We all have stories to tell, some real, some imaginary. Are you a storyteller and want to be a story writer? Maybe, you don’t know how to get started. If you are a would-be writer who would love to try and don’t know where to begin, I want to share part of my journey of getting started with you in this blog.
First of all, my experience throughout my career has been technical writing, not creative fiction. There is a world of difference in how you think when writing creatively. Personally, I find it fun and enormously satisfying. I have written poems and short stories over the years, but I had never considered writing a novel.
When I decided to become a novelist, I did a lot of reading and research to see how to get started. Just start writing was a common theme I kept finding. How? Write your ideas in a notebook or on the computer but write down what moves you, what you think about, perhaps describe something. Get your words down and then you can begin to put your story together.
There is a world of information about what is the best way to write a book. Each of you, must decide what fits your style of organization. You may choose an outline, a storyboard, a spiral notebook, post-it notes, or a combination of these. I have used all of them, and I am still working on what is the best fit for me. I did start with an outline, simply because it was familiar to me. It worked. Whatever you choose, just write.
Mostly, I tell my friends that I became a writer by accident. Writing a novel became a reality for me as a challenge over dinner with friends. Let me back up a bit. My husband, Dick, and I make trips in our RV, consequently, we have a lot of windshield time. We love to watch the scenery go by and listen to great music. We also have lengthy conversations, but on occasions we do run out of topics. For those of you who travel a lot know what I am talking about. Nevertheless, to fill the time I began making up stories about “What if . . ..” Then one day, I said, “we could write a book about that.” Dick believed me. He thought we really could or I could.
About a month later, my husband and I were having dinner with several friends when he announced that we were indeed writing a book. I was shocked he had shared that. When we got in the car to go home, I told him that was just a husband wife conversation about writing a book.
I said, “now, we have to do it, since we told our friends we were.” I was convincing myself!
He calmly said, “we can do this.”
I had to admit, I wanted to. After that conversation, writing that book was all I could think about. I jotted down notes. I looked up how to’s on the Internet. I bought index cards. I’m a great planner.
After a week of research, Dick dropped out. I think he could see I was moving ahead full steam. By that time, I was deep into writing the first chapter. I was committed. I was hooked!
Dick became my biggest cheerleader. He listened, encouraged, said he loved the story (whether he loved it or not, I believed him:) That kept me writing, and today I have a book published. Sometimes I think Dick was secretly pushing me forward.
So, get ready, set, go my friends.