We have all at one time or another wanted to write a book. There are years and years of experience we are ready to share with the world, as we express our point of view, and get ready for a book signing at the local book shop. We have to warn you – it is not easy to write a good book.
Reading a bad book could make a person think: “I could do better that that.” This is not far-fetched – there are many books out there that are made for quantity, and not quality. Even some simple information put on paper, and bound with a hard cover could pass as a book. Because we know you are better than this, and you seem like a promising young writer, here are a few tips on how to write.
First of all, you have to choose what you want to write about. Maybe your book is a children’s book, or a book about the history of Cuba. Perhaps, it is your biography, or a work of fiction. Whatever the case may be, you have to choose what you want to write about before you do it (though, to be fair, during the course of writing a book, one often changes direction completely).
The topic should be chosen based on what you already know, or have a passion for, or, at the very least, you know you can write well and people will want to read it, though we urge you to write about what you love, since it will not seem like a task then, but rather like a relaxed conversation.
One of the first mistakes aspiring young (by young, we mean inexperienced – you could very well be over fifty and still be a fledgling) writers make is that they fail to do proper research. Let us explain. Say you want to write a novel about vampires. They are not as popular today, so this is a perfect example.
You will want to read folklore related to vampires, dive into the origins of the myth, compare and contrast what is considered a vampire in Europe, Africa and Asia. Are they cursed, divine, or different? What is their plight in your story and how do they view the world in general?
Don’t be afraid to take your time with the research. We know you want to write a book now, but these things should not be rushed. Be prepared to interview experts, collect articles, and read books of similar nature, so that you may learn from their good parts and avoid the bad. Which brings us to our final point.
That’s right, it is impossible to be a good writer if you are also not an avid reader. There are many things to consider that you may learn from the old masters, like the style and vocabulary, the rhythm of the plot, and the level of description concerning people, places and times.
Russian realists could give you a run for your money in this regard – they are capable of writing about a horse crossing the road for several pages, and that’s an action that takes, maybe, ten seconds. We are not saying you should write like that, the times and rhythm are very different from books we have today. We are saying you should learn from them.