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How to write a book ?

Want to write a book? Know how to begin with….

Have you ever wanted to write a book, but you were not sure where to start from? Did you start one but felt lost or off-track? The information provided below will boost you up and at the same time, equip you with some handy tips to give a kick start to your desire of authoring a book.

Identify a genre or a subject or an issue you are sensitive about.

  1. Determine the basic idea to deal with:

Before you start writing your book, you will need to acquaint yourself with the idea, you are going to work upon. This will serve as roots for your book to grow. Stronger the roots, firmer the book will be. Coming up with the idea can, however, be difficult. Ideas will come when you open yourself to more experience. However this could be the most difficult as well as the most important step, to begin with.

  1. You can get ideas from anywhere: Your ideas can take many shapes. You can steal ideas from your own day-to-day experiences; your trips and journeys; your opinions about the society, your observations of the environment. You can also take up ideas that have never been discussed before, or you can begin with further strengthening the already discussed issued. You can also read other books to know where to start from. Reading different authors will help you create a plot for your own book. Any idea can come up with flying colors.
  2. Do a thorough research on your idea: Once you are done with deciding what to write about, start searching to get more related ideas. For example, you wish to write a book about good parenting styles. Do some research by studying experiences of different parents with different kids, consider your own upbringing, talk to different parents, study blogs on different parenting websites. In this process you will come across many such ideas which will help you develop a good book.
  3. Develop and organise your concept. Coming across so many similar ideas about what could be included in your book, you will develp your own concept pertaining to these ideas. All you have to do now, is to organise the concept in a manner that it becomes a logical and a bit complex expression of your ideas. Don’t forget to lead it to a logical ending, thinking about what might be concluded from the given set of circumstances. A better understanding of the concept will enable you to build a better plot.
  4. Take your audience into consideration. While coming up with a concept and developing it, you ought to consider those, whom you are writing for. Different people are into different things and there be particular sets of experiences and prior liking for a particular genre. You will need to consider this so know how to proceed with the plot, characters, and how to give a beautiful concrete form to your idea.

Try creating a false ad for your book along with a short synopsis and the title. Also welcome readers’ suggestions for the same. This way you will know what the audience think of your book. Henceforth, you can make alterations according to the responses. This will help you make your book mass appealing.

       2. Organize Your Plot

  1. Choose a framework. In the beginning stages of writing a book, you will need to organize an outline for your plot. It is okay to leave some room for movement when you begin writing, but writing your story without some a basic structurerarely works out. The best way to start is choosing a structure that works for you. The major structure is:
  • Act structure: The act structure is commonly associated with plays and films and can easily be applied to novels as well. According to this theory of structure, stories do well when broken up into clearly distinguishable parts or sections. There are normallythree sections, though two or four are quite common. In the typical three act structure, the first act discusses the main and supporting characters, the plot, the issue to be dealt with, with some background information (this phase generally comprises around one-fourth of the story). The second act proceeds further and gives birth to the conflict in the story, usually constituting a turning point for the main character. This is the protein of the story and usually caters to almost 50% of the content. The third act is the ending or the conclusion, where the main character faces the negative characters of the story and the story reaches its climax. Endings are usually, more or less, happy endings. Each of these three acts can often be moulded into different mini- stories as per the demand of the situation.


  1. Choose your conflict type:It is important for a story to have conflicts, as a happy going story is usually less appreciated. You may find it challenging to think about type of conflict that would add value to your story. But once you are done with deciding the conflict, you will have a better developed plot to proceed with. There are several theories about the types of conflict in stories. Some of them have been discussed below:
  • Man against man: This is the most basic type of conflict in a story, like we find the rel world as well, where your main character stands in contrast to another person. The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is a classic example.
  • Man against supernatural powers: This is a story where your main character fights off creatures like ghosts and demons, God himself, or other beings which don’t belong to this very world. Conjuring is a good example of this type of conflict.
  • Man against nature: This is a case where your main character takes nature for granted and at the end, ends up fighting the atrocities of nature. The film 2012 is a great example of this kind.
  • Man against his illusions: This is a story where your main character fights against his own inner illusions, misconceptions or his own internal conflicts. An example of this would be Jumanji.
  • Man against the society: In this type, your main character faces off against the societal rules and regulations. An example would be the novel Fahrenheit 451.
  1. Consider your themes:Whether you know it or unintentionally, your story will move on a basic theme, and will end up having the same theme. It is important for you to identify and consider that theme and end up giving some views of your own about the theme, or about what you think of the topic. This can help you develop a plot, through creating situations which portray your ideas.
  2. Edit mercilessly: Whenever you feel your story is going nowhere, don’t stuck at the same place for long. Simply resort to the last section where your story made sense and start writing on a different path from there on. Sometimes the story may have other ideas it would like to follow.
  3. Plan your turning points:Turning points in your story are important events which may change the course of action of your character. It may prove to be a point of transformation for your character. It is utterly important to plot the turning points wisely so that the story doesn’t go offtrack, rather serves as the cherry on the cake. This is the point when all the plans of your character for dealing with the problem shed away and and the story meets some climax which initites the final conclusion.
  4. Outline: Once you know where you are heading towards and how you are going to get there, outline the whole thing which would further serve as a route map for a flawless writing process. Jot down the prerequisites for each scene, a list of characters for each scene, heir entry and exit, their feelings and exressions, their dialogues, etc. You need to write dwn every minute detail of the sequence of events in each scene. This is the best way to avoid doubling or confusion of scenes. Moreover, this way you will have a room for further alterations while preparing the final draft of the story, as you can still cover the basics of a scene.

