So you want to write a novel?

The purpose of this blogpost is to help new writers with the exciting albeit frustrating creative process, plus some helpful suggestions on overcoming writer’s block.

Publishing your first novel has never been easier thanks to CreateSpace, an Amazon company,as well as others that help writers independently publish books in physical or digital formats at affordable prices.  Beware of some snarly publishers that will publish for free or for very little.  They make their money on the back end with books you will have to buy at prohibitive prices. Result: you’re dead in the water.  For example: You cannot promote your novel in book fairs if you can’t afford soft cover copies of your book.

You are sadly mistaken if you are writing with the idea of becoming rich and famous. Definitely, not a good idea.  You may spend more money than you might ever earn.  Be careful, be frugal.  Think before leaping.

 Warning:  most writers can’t proof their own copy!  They know what should be there, and that’s exactly what they see.  The best money is spent on presenting a gramatically, correctly punctuated book with precise spelling.   

Another warning, you must promote your book.  Success comes  to those who research online promotions, such as GoodReads, Facebook, Amazon, Google and others.  

Plotter vs. Panster,by Denise A. Agnew

*A plotter needs structure when they write. They often need charts, diagrams and outlines to feel comfortable. Many times they need to understanding what the beginning, middle, and end of the book before they start writing. Not knowing things ahead of time can create significant anxiety for the writer who is a plotter.

*A panster may have a title or an overarching idea for a book based on a time period, a concept, or an individual character. They may know one or two of these ideas up front. Or they may start with a single scene that intrigues them. They will rarely know the end of their book. *Denise A. Agnew’s bestseller: Dark, Deadly Love, http://amzn.to/2eSkAng

Think and Grow Rich was written in 1937 by Napoleon Hill.  By 2015,  over 100 million copies had been sold worldwide.[The Essentials of Success are derived directly from the power of the subconscious.  Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill  is the best dependable philosphy of individual achievement ever presented.  To blatently summarize his fabulous work: You are what you think about, and you would not have the desire to write a novel if you were incapable of doing it. http://amzn.to/2vbRzK2

Reader, you’re here for a reason. Now:  set out and write the very best novel you’re capable of creating. This is about you.

The basic idea: Be spontaneous. Effortless. The subconscious is truly magnificent. It will lead you, albeit with detours you will not understand. Creativity is often beset with self-doubt, amidst little triumphs of chills and Goosebumps.  This is protein powder for the creative energy.  Repeat,  You would not have the desire to write a novel if you were incapable of doing it!

 Avoid rules:  Too many rules smother creativity.

The anatomy of Golf Swing: The golf swing features many parts that must work together: grips, stance, back swing, follow through, etc. Take the club back by turning your shoulders. Your left arm should be straight or bent slightly and tension free. Move your arms and the club back so that your left shoulder moves under your chin. At the top of the swing, your wrists will be cocked and your weight will shift to the back foot…etc. Whew!

Betty Webb, http://amzn.to/2uH0foO  –  Former journalist Betty Webb is a prize-winning mystery novelist whose books are based on true crimes, including human rights abuses. Publishers Weekly called her novels “mysteries with a social conscience.” She lives in Arizona, where her Lena Jones mysteries are set, and teaches writing at Arizona State University.  Excerpted from The Pesky First Chapter (The Llama of Death):  

Writing Chapter One can be hell. When beginning the first draft of a novel, Chapter One is almost always clumsy, confusing, vague, and written with all the expertise of a college freshman whose brain is fried on a combination of ganja and energy drinks. In fact, these first chapters are such miserable messes that most newbie writers feel compelled to fix them before they move on to Chapter Two.

Then Chapter Three, then Chapter Four, then…“Oh, the hell with the thing!” the newbies wind up screaming before storming away from their manuscript, possibly forever. “This book just doesn’t work.”

To which I say, “Of course your book doesn’t work, because you didn’t write it. Instead, you wrote and rewrote and re-rewrote your first chapter until it died in your own hands. You were so obsessed with getting Chapter One ‘just right’ that you ignored your novel.”

And that’s a shame, because in the end, that first chapter will probably be cut anyway. It’s worth rephrasing. First chapters are usually cut from the finished manuscript.

Why? Because by the time the newbie writer has finished his or her manuscript, the book has taken on a shape and maturity he or she didn’t have when they were slaving away on Chapter One. The final chapters of his or her book are more universal in scope, deeper in tone, and more assured in craft than anything he could possibly have accomplished when he or she began the manuscript. Somewhere along the way, between page 50 and page 410, the writer grew up.

Assignment:  Take a legal pad and write down on the side beside each line: the nmbers from one to twenty-eight.  Thias will be your chapters.  Think about it….More later.

C. Michael Bennis is the author of Rules of Engagement, Signs of Destiny, Dangerous and Desirable, Ralph’s Place  http://amzn.to/2aLQ1uk

Fall, 2017: Jaguar and Ralph’s Place II

Continued biweekly on http://www.cmichaelbennis.com/blog/

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