Lately I’ve been learning a lot about how to begin your novel. Personally, I think this is the most important part of the book because it determines whether or not the reader will even give your story a try.
As a reader, how many times have picked up a book only to give up on it after reading the first few pages? When those pages didn’t grab you, you dumped the book and moved on to something else.
As a writer, you have to give your readers a reason to stick around right away.
The characters in my story seem aimless. I'm afraid the story will go nowhere if there are no goals set. Any help? — Anonymous
For writers, journaling can be the best supporting discipline in your tool kit. Especially if you make it a habit to journal daily, the activity will lead you to improvements in your other writings, and it’s likely to open up a host of other discoveries for you as well.
Your journal is a safe place to try new techniques and to succeed – or fail miserably. That’s how you grow.
So just relax and let yourself play. You have nothing to lose because no one has to see what you’re doing unless you choose to share it. Each failure provides valuable lessons. In addition, by consolidating your experiments in one place, you’ll be able to see your progress over time.
One of the most valuable tools I’ve found since I started taking my writing seriously is my writing journal. This notebook is where I detail every idea I have. Some I end up using, some I don’t, but the journal helps me sort them out and keep them organized.