Tips for writing your first book
One important decision to make before writing your first book, or second or third for that matter, is to decide if it will be written in the first person or third person.
I was typical of most when I wrote my first book. It was about me, so naturally, it was written in the first person which naturally meant I, me and myself came grammatically first. I did this, I did that, he told me, I was there, for example.
It was only after reading a number of debut books that I realised how common it is to write about your own experiences in your first book. The problem is that quite honestly, it can become a tedious read after only a few chapters. Very few books written in the first person make gripping reading. A far better idea is to take your idea, experience or expertise and work on writing it in the third person.
When I came to writing my second book, I was still concentrating on my own experiences, but by deciding to write in the third person, a whole palette of possibilities became available. It was far easier to create a story with pace, colourful characters and incorporate fiction into what was essentially a ‘my life and all the happy and sad things that have happened to me’ story.
Simply put, separate yourself and become the writer of a story where the main character just happens to be you. Giving yourself a new name and creating a short list of your positive and negative personality traits helps you build this new you character.
It also helps you develop what is called ‘voice’. That is, a unique writing style that should become recognisable to your readers. Although it takes time to develop and even recognise yourself, it is very important to develop a style that is uniquely you. Think of some authors you enjoy reading and think about the voice they use.
Although it is now extremely easy to publish your first book on either Kindle, Smashwords, Draft2Digital, Lulu, Createspace or a plethora of other self-publishing or vanity publishing choices, it is important to think about what reputation you would like to create. A poorly written and error-filled first book in the first person will not give a good impression, no matter how compelling the story. Far better to be patient and take the time to re-write and edit your manuscript and get some feedback from friends, family or even better, someone independent before rushing into publishing.