How do you not only write your first novel, but also a bestselling first novel - in only 10 easy steps? Simple:
1. Think of an idea. Spend a day or two realizing how great this idea is and how it will make you rich! Buy a notebook and a dozen cheap pens to capture all the great ideas that will soon flow from your brain. Or use a laptop. Either way.
2. Tell others that you have this great idea (but don’t give specifics – they might steal it!) and how you’re going to turn it into a novel. Mention that there will probably be a movie deal, too. It's okay at this point to start casting the movie in your head. And best of all, tell everyone you know that you’re now a writer!
3. Jot down some ideas about the book and maybe some character names. Watch some TV or goof around on the internet for a few hours to let your mind rest and your subconscious work. No use going overboard at the beginning.
4. Have a drink or three. Hey, your idea seems better and better! And you just figured out something chilling about one of the characters! Jot it down if you can find your notebook (or laptop) under all the crap on your coffee table.
5. Post on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ etc about how you’re writing a novel. You’re a real writer now! You realize you’ve got a whole year or so to write this thing. Don’t most writers put out a book a year? A whole year is plenty of time, so no hurry.
6. Now you’re ready. Time to get down to the hard work. Have another drink. Get that notebook in front of you. Wait, no – go to a coffee shop and sit at one of those tables. A coffee shop is a great place to write.
7. Write down sentences. One sentence, two sentences. It’s okay to use a bigger font to fill up the pages faster. They hire editors to fix that stuff after the book deal has been signed. Hey, look at that person over there. Can they tell I’m writing? I bet this whole writing deal will get me laid a lot more. C’mon, look this way, look this way! I’m a writer!
8. Don’t fill up too many pages just yet. Go to the bookstore and get the Writer’s Market. Or the Novel Market. And the Agent Market. You’re going to need an agent, right? Go home with these and look through them. Which agents and/or markets are right for your novel? Go through and circle them. You’ve got the time! You’ve only just started your novel, and there are still over 360 days left in the year. Relax, you’re doing great!
9. Call your parents or in-laws for some money to subsidize your rent for a while. Why continue with the day job when you’ve got a book to write! Tell them you only need six months worth of rent. (Because really, who are you kidding? You can crank this thing out faster than that! Your idea practically writes itself!) And even if it does take a year, your folks will already be heavily invested, so why cut you off when just as soon as you’re finished, you’ll be like a millionaire or something. And if you’re married with kids, don’t worry about it. They’ll understand your sudden need to follow your bliss!
10. Okay. So you’ve got at least a page or two written, or at least filled them with some ideas and character names. Here’s where the real magic happens – the sure-fire way to land your novel an agent leading to a six-figure book deal leading to a seven-figure movie deal. Listen carefully...You know that cousin/brother-in-law/nephew/friend/former co-worker you have who actually has written a book? Tell him/her that you have this awesome idea for a bestselling novel. Don’t tell him/her the idea yet! No, first tell them that you’ll give them the idea if they will write the book. And then you split the money; at least 60% to you for your sure-to-be-bestselling one-of-a-kind idea, and the remaining 40% to them for the easy part of just writing it out on paper (and make sure they understand the agent’s commission comes out of their end, too.)
There you go – 10 easy steps to not only start your first novel, but to become a bestselling author as well. Enjoy your journey!