Starting a career as a writer is not an easy task. This requires, in addition to enthusiasm and passion for writing, constantly working to acquire the habit of writing and a style of your own that distinguishes your literary work from that of others.
If you have discovered your true vocation as a writer, you will be interested in knowing and learning certain techniques to develop your writing. We will give you essential guidelines so that you learn how to start writing a book easily and step by step, so you don’t get lost.
How to start writing a book step by step
When dealing with the blank page, keep in mind that by following a series of guidelines, you will be able to face the task of capturing that story that goes around your head on paper. Here’s how to write a step-by-step book to get your ideas in order and to acquire habits that will help you shape your story:
What’s the plan?
Before you start writing any story, you must know exactly what you want to tell and where you want to go. Improvising and letting yourself be carried away by inspiration and impulses is very good on a creative level, but you must have a more or less planned scheme that you can modify.
Choose the narrator:
Another essential point to learn how to start writing a book step by step is to know who will tell the story. Do you plan to do it in the first person so that your writing is more direct, or do you prefer a narrator who tells everything in the third person to give more details? In many works, there are several voices within a novel, but this is acquired with a lot of practice and work.
Define your characters:
Characters are an essential part of any story. Thanks to them, we understand the history and events that unfold in a book. Think well about how they are, both physically and psychologically, and show what is essential so that the reader knows them well. A good description does not need to belong, but it does need to contain the elements and words that make your character part of the reader’s imagination.
Define the place well:
A good setting is essential to get the reader to immerse themselves in your story. It is also a compass that will help you locate where and when the story takes place.
Document yourself properly:
If you are thinking of writing a historical novel, you cannot start without knowing the historical period in which you will place it. Anachronisms and other errors could cloud a story that could be most interesting with the right information. Before writing, read, document, and contrast information.
Think about your audience:
Obviously, writing for children or teenagers is not the same as writing for an adult audience. The language used, the plot and the topics to be covered will vary depending on the audience you are addressing.
Make the beginning interesting
The beginning, in a book, is essential to capture the reader’s attention. With an interesting beginning, you are much more likely to win an audience than with a boring one without sparkle.
Ideas for writing a book
Among the ideas to write a book that you should consider, it is worth mentioning autobiographical books, the narration of different genres (fantastic, thriller or mystery, horror, etc.), and self-help books, among many others. In the following sections, we will explain how to start writing a book step by step, taking into account each of these ideas. However, first, you must know these essential tips:
- Choose a comfortable place: Virginia Woolf made it very clear in her work “A Room of My Own. Find a comfortable place where no one bothers you, allowing you to focus and be yourself as a writer.
- Routine is essential: it may seem boring, but in the end, this step is part of the life and success of any artist. Make a calendar with schedules and write non-stop until you find something that you think is worthwhile.
- Know your references well: writing is impossible without good references to inspire and teach you. Soak up the talent of others and make your own emerge.
- Seek help if you think you need it: If you think you have an Achilles heel in your writing, seek help. Sign up for a specific writing course or workshop. For example: how to create characters, how to develop a plot, etc.
- Work hard: a good book is the result of work comparable to that of a craftsman. You have to work on it and perfect it until it is just as you imagine it. Do not give up if it takes time to find the result you want, because all good things take time.
How to start writing a story
The beginning of a story is the cover letter to your readers and potential editors. It is not about getting a beginning full of action and conflicts from the first page, but about something more subtle, as if it were a silk thread that is woven little by little.
A brief but intense description of the main character or a certain place can be enough. You don’t need to tell essential or crucial things about the story. The most important thing is not always what you tell, but how you tell it and manage to leave a mark that others will want to follow.
There is no perfect mathematical formula for learning how to start writing a book or how to start writing a story, but there are a number of mistakes you should avoid to get it off to a great start:
There are no long descriptions: if you start your story with very long descriptions full of adjectives, the beginning will be too heavy. Choose the precise words to achieve the effect you want.
Don’t give too much information: never give more information than the reader needs to know. The objective is to suggest something so that the reader is captivated and wants to know more.
Do not try to copy other authors: be original. Being a writer means finding your own voice and not being a mere imitation of others.
Do not withdraw into yourself: do not be complacent. Let someone you trust read to you. A reader’s opinion should always be welcome.