My suggestion to anyone who is actually interested in writing a novel, skip to chapter 12 where Rittenberg starts discussing findind an agent. Don't both with the first half unless you really don't know anything about writing Jun 10, Matt Murphy rated it it was amazing. I've spent hundreds of dollars on dozens of books designed to teach aspiring authors the craft.
Most of the books sing the same song and at the end the reader realizes he's just wasted many hours of valuable time that could have been spent practicing the craft or reading worthwhile prose. Despite the dozens of writing-related books it recommends throughout the book, Your First Novel: It shows, not t I've spent hundreds of dollars on dozens of books designed to teach aspiring authors the craft. It shows, not tells, aspiring novelists by providing countless examples from familiar works, something most other books lack.
The book is divided into two sections, one about authoring a book and the other about publishing the novel. If you are serious about writing a novel, this book is a must-have. Jun 07, Matt rated it it was amazing. Having thrown enough first novels away to start an insulation business with all the wasted paper, I decided it might be worth thinking about the process of writing a novel before I start another.
From "listening for the idea" through carding the scenes to character development and plot, the book has changed the way I think about the process and inspired me with more confidence. Writing a novel is no longer a source of anxiety but a prospect for lengthy and involved pleasure. Still equally unlike Having thrown enough first novels away to start an insulation business with all the wasted paper, I decided it might be worth thinking about the process of writing a novel before I start another.
Still equally unlikely to actually complete the task, of course. But at least I'm gonna worry about it less. And this book is a lot cheaper than an MFA. Nov 25, Amelia rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: The greatest book to read if you're looking to write a book. While most books along these "helping" lines are stiff and mostly remind you of your most boring college professor, this book gets up close and personal, skipping around the soft edges and going straight for the hard core. You will not be able to hide from your own fears while reading this book. It offers sound advice from my most favored author.
Sep 28, Daja added it Shelves: As of December 13, this is my review of the first part that deals with the actual writing. The first part of this book wasn't what I was expecting at all. It told you tips and gave you different activities you could do but it didn't really go into depth. Instead, they would put other books at the end of the chapters that addressed it. So this book is a great beginning for people to get a general idea of writing a good book. Feb 15, Kev rated it really liked it Shelves: All you need to know to go about writing your first novel from the author of 'A Certain Slant of Light' and 'The Fetch'.
From what and how to write, to picking an agent and to getting published.
It's not a riveting read but it has all you need to know and having read it I now realise how hard writing a novel, or at least a good one, must be! Aug 25, Danielle rated it it was amazing Shelves: This was a great guide to writing a novel. Even if it's not your first novel, I still recommend this book for great tips. The first half of the book is about writing your novel, the second half is about getting it published. Great wealth of information!
Jun 02, Christine Grabowski rated it really liked it Shelves: I wish I had read this 3 years when I was just beginning my first novel. It touches on almost every area of your writing.
But now, three years in, most of it is a little basic as I'm ready to drill deeper into each particular subject like character and dialogue. But those types of books would be too overwhelming and detailed for a beginner. Jan 21, Allison Jensen rated it it was amazing Shelves: I love this book! I go back to it constantly, even though I don't feel like there is much I can still learn from it. I would absolutely recommend it for anyone who dreams of being a published author and even for those who dream of being a well-known fan-fiction author.
Jun 23, Richard Conrath rated it really liked it. Ann Rittenberg has written an excellent book for the novice writer. Some great tips in finding an agent and what to look for in an agent once you've identified her. I am still reading the book--focusing now on the second half. It's worth the price of purchase. Jul 11, Taly rated it liked it. Mar 11, Katie Tillwick rated it really liked it Shelves: Love the further reading suggestions at the end of each chapter.
Aug 16, Kelsey rated it really liked it Shelves: This book consists of two parts. The first half is devoted to writing your novel and the second half to publishing it. The first half is a wealth of information on everything from plot to character to memorable detail. There is a good mixture of insights about writing, high level or step-by-step advice, and exercises to help you work towards your goal.
Whitcomb also offers buckets of examples from published works and theoretical stories that get your creativity flowing. I peppered the first half of the book with sticky tabs to mark excellent tips or inspirational quotes. The second half had 1 sticky tab. It covers what an agent does and how you can best find and interact with agents. Although it provides useful information, it could have been summed up in a third as many pages. It seemed like Rittenberg and Whitcomb wanted to split the book , when it could have been Two key take-aways are that relationships matter and agents are people, too.
