It is hard work writing a novel, everybody knows that. But that does not stop people from trying. They will find many naysayers around them who will discourage them, and tell them that it is not worth the effort; they will tell them that they will fail, and that they should find a safer vocation. Many of these people will be their family and friends. There are times when they will find it hard to get support for what they are trying to achieve. But the best of them do not allow such obstacles to get in the way of them achieving their most cherished goal.
The first thing that aspiring novelists should do is to start writing. There is no point in just sitting and staring at pieces of paper as though the words will automatically print themselves on the pages. Procrastination is the author’s worst enemy. There is nothing worse than writer’s block, where the mind is blocked of all ideas, and the pen just refuses to move across the pages.
The only way to overcome this block is to write, and keep writing, and never stop. It does not matter if it makes sense initially or not because eventually it will. The thoughts will come together, and a story will be formed, but for that to happen the author has to keep putting pen to paper.
There are many writers who dream of the rewards they will get when their work is finally published. But that destination is a long way away. For the time being writers just have to keep their mind focused on the journey, and not on the destination. They have to write for the joys of writing, and not worry about whether they will get anything in return or not. They have to keep their expectations at a minimum, and their efforts at a maximum.
Writers have to be prepared to formulate many drafts of their work. Perfection is only achieved after repeated re-writes. They should not expect the first version itself to be a bestseller. Many writers spend years perfecting every sentence and every phrase in their novel or their short story before they finally end up with a version that they are satisfied with.
Writers should master the art of playing with words. Their vocabulary should be so large and so comprehensive that for any given situation they have the option of using at least two or three words. Authors should write the book that they would be happy reading. Creating a novel is a long and arduous process, and only those who enjoy reading their own writing can possibly complete the journey.
The most beautiful thing in this world is the mind’s own imagination. The images and words that people can make up in their own heads are truly wonderful. Writers should know that they have been endowed with a special gift. And they should revel in this gift, and use it to the best of their abilities, and if they do so with sincerity and hard work then they will realise all their dreams.