How to Start a Story From Scratch


I was talking to a friend a couple weeks ago about writing. One of the first things she said is that she had been planning on writing a book for some time but hadn’t. When I asked her why, her answer was “I just don’t know where to start.”

In today’s post, I’ll be sharing some tips on how to take those first steps.

Put Your Mind to It

Starting a novel is scary. It can be overwhelming and hard but it can also be fun, life giving and rewarding. But it can’t be any of those things if you never start.

Make up your mind, today, right now, that you’re not going to write a book “someday” aka never. Start writing it now!

But take that with a grain of salt…


Rather than just jump into writing whatever comes to mind, take some time to prepare first. If you really want to see your story through to a finished manuscript you have to do a little prep first.

For my own novel I spent about three months just brainstorming ideas. I didn’t have a brilliant plot just come to me as I started writing my first page. I had to spend lots of time planning it out. Each person’s process of brainstorming is going to be different.

For me, I kept a notebook on me all the time and each time I thought of a cool scene, plot idea, character, etc. I wrote it down. Don’t worry about the quality of the ideas at this point, just write whatever comes to mind.

Refine Your Ideas

Next, when you have enough ideas, organize your plot. Again, this is going to look different for everyone. Some people go super into the weeds figuring it out, whereas others keep it high level. For me, I dumped all my main ideas on the floor and started arranging them several times a day and playing with them until I had a solid plot.

Start Writing

Once you have your plot nailed down it’s time to become a writer. How do you do that?

By writing.

This is actually one of the hardest steps for many would be writers. I can’t tell you the number of people I know who have brilliant ideas but who never sit down and write. Hate to break it to ya, but if you don’t write, your story won’t magically appear on paper. So hop to it.

Get Your Grit On

Lastly, stick with it! Don’t throw in the towel after your first chapter or if your friend doesn’t like your main character. This is your story, the one that has to be told.

So tell it! And don’t quit until the final the end.



Candace signing off.


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