Book Writing Guides For First-Time Authors

Writing a book is a big undertaking. It takes time, energy, and passion. The process of writing a book is also unique to each person. There’s no right or wrong way to write your story or tell your experiences as an author. 

However, some things make the journey easier for first-time authors-myself included! Here are my top tips for making your book writing experience less daunting.

How to Write Your First Novel | Tips for New Writers – YouTube
1. Begin with a clear book idea and outline.
2. Set realistic writing goals to maintain motivation.
3. Craft a compelling narrative that resonates with readers.
4. Build an author brand to establish your unique identity.
5. Consider self-publishing options and marketing strategies.
6. Edit and revise your manuscript meticulously.
7. Overcome writer’s block through creative techniques.
8. Seek feedback from beta readers and professionals.
9. Stay consistent with your writing routine.
10. Embrace the journey and celebrate small victories.

Picking Your Niche

Choosing a niche is one of the most important parts of writing a book. You want to make sure that you choose a niche that you are passionate about and one that you have enough knowledge and interest in. This will help ensure that the book is engaging for your readers and will be something they want to read.

Crafting a compelling narrative is a crucial skill for authors. If you’re wondering how to structure your story effectively, consider exploring the Snowflake Method as a powerful technique to develop your novel step by step.

When Choosing Your Niche, There Are A Few Things To Consider

Do you have enough knowledge about this topic? If not, how will you gain knowledge about it?

Are there any experts in this field who could help answer questions or provide feedback on your work-in-progress (WIP) drafts as it comes together?

How much time have you spent researching this topic in general and specifically on the specific subject matter of your WIP drafts so far?

Choosing A Title

Choosing a title is an important decision. Titles can often be the first thing that people read when deciding whether or not to buy your book, so you must choose one that is not only memorable but also relevant to the content of your book.

You should aim for a short, memorable, and interesting title. It’s also helpful if it’s unique: so many books are published every year, so having a title that stands out from others will help yours rise above the pack!

When choosing your book title, make sure it’s easy to pronounce and spell; this will increase its chances of being found by potential readers when they’re searching for something specific on Amazon or in other online stores (and who doesn’t love looking at what everyone else bought?) 

And lastly but not least – make sure you like how it sounds because after all these years I still get annoyed when I hear someone pronounce my name wrong (it’s pronounced “Bree”!).

Writing a book that resonates with readers requires a strategic approach. Discover 11 effective ways to craft a book that not only tells a story but also captivates and engages your target audience.

Choosing A Genre

While it may not seem like a big deal to some, choosing the right genre for your book can make all the difference. A good way to start is by thinking about what kind of reader you want to attract. While there are dozens of different genres available, here are some of the most popular:

Children’s books – Written for children aged 6-12 years old and often include illustrations by well-known artists. Some examples include The Wind in the Willows, Peter Pan, and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Fiction – An imaginative story that deals with real-life events (even if they don’t happen), but takes liberties with details or characters. Some examples include The Catcher in the Rye by J.D Salinger, A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess (or any other dystopian novel), Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Knowing What You Want To Write About

Knowing what you want to write about is important. It will help you focus on your writing. It will help you stay motivated, get started, and finish the book that’s in your head!

It’s also going to be a good thing for your readers because they don’t want to read a bunch of random stuff they just want one thing: what they think they’re going to get from the title of the book (or at least something close).

If there is no clear direction or topic in mind before you start writing then it might be hard for people who are new at reading books by first-time authors like yourself!

Deciding On Your Publishing Platform

You can decide on your publishing platform by weighing the pros and cons of the various options.

Self-publishing is growing in popularity, but it’s not for everyone. While you can publish your books and make money from them, there are some drawbacks:

You’ll have to do all the marketing yourself (which may or may not be an issue).

Your book might not look as professional as one published by a traditional publisher (though this can be fixed with professional editing).

Traditional publishing via a literary agent is still an option if you’re serious about getting your writing career off the ground. Agents receive thousands of submissions every year, so make sure yours stands out somehow and don’t spend too much at once! 

