Penning a bestseller may be any Tom, Dick and Harry's (or Mary, Jane and Penny's) wildest dream, soon forgotten once they wake up from their fantasy and the daunting task of punching the QWERTY board for hours on end seeming not worth a task for the world, but very simple techniques can help one tell a tale that keeps the reader intrigued and riveted.
Most writers are like a teenager under massive attack of identity crisis. They cannot decide what type of novel they would like to write, which is the first step to producing that million-dollar cliff-hanger thriller. Decide what appeals to you, what stories can you comfortably tackle (gentle love stories, nail-biting thrillers or chilling horror tales)?
Write a novel that fits easily into a well-known genre. This way publisher would be able to identify and strategize the market. For rookies who don't know the difference between a novella and a novel or a paperback and hardcover, start with writing a novel of the genre you enjoy reading for pleasure. Going James Patterson all the way when you spend hours on end twisting on your seat reading Nora Roberts or Amanda Quick is a total blow to the epilogue even before the prologue is thought of.
Don't think you are bringing in something new that we haven't read or seen. In actuality, there is not an original idea, nothing you see today has not been done or thought of. Be novel in your approach from a different angle obeying conventions yet bearing in mind that something new, unusual and exciting is what readers would be looking for.
Once you do this, think of what type of story you want readers to fasten their seat belts and brace themselves up for. The action/plot based story is pacey, characters hurtle around like pieces on a chessboard and there is no time for tomfoolery as opposed to the reflective novel that creates detailed, sympathetic and multi-layered personalities that grow up like normal people, nurture relationships and sadly break them up.
Prepare accordingly, mentally and physically. A novel is a long-term project, not instant coffee or vodka (served James Bond style). There are times you would feel like giving up (and this is not writer's block) thus you should have loads of self-discipline to continue working on the book albeit lackadaisically.
The novel may be an ambitious career to debut in the world of writing, but the work involved is more than catches the eye. It requires determination and dedication to reach that final chapter and pack the manuscript up to send it to the publisher.
The novel is the pinnacle of any writer's accomplishment. There is nothing mystical or superhuman about writing it though.
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