How To Begin a Novel

It can be hard to write a novel if you are new to it.You may not know how to start a novel.It is possible to start a novel more effectively if you plan out the novel first, like creating your characters and setting.You can write a strong opening for the novel by sitting down.

Step 1: Write exercises.

Writing exercises can be used to generate ideas for your novel.If you want to get your creative juices flowing, use existing writing prompts or create your own.You can start to get your ideas down on the page if you sit down and do timed free writes.You can do writing prompts that focus on creating a specific element of your novel, such as character or setting.A writing prompt about your main character’s worst day may be a good way to create scenes for your novel.There is a list of writing prompts at Writer’s Digest.

Step 2: The main character should be engaging.

Who is going to be in your novel?Who is your main character?What do they want?What kind of story will they tell?Use your main character as a driving force in your novel.Give your main character a name, gender, profession or something that occupies their time, such as school or college.Determine their physical attributes, such as height, weight, eye color, and skin tone.Think about what personal items they carry with them and what clothing they wear.Your main character’s story should include past memories, experiences, and important moments.A main character may have had a traumatic childhood.It can help flesh out your main character more on the page if you include the backstory in your novel.

Step 3: The conflict should be central.

There is a conflict in your novel.What do you want your main character to do?What do your characters want in the novel?What obstacles will make it hard for your characters to get what they want?The stakes for the reader will be raised if there is a central conflict in the novel.You could have a novel where abortion is illegal all over the world.In the world of the novel, a character who needs an abortion is unable to do so safely and legally.The central conflict of the novel is her attempt to get an abortion.

Step 4: Pick out a setting.

It is possible to flesh out the world of your novel by focusing on a specific setting.Think about what time period you want your novel to be set in.In a small town based on your hometown, you could set the novel in the past.Maybe the novel will be set in a big American city.Pick a setting and figure out the details of the novel.You can choose a setting that uses landmarks in New York City to make them more futuristic.If you put a bubble over New York City, your characters will not be able to move in and out of the city on their own.

Step 5: There is a central theme.

The central theme of your novel should be love, loss, grief, or connection.The theme should be specific to your characters and setting.Think about how you can explore a central theme through the actions of your characters.Some of your characters may be a family of immigrants living in a small American town.You can explore themes of identity, family loyalty, and love through your characters and setting.

Step 6: You can choose a genre.

To help you get ideas for your novel, you can choose a genre that you enjoy reading and writing in.If you enjoy reading historical romance novels, you may want to write your own novel.You can try your hand at writing science fiction if you enjoy it.There are many genres of writing, from literary fiction to romance to crime to thrillers.You can find books in a few genres that speak to you as a writer.

Step 7: You can use a plot diagram.

A plot diagram can help you organize your novel.The plot diagram can be used to help you write the novel.The setup, inciting incident, rising action, climax, and falling action are the main parts of a plot diagram.To plot out the story in your novel, identify each section.If you have a setup like a college student returning home to their hometown in time to celebrate with their family, you can do it.The death of her mother may be the cause of the inciting incident.The college student may have a lack of connection to her family and friends.It could be the death of her mother.She could be dealing with the death of her mother.The college student could have decided to stay in the small town to care for her family.

Step 8: A plan for a chapter.

Chapter by chapter plan is a way to organize your novel.Break down your novel into chapters.An outline for each chapter should note the basic action of the chapter as well as the characters involved and the setting.You can fill in the gaps when you start writing.Chapter 1: Introduction of Main Character is where you introduce your main character and setting to the reader.Chapter 2 Exploration of the Setting is where you can learn more about the setting and the minor characters.

Step 9: Try the method.

If you are looking for a different approach to plot out your novel, the snowflake method may be a good one.The method consists of a summary of the novel, character synopses, and a spreadsheet of scenes.You can get a better sense of where your novel is headed with the help of these four elements.You can extend the one sentence summary to create a one paragraph summary, character synopses, and a spreadsheet of scenes.

Step 10: The opening line needs to be engaging.

The guidepost for your reader will be the first sentence of your novel.The tone, voice, and style of the novel should be presented.It should make the reader want to read more.You want an opening line that isn’t boring.You may have an opening line that states an interesting fact about your main character.One option is to have an opening line that states a fact about the setting and her characters: “In the town there were two mutes, and they were always together.”The opening line ofLolita is a good example of this.

Step 11: Start with action.

Your novel should begin with danger, action, or surprise.Start at a crucial point in the scene.Your main character should be doing something dangerous.The main character is making a decision.The reader should be introduced to the world of the novel through action.You could start with your character making the decision to return to their hometown despite their complicated feelings towards their family.A character rushing to catch a train back to their hometown will keep the reader engaged.

Step 12: Start with dialogue.

It is possible to start your novel with interesting dialogue.In a scene, have your main character speak to another character.The tone and mood of the novel will be set by dialogue.Your reader will be interested in your story immediately.The dialogue needs to introduce setting and character.An opening line like, “You missed the train again, Melanie said to her sister, Ness” introduces both characters, their relationship, and a conflict or issue.

Step 13: The reader should ask questions.

A good opening will make the reader want more.Over the course of the novel, there will be questions or mysteries presented.Don’t pack too much information into your opening scene.To help the reader stay grounded in the world of the novel, present just enough to motivate them to keep going.Most of the main plot can be laid out in the opening.The reader is left wondering about the main plot as a whole after revising it so only the most necessary information is still present in the opening.A few details can make your opening more engaging.