Customer Reviews for

How To Write A Novel

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  • Posted November 29, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    If you are a decent human being and not a soul-sucking leech...

    If you are a decent human being and not a soul-sucking leech...

    Let me put this out there first: If you are one of the thousands of people who've been visiting Nathan's blog for t
    he last several years, getting all those free goodies and tips, then if you are a decent human being and not a
    soul-sucking leech, you need to pony up and buy this book. Even if the book sucked.

    But, it DOESN'T suck. Some of it is common sense (you're not going to make mountains of money writing
    books) and some is practical advice (don't chase trends), and some is kind of a shared spirit of camaraderie.
    Like: "After all, what is the point of writing a novel if not to settle old grudges by taking veiled swipes at people
    who've wronged you?"

    It covers everything from knowing your genre - and why this is important, to the basics (plot, character, voice).
    What a killer first page actually means and why many authors get it wrong. Editing and revising. Making backups,
    on the theory that what if you got robbed on the way back to your apartment which is on fire? Even on getting
    started again, if life has interfered with your novel for XX days/weeks/months, because that whole "write every
    day" thing works great for independently wealthy novelists who never, ever get sick or who have friends or family
    who want attention from time to time.

    If you write, some of these things you probably already do right, and some of it... We all need reminders. And
    easy ways to test if we're doing it right. Those things are included here. I laughed, I nodded my head, I
    highlighted my copy like a fiend. If you write - even if you are writing a memoir - this book can help you.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 11, 2013

    Nathan Bransford¿s How to Write A Novel is one of the best writi

    Nathan Bransford’s How to Write A Novel is one of the best writing books I’ve read. He lays out 47 steps for writing “a stupendously awesome novel that you will love forever”. It will be my writing bible going forward.




    Bransford’s writing style makes you feel like he’s your mentor imparting morsels of genius over salted caramel hot chocolate at your favorite Brooklyn coffeehouse. 




    Right now, I’m in outlining mode. I spend the majority of my time in revision mode, so I was experiencing all the issues associated with drafting. But it felt like Bransford was there to remind me we’d been through this before and we could do it again. 




    There is something about Bransford’s voice that makes you trust in what he says. Maybe it’s the confidential tone or the way he breaks it down. He doesn’t just tell you what to do, he tells you how to do it. His genuine love of writing shines through and his words got lodged in my brain and sunk deeper than other writing books had. 




    Every single rule in this book will make you a better writer. I went highlighter crazy on my Kindle. So much brilliance to be absorbed and applied.  




    This book focuses on drafting but also has a really useful section on revising. 




    Rule #3 really resonated with me: “Find the writing style that works for you.”




    The big takeaway: “There isn’t one way to write a novel. There isn’t a formula...as long as you’re getting words on the page you’re doing fine.”




    Thanks Mr. Bransford! This is a book that needed to be written for first time writers and those of us a few books in. 

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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