13 Things You Should Know Before Writing A Book

If you’re an author, you know that the process of writing a book is never an easy one. It can be a lonely endeavor and it can take years to finish a novel. 

While there are many authors who do everything themselves when it comes to writing their book from outlining it, drafting it, editing it, and publishing it there are also those who use ghostwriters or co-authors to get their manuscripts ready for publication. 

If you’re thinking about hiring someone else to write your book for you, check out this list first!

5 Steps You NEED TO KNOW to Write a Book – YouTube
Understanding your target audience is essential for crafting a book that resonates.
Setting realistic writing goals can help you stay on track and avoid feeling overwhelmed.
Researching your genre and market trends can inform your writing approach.
Outlining your book’s structure before you begin writing can provide a roadmap.
Creating a writing routine and sticking to it enhances consistency and progress.
Embracing the revision process is crucial for refining your manuscript’s quality.
Seeking feedback from beta readers can provide valuable insights for improvements.
Developing a strong author brand can help you connect with your readers.
Balancing creativity with marketability can lead to a successful book.
Understanding the publishing options available, including traditional and self-publishing.
Navigating the marketing and promotion process is vital for your book’s success.
Cultivating resilience and patience as you work through challenges and setbacks.
Celebrating milestones along the way can keep you motivated and inspired.

What Does Your Character Want?

You’ve got a great idea for a book, but you’re not sure how to bring it to life. Your story’s main character is an interesting person with plenty of thoughts and feelings, but what do they want?

The answer to this question is more important than you might think because it will help guide you through all the other parts of your novel. 

What does your character want? What is their goal? What is their motivation? How do they go about achieving their goals? What are some major conflicts that will arise along the way (or perhaps even after they achieve their goal)? All these questions come back to the same thing: what does your character want?

For us as readers to care about someone’s story, we need reasons why we should follow them on their journey. This can be done in any number of ways by setting up mysteries or mysteries within mysteries; making them relatable in some way; adding witty dialogue between characters but one thing remains constant: readers need something at stake. 

And if there isn’t something at stake (for instance, if nothing bad will happen if my protagonist fails) then there isn’t much reason for me as a reader not only to finish reading this book but also recommend it either online or in person!

Starting the journey as a beginner writer can be overwhelming. Get a head start on your book-writing endeavor with our Quick Start Guide for Beginners, packed with essential tips and insights.

What’s Stopping Your Character From Getting What She Wants?

There are two main ways to lose a story: either the protagonist succeeds and has no reason to go on, or he fails and has no reason to go on. 

So if you’re not clear about what your character wants, how can you be sure that she’ll stay motivated throughout the narrative? And if she doesn’t have a clear goal in mind before things get started, how will you know when and if she reaches her goal?

Where Does She Want To Be?

Before you can write a book, you need to know where your character wants to be. What is her goal? What is her motivation? How far will she go to achieve her goal and why? Will she have a love interest (yes, even in a business book!) What does her character arc look like as the story unfolds?

What if you’re writing about your own life experiences or those of someone else? That’s fine too! You still need to know where they want to be by the end of their story but it’s not going to be some sort of Hollywood ending with fireworks and unicorns dancing around them while they do back flips down hills on their surfboards because that would just be silly!

Crafting a book that resonates with readers and sells well requires strategic planning. Explore our article on 11 Ways to Write a Book That Sells for practical advice on making your writing stand out in the market.

Why Does She Want What She Wants?

As a writer, you need to know why your protagonist wants what she wants. What are her motivations? Why does she want the things she says she wants?

The best way for me to explain this is by using an example from one of my books. My heroine works as a waitress at a local diner, but all she wants is to become a famous chef and open up her restaurant someday. 

She’s driven by her passion for cooking and enjoying the taste of success with every new dish that crosses her path. But is that enough motivation for the reader?

I think not! It’s too vague and there are often when your characters need more than their passions or dreams alone to keep going through tough situations (which will inevitably come up). 

In this particular case, we decided on adding another layer: our heroine has been working extra hard towards achieving this goal because it also means supporting herself after leaving home at 16 due to family issues. 