Treat them like professionals, follow directions, and make it as easy as possible for them to do their challenging job. One word of caution… this book is geared towards literary, novice novelists. Still, for you beginning novelists, I highly, highly recommend Your First Novel. Read the first half and then read it again and again as you work through revisions.
Skim the second half and keep it in your back pocket for if when! Aug 16, Kate Conroy rated it it was ok. I have to say that in , this book might have been good. It took me back to having to write essays in cursive with a black or blue pen back in middle school, before everything was done on computers.
The publishing half of this book goes on and on about the ways to mail copies of your manuscript, but none of that is relevant any I have to say that in , this book might have been good. The publishing half of this book goes on and on about the ways to mail copies of your manuscript, but none of that is relevant anymore. Plus, I honestly skimmed the last 50 pages because it was all about what to do once your book is picked up by an agent and then an editor. I already spend too much time imagining myself as being more famous than John Green. Read the rest of my review at Kate Likes Books: Jun 19, Meghan Mathew rated it really liked it.
Reading the book is actually a forced task for me. I bought it, read a few pages, highlighted a few things, and then didn't touch it for about 12 months. Finally, the process of moving into a new place made me realize that I shouldn't own books I haven't read. It was a new principle and I started with this book. The first section written by Laura Whitcomb is insightful.
It provides a lot of information for those who know nothing. It opens up worlds of information and techniques which if practiced Reading the book is actually a forced task for me. It opens up worlds of information and techniques which if practiced regularly, will help your writing. However, other than that, I really had to force myself to read this. For those who know nothing and want to really educate themselves, be prepared for some boring research. Finally, I did find Ann Rittenberg's portion of the book very useful and I still reference it.
Mar 20, Amity rated it it was amazing. While the Craft section has basically what you can find in any other craft book, it does have quite a few good 'I'm stuck' exercises, and it's organized in a very nice way. There's definitely things I learned there. What makes this really shine though is the Agent section.
For anyone who is clueless in what to do once you've written the darn novel, this is essential.
In Your First Novel, novelist Laura Whitcomb and seasoned literary agent Ann Rittenberg team up to provide you with the skills you need to write your dream. Editorial Reviews. From the Publisher. "Superb advice on writing a great novel and getting it Your First Novel: An Author Agent Team Share the Keys to Achieving Your Dream - Kindle edition by Ann Rittenberg, Laura Whitcomb. Download it.
Rittenburg is very honest about the amount of work that goes into publishing a book, without making the process completely paralyzi While the Craft section has basically what you can find in any other craft book, it does have quite a few good 'I'm stuck' exercises, and it's organized in a very nice way. You can see why cliffhangers are good chapter closers.
To pinpoint your cliffhangers or to create some , look at your story lines. Where are the m o m e n t s when an action a n d reaction might be separated? A young protagonist is shockingly thrown into a strange, new world with its own rules, language, hierarchy of characters, goals, prizes, rites of passage, and themes. Watson believes the subculture must be implied, rather than explained, so the reader is thrown into this new world in the same shocking fashion as the protagonist.
Notice how these versions of greeting a m o r n i n g , the first f r o m Mother's point of view, the second f r o m Father's, have very different tones. Ah, what a summer it was! Each morning Mother opened the white curtained glass doors of her room and stood looking at the sun as it rose above the sea.
Now every morning Father rose and tasted his mortal being. He wondered if his dislike of Coalhouse Walker, which had been instantaneous, was based not on the man's color but on his being engaged in an act of courtship, a suspenseful enterprise that suggested the best of life was yet to come.
And that is the strength of being informed. It covers what an agent does and how you can best find and interact with agents. I bought it, read a few pages, highlighted a few things, and then didn't touch it for about 12 months. What makes this really shine though is the Agent section. Jan 21, Allison Jensen rated it it was amazing Shelves: To ask other readers questions about Your First Novel , please sign up.
Skip to content Home. By Ann Rittenberg An writer agent crew stocks the keys to attaining your dream. Writing Young Adult Fiction For Dummies Your hands-on, pleasant advisor to writing younger grownup fiction With younger grownup publication revenues emerging, and bestselling authors like J.