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» 2011 » May » 02 Brian Farrey Books

It’s all about the execution.

There’s a lot of advice out on the web on how to write a book. Some of it’s good advice, some of it’s awful.  What I’m noticing, though, is a dearth of information on how to approach writing a book.  This unsung step is crucial to the development of any novel. It’s where ideas are nurtured and shaped. It’s where worlds are born and characters are birthed. It’s where inspiration and intuition conspire to parent dreams.*

Here, then, is my contribution to this seldom discussed piece of craft.


1.    Get an idea (check the Sunday paper, sometimes Target has a sale).

2.    Make sure it’s a really good idea. Ask your cat. If she sleeps, it’s a really good idea.

3.    Research the YA market and learn that someone else did your idea.  Sort of like how you planned, only better.

4.    Buy a live chicken, some salt, and a ceremonial dagger.

5.    In a field near a graveyard at midnight, draw a pentagram with the salt and sacrifice the chicken.

6.    Curse the name of the author who stole your idea. Said curse might include, but should not be limited to, poxes, bodily leakage, poor judgment, spontaneous combustion, spontaneous tap dancing, unrelenting sorrow and porridge, intermittent gravitas, and mistaken identity.

7.    Google the author to see if the curse worked.

8.    If the curse did not work, repeat with step 1.

9.    If the curse worked, supply me with a list of ideas you’d like me to stay away from and I’ll do so unreservedly thank you very much and my you’re looking nice today unholy one.


*=Yes, I”m aware of how completely awful that metaphor is. I’m giving it to you as a gift. Consider it a weapon the next time someone criticizes your writing.  Whip that puppy on them and watch their brains implode. You can thank me later. Or now.

**=Please note that while the term “YA novel” is used, these methods can be invoked as you approach writing just about anything. The advantage of using this as you prepare to write a grocery list is that the chicken doubles as both sacrifice and dinner.


Published in: on May 2, 2011 at 7:13 am  Comments Off on It’s all about the execution.