How to Start a Book

This week I have a (hopefully) helpful post to share with you! If you’re a writer, you will probably write a book at sometime in your life. If you’re having trouble starting your book, this post is for you!

So, let’s begin!

Step 1: The Characters

Every novel has characters. To start writing your book, you need to come up with the characters. You can always add more characters as you move along, but to start your book you need to think of the main character(s). Here’s a list of questions that will help you make him/her.

  • What is his/her name?
  • What does he/she look like?
  • How old is he/she?
  • Where does he/she live?
  • What is a good thing about him/her?
  • What is a bad thing about him/her?
  • What is he/she good at?
  • What is he/she bad at?
  • What is his/her dilemma?
  • What is his/her backstory?

You don’t have to use all of these questions; these were just the ones that I thought of. Once you’ve made your main character, you can go on to make the rest of the characters. And remember, you can always decide to keep or get rid of characters later on.

Step 2: The Plot

The next step is to figure out what’s going to happen, or figure out the plot. Write how the book starts, what goes wrong, what happens at the main character is trying to fix that problem, and how the main character fixes the problem. Include all information, this isn’t going to be read by other people. Here’s my example:

Bark the dog is having a good day, until he smells cat in his house. His owners just got a kitten to be his buddy, and he doesn’t like it. The kitten, Meow, keeps trying to befriend him, but Bark refuses to be friends with a cat. Meow is sad a runs away.
Bark’s owners come home to see Meow gone, and they’re sad. Bark has to save Meow now, and he travels far away one night. He’s searching for many days, then he finds Meow starving on the streets of a nearby city. But Meow doesn’t want to come home.
After a kind compliment to Meow, Bark and Meow finally become friends.
Meow agrees to come home and the two are greeted with loving arms. The two then have lots of fun together, and they are happy. (end)

Step 3: The Chapters

Now you need to figure out how long you want your book to be. Figure out how many chapters; I’d recommend around 10-30 chapters if your book is a novel. Once you’ve done that, you could spread your plot out through the chapters. Like this:

Chapter One: Bark finds out about Meow
Chapter Two: Meow tries to befriend Bark, but Bark refuses
Chapter Three: Meow keeps trying to be Bark’s friend, Bark tells him to go away
Chapter Four: Meow Runs away and Bark’s owners are sad

Step 4: Starting your Book

Now you gotta start actually writing your book. You need to decide how you want to start your book. Here are some example ways:

“What?” Bark/I was shocked when he/I first found out his owners/we were getting a cat.
Bark/I sat in his/my room, munching on delicious brown pebbles of dog food.

Once you’ve done that, write away! If you find yourself at a writer’s block, look around you for inspiration. One book I wrote a long time ago was about a horse, because I loved horses; another one I’m working on (for a school project) is based off of the “Hank the Cowdog” stories.

Well, I hope you liked this post, because I sure had fun writing it! Also, my books page has been updated (I figured out a good plot :D), so I hope you’ll check that out!

Tell Me

Are you working on any books?
Do you have any tips you’d like to share?

See you next week!


9 thoughts on “How to Start a Book

  1. Great post! ❤ Thanks for the tips! I am working on five books at the moment. 🙂

    I would say for a tip to really have a hook sentence, it does not have to be full of action, just immediately get your reader in the mood to read this story, if it is sad might want to start with rain, if it is about the outsider in school might start with an embarrassing story or maybe like a journal! Example:
    "Hi, I am Taylor, have you ever met that weird kid? Guess who is in the genre? Yep, you are right….me."

    I hope this helps, good job, Anna! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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