Writing Your First Novel: How to Fix an (Accidentally) Autobiographical Novel

Writing your first book is hard. Its a battle. Its a learning procedure.

And its often autobiographical, even if you do not mean it to be. And thats all right.

Some of you may be taking part in our 100 Day Book program, composing your first book on your own, or kicking around the concept of beginning that manuscript.

Wait, My Main Character Is Me!

Even if you discover your initial draft to be “too you,” dont panic. Its not a wild-goose chase, and you can still wait from gathering dust for eternity.

My first finished book was a dramatized variation of my life at the time. I didnt understand it when I was composing, but my main character was me.

Your first book will most likely be heavily based upon your own life– whichs okay! Keep composing.

Every character is a piece of the author. I suggest, how do you “write what you understand” if you cant use who you understand?

The thing with writing your very first novel is that the primary character will probably be based upon yourself. Greatly based on yourself.

5 Reasons to Roll With It

No, you do not.

You might be stating, “I didnt suggest for this to be autobiographical. Now I have to begin over.”

Here are just a handful of reasons to go with the circulation and keep writing your very first book:

1. Youre entering into a writing habit.

With your first book, youre practicing your writing habit by finding what time of day you write best, discovering how lots of words you can fairly produce in each session, and establishing your “process.”.

Writing requires devotion, time management, and a lots of patience. Similar to anything else essential, you need to prioritize your writing time and set goals and deadlines on your own or youll never end up.

2. Youre practicing your strategy and finding yourself.

Writing is a great deal of work. Structure, character arc and advancement, B plots, tone, style, and so on are all things you need to keep track of when composing a novel. Since your life is so familiar, utilizing it as product makes it easier to focus on the finer points and lets you establish your composing design without having to focus as much on characters or original story.

Youll be much more confident in your writing when you move on to the next book.

3. Youre finding out to separate characters.

A typical problem with new writers (and lets face it, some experienced ones) is all their characters are the very same. They talk the very same, react the same, often even look the very same.

Drawing from people in real life can help with this. You know how your sister would react, what her speech patterns are, that annoying little half smile she gets when shes ideal and knows it. No one else resembles her. Writing “her” into your book will assist you establish richer characters in later stories.

4. Youre discovering to use reality.

But I simply said you shouldnt use reality, right? Not exactly. You will constantly utilize real life as a basis for your stories, but life ought to be a trigger for inspiration rather of copied verbatim.

As youre composing your very first book, youre learning to keep in mind, to see peoples mannerisms, to remember odd conversations you had 3 years earlier. Youre learning to focus. (And hopefully youre discovering to constantly carry something to compose with.).

5. Youre going to complete a novel!

Keep in mind how you desired to write a novel, which is why you started the process to start with? Youre still doing that!

You can still conserve this book.

Your primary character is you at the core. Shes taking her dog for a walk, going to the grocery shop, combating with her partner.

Up the Stakes.

And when you move on to the next concept, youll be old hat at this entire novelist thing.

I understand it looks like Im stating composing your first book is just a practice run, but thats not necessarily the case. Besides the above reasons to stay with it, I have another secret:.

Even if it never sees the light of day, you will have written your first book. It will exist.

However wheres the dispute?

A list of action is not a story. There need to be dispute. Your personal life most likely isnt very dramatic, and thats okay. You can still utilize instances of your life to write your novel.

Just up those stakes.

If your main character goes to the grocery shop, what takes place? Does she get mugged in the parking lot?

Keep composing. Keep practicing. The rest will fall in line.

( A NOTE FOR THOSE MEANING TO WRITE AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR: This section applies to you, too. You still need to have dispute in your story. The difference is you need to remember what the dispute was at the time instead of making it up.).

Now I have so lots of ideas, its hard to keep up.

Knowing that made me stress I didnt have any creativity or composing chops. I picked myself up and wrote a couple bad brief stories. I started 3 other novels that didnt get off the ground.

After my first book turned out too true to life, I stagnated a bit. The story simply felt done to me.

The trick to composing a remarkable very first novel (or any novel, truly): Raise the stakes.

I kept writing.

Keep Moving Forward.

Something has to rub your main character the wrong method in order for there to be a story. Discover the conflict and youll have a book, whether your characters are a little too real to life or not.

That book developed into Surviving Death, and was released this month.

Even if upping the stakes doesnt turn your basic material into glossy gold, its okay.

It didnt take long for me to get out of my depression. A little while later, I was practically rupturing with ideas to discuss. I d trained my brain to write and opened the floodgates of inspiration while doing so. The next novel was a dark dream, with characters that had personalities all their own and a world that was considerably various from my local grocery store.

Is your book a little too autobiographical? What are you going to do to up the stakes? Let me understand in the comments!

Sarah Gribble.


Writing your very first book is hard. Structure, character arc and advancement, B plots, tone, style, etc. are all things you need to keep track of when composing a novel. Because your life is so familiar, utilizing it as product makes it much easier to focus on the finer points and lets you develop your writing style without having to focus as much on characters or initial storyline.

Today I want you to take fifteen minutes to write about something you did today. A discussion, a shopping journey, cleaning your house, anything. Keep it as real to life as possible except for something: conflict. Up the stakes.

When youre done, share your writing in the remarks. Do not forget to comment on your fellow writers work!

As youre composing your very first novel, youre discovering to take notes, to see individualss mannerisms, to recall odd discussions you had 3 years back. You can still use instances of your life to write your book.

Sarah Gribble is the very popular author of dozens of narratives that explore unpleasant situations, standard worries, and the basic wonder and fascination of the unidentified. She simply released SURVIVING DEATH, her first book, and is currently working on her next book.
Follow her @sarahstypos or join her e-mail list for complimentary scares at https://sarah-gribble.com.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *