New Year. Chapter One.
People frequently say to me, "I want to write a novel, but I don't know where to begin." Surprisingly, the answer is not always, "Start on the first page." There are no rules in writing. Whatever works for you is what you should do. If you can't muster up on Page One, then start in the middle, or start with a description, or dialogue and build upon it. You might even start at the end. The idea for my book, "Virgins of Paradise," came to me while I was in Egypt visiting friends (I was there for a wedding, actually) and it was during the boisterous celebration that I scribbled down a description of the party, the guests, the happy couple. As I wrote this, the idea for a book came to me, and I knew it would culminate in a wedding. This very one that I was describing. When I got home I started writing "Virgins of Paradise" and the whole time, I was writing toward that initial final paragraph. Six hundred pages later, I had my book, and I had not changed a single word of that final paragraph, written two years prior.