     3.  Develop Your Characters

  1. Choose the number of characters: While planning your book, it is important to decide upon the number of characters to be included. Whether you want to have a small number of characters or you want to place a huge world inside your book. It is really very important to  carefully assume the scenes and estimate how many characters you want to include.
  2. Balance your characters.Don’t portray your character as a perfectionst. None is good at everything. Everybody has goods and bads. Give your character a realistic role with real struggles and faults. This will hep your readers identify themselves with the characters. Don’t forget: your readers ave faults, so should your character have. Your readers will love you for this. Your characters’ faults will provide a greater a scope to transform them over a course of time in the  story. This will make your story good and will allow you to give a morale at the end. It will help tthhe readers feel that they too can be beter human beings.
  3.  Empathise your character. Once you’ve got a balanced character, get to know him. Assume yourself in his shoes and think about how they would react in different situations (even if you have not included such situations in your book). Think about his on and offs, which situations would drive him to different emotional points, know about his dreams and desires. Knowing the ‘why’ and ‘how’ of your character will allow you to better understand the reactions of your character to different problems, leading to a more realistic, more identifiable character.
  4.  Evaluate your characters. Once you have understood your character reasonably well, you may want to stand back and evaluate its relevance to the story. It is quite possible that you may find it extra and would want to cut it altogether or you may find his dialogues overrated and would want to change his position. Always try to have characters that may be easily distinguishable, so that the readers do not get confused with similar characters. Don’t include too many characters as it may lead to chaos.

Create a congenial environment

  1. Create an appealing infrastructure:Once you are rady with the players, you need a ground to play in. So is the case with a book. Once you are ready with your characters, it is important for you to work upon the environment. Think about where your story takes place, the infrastructure, places for scene transition, how buildings are laid out. Describe the natural surroundings. Now note all of them down. This will help the readers to find a personal touch in the story. This will also allow you to be consistent in your descriptions.
  • You can tell someone the sky is red, all you have to do is just support your statement with fair descriptions like describing the sunset scene. You just have to make them believe you by providing any supporting argument. Make the visual it by giving a proper pictorial description. And this can be possible only when you yourself completely understand the situation.
  1. Be logical:Play safe by being logical in your explanations. Say if you are writing about a trip to Leh by a motorcycle, you cannot simply portray it in just a day. Things are bound to happen during a passage of time. You need to allocate reasonable time for each and every activity to be done. So, make sure you don’t forget to consider the logistics in your story.
  2.  Take care of audience’s senses:Your story should be such that it makes use of all the senses of your audience if you want them to be fully involved in the story. You will need to appeal to all of your audience’s senses if you want them to be fully immersed in the text. Don't just tell them what your characters ate, support it with th exact sounds of those activities. Tell them how the juice of the meat burst out as they bit into it and its taste is a mix of the grease and the smoke from fire. Don’t just tell them that a bell was ringing at your character’s door. Tell them about how the sound of bell was so loud ad shrill that it pierced into the ear until only an awareness of the ringing persisted.

Find an appropriate writing place

  •  Select the method of writing.As there are a number of advancements in the technology, you have a wide variety of options to choose from, regarding the selection of method for writing. Remember, the method you choose to write, may affect the publishing of your work to a great extent. You can use a typewriter to write, or pen and paer. You can also type on a computer. You can also use a voice reconition softfware which can translate the spoken material into typed text. Different methods suit different people.
  1. Search an appropriate writing place.You would probably need a space of your own, to write. It could be a crowded place, but generally people find silent places helpful in creating a mood for writing, which allows you to work without interruption and without distraction. You will need an acceptable space, which allows you to work without interruption. It will need to accommodate your chosen writing method and be comfortable and not distracting. Common options may include a coffee house, your personal office cabin, your studyroom or library.
  2. Gather your essentials at one place.You need to be sure that you do not get distracted while writing. So, it is advisable to have with you, everything you may need while writing so that you do not need to get up again and again, to get those essentials. Different people may have different basic requirements, which they cannt write without. It coulb be a particular pen, or a writing pad, or chair, or coffee, etc. Make sure that these needs are met before starting the task.

