20+ Essential Novel Writing Tips &Tools for Beginners

20+ Essential Novel Writing Tips &Tools for Beginners

novel writing
novel writing

Estimated reading time: 9 minutes

Do you need novel writing tips to take your writing to the next level?

 Are you ready to put your idea onto paper, but you are faced with the daunting task of finding the perfect starting point?

The first word feels crucial, and you need guidance.

Don’worry: Crafting a captivating novel demands creativity, skill, and unwavering dedication. 

Whether you’re a novice venturing into the realm of writing or an experienced wordsmith seeking to refine your craft, this collection of 40+ essential novel writing tips will serve as your compass through the exhilarating and occasionally challenging process of bringing your story to life. 

Within these tips, you’ll discover invaluable techniques to enhance your storytelling abilities and ensure your novel shines brightly.

 We will also be providing you with 11 lists of tools that will assist you with your writing.

So, without further delay, let’s dive in.

1. Explore your ideas:

Allow your imagination to wander and explore various ideas for your novel. 

Think outside the box, push boundaries, and challenge conventions. Consider different genres, themes, and concepts that spark your interest. 

Embrace the freedom of creativity and let your ideas flow without judgment.

2. Have a rough guideline:

While spontaneity is essential, having a rough guideline or outline can provide structure and direction. 

Create a basic framework that outlines the main plot points, significant events, and character arcs. 

This will help you stay focused and prevent your story from meandering aimlessly.

3. Outline your plot:

Crafting a compelling story is crucial to captivating your readers. 

Develop a clear and engaging storyline that keeps them hooked from beginning to end. 

Outline the key events, conflicts, and turning points that drive the narrative forward. 

A well-structured plot ensures a cohesive and satisfying reading experience. 

If you are new to outlining your story, read this post on how to summarize your plot https://milanote.com/guide/story-outline

4. Research your story:

To add depth and authenticity to your novel, conduct thorough research.

 Dive into relevant topics, whether historical, cultural, or scientific. Explore different perspectives, gather facts, and immerse yourself in the details to bring your story to life.

 Solid research adds credibility and enhances the overall reading experience.

5. Know your character:

Your characters are the heart and soul of your novel. 

Take the time to understand them fully. 

Develop their backgrounds, personalities, motivations, and desires. Delve into their fears, flaws, and aspirations. 

The more you know your characters, the more relatable and compelling they become for your readers.

6. Choose your narrative:

Consider the narrative perspective that best serves your story. 

Will you tell it from a first-person point of view, allowing readers to experience events through the eyes of the protagonist?

 Or will you opt for a third-person perspective that provides a broader view of the story? 

Choose the narrative style that enhances your storytelling and engages your readers.

7. Draw inspiration from an actual individual:

Find inspiration in real-life individuals with qualities, experiences, or perspectives that resonate with your characters.

 Look for inspiration in their strengths, weaknesses, and triumphs.

 Drawing from real-life examples adds depth and authenticity to your characters, making them relatable and compelling.

8. Tease your reader:

Capture your reader’s attention from the very beginning. 

Tease them with intriguing hints, questions, or conflicts that make them eager to uncover the answers.

 Create a sense of anticipation and curiosity that propels them forward, eagerly turning the pages to discover what happens next.

9. Be accountable:

Hold yourself responsible for your writing goals.

 Set deadlines, create a writing schedule, and commit to it. 

Embrace discipline and consistency in your writing practice. By being accountable, you ensure steady progress and overcome the challenges that may arise during the writing process.

10. Take a break:

Writing can be mentally and emotionally demanding.

 It’s essential to take breaks to rest, recharge, and gain fresh perspectives. Step away from your work and engage in activities that inspire you. 

This downtime allows your mind to process ideas and rejuvenate your creative energy.

11. Write every day:

Develop a writing habit by committing to writing every day, even if it’s just for a short period.

 Consistency is critical to honing your craft and making progress. 

Make it a non-negotiable part of your daily routine, and watch your writing skills improve over time. Even the world-renowned author Stephen King writes at least 1,000 to 2,000 words daily. h


12. Play with literary Devices:

Harness the power of language to create a vivid and immersive reading experience. 

Experiment with literary techniques such as metaphors, similes, and descriptive language. Paint scenes with sensory details that transport your readers into your story.

 Use words that evoke emotions and captivate their imaginations. 

13. Build your writing room:

Create a dedicated space for your writing, whether physical or mental.

 Designate a place where you can focus and let your creativity flow.

 Eliminate distractions, surround yourself with inspiring objects or visuals, and establish an environment that fosters concentration and productivity.

14. Keep your work private:

While sharing your work and seeking feedback is valuable, protecting your creative space is also essential. 

Keep your early drafts and ideas private until you’re ready to share them.

 This allows you to explore and experiment without external influence, fostering your unique writing voice.

15. Join a group:

Connect with fellow writers by joining writing groups, workshops, or online communities. 

Engage in discussions, share your work, and seek support from like-minded individuals.

 Surrounding yourself with fellow writers provides a valuable encouragement, feedback, and inspiration network.  

16. Develop a compelling opening:

Your opening sets the tone for your entire novel. 

Craft an opening that grabs your reader’s attention and compels them to continue reading.