They’ll most likely reject you based on lack of quality rather than lack of effort, so make it count when sending in your manuscript.

Embarking on your first book-writing journey? The challenge lies in choosing the right topic that aligns with your passion and readers’ interests. Dive into our insights on selecting the perfect topic for your debut book and set yourself up for success.

Developing An Outline

It’s great to have a general idea of what you want to write, but it’s even better to have a concrete plan for your story. That way, once you get started, things won’t go off track and there will be no second-guessing or wandering through paragraphs of nothingness.

For this reason, many authors choose to create outlines before they begin writing their books. An outline helps you stay on track by helping you see what needs to happen next in the plot and allowing room for surprises without throwing off the whole structure of the novel. 

It also allows for more detailed descriptions when needed, for example, if one character makes an unexpected appearance early on in chapter two, then that information can be added into the outline so that everyone who reads it knows beforehand who this person is and why he or she is important enough to warrant his/her section later on down the line (in chapter 10).

Developing Characters

The most important thing is to make your characters relatable. Your readers will feel more comfortable with the story if they can relate to the characters, who are probably going through similar experiences.

The second most important thing is to make your characters unique. If they’re not unique, they will be boring and forgettable! They need to stand out from the crowd in some way, for example, maybe their names are unusual or they have a funny accent or something like that.

The third most important thing is for your characters’ personalities and actions to be believable within the context of their world (e.g., if you set a story on Mars with humans as one of many races living there, it’s easier for us Earthlings than if everything was normal except that everyone had blue hair).

The fourth-most-important thing is for each character’s personality traits (what makes them memorable) not only share commonalities among those traits but also complement other character traits (so nobody has all good qualities or all bad qualities). 

This prevents too much “good vs evil” narrative tension which leads nowhere except boredom! When there isn’t enough diversity between personas within a single team then there won’t be anywhere near as much dramatic tension between them either unless something happens outside their control/worldview.”

Building an author brand is a dynamic process that goes beyond writing alone. Learn how to create a unique and memorable author persona with our guide on crafting an author brand that resonates with your readers and extends your influence.

Developing Conflict And Tension

Conflict and tension are the two main elements that keep readers turning pages. As a writer, you can’t have one without the other. Without any conflict at all in your story, there’s no reason for your characters to worry about what will happen next and no reason for readers to worry either. 

And while there’s nothing wrong with writing a quiet character study or slice-of-life memoir (in fact, I encourage it!), most stories need some sort of conflict or tension that propels the plot forward and keeps readers interested in what’s going on inside their heads as well as outside them.

Conflict is what happens between characters: how they interact with each other, where they stand on different issues and opinions, etc. Tension is what happens within each character: how they deal with their problems/goals/etc., as well as any larger conflicts they’re involved in.

Developing Your Plotline

A plotline is a way in which your story unfolds. It’s a series of events that lead to the resolution of your conflict, usually in the form of rising action, climax, and falling action.

A good plotline needs to have several key components:

A protagonist who wants something but faces obstacles in getting it

A compelling problem or conflict that keeps readers interested and on their toes

An ending that ties up any loose ends

Developing your supporting characters

A supporting character is a character who helps your main character to achieve their goal. Supporting characters can be friends, family members, and even enemies of your main character. They often play a key role in the plot and help move it forward by providing information or assistance to the main character.

To create a well-rounded supporting character, first, consider what role they have in the story. What does this person want? How does he/she get it? What obstacles stand in the way of getting what he/she wants? If you know how your supporting characters’ goals fit into the overall story structure then you will be able to make them believable within that context.

Another important thing to consider is how your supporting characters interact with each other as well as with other characters from outside their circle (like rivals). 

You need to develop relationships between them so they feel like real people who have lives outside of simply serving one purpose about another person’s journey towards achieving an overall goal (in this case yours).

Developing Your Setting

The setting is as important to your story as any other character. It’s the place where your characters live their lives, and it shapes them in unexpected ways. 

