It is often said that everyone has a novel inside them but many people never start because they feel that the novel itself may be really shit. This may be true, but this shouldn’t stop you from trying.
Take my hand, follow this blog and let me help you excrete the novel that is pushing to get out of you.
Not sure if you should put your faith in my abilities? Then read on…
My achievements include:
I once wrote a comedy show for the Edinburgh Festival that was seen by over 250 people.
I have started writing six novels including ‘Robert Mugabe’s Missing Glasses: 2001 A Specs Odyssey’ and ‘Bangor to Bangkok (Travel Writing From A Non-Traveller)’ and I plan to actually finish one soon.
I sometimes get confused between ‘there’ and ‘their’ but I still know loads of words and have strung literally thousands of sentences together.
All you have to do is think of something that happened in the past and write about it. I love writing history novels and shit like that. My last book set in historical times was called ‘King Arthur and the Search for the Yellow Banana’ – it’s all about a king called Arthur and his quest to find a banana that was used at the last supper of Jesus and his mates.
I’m not sure how many people have downloaded it on Amazon but it’s loads!!
Anyway, there are many tips I can give you about writing books set in the past but below is probably the two most important things to remember.
One of the mistakes new writers make is to tell rather than show. What that means is that new writers are telling rather than showing. In other words the new writer isn’t showing but rather telling.
It is a technique that allows the reader to experience the scene through actions and shit like that rather than the writer’s description or something like that.
If you’re any good as a writer, this is a technique you will get to grips with. If you don’t it probably means you’re no good. I understand it really, really, really well as the example below demonstrates.
One of the most important things when writing a novel is to make your readers feel empathy for your main characters. If the readers have no reason to like a character why should they keep reading?
I couldn’t get past the first fifty pages of ‘To Kill A Mockingbird’ because I just didn’t care about any of the characters in it and none of them seemed real!
There are many ways in which to make your readers feel all emotional and shit like that, you can make one of the characters sad about something or you could make one of them really frustrated about something in the news.
But if neither of the these two example make you want to reach for a tissue then I suggest giving all of your characters a limp. Who doesn’t feel sorrow for people with limps??
Writing romantic or saucy, sexy scenes can be a bit of a minefield, especially if you are a total loser with the opposite sex (haha, loser…I am not a loser, I’m good at sex).
So many novels are ruined by badly written sex scenes, but follow my tips and watch the sex scene come alive and jump off the page.
When writing sexy scenes make sure you use the correct words to create the right mood. You can do this by using words such as ‘fanny’, ‘shazam’ ‘bacon’ and ‘banging’. The following excerpt is an example from an erotic novel I wrote called ‘Sit On The Chair and Look At The Sandal Magazine’. Read it carefully and I am certain you will gain a lot of insight on writing erotica.
So there you go. This should get you up and running in the world of erotica. I will write more about this at a later date but I’m tired ‘n’ shit.
Dialogue between characters in your novel is very important.
It helps give us a picture of their personalities and it helps us to add more words to our final word count. Dialogue is another name for talking, so when a writer says I am writing ‘dialogue’ he/she means they’re writing people chatting.
But you must remember that dialogue can be boring if it doesn’t help move the story along. It is advisable to NOT bore the person reading you book. I really can’t stress that enough. Be interesting!
Writing dialogue is super easy, you just think of what your character would say and then write it.
Below is an example of dialogue that is exciting and keeps the story moving forward!
Every successful writer has his or her favourite place to write. A place where their mind opens up and they feel the surge of creativity oozing out of EVERY orifice.
This sacred place may be in a library, the corner of a small coffee shop or in a countryside cottage. As for me, your inspirational teacher, I like to write on an aeroplane flying at 35,000 feet.
This may be difficult for some of you due to time constraints and cost but I have no concerns with time and money so five times a week I fly six hours every day to Serbia and back. If you want to try to write on a plane every day here are my tips;
Take a pencil on the plane with you.
REMEMBER pens leak.
But also REMEMBER that pencils can break and you can’t sharpen pencils on a plane because you are not allowed sharp objects on planes.
Take two pencils on the plane.
If both pencils break ask a flight attendant if they have a writing implement.
Take some paper with you. I prefer white paper but any colour will work.
If you don’t have paper you can use a piece of wood or your arm.
Drink some water occasionally.
If both pencils have broken and your pen has leaked and the flight attendants don’t have any writing implements have a sleep.
Once you have an idea for your novel you need to start writing it. Once you have started to write it REMEMBER to make things happen in it.
You can have loads of stuff happen in your novel, the death of a pet, a sneezing fit that leads to the main character having to buy more tissues, an old woman opening a jar, someone driving somewhere, a young child finding a fish finger down the back of the fridge, two people having a conversation about something, someone looking at a collection of rubber bands, a lady telling someone she likes The Beatles, a man sitting, someone walking in a big field, an old man saying ‘no’ and shit like that.
So many things ‘happen’ so PLEASE make sure things happen in your novel. If nothing happens in your novel maybe you should stick to writing manuals.
When writing a novel it is important to make sure that every scene has a reason for being there. Each scene must move the story along or help to develop characters.
This is a mistake many newbie novelists make when they are starting out, along with not having the correct pen and not giving any of their characters believable surnames, (seriously, DO NOT give your characters surnames like ‘Mangofart’ or ‘Vulvabacksweat’!!)
Below are two sentences, see if you can work out which one moves the plotline forward the best.
‘Dave Vulvabacksweat entered the kitchen’;
‘Dave Vulvabacksweat entered the kitchen, tripped on a mango and died instantly’
Can you spot which sentence moves the storyline forward?
If you are still not certain how to make every scene count, watch the film ‘Crocodile Dundee II’ staring Paul Hogan and copy it.
What do you do before you start a new scene? Obviously you check that your pen still has ink in it and that you are physically awake. You may also check if you have a spare pen, in case the one you plan to use runs out of ink during the writing session.
But another thing you will do before setting off on an uncharted voyage into a new scene is to ‘visualize’ the scene.
This means to visualize stuff and shit like that.
And when I say ‘visualize’ I of course mean ‘imagining’ buy using your ‘imagination’. The word ‘imagination’ is a word you have no doubt seen or heard quit a lot since you decided to write a novel and the reason you keep hearing (or seeing) it, is because ‘imagination’ is really, really, really important.
To make a scene believable, the place where the scene takes place has to be believable to the reader. Below are two examples of the beginning of a scene, which one is correct:
‘The woman walked into the dimly lit library and could instantly smell chips’
‘The woman walked in’
Which one gives you the better ‘visualization’ of the scene? This can be your homework for today.
REMEMBER humans are visually orientated so we need to ‘visualize’ scenes and shit like that. If we weren’t humans and instead were bats, our books wouldn’t be ‘visual’, they’d be ‘soundual’ because bats are blind as shit, I am sure you have heard the famous expression ‘as short-sighted as a bat’…yes? Have you heard of it? Great..
What I am trying to say is the market for novels written for bats is a very small market and they are extremely difficult to write, so stick to writing for humans.