When you start there is nothing but a blank page that could in time turn into a masterpiece or a disappointment, two extremes of the same path. What makes the outcomes so different then?It is the choices that we made during the path. Most important thing is choosing the right kind of story; not the one that people would like, but the one that you like, because you have no heart in the story, you can never make it what it needs to be the best. However, even if you have a good story it is not necessary that it’s going to be perfect.
I’m going to share some tips that might be helpful in starting a novel.
- When you plan the beginning of the story, keep in mind that your protagonist must go through a path early in the novel from where his life either takes a steep turn into a life from where there is no return. He must go through, live the new life, and face challenges again and again until he had taken care of everything by the end. For a good story change is the only constant thing. There must be a new challenge, a new conflict ahead of the protagonist to keep the readers interested, and guessing.
- Avoid giving out too much information early in the beginning. Everything that the readers must know, the back-stories or the side stories, should come gradually, at right points, and such that it is blended well with the ongoing story.
- To better your descriptions, rather than giving them out in chunks straightaway, let them come to readers through the character’s experiences and emotions. For example, consider the following description of the same room.
Example one: There was little to no light in the room and there was a stink of rotten flesh all around. There was a barrel lying in one corner of the room and a table in another. On the table lay a dead person. The dead person was a tall, middle aged man and his throat had been slit.
Example two: The hero opened the door to find a strong stank of rotting flesh in the air. There was barely enough light for him to see, but as his eyes adjusted to the dark, he saw a barrel lying in one corner of the room. He shifted in gaze in other direction to find the source of the stench. He walked to the table in the opposite corner of the chamber. As he went closer the smell became intolerable and he was forced to cover his nose with his hand. With the other free hand he picked a probe and shifted the dead man that lay on the table. It was a tall man, must be in his forties, the hero observed. When he probed closer he found the reason of his death. His throat had been opened from ear to ear. Now, I think I don’t have to tell you that which of them sounds better to your ears.
- Create secondary characters with important role in shaping protagonist’s future.