As writers, you are probably familiar with the writing cycle. For me, it goes something like this: first, I obsess over an idea. It’s the best idea anyone has ever had. I write 1500 words in one sitting. Then, I come back to the computer the next day with a head full of doubt and heart full of fear. Why did I write this? Who even cares? But, I push through the voices in my head and just get words down on paper. More words. And more words. A triumphant moment of completion – and then back to doubt and self-loathing.
Does this sound familiar? Let’s get some advice from a free-lance editor, Ellen Brock on what makes a good idea for a novel!
In the video below, Ellen tells us that contrary to popular belief, there are not very many “new ideas” when it comes to books. Picture this: a group of kids gets magically transported to a new, fantastic world. Are we talking about The Magician’s Nephew? A Wrinkle In Time? Half Magic? It could be any of those books, plus about a thousand others. The point here is that it really isn’t so much the idea that matters, but the way you write about your idea.
You’ll need a hook in order to elevate your story. The best hook is a good plot. Along with plot, focus on engaging and unique characters. And of course, a strong and distinctive writing style. Watch the video below to get more of Ellen’s tips!