What Does it Take to Write a Novel? 

Writers often ask me this same question whenever I’m speaking at writing conferences all around the world:

“What do you really need to write a novel?” 

Or, conversely, they say: “I’ve always wanted to write a novel. It’s always been a dream of mine but it’s so hard to do because of X, Y, and Z.” 

Writers always have lots and lots of reasons why their novel isn’t finished yet. While it is true that writing a novel can be difficult, writers sometimes over-complicate the process. However, this is not entirely the writers’ fault. 

Writers are surrounded by the billion dollar writing industry and they often get tricked into spending a lot of money on workshops and conferences that promise to solve their problems, but never do. 

I often see representatives of writing conferences tell writers about what it takes to write a good novel. They could be telling these writers some actual important things, but their methods almost always include some scare tactics and overemphasis on one specific thing. 


Because writing conferences like these want writers to keep coming back; they want writers to sign up for their course on A. When you finish this course, they tell you that you need to take a course on B. It goes on and on and on.

They take money from you, maybe $100, $300, even $1000 at a time because they keep telling you that your novel has problems. 

By the end of this cycle, you still don’t have any answers to your questions. You’re not really clear about what A is and why you need it in the first place. You don’t know where B goes or how it even applies to your novel. By the end of it, you will be left with confusion even when you’ve already spent hundreds or thousands of dollars.

Then, you give up writing a novel. 

I have seen this time and time and time again. 

 At the end of the day, writers need one thing: a story that people want to read. 

I hear this same concept from industry professionals–editors, publishers, literary agents. You need to have a story that people would want to read in order to have a quality novel. If people want to read your story, you will land a publishing contract, publish your novel, and gain fans.

How do you write a successful novel? You need to stop thinking about A or B or anything those one-off courses tell you to do.

What you need is a successful program that will take you through the steps to publish, give you an individualized plan based on the kind of novel you want to write, who you are as a person and as a writer, and your future writing career goals. 

If you want to stop throwing away your money and you’re ready for a real solution to finish that novel, to have a story that people will read, I’d love to chat with you. I’ve opened up some time this week and next to talk with writers who are serious about living the author lifestyle and finishing that novel once and for all. 

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