When people find out that I’m an author, one of the most common responses I get is: “I’ve always wanted to write a story too. I have this great idea, I just don’t know where to start.”
Undoubtedly, starting is always the hardest. Many agents and publishers, (and readers) project the quality of the author’s writing based on the first sentence. One agent goes so far as to tell writers: “Tweet me the first line of your novel and I’ll let you know if I want to read it.” With such pressure, it’s no wonder writers sit and stare motionless at a blank screen.
Writing a new story is no different to starting anything new – you’ve got to just jump in feet first. In answer to the question: “How do you know where to start?” I always reply: “I start with the first thing that comes into my mind.”
Writing is rewriting. Beginnings, middles and ends can all change, but only if you first have a beginning, middle and an end. More than likely, by the time you get to the end of your story, you’ll have a better understanding about the beginning. Perfect first lines can be crafted after the fact.
Only when we end, can we truly begin.
Happy writing everyone!