am not a writer”, “What can I give this world?”, “Everyone will laugh at me”, “I will merely waste a lot of time for nothing”, “It is better to do something more real”, “I am not able to write even a short essay, help me someone”. These critical thoughts are the first obstacle you have to overcome on the way to your book. But only in case you are eager to write indeed.
Don’t compare yourself with other people, no matter whether they are writers or not. Definitely, there are thousands of more talented, skilled, experienced people in the world, and some of them are good writers. Nevertheless, it is not enough reason for giving up. Try to be not biased. If you feel you are (or you can be later) good at what you are going to do, start. If you realize that your texts are empty, silly and too ordinary – it’s a proper point to develop yourself from.
Become observational. Notice details you have never pay attention to how people talk and move, what are the sounds of cars, wind in the leaves, raindrops falling on the metallic roof, etc.
Write down your ideas and thoughts that may seem to be non-trivial. Perhaps you will never use most of them, but it’s a good training.
Think of genre you want to write in. Try to imagine you are an outlier, who is reading your book: what is it about, what kind of people would love it? It is quite important since it defines what kind of knowledge you need, and what places you should visit for inspiration. For instance, if you are a fan of the fantasy genre, perhaps it will be great to visit some ancient castles, museums of history and science, parks and villages. If your ideas perfectly fit in the modern prose, probably you will catch plenty of pat images in the shopping malls, in the crowded streets, restaurants, business centers and so on.
Start writing. Describe your characters, create a plot and write it down at least in bare outlines, write some scenes.
Make your book alive
No matter what you are writing: a roman or a novel. Let you readers dive into it, identify themselves with the main characters, and return to the story in their mind. This will happen only in case your writing is living. This effect can be achieved by a plethora of artistic receptions, but they will not work unless you sincerely believe in the story that you let become incarnate on the paper. Some people think the more detailed descriptions of circumstances, places, feelings, appearance, emotions, the more “real” a book is.
Ultimately, it is just a matter of style: some writers are the masters of long descriptions, some are known by their brief, strong sentences. Life is brought into a book by details: if you mention somewhere that your character has a habit to bite his lower lip while thinking, it becomes more alive at once. If you say that the character’s hat was blown away by the wind, it will be enough for the readers to imagine the weather – even without wordy description.
It is a platitude, but sometimes the beginners miss this: write about what you know well. Don’t move the action to the sawmill until you visit it at least once or have a long talk with an expert. Don’t make your character to ride a horse if you have watched this process only in the movies. You will retort: but how has Jules Verne manage to create his incredible ideas without any experience and knowledge of how they can work? Well, he was a genius. Are you?
First write, edit later
It is obvious, but who of us is not sick with perfectionism? However, be insisting: first write, feel the flow and let it take you wherever it needs, let your hand be just a tool for the story that wants to be written down. You will edit it later, over and over again, singly and together with professionals. But writing is a special state of mind and emotions, and without it is hardly possible to create something worthy, something, that people will remember about for long and recommend to each other. Yet, your goal should never be fame, or at least it should not be the only goal. There is no true author without passion, spark, core – no matter how it is called; everyone knows at heart whether he or she has it or no.