So you have an amazing idea for a story you just can't stop thinking about. Sounds like it's time you put that on paper and share it with others! But writing a book is so hard, you say. Of course it can seem that way; your mind is full of characters, plots, and dramatic twists and turns. But if you can't find a way to organize those thoughts and get them out into one cohesive story, the idea of writing a book can seem daunting. Fear not. Here are five easy steps to help organize your thoughts so you can finally write that bestseller you've been dreaming up.
1. Get Your Thoughts Straight
This is one of the easiest and shortest steps, but it'll help you tremendously on your quest to write a masterpiece. Think of it like a business plan for your book, although it won't be nearly as time-consuming as a business plan. Think about what inspired the idea to write your book, and summarize it in a few sentences. If it takes you more than a short paragraph to summarize your book, you may need to narrow your focus a bit more. As you’re writing your book, look back on this summary whenever you get stuck or off track.
2. Create a Plot Synopsis
The next step is to expand upon your previous summary. This is when your book starts to take form. The synopsis doesn't have to be long, somewhere in between 3-5 pages will work just fine. It should accurately portray your characters and some of the main plot lines. It'll also help you get to know your characters better, which is never a bad thing.
3. Make an Outline (If You Like)
Some authors don't believe in making story outlines, while others swear by it. Outlining will help you stay true to the plot and the characters of your book. It's a great way to fend off the dreaded writer's block. If you're seeing blank pages, take a look at your outline for inspiration. All forms of creativity benefit from some form of structure, if even in the slightest amount. The outline will serve as a structural backbone to your creative process.
4. Go, Go, Go!
Now it's time to sit down, get comfortable, and just write! Now that you have a strong foundation for your story, the flow of your writing should come much more easily. There's no trick to this, you need to just write. If you're not happy with a scene or chapter, don't stop to fix it. Come back to it at the end (that's what editing is for). If it helps, set a daily or weekly goal for yourself for how many words or scenes you'll complete. Drown out your inner critic, and go with the flow until the story is done.
5. Fine Tune Your Book
Hello there, welcome back! It's probably been a few months since you started out on your journey. Now that your manuscript is complete, you'll want to give it some time to steep. Walk away for a few days or weeks and take that time to clear your head. When you're ready, go back and read your manuscript. This is the key stage in polishing your book to make it shine. You'll need to revise and reshape it into an entertaining piece that flows well. Don't be afraid to have a second pair of eyes read it, as well.
Now that you know how easy it is to write a book, we hope you're inspired to get started. Good luck!
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