• L.E. Mearman

Episode 2 - Make a Plan to Write Your Book This Year

Have you made the new year’s resolution that this will finally be the year you write your novel? If so, you are not alone, and it may be easier than you think…with the right planning.

In this episode of Authoring Advice, I share my tips for planning a novel and how, if you take the time to do so, you will be well on your way to finally writing your book this year.

In today's episode, we will cover:

  • How to break your writing project into manageable pieces

  • The basics of pre-plotting, outlining, plotting, writing, and revising

  • The truth about your first draft

  • How to decide on some important elements of your story

Important questions to ask yourself about your story:

  • Who is the protagonist?

  • Who/what is the antagonist?

  • What is the central conflict?

  • How will the protagonist change from beginning to end?

  • How will you raise the stakes to keep the reader coming back?

  • How will the conflict be resolved?

  • Is there a central theme?

"Do research and learn as much as you can. You want to be able to create a place that readers can envision, smell, hear, taste, and feel."

Episode Highlights

0:50 - Break Up Your Project into Manageable Pieces

1:20 - Pre-Plotting - What You Need to Get Started

2:40 - Plotting - Set Up for Writing Success

8:18 - Writing - How to Plan a Writing Schedule

13:38 - Revising - "Zero" Drafts and Polishing

* Times are approximate

"Along with helping you discover plot points and characters, your outline will also help you see where your story is going. It will help keep you on track and minimize, or even eliminate, writer’s block."

Sources & Sundries

I really like the way author Dean Koontz sums up structuring a novel in four simple steps:

  1. Put your protagonist into terrible trouble as soon as possible

  2. Everything your character does to try and get out of this terrible trouble only makes things worse

  3. The situation eventually appears hopeless

  4. Finally, there is resolution (hopefully your protagonist succeeds, but this isn’t always the case)

“The scariest moment is always just before you start.” - Stephen King

How do you plan your writing projects? Will you attempt to write a book this year? Please share below. You can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest @authoringadvice.

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