Tips for Planning a Novel

Are you thinking about writing a novel? You may have so many ideas inside your head and don’t know where to start.

Here are some tips to help you plan out your novel and provide structure to the writing process.

1. Describe Your Novel in One Paragraph

Before you concern yourself with the details, start simply and build up the general story arc of your book. You should be able to describe your story in a concise paragraph of about five sentences incorporating the beginning, middle, and end.

2. Choose Your Characters

Now that you know what your novel is about, it is time to choose the actors of your story. Begin with the protagonist as this is the main character in whose development the readers will be invested. It may be helpful to take a sheet of paper for each character with their name, physical description, their role in the story, and their motivations simply outlined on each.

3. Set Goals and Conflicts

The protagonist must have a goal, that drives the plot forward. You should also think about what you want to accomplish with your novel. What is the purpose of your story? Then you must establish conflict by presenting obstacles for the protagonist. This creates tension so that the readers do not get bored and want to keep turning the pages.

4. Establish a Setting

The location in which your novel takes place sets the background and circumstances in which the events are taking place. Whether using a real location, or developing your own world, it is important to describe the setting for the readers. It will influence the plot, characters, and dialogue, to make your story more believable.

Once you have established these foundations for your novel, you can begin the writing process. Your story and characters will be fleshed out while you write, but it is important to have this base to guide you.

We wish you well in writing your book. We look forward to hearing from you at our agency when it is ready.