How Do I Write A Story?
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How Do I Write A Story?
The pain point of many writers is that they yearn to write a book or a novel but have no idea how or where to begin.
I know how they feel.
I’m a novelist and certified creativity coach for writers. I run Barany School of Fiction, designed to help fiction writers experience clarity and get writing, so they can revise and proudly publish their novels to the delight of their readers.
But I wasn’t always the writing teacher I am today.￼
Before I was a writing teacher, I was just a novelist. And before that I was learning to be a novelist.
And before that I wanted to be a teacher, so I could teach story writing, like my eighth grade teacher.
When I was thirteen, in ninth grade at the public high school in Sonoma, I wanted to continue the creative writing we have been doing in eighth grade, at a small Catholic private school also in Sonoma.
In our ninth grade English class, I didn’t understand why we had to diagram sentences and write boring essays.
Well, I understood that they thought it was important but I didn’t understand why we couldn’t also include creative writing.
Really, How Do I Write A Story?
If I had a guide who could show me the steps to write stories and help me improve, that would’ve been a wonderful thing.
You see, I had wanted to be a creative writer since I was young. My best friend could tell stories at the drop of a hat. My great grandmother was a storyteller and writer.
I yearned to be able to understand story so I could write wonderful stories too.
Since I was seven years old, I’d been an avid reader and really wanted to be able to tell magical adventurous stories like the ones I’d been reading.
When our eighth grade teacher at the small private Catholic school gave us creative writing assignments I was terrified.
I didn’t know if I could write a story. She didn’t explain how to write stories but she trusted in us to create what we could. She gave us wonderful topics, like the Wild West, and gave us different assignments to try our hand at, like comedy, horror, and drama.
I fumbled around and did my best. I don’t think I was great at the little stories I created, but what I loved was the teacher’s encouragement and her trust in us to do the assignments.
I was, and still am, the type of person to take someone else’s direction and run with it. I really dug into those creative writing assignments.
I remember writing that first scary story vividly. I even scared myself with the Hitchcock-type story where a woman is murdered at midnight. No one hears her scream because it’s New Year’s Eve and there’s a party going on in the house.
I don’t know if it was a good story, but I do know that it made me feel. I was scared by what I created, and exhilarated. Without even realizing it I had unlocked the key component of storytelling: emotion.
And I realized I could write.
A Wish That Became A Reality
It wasn’t a wish anymore; it wasn’t a dream anymore. It was a reality.
From then on, I wanted to learn more. I wanted to understand and master telling stories, and I knew that if someone led me down the path of learning, I could.
But as I mentioned, our ninth grand English class was full of diagramming and essay writing. We weren’t being offered the chance to learn how to tell stories better.
Instead I had to put my attention on the academic courses given to me and strive after the dream that have been handed to me by my parents and probably their parents, and their parents before them: get a good education, go to university, get a job.
So I squelched my creative writing dreams and settled in to the business at hand. But I didn’t give up writing. I kept a journal, I did my doodles, I vented, I complained. I did what any teenager does to their journal, I confided in it.
But the dream of being a teacher never left me. When I had the chance to set out on my own and go from employee to self-employed. I jumped at it, I knew I wanted to help writers, I knew that from the start.
So here I am today offering you a way to seize your dream of being a storyteller, jump into your reality of learning how to tell a good story, in our upcoming 60-Day Novel class.
I believe if you have the yearning in you, the dream, even just that tug that says you want to write a story. I believe you can do it.
Maybe like me you need a guide, need someone to show you the map so you can make it your own and get to your destination.
Sometimes all we need is someone to show us the way and then we can go for it.
I believe in the power of creativity to solve just about any problem. And of course the same goes true for learning how to write a novel.
Our 60-Day Novel course starts April 1st
In our 60-Day Novel course starting April 1st, we show you step-by-step how to think through all the story elements from character, to plot, to story structure, so that after 30 days of planning, you can write a first draft in the next 30 days.
Even though it’s scary, even though you have no idea how it might turn out, I trust that if you have the vision, the drive, the curiosity, and that yearning, you can learn how to write a novel.
You won’t be alone. You’ll have cohorts along the way in the class, and you will have two experienced guides showing you the next steps, encouraging you, and even talking about pitfalls to avoid.
Between the two of us, my husband and I, your teachers for the 60-Day Novel class, we have written over 30 novels and published over 20 of them.
So we know a lot about starting a new story, and we know a lot about facing the blank page. We know a lot about the doubts and fears and worries that come along with the journey of writing a story.
And we know a lot about the exhilaration of getting to know our characters, creating exciting plot twists, and getting to The End.
We hope you’ll join us for our 60-Day Novel course starting soon …
Register now, as registration closes March 27th. Only 30 spots.
ABOUT 60-DAY NOVEL
With support and guidance, plan and write your first draft in 60 days. Seize the day and and your dream of writing a novel and make your dream real today.
This course is designed for the writer with a life.
You can plan your novel in a way that fits into your life. We know, because we’ve done it, multiple times!
In the first 30 days, we will help you think and write through the steps to create your novel – from character development to plot structure to story themes and world building — so that you can write your novel prepared.
In the second 30 days, we will support you while you write your novel with daily tips for focus and inspiration and weekly calls for accountability, learning, and witnessing.
This class is for you if:
— You have never written a novel, and have always wanted to, and still feel lost on how to go from brilliant idea to The End, then you will be stretched in new and different ways.
— You’re an experienced novelist, with 1 or 2 completed or partially completed novels under your bed. You may find this course structured in a way that’s new to you and yet familiar.
— You have 3 or more unfinished novels sitting in a drawer, and always hit that sagging middle and lose focus or lose interest. This course will help you dream up exciting ways to torture, I mean challenge, your characters all the way to the resolution of the story.
Every word counts!