 Set A Writing Schedule

  1. Identify your writing habits.It is only you who knows what time suits you the best. Identify it from within and pursue writing. Some would find it comfortable to write early morning, or others would find it conducive to write at night in peace. For some, writing at specific times and at specific places would prove fruitful. You need to decide how you should proceed so as to get the best out of you. Observing your writing habits would allow you to build your writing schedule.
  2.  Pursue writing at the same time.Once you are aware of your writing habits and have made a writing schedule for yourself, it is important to follow the same, everyday without a miss. Stick to that schedule . Spare that particular time for writing only. You can use this time in any manner, like for planning your novel, for writing the outline, or setting the plot, etc. But all you need to do is, make sure that only writing work is done in that scheduled time and nthing else. This will help you to become systematic, cultivate your writing habits and will prove more fruitful for you.
  3.  Be persistent.Be persistent and consistent in what you are writing. Don’t give up. Practice daily as practice makes a man perfect. No matter how hard or difficult you may find it, don’t loose hope because hard work pays. There may also come times when you feel pissed off, and would not want to continu. Overcome that feeling saying “I can do it, and I will do it”. The more you do it, the better you will get. Take rests in between, if you want, but never loose hope. Don’t forget many famous authors would have failed hundreds of times before they could produce the final draft.

 Assess Your manuscript’s Commercial Potential

Every book has its own commercial  value and readers as well. Before going for  publishing you must assess your book’s potential audience and value in the market. The most important thing to be remembered is that not every book gets the chance to be published by a big publishing house. If your book too doesn’t get such a chance, don’t despair.


 The Quality of your book :

If you write a fiction or memoir, the writing quality usually matters the mostor else if you want to be published traditionally. Read your genre and polish your work. Repeat this cycle until your work gets published. Your writing gets better with with more and more practice. You mature as you develop.The quality of the writing may only need to be marketable, depending on the genre we’re talking about. (Certainly there are higher demands for narrative non-fiction than prescriptive.)

Good marketing exposure for your book :

Today, mere publication of a book is not enough, it needs a well thought marketing strategy. There are ample of ways to boost sales of your book, i.e. marketing agents, distributors, internet, social networking sites, e-commerce websites,etc. Nirmal Publication (India) has all that your book needs.

Answered Questions

What would I do if I have an idea but people consider it as if I’ve copied it from someone else’s work?

It does happen at times, buut you need not worry. Keep a record of all your workings, outlines, so that if demanded in future, you can produce them. We all grow up listening similar tales, and experiences similar situations, so there are bound to be similarities in many stories we write. It is only when we deliberately copy another writer’s exact story, we are accused of plagiarism.If it happens, get a lawyer for yourself, who is  well versed in intellectual property and don't be bullied by people who make more noise than offering proof.

How to decide what to write? Although I know what to write, but I don’t understand how to create a plot?

You can relate your story to a real event or experiences of your own.One option is to base your story on a real event. Or you can look upto othr books for inspiration. Stop worrying about the plot. Form it as you write. And when you are done with one-fourth part of the your story, go through it again, from the beginning and reformulate or reshape it as the condition demands.

How to decide the title?

Brainstorm. Complete the book first, then an idea might strike. Make sure it connects to the story, don’t give a vague title, for example, don't give a romantic title to a horror book.

 If a book is about me and my travelling experiences, how do I set the scene as such?

Perhaps begin by telling people an adventurous tale involving one of your travelling experiences. This could be a kick start to the instances you're hoping to explore in the book as a whole, giving the reader immediate insight into your travelling experiences, your interests and the manner in which you react to whatever you tell about.

 I am having trouble in classifying my novel into chapters. How do I deal with it?

Take suggestions from a friend or family member to suggest suitable titles for the chapters. Think yourself: what the chapter is about? What significant things happen in the chapter? Is there any small line or proverb of the chapter you particularly like that you might be able to turn into a title of the chapter?

 How do I start writing my autobiography?

Choose a point of your life where you would like to start, and proceed from there. Write it as if you were living it. Include all miniscule details of your life you would like to share, so as to connect with the audience.

 How do I make a sad ending story?

Murder a few main characters. Get readers really attached to the characters, then murder them. After that, write about how life goes on without them. Discussing their deaths makes the readers even sadder, because they refuse to accept their deaths and will learn to love the characters and get emotionally attached to them. When the characters die, the disappointment will be intense.

 Who makes the book cover?

It is not an area of concern. Even you yourself can make it, or a friend or the publisher can do I. You can even hire someone for the same. What is important is it should look appealing and makes the book presentable and marketable.


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