“You have to learn how to pick the right idea, develop deep fascinating characters, write believable dialogue, build a world, create suspense, hone your voice, craft a plot with a satisfying beginning, middle and ending, edit edit edit, rewrite rewrite rewrite, and use beta readers wisely.”
“Art of the Novel” Panel
Here’s what I love about book panels: the people who appear on them really, truly love books! It’s so refreshing to hear people talking about both craft and the publishing field with dedication and enthusiasm. Both were abundantly in supply at the “Art of the Novel,” an event held at my favorite local bookstore, Watchung Booksellers. Here are some comments that may prove inspiring and helpful:
Emily Bestler, Editor-in-Chief of Emily Bestler Books:
“I am Middle America. I grew up in a small town where we bought our books at
the grocery store. If I like something, there’s a good chance others will, too.”
“What happened next? What happened next? That’s storytelling.”
“You can’t ever give up and you can’t listen to anyone — it’s a very subjective business.
So never give up, just keep going.”
Alice Elliott Dark, Novelist:
“Writing is my way of life. It’s a daily practice.”
“Take a chapter and copy it by hand — see how the author makes decisions.
David Henry Sterry, Novelist:
“Being a writer is privilege and a pleasure.”
“If you don’t show your book, it will end up a file on your computer.”
“We have to do things that are outside our comfort zone to get published.”
Alice, an award-winning author of short stories and the novel Think of England, spent two years just reading and outlining books so she could begin to understand how plot and structure functioned. Now that’s patience! David, the author of more than a dozen books, is celebrating the publication of Mort Morte, a work he actually penned 20 years ago. Now that’s persistence! Write on!