 Intrigue them with a captivating scene, introduce a compelling conflict, or pose thought-provoking questions that pique their curiosity.

17. Create three-dimensional characters:

Bring your characters to life by giving them depth and complexity. 

Avoid one-dimensional stereotypes and develop well-rounded characters with distinct personalities, strengths, weaknesses, and desires. 

Show their growth, challenges, and inner conflicts to make them relatable and engaging.

18. Use dialogue effectively:

Dialogue is a powerful tool for conveying emotions, revealing character traits, and advancing the plot. 

Write authentic and engaging dialogue that captures the unique voices of your characters. 

Use it to reveal information, create tension, and deepen relationships within your story.

19. Balance pacing:

Maintain a balanced pacing throughout your novel to keep readers engaged. 

Alternate between moments of tension, action, and quieter introspection.

 Vary the rhythm of your scenes to create a dynamic reading experience. Pacing impacts the flow of your story and keeps readers turning the pages.

20. Edit and revise:

Writing is rewriting.

 Polish your work through diligent editing and revision. 

Read your manuscript critically, addressing grammar, syntax, plot inconsistencies, and pacing issues. 

Refine your prose, eliminate unnecessary words, and enhance clarity. Editing is the key to a polished and professional final product.

21. Seek constructive feedback:

Invite trusted individuals to provide constructive feedback on your work. 

Seek input from beta readers, writing groups, or writing mentors.

 Embrace feedback as an opportunity for growth and improvement. Consider different perspectives and use feedback to refine your novel.

22. Create an engaging ending:

Craft an end that leaves a lasting impression on your readers. 

Tie up loose ends, resolve significant conflicts, and leave them with a sense of satisfaction. 

Consider a twist, a poignant moment, or a thought-provoking conclusion that lingers in their minds long after they finish reading.

23. Read widely:

Expand your literary horizons by reading books from various genres and styles. 

Expose yourself to different writing techniques, narrative structures, and storytelling approaches. 

Reading widely broadens your perspective, enriches your writing, and inspires new ideas.

24. Be patient with yourself:

Writing a novel is a journey that requires patience and perseverance.

 Allow yourself the time and space to develop your skills and find your unique voice. 

Embrace the learning process, celebrate small victories, and remain committed to your passion for storytelling.

25. Create obstacles and challenges for your characters:

Keep your readers engaged by presenting your characters with obstacles and challenges they must overcome.

 Create internal and external conflicts that test their strength, resilience, and growth. 

These challenges add depth to your story and keep readers invested in your characters’ journeys.

11 Lists of Tools for Writing

  1. Grammar and Spell Checkers: 

Tools like Grammarly and ProWritingAid help you identify and correct grammar, spelling, and punctuation errors, improving the overall quality of your writing.

  1. Writing Software: 

Dedicated writing software like Scrivener, Ulysses, or Novlr offers specialized features for organizing and structuring your novel, including outlining, note-taking, and manuscript management.

  1. Note-Taking Apps: 

Apps like Evernote, OneNote, or Simplenote allow you to capture and organize ideas, research, and plot notes on your computer or mobile device.

  1. Mind Mapping Tools:

 Software such as MindMeister or XMind helps you visually organize and connect ideas, characters, and plot points, allowing for a more structured approach to your novel.

  1. Writing Prompts: 

Websites and apps like WritingPrompts.com or Prompts provide inspiration and creative writing prompts to help you overcome writer’s block and generate new ideas.

  1. Thesaurus and Dictionary:

 Online resources like Thesaurus.com and Merriam-Webster provide synonyms, antonyms, definitions, and word suggestions to enhance your vocabulary and find the perfect word.

  1. Plotting and Story Structure Tools: 

Tools like Plottr, Save the Cat!, or Storyboard that assists in plotting, organizing story beats, and visualizing the structure of your novel.

  1. Time and Productivity Trackers: 

Apps like Toggl, RescueTime, or Forest help you track your writing time, set goals, and stay focused and productive during your writing sessions.

  1. Writing Communities and Forums:

 Platforms like Wattpad, Scribophile, or Reddit’s r/writing provide opportunities to share your work, receive feedback, and connect with other writers.

  1. Character Development Tools:

 Software like Character Pro or The Novel Factory assist in creating and organizing detailed character profiles, including traits, backstory, and relationships.

  1. Writing Analytics Tools:

 Apps like Pacemaker, WordKeeperAlpha, or Writometer help you set and track writing goals, monitor progress, and stay motivated throughout your writing process.

Get Your Pen and Paper Ready

Armed with these 40+ essential novel writing tips and powerful writing tools for beginners, you now possess the blueprint to conquer the literary realm.

 With discipline, dedication, and a burning passion for storytelling, you have the ability to craft a novel that will captivate readers and leave a lasting impact. 

Harness the potential of the writing tools at your disposal, and let your imagination run wild. 

Now, it’s time to put these tips into action.

Grab your pen, open your laptop, and start writing.

Don’t wait for the perfect moment; create it. 

Your novel is waiting to be written, and the world is eagerly waiting to read it.

So go forth, my fellow wordsmith, and may your journey be filled with creativity, passion, and literary brilliance.

Take the leap and start implementing these novel writing tips today. Your masterpiece awaits.

Happy writing!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *