How do you write your first book? Just start writing.
Wondering about how do you write your first book isn’t going to get your far.
In fact – take my word for it – it won’t get you anywhere in days, weeks, months, or years.
You can wonder forever about ‘how do I write my first book’.
That said, here are some pointers on how to write your first book.
By now, you would have decided whether to write a fiction or non-fiction book.
The first step towards writing your first book is to be prepared for things going wrong.
Don’t start with the expectation everything will be plain sailing.
Expect complications, dead-ends, and even a creative impasse.
If you set out with this mindset, then you’ve won half the battle.
The best way to write your first book is to trick your mind into doing it.
How do you do it?
The worst thing to do if you’re writing a book is to tell your mind you’re writing a book.
Your mind then goes into a protective or defensive mode. Oh, I don’t think I can do it. It’s a tall order. It’s going to take years to do it. I’ll have to struggle with ideas for hours. The book may never get published. It may not be received well by the reading public.
In short, you’re defeated before you begin. And you’ll stay in the belief that you’re defeated and can never recover.
So, what do you do? You trick your mind (sometimes your greatest enemy) by saying that you’re not writing a book.
So, what do you say? Let’s say you’re writing a nonfiction book, and you plan to have ten chapters. Instead of saying that you’re going to write 10 chapters, you say you’re going to write 10 blog posts over 10 days or 10 weeks.
Does’ that seem doable? For one, the word blog post seems more approachable if you have written one before. Or if the word blog post doesn’t appeal to you, you can call it articles.
You don’t even have to say you’ll turn these 10 articles into 10 chapters. Just say you’ll write the 10 articles. Once written, then you can think about how to turn them into a book.
It has been done before. There’s no reason why you can’t do it if you really want to.
If writing a novel is what you have in mind, then there are two ways of approaching the job.
First, you think in terms of scenes. Instead of thinking of a novel beginning, middle, and end and getting overwhelmed, think in terms of scenes or situations.
So, you say, “I’m going to write 52 scenes or 52 situations. One scene or situation a week or even a day.”
So, you go out and focus on one scene. You write it to the best of your ability. You don’t worry about how the next scene would turn out. Or how the scene will fit into the whole novel.
So, you’re hardly thinking about writing a novel. You want to write scenes. To see where they go.
If the scenes approach doesn’t appeal to you, you can treat your novel as a series of short stories.
If the short story format comes naturally to you, you can go for this approach.
You may want to divide your novel into chapters of 5,000 words each. If you aim for 12 chapters, then you’ll have about 60000 words.
So, all you need is to write 12 short stories to complete a novel.
But the challenge with the short story format is that all the stories must flow naturally into the next.