Richard Edwards, author of the Puzzle Train series back again. Self-publishing excites me. Here we are, half way through another month and I must say it’s been an rousing two-weeks already. As anyone who is following me on Facebook or read last week’s newsletter, will know I have recently finished the fifth and final book in the Puzzle Train series – Puzzle Mansion.
Draft 1 is nicely tucked away and remains untouched since I completed it. I know this is hard for some people, and the temptation has been there for me to go back and look at it. But I haven’t. Instead I have started a whole new Middle-Grade series, which leads me to the topic of this newsletter – moving on and finding inspiration.
For me, writing can be split into three parts:
- Inspiration – what to write
- Motivation – how to write
- Review and editing – making what you’ve written the best it can possibly be
Where does inspiration come from? Without it, that book doesn’t get started. When you’re writing the second, third or later book in that series, and the inspiration can often come from an unresolved issue or a character’s backstory. But how do you start a new story?
I believe that inspiration is everywhere, you just need to know how to spot it. Overhearing snippets of conversation, watching the news, a movie or even a series. Allow yourself to daydream and make notes of your dreams. The subconscious is a powerful tool if you can access it.
My new project came to me a while ago whilst I was in the gym, but I made a note of it. While I was daydreaming emptying the dishwasher, the plot developed itself. It went in a different direction from the way I imagined it in the beginning, but I drafted an outline from it.
If inspiration eludes you, then start with the big 6 questions – what, where, how, why, when, who:
- What genre?
- Where and when will it be set?
- Who are my main characters?
- How did they get to where the story starts?
- Why are they going to do whatever they’re going to do?
Once you answer these five questions, then you’re well on your way to writing your next novel. If inspiration still eludes you, then I I have places available on my self-publishing mentorship course, where I will work with you to achieve your writing goals.