How to start writing a book

open book
Inspiration will strike at any time if you are receptive to it. Often writers find that they are bombarded with ideas and the hard part is to distinguish between what will be a viable book idea and what needs to be discarded.
Once you have an idea that you feel burning in your mind at any given opportunity and just will not go away this is the one that needs to become a book. The only way to write a book is to make a start. However, the thought of producing the necessary 100,000 words is ever so slightly intimidating and so lots of us put it off until one day when we have more time. That time, as we all know just never arrives. By breaking your story into tiny chunks you will achieve something towards completing the story every day. Making some progress, even a tiny bit, will inspire you to keep going.
So – where to start? The story, character or half thought of few lines of a novel, or a desire to share your practical equestrian knowledge need to be taken out of your imagination and have a chance to become a reality. Begin by buying the most beautiful notebook you can afford. This book will become your constant companion. Keep it in your handbag, in the car or beside your bed, somewhere it can easily be accessed when inspiration strikes. It is important to have a beautiful notebook, your writing is something to be very proud of – writing a novel or a non-fiction book is a tremendous achievement, something many people talk about doing, and yet so few actually achieve.
At first, try to set aside some time to write, or plan your book. This can be as little as ten minutes a day if you have a tough schedule. At first it is important to let the ideas flow. Jot down everything you have thought about in terms of the book, the characters, the ideas you have for the plot, or what a non-fiction book will include.
It might be that all you have are a few very hazy ideas. Get these down, because it is these which will form the foundation of what you want to achieve. Use ‘empty’ time, when you are in the shower, dropping off to sleep, or commuting to work to think and plan your book.
Once you have the hazy ideas down in your notebook you will find that they take on a life of their own and the plot for the book will soon become apparent. Because your time is limited it is important to break down the plot into small achievable chunks. Life becomes easier if you break the plot into a number of chapters and write down what happens in each chapter.
Most fiction contains from 60 to 120,000 words. Most three page magazine articles are around 1500 words, so that will give you some idea of how much will go into a novel. From the plot you have written down, or the subjects you want to cover in non-fiction, you will see how many chapters can potentially be written. A book of around 100,000 words can be broken down into 40 chapters of 2500 words. Each of these 2500 chapters can then be broken down into mini chunks of 500 words. If you have an idea of what action will happen in each chapter then it is easy to break this down into smaller bits.

Having a plan of where the plot goes makes it easy to write the 500 words. Then when you begin to write you can get the 500 words down and then have the day to consider how you will write the next 500. In this way your 100,000 words is soon achieved.