So not only does she want it because it’s something she loves doing…but also because it’s important for survival! How many other ways can you find better reasons than these two combined?

Who Is The Antagonist?

To understand your protagonist, it’s important to know who the antagonist is. The antagonist is the character who has an opposite goal as your main character and/or is trying to prevent them from achieving their goal.

For example: In a story where one person wants to get married and another wants never to marry again, they are both trying to achieve similar things (which is why they’ll probably end up in bed together). But because they have different goals, there would be an obvious conflict between them.

What’s At Stake If The Protagonist Doesn’t Get What They Want?

At this point, you may have noticed that the stakes for your protagonist are pretty dire. If you don’t give him or her something to lose, it’s going to be hard for your reader to get invested in the story. 

It’s also important to remember that there should be consequences for failure the protagonist is fighting against something, not just attempting a feat with no risk involved. There are many ways that a character can run afoul of his/her goal:

The protagonist will lose everything (money, reputation)

The protagonist will die

The protagonist will lose their loved one (family member/romantic interest)

Transforming your book idea into a finished masterpiece involves careful steps. Learn valuable hints and strategies in our guide on Taking Your Book from Idea to Delivery to navigate the creative process with confidence.

Where And When Does The Story Happen?

The setting is the time and place where your story happens. It can be an important part of the story, or it can serve as a backdrop for the events that take place.

The setting is also sometimes used as a character in its own right, by being a catalyst for other characters’ actions. 

The setting may even be one of those “worlds within worlds” mentioned above, for example, if you’re writing about a long-lost civilization on another planet (which is exactly what I’m doing right now), then you’ll need to come up with some rules about how that civilization works: 

What kind of technology do they have? How do they treat their elders? Are there magical powers involved? All these things are part of your setting; they’re not part of your plot or any specific character’s arc but rather provide context for everything else that happens in the story.

Which Genre Is Best Suited For This Story?

Although you may be tempted to write about your own experiences, you must consider the genre of your book. Some genres are more popular than others, and some are easier to write than others.

Before you begin writing your book, take time to research what other authors have done with similar storylines. Was their story a success? How well did it sell? This will give you insight into how the market currently views similar stories and whether or not there is room for new material in the same genre.

Who Are The Secondary Characters, And What Role Do They Play In The Story Compared To The Protagonist?

Secondary characters are great. They can help round out the story and add depth to your plot, but they shouldn’t overshadow the main character or become more important than them. So who are these secondary characters? What role do they play in the story compared to the protagonist?

In general, secondary characters should support and aid the protagonist’s goal. They don’t have to be as well-developed as your main character since they take a backseat to whatever he or she is doing in this chapter of his/her life (or novel for that matter). 

However, if you’re writing about an important historical event or situation involving many people, then having some well-thought-out secondary characters can help flesh out these moments from multiple perspectives and not just from one person’s point of view like most fiction books tend to focus on today!

Establishing an author brand is crucial for building a meaningful connection with your audience. Discover the art of creating an author brand in our insightful article, The Fine Art of Creating an Author Brand, and unlock the potential for lasting impact.

Is There A Love Interest That Will Get In The Way Of Your Protagonist’s Goal?

A love interest can be a distraction for your protagonist, but it can also be a catalyst for change. The love interest can help deepen their character arc by making them question their values and desires, which in turn causes the story to move forward.

A romantic relationship may be a source of conflict if there’s an age difference between the two characters or if one character is already in another relationship. If you want readers to root for your couple, they need to feel like they equal and that means being relatively close in age and status (e.g., single vs. married).

How Will I Build Tension As My Protagonist Tries To Reach Her Goal?

You want to create a sense of urgency in your story, and this is done by introducing conflict. It could be something as simple as deciding whether or not to go out for dinner on Sunday night, or it could be something more complicated, like being trapped underground with no food or water for three days. The important thing is that the reader feels invested in what happens next.

To do this, you must create tension by giving your character (or characters) an external goal they’re trying to achieve if there’s no goal, there’s no story! You also have an internal conflict going on within their minds will they reach their goals? 