Your setting can be a place that’s familiar to you, and it should feel like home when you write about it, but it also needs to feel foreign enough that your reader can’t predict exactly what’s coming next. A good setting will leave them wanting more.

A good setting feels familiar but not too familiar! If this sounds contradictory, let me explain: readers want their settings to be recognizable because they need somewhere they can ground themselves while they’re reading. 

They want something they know well enough so they don’t get lost in an unfamiliar world but at the same time, readers also want a sense of mystery when reading about new worlds! 

This means that if all we ever do is write about real places (or too-familiar ones), our writing will start feeling stale quickly so try finding ways for us both not just for ourselves but also for our readers’ sake as well!

Making Your Story Unique From The Rest Of The Pack

One of the best ways to set your story apart from the pack is by making it unique. You can do this in several ways, but probably the most effective is by setting your story in a different period or country than is typical for a given genre. 

For example, if your book is going to be part of an urban fantasy series that takes place in New York City, consider setting yours in London instead.

If you’re writing historical fiction, set it during the Prohibition Era or World War II instead of at any other period throughout history.

If you’re writing science fiction and plan on having aliens show up at some point (because every sci-fi novel does), why not make them come from Mars instead of Earth? Your readers will appreciate being able to explore something new with each book they read!

Writing a book is only part of the journey; getting it into the hands of readers is equally important. Explore our tips on writing, publishing, and selling your book on Amazon to maximize your book’s reach and impact in the competitive market.

Writing Pages 1-9 And 12-22, Depending On Where It Falls On Your Novel

The first nine pages are vital. The opening of your book is what will set the tone for everything that follows. If you can’t get those first 8,000 words right, then there’s no point in writing the rest of the book because your readers won’t want to read it anyway.

And don’t forget about page 22! This is where most people stop reading a novel because they feel they know enough about the story or character(s) by this point and would rather move on to something else or watch TV instead of reading more so make sure these last few paragraphs are good ones!

But don’t worry if you haven’t finished yet either: just remember that each chapter should have some sort of problem or conflict within it so that it ends with some kind of cliffhanger leading into next week’s lesson when we’ll talk about how much content should go into each chapter (and whether or not they should all be roughly equal).


Writing a book can be a daunting task. It’s hard work, and it can seem overwhelming. But if you follow these tips you’ll be well on your way to writing your first novel.

Take one step at a time and don’t get frustrated if things don’t go as planned! Your first draft doesn’t have to be perfect – just keep going until the story is complete 🙂

Further Reading

Explore more resources to enhance your book writing journey:

How to Write a Book: A Comprehensive Guide Learn the step-by-step process of crafting a book from start to finish, including planning, writing, and editing, with valuable insights from experienced authors.

First-Time Author Tips and Insights Delve into essential advice tailored for first-time authors, covering topics such as overcoming challenges, staying motivated, and navigating the publishing world.

Mastering the Art of Writing a Book Gain valuable tips and techniques to hone your writing skills and tackle the complexities of book creation with confidence.


Have questions about book writing? Here are some answers to common queries:

How do I begin the book-writing process?

Starting your book begins with a clear idea and a solid outline. Identify your target audience, clarify your message, and outline your book’s structure to provide a strong foundation for your writing journey.

What’s the importance of setting realistic writing goals?

Setting achievable goals keeps you motivated and on track throughout your writing process. Break down your larger book project into manageable milestones to maintain steady progress and avoid feeling overwhelmed.

How can I maintain consistency in my writing routine?

Consistency is key. Set a regular writing schedule that works for you, whether it’s a certain number of words per day or dedicated time slots. Consistency helps build momentum and keeps writer’s block at bay.

How do I edit and revise my manuscript effectively?

Editing is a critical step. Start by taking a break from your manuscript before revisiting it with fresh eyes. Focus on clarity, coherence, and grammar. Consider seeking feedback from beta readers or professionals to enhance your work.

What are some strategies to handle writer’s block?

Writer’s block is common but conquerable. Try changing your writing environment, freewriting, or working on a different section of your book. Sometimes, stepping away and engaging in other creative activities can also reignite your inspiration.