How Does A Book Get Written?

Years ago, while on a hiking trip, some friends asked how someone should go about writing a book.  My reply?  Any way it gets done.

As if I hadn’t spoken, they proceeded to argue about whether someone should start at page one and continue through until the book was finished, or have a more free flowing, non-structured approach..  The intensity of their disagreement grew as each one tried to convince the other they were correct, that their way was the right way.  Of course, to my knowledge, neither of them has ever completed a book.

“The only correct way,” I tried pointing out, “is the way that gets it done.”

I tried to explain that some authors have very specific routines (sitting in the same location at the same time and pounding out the words on the same ancient typewriter they’ve been using for decades).  Others write when they can, fitting it in around other commitments.

There are writers who hand write manuscripts in ink on a legal pad, while others face a computer screen for their own writing sessions.

Some writers sit down at the same time each day while others go when the muse is awake and the mood strikes them.

As much mystique as some people feel surrounds the working writer, the truth is that the process of writing a book varies from writer to writer and the only right way is the way that gets the job done.


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