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Book in a Month: The Fool-Proof System for Writing a Novel in 30 Days 42179th Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
The actual product is even better than what I expected. I have looked at Victoria Schmidts other books and Story Structure Architect was interesting but too complicated for me.
This book is a workbook. You write in it - but its not one of those complicated workbooks that make you write backline and huge character outlines and then piece them all together later. Instead it walks you through the process of writing a novel on a daily basis. It's not a book about writing - its a book for writing. As Schmidt says in the intro "You cannot read a book on writing and then poof become an author (though books are great guides)No you must experience the act of writing to be an author...the only way you can do this is to write, from beginning to end a story. And then do it again and again. Then you will have the experience. Then you will be an author."
What differs this book from other book in a month style books is the structure. Its easy to follow, the daily tasks are manageable, it follows the classic 3 act structure. It's basically a template for writing the book you want to write. Plus it has online support if you want to be part of a community.
Writers Digest did a GREAT job in the layout and design of the book so you can write directly in it and it has a ring binder so you can lay it flat while writing.
I wanted a book to jump start my writing again as I have been out of practice. This is exactly what I needed. I know I will buy a new copy each time I write a book.
I used to buy screenwriting books to study story structure. Finally thankfully books on the craft of novel writing are focusing more on story structure too.Read more ›
My first impression: It's fantastic, exciting, and exactly what I was looking for. The book and it's author Schmidt give quite a lot of inspiration with an angle only a book like this can have. Really, all writer-motivating books promise some sort of personal fulfillment through writing, but this is the first one I've read that puts that goal solidly within reach (30 days out). Plus, the book is meant to be a structuring guide through the process, with places to note things like subplot ideas, character sketches, story outline as well as day-by-day exercises meant to take you closer to your goal.
The difference between this BIAM and the NANOWRIMO one is that it's intended to give you something incredibly solid and usable by the end. Baty's NANO is more about an explosion of creative productivity and this one is about ordering chaos. Both lead you to a "book" in 30 days. Schmidt's makes sure your book has a solid 3 act structure that adheres to the most successful conventions of storytelling.
Why only 3 stars? Well, I'm now on day three and I haven't been able to force myself through one page of the workbook section. I read the inspirational lead in (about 64 pages), got caught up in the NANOWRIMO excitement, and now I can't stop writing long enough to follow the exercises and fill in the blanks in the book. It frankly scares me too much with it's structure and guidelines. I don't want to direct my novel-writing energy to filling out its worksheets and answering its questions.Read more ›
What I like about it: It really did get me out of eeking out a few hundred words and into writing much more. One of the most eye opening things was that I didn't need to do the first draft with subplots and could work them in later. I also liked the outline format because it didn't go a standard outline route that's always hung me up in the past.
What I didn't like: Some things weren't explained and left me confused. Someone else mentioned setting, but I also wanted to see an explanation of a temporary triumph.
I'm having a hard time understanding why the author didn't put the forms up on her Web site to be downloaded for reuse. Instead, we're told to buy another version of the book just to create a second project. At $22, that's expensive for a set of forms--and small forms at that.
It's a good book to use if you want to learn how to write faster, but expect to be confused by some one of the questions.
My only reservation about the book is that some of the questions Schmidt uses in some of her activities use terms that are not defined elsewhere in the book. For example, on Day 3 the prescribed exercise is to create an outline. In the questionnaire portion of the exercise she asks the writer to describe the "setup" but does not define the term. I suppose if you've purchased many other writing books or some of Schmidt's previous books, you may be able to use those as references to figure it out. This is irritating but does not diminish the usefulness of the book overall.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book is particularly helpful for first timers or someone trying to fill in the blanks on a story idea. Great purchase!Published 3 months ago by Emily Haines
I have already written several books and still found this very helpful. It motivated me to finish my newest WIP and reminded me to ask many important questions about my manuscript. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Lorraine Linthicum
I have looked the book over thoroughly, and will be starting to work through it shortly, though I think I'm a way from completing a book in a month. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Connie White
I have been a writer for many years. I had never gotten past the long short story/noveltte stage, because I would get caught up in research or outlining or editing. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
An informative read. This book will hopefully help me finally write my novel. Before this book, I would start and stop way too many novels. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Maddy Boughner
Step by step instructions, tips, inspiration, to help you complete your book in a month. Starting my 30 days tomorrow.Published 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
This book changed the way I write...for the better! It isn't just another "write faster" help book that offers no real help at all. Read morePublished 10 months ago by KFaitour