Will they fail? How will they fail? What will happen if they succeed? This creates conflict between what someone wants versus what someone needs; whether people are willing to compromise their values to achieve success; and how far one should go when pursuing success.

While there are many ways of building up tension through words alone (the list above gives just a few), here are some other ideas for ways authors can build up excitement: use cliffhangers at the end of chapters so readers can’t resist turning those pages until morning light shines through windows again! 

Create scenes where one character threatens another with violence; let readers wonder how bad things might get before everything.

Calms down again between the two friends who’ve been feuding over something silly like which holiday is better than any other holiday ever created anywhere else before now since forever into infinity Infinitum infinitesimally small yet infinitely large at once.

How Am I Going To Surprise My Audience Every Time They Turn A Page?

So let’s talk about a surprise. Surprise is one of the most powerful tools you have as a writer. It can make or break your book, and it is important to have a plan for how you’ll use it to keep readers engaged in your story.

First of all, understand that each chapter needs a twist at the end of it that makes readers want to turn the page and read more. This is something I call “the hook” because it hooks them on another page turn and keeps them reading until they reach the end of the chapter (or even beyond).

The best way to accomplish this is by using something called an “epiphany twist” at the end of each chapter. 

An epiphany twist effectively combines two things: 1) A revelation about either character or plot that forces him/her into action; 2) A shocking moment in which we discover something important about ourselves, other characters, or both! For example, Your character has been searching for her missing husband when suddenly she finds his dead body lying in an alleyway!

Avoiding common pitfalls is essential when embarking on your book-writing journey. Take a proactive approach by exploring our advice in 10 Poisonous Mistakes That Will Kill Your Book Before It Begins, ensuring a strong foundation for your writing endeavor.

Knowing These Things Before You Begin Writing Will Make It Easier To Write A Book

There are several things you should know before writing a book:

The story you plan to tell. What is it? Who is your main character? What is the conflict that drives your protagonist’s actions, and why does he or she choose to face this conflict instead of another one? Where does the story take place, and how does it fit into its period?

How long each book in your series will be? It takes time to write an 80K word novel; however, not every reader wants an 80K word novel. Some readers want shorter novels that they can finish in one sitting or two. 

Knowing how many words each book will contain will help you figure out how much money you need to make from sales so that you can sustain yourself financially while writing them all (and also allow people who prefer shorter books more options when selecting theirs).

The length of each chapter in your manuscript (or even individual scenes within chapters). This will determine how much attention readers are going to pay as well as how much time they’re willing to devote toward reading it both factors which affect whether or not those readers come back for more after finishing the first book!


Writing a book is a huge undertaking. You have to balance your expectations with the reality of what you can realistically accomplish. It’s important to know what you want before you start writing, but even more important that your expectations are realistic.

Further Reading

Here are some additional resources for further reading on the topic of writing a book:

Write Your Book
Short Description: Gain insights and practical tips from experienced authors on how to effectively write your own book.

How to Write a Book
Short Description: Explore a comprehensive guide that breaks down the book-writing process into manageable steps, helping you bring your ideas to life.

How to Write a Book
Short Description: Delve into the world of book writing with MasterClass’s expert advice, covering everything from initial concepts to final drafts.


How do I get started with writing a book?

Begin by brainstorming ideas, creating an outline, and setting a writing schedule. Break down the process into manageable steps to make it less overwhelming.

What’s the key to maintaining motivation throughout the writing process?

Finding inspiration from other authors, setting achievable goals, and reminding yourself of your book’s purpose can help you stay motivated and focused.

How can I overcome writer’s block?

Experiment with different writing prompts, take breaks to recharge, and consider writing scenes out of order to stimulate creativity and bypass writer’s block.

How important is the editing and revision process?

Editing is crucial to refine your manuscript for clarity and coherence. Consider seeking feedback from beta readers or hiring a professional editor to enhance your work.

What should I do once my book is written and edited?

After completing your book, you can explore publishing options, such as traditional publishing or self-publishing. Research marketing strategies to help your book reach its intended audience.