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Your premise alone should make readers salivate.


  • Kiss River (The Keeper of the Light Trilogy Book 2).
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  • .
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Does it have legs? In other words, does it stay in your mind, growing and developing every time you think of it? But fashion some sort of a directional document that provides structure and also serves as a safety net. Potential agents or publishers require this in your proposal. What do you want your reader to learn from your book, and how will you ensure they learn it? You may recognize this novel structure illustration. Did you know it holds up—with only slight adaptations—for nonfiction books too?

Make promises early, triggering your reader to anticipate fresh ideas, secrets, inside information, something major that will make him thrilled with the finished product. You can even make the how-to project look impossible until you pay off that setup with your unique solution. Keep your outline to a single page for now. Your outline must serve you. If that means Roman numerals and capital and lowercase letters and then Arabic numerals, you can certainly fashion it that way. Simply start with your working title, then your premise, then—for fiction, list all the major scenes that fit into the rough structure above.

For nonfiction, try to come up with chapter titles and a sentence or two of what each chapter will cover. Once you have your one-page outline, remember it is a fluid document meant to serve you and your book. Expand it, change it, play with it as you see fit—even during the writing process. That may consist of three sessions of two hours each, two sessions of three hours, or six one-hour sessions—whatever works for you. I recommend a regular pattern same times, same days that can most easily become a habit.

Having trouble finding the time to write a book? You have to make it. Something in your calendar will likely have to be sacrificed in the interest of writing time. Never sacrifice your family on the altar of your writing career. Many writers insist they have no time to write, but they always seem to catch the latest Netflix original series, or go to the next big Hollywood feature. They enjoy concerts, parties, ball games, whatever.

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How important is it to you to finally write your book? What will you cut from your calendar each week to ensure you give it the time it deserves?

To ensure you finish your book, set your own deadline—then consider it sacred. Now determine—and enter in your calendar—the number of pages you need to produce per writing session to meet your deadline. If it proves unrealistic, change the deadline now. If you have no idea how many pages or words you typically produce per session, you may have to experiment before you finalize those figures. Divide by 50 weeks accounting for two off-weeks , and you get eight pages per week.

Now is the time to adjust these numbers,while setting your deadline and determining your pages per session.

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Or you know your book will be unusually long. Change the numbers to make it realistic and doable, and then lock it in. Remember, your deadline is sacred.

I quit fretting and losing sleep over procrastinating when I realized it was inevitable and predictable, and also that it was productive. Maybe it was at first. If you have to go back in and increase the number of pages you need to produce per session, do that I still do it all the time. Have you found yourself writing a sentence and then checking your email?

Writing another and checking Facebook? Then you just have to check out that precious video from a talk show where the dad surprises the family by returning from the war. That leads to more and more of the same.

Ten easy steps to happier living

Look into these apps that allow you to block your email, social media, browsers, game apps, whatever you wish during the hours you want to write. Some carry a modest fee, others are free. Your details and logic and technical and historical details must be right for your novel to be believable. The last thing you want is even a small mistake due to your lack of proper research. Your credibility as an author and an expert hinges on creating trust with your reader.

That dissolves in a hurry if you commit an error. Talk back to yourself if you must. It may sound silly, but acknowledging yourself as a writer can give you the confidence to keep going and finish your book. Not you-first, not book-first, not editor-, agent-, or publisher-first.

Certainly not your inner circle- or critics-first. When fans tell me they were moved by one of my books, I think back to this adage and am grateful I maintained that posture during the writing. So, naturally, you need to know your reader.

How to Write a Book: A Proven Step Guide from a Time Bestseller

When in doubt, look in the mirror. The surest way to please your reader is to please yourself. Write what you would want to read and trust there is a broad readership out there that agrees. Oh, it can still change if the story dictates that. But settling on a good one will really get you off and running.

Start Over Guidebook # 4: Listen Intently

Great opening lines from other classics may give you ideas for yours. In a novel, if everything is going well and everyone is agreeing, your reader will soon lose interest and find something else to do—like watch paint dry. Are two of your characters talking at the dinner table? Have one say something that makes the other storm out. Some deep-seeded rift in their relationship has surfaced. Thrust people into conflict with each other. Check out some of the current bestselling nonfiction works to see how writers accomplish this.

Tension is the secret sauce that will propel your reader through to the end. Many of us are perfectionists and find it hard to get a first draft written—fiction or nonfiction—without feeling compelled to make every sentence exactly the way we want it. Deep as I am into a long career, I still have to remind myself of this every writing day. I cannot be both creator and editor at the same time. That slows me to a crawl, and my first draft of even one brief chapter could take days.

Our job when writing that first draft is to get down the story or the message or the teaching—depending on your genre. Imagine yourself wearing different hats for different tasks , if that helps—whatever works to keep you rolling on that rough draft. This chore is about creating. Some like to write their entire first draft before attacking the revision.

As I say, whatever works. I alternate creating and revising. The first thing I do every morning is a heavy edit and rewrite of whatever I wrote the day before. Then I switch hats, tell Perfectionist Me to take the rest of the day off, and I start producing rough pages again. Learn more about Amazon Prime. Please try your request again later.

Jamie Wolf helps people who have experienced unwelcome or unexpected change start over and become agents of change, profitably directing their destiny. Jamie transforms lives by translating her experience in entrepreneurship as an author, marketer, and business owner into a common sense, practical, systematic approach that you can apply to your life situation today. Her business experience is hands on; her current businesses include - Wolf Tide Publishing - http: After taking her online-courses and coaching - for entrepreneurs and people interested in starting over or in starting their own business - you will have reinvented yourself, revived, and reinvigorated your enthusiasm for life!

A graduate from Arizona State University with her Masters in Business Administration, Jamie's first Start was to cofound a company where she saw a need. As Chief Science Officer, she traveled throughout the US and as far away as Beijing to raise investment money for the start-up company. The company created hardware and software systems to help people with chronic diseases such as diabetes.

It proved to be an auspicious beginning. Jamie wrote Start Over! Ten Keys to Success in Business and Life and the 10 accompanying guidebooks by living it. Jamie has three children and lives in Beaufort, SC with her husband, two rescued dogs, and several rescued cats!

Be sure to follow her on Facebook at any of these pages: Are you an author? Help us improve our Author Pages by updating your bibliography and submitting a new or current image and biography. Learn more at Author Central. Rober Notter, Nicole Heppard and Cheryl Heppard I just got back from attending a fantastic marketing conference for a platinum group coaching program I joined last year.

While the conference was great, it was the overall experience that really blew me away. Sometimes what we get is much more than we had hoped for. I set my intentions as I always do for what I planned take-away from the event. Although I left with what I had hoped to receive, which was a clear. Where do I go next? Do you ask why or do you ask why not?

For example, I have a friend who is older and retired. He went from a very busy career to a very quiet lifestyle. When he worked he was always too busy to do volunteer work or pursue hobbies. And they take intelligent risks. You may just want to get through a day without making the same old mistakes. No matter what you hope to accomplish, Jamie Wolf can help. The lessons in Start Over are life-tested by Jamie herself. My wish for you is for your learning to be successful. For your greatest benefits, I strongly encourage you to try all three learning formats — written, audio, and video.

Then work through the exercises by yourself of in the Start Over forum online. Finally, share what you have learned.