May 052014

Pines in winter
Now plotting a novel can sometimes feel like it is the most difficult part of the whole writing process. Yet it does not have to be.  Before the internet, authors had to plan their book, or novel with pen and paper, or sometimes using a typewriter, and eventually upgrading to a computer.

Now some people have to carefully plan everything that they do, to them writing a novel is no different to doing anything else. Besides in many ways plotting your novel using a storyboard or anything else makes a lot of sense.

Storyboards can be either online, stored on your own computer, or for the more traditionalist amongst us printed out on separate pieces of paper.  If you are not too computer literate, or you could not be bothered to set up your own storyboards, they are readily available to download usually free of charge from the internet.

People that are more confident with handling their computers, or that have more time, or inclination can create their own storyboards using standard packages such as Word, and Powerpoint. Word is more practical, yet Powerpoint is better at showcasing things and grabbing your attention. So a storyboard on Powerpoint could be used to gain interest from publishers about publishing your book.

You could make your own board and physically stick things to it on pieces of card roughly postcard sized, and then place additional ideas, or alterations on sticky notes.

Now storyboards are just as useful for fiction and non-fiction writers alike. That is because they give a structure to your book, a solid framework to put your story into place. All books need some kind of structure, in order for the plot of a fiction story to make sense, or for events in non-fiction works to be told logically.

Storyboards allow you to breakdown roughly where in the book you are going to inform your readers of what and how much they need to know to make sense of the story so far. Sometimes you want the audience to know exactly what is going on, whilst at other times you only keep them partially informed so that they have to work out what is happening.

The most practical way of using a storyboard is to split each board into related chapters, and then further divide into sub-chapters, sub-headings, or scenes.  Doing this means that the book should be paced better. You are keeping the readers’ attention without telling them too much, or too little. Yet it means that chapters are kept to the right length, and that they do not go off on a tangent from the rest of the book.

Most authors have found that splitting a storyboard into three different but closely connected sections helps them to write a good, possibly even great book. If you like storyboards make sure that you as an author do not lose focus on what you are attempting to write about.

The first part is the introduction. In fiction these are the highly important opening chapters where you need to immediately grab your reader’s attention. In a non-fiction work it is the place to introduce the subject whilst convincing the reader that you know what you have written about.

Then there is the main body of your book. In fiction that is the part that the main events are described, and also is the bit where you have to convince the reader to carry on reading until the end. In non-fiction it is the section where the bulk of the information is given to your reader.

The third and final part is the finale. This is when you disclose who the killer was, who the spy was, or if the main characters rode off in the sunset together and lived happily after. In non-fiction it is where the reasons and the consequences of events are explained to your audience.

 Posted by at 10:42 am
Apr 282014

Writing a book is an exciting process but when you are writing a book you need to understand the process from start to finish. In considering how to write a non-fiction ebook, you have to take several steps. Let’s look at what these are.

First you need to research the topic. Even plotting a novel requires some research, but writing non-fiction requires a lot more.

Before any writing can begin you need to know where a good place to conduct your research is. Even if you are an expert on a topic you are still going to need additional information from other experts. Quotes are going to be needed from these experts.

The more well known the expert is the more people will be interested in what they have to say. Getting an expert to help is easier then most people think. All you have to do is ask. Not everyone is going to say yes but some will be willing to help.

You can email the expert and ask if you are allowed to quote them. You can ask the expert for a quote over email or you can ask permission to use a quote that was already published.

You can ask an expert for a phone interview. If you are new at this the phone interview may make you a little nervous. You will need to tape record the conversation. Before beginning the conversation with the expert you will have to clearly explain the conversation is being taped and get their consent to continue.

You can also use professional or government agencies to find information on the topics that will be covered in your book. There are case studies, newspapers archives, and other written articles to find information. These items can be found at the local library or online.

Before you begin writing you want to find out as much information as possible. Of course, you need to put this information in your own words so you do not plagiarize. If using the information of others be sure to properly cite this.

You’ll then want to make an outline to help gather your thoughts before writing the actual book.

When writing non fiction ebooks an outline is important so you give your book some direction. An outline is like a map of the book from chapter one until the end. You can also use this outline later as a table of contents for the book.

When writing an outline all you need to do is jot down key points and subpoints for each chapter. You should also write a one or two sentence summary about what the book is going to be about. This will help keep you on track during the writing process and you can use it later when it comes to writing a blurb, which publishers will require.

Once your research and outline is complete you are ready to write your book. When writing stay on topic. At times it can become easy to wander and jump from point to point. If something important occurs to you, write it down but save it for the chapter where it will fit best.

When writing it is also important to keep your audience in mind. Use your own voice and do not try to imitate someone else’s style. Do not box yourself in during writing.

Finished products will be more interesting to read if the author writes with emotions. This will also make people want to keep reading the book. By following this process you will understand how to write a non-fiction ebook and when you are finished you’ll have a well thought out and well researched book.

 Posted by at 11:25 am