I come across a lot of people who claim they want to write. They have an idea, but don’t know where to begin. Bottom-line: you’re either a writer or you are not. If you spend your time writing, you’re a writer. Spending your days thinking about writing just doesn’t cut it.
I’m an aspiring writer.’ I hate that phrase. You’re either a writer or you’re not. -Jake Black
So where do you start? Well, if the title to this post wasn’t subtle enough – Who Gives A Crap? Most first time writers have no clue what they’re doing. They start wherever the story calls. Even seasoned authors have different methods than others and it can even vary for different projects. My first novel was discovery written. I wrote 5 chapters which ended up being my ending. Then I wrote the beginning and worked my way to the ending. That worked for that particular book, but there are so many ways to write and different benefits to each.
Beginning to End
Many assume writing from beginning to end is the way every writer does it, because it reads that way. However, it’s not necessarily true. It is a fairly standard method, but far from the only one. Writing is this format helps the writer to keep the order of events clear, the character development solid, and the plot cohesive. I would relate this type of story writing to Stairs. One step after the other, climbing to the top. As long as you know where you’re going, this can be a rewarding ascent.
Let’s face it. Endings are the exciting part of the book. So, it’s no wonder that some writes prefer to write their climatic scenes first. It’s where the final battle wages, the guy kisses the girl, and right when all the odds were stacked against them. It’s fun. In this format, you can set the bar for yourself and spend the rest of you writing working towards that mark. I would call this method, Dessert First. As a writer, the endings are always spoiled, so it doesn’t matter if you want to giver yourself a little treat as long as you don’t spoil your dinner.
I have never used this method myself, but I can see the pros. Random means that you write whatever scene is screaming to be written. You don’t follow an order. This is beneficial to people who have strict outlines and have the freedom to write when inspiration strikes. You may be in a romantic mood, so you write your romance scene. You just got cut-off by some jerk in rush hour traffic? Great! Go home and write your slasher scene. I call this format Hopscotch because you need to have all your lines drawn, but you can skip to whatever sections you want and touch on the others later.
All in all, it doesn’t really matter how you do it. Just write. It doesn’t have to be perfect. That’s what editing is for. The real key is to start – and everyone knows to always finish what they’ve started.