K.M. Weiland is an author friend who writes historical and speculative fiction as well as helps to mentor other authors. One of her posts, “Top 25 Ways to Write an Awesome Novel,” is so awesome in itself that I had to share. So with her permission, I’m re-posting the information here. Make sure to give a shout out to @KMWeiland over at Twitter to say thanks or visit her here.
Millions of words have been strung together on the subject of how to write an awesome book. A book is always going to be a tremendous undertaking that can feel more than a little complicated sometimes. But what if we could simplify the process to just twenty-five ingredients? Last summer, I wrote a post about the Top 25 Ways to Blow a Book. One Wordplayer asked that I also share the Top 25 Ways to Write an Awesome Book. Here they are!
1. Hook readers with a strong first chapter that doesn’t waste time.
2. Create a sympathetic and/or entertaining character.
3. Give the character a strong goal.
4. Obstruct the character’s goal with equally strong opposition.
5. Create a theme that arises from the character’s inner conflict.
6. Craft a strong plot with proper structure.
7. Do your research and get your facts straight.
8. Expunge unnecessary scenes, settings, and characters.
9. Balance action and character with properly structured scene/sequel pairings.
10. Write realistic, entertaining dialogue.
11. Maintain a consistent POV.
12. Create original and entertaining voices for narrating characters.
13. Tighten descriptions with more strong verbs and nouns and fewer modifiers.
14. Show more than you tell.
15. Dig deep for original ideas and turns of phrase.
16. Properly foreshadow your climax—without giving away any big reveals.
17. Build realistic and engaging settings.
18. Add only meaningful subplots.
19. When you build tension—always fulfill it.
20. Create a dynamic arc of growth for your character.
21. Add interesting minor characters who can power the plot forward.
22. Choose the right tone to enhance your plot and theme.
23. Rock readers with a climax that fulfills all their desires for the story.
24. Don’t tie off all the loose ends in your story’s ending.
25. Proofread, proofread, proofread.
So, which point above are you going to focus on first?