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Nail Your Novel: Why Writers Abandon Books and How You Can Draft, Fix and Finish With Confidence [Paperback]

Roz Morris
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
RRP: 6.99
Price: 5.56 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

30 Jun 2011
By bestselling ghostwriter and book doctor with a top London literary consultancy

This book is used by award-winning authors and university creative writing departments.

'A how-to-write book that actually DOES tell you how'

'There are shedloads of books on how to write novels, and a lot of them are longer and considerably less useful'

'I wish I'd had this book a long time ago'

'The author has a proven track record as a writer of fiction, as opposed to writers of "how to write" books'

Are you writing a novel? Do you want to make sure you finish? Will you get lost and fizzle out? Will you spend more time reading about how to write than actually getting the words down?

Most books on novel-writing will make you read hundreds of pages about character arcs, inciting incidents, heroes’ journeys. It’s great to know that – but while you’re reading about it you’re not writing your book.

And what these books don’t tell you is how to use this learning and get the job done.

Nail Your Novel is a writing buddy – and mentor - in a book.

In 10 easy steps it will tell you:
*how to shape your big idea and make a novel out of it
*how to do your research and how to use it
*how to organise your time
*how to plot and build characters
*when you’re going to hit problems and what to do about them
*how to write on the days you don’t feel inspired
*how to reread what you’ve written and polish it.

Along the way, Thumbnail Notes give tutorials about storytelling and storycraft – strictly when you need them. The author has written nearly a dozen novels that have made it into print – and this is how she did it.

You don’t even need to read the whole book before you get started. You read a section, then do as it says. And, once you’re finally satisfied, Nail Your Novel will tell you how to sell it to publishers and agents.

A FULL index means you can find what you want, when you want it.

You’ve dreamed of writing a novel. Don’t procrastinate with another theory book. Don’t launch in, get stuck and throw your hard work in a drawer. Nail your novel.

Frequently Bought Together

Nail Your Novel: Why Writers Abandon Books and How You Can Draft, Fix and Finish With Confidence + Writing Characters Who'll Keep Readers Captivated: Nail Your Novel: 2 + The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer's Guide To Character Expression
Price For All Three: 22.62

Buy the selected items together

Product details

  • Paperback: 182 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 2nd edition edition (30 Jun 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 146108136X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1461081364
  • Product Dimensions: 20.3 x 12.7 x 1.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 120,387 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Authors

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Product Description

About the Author

Roz Morris has two decades of experience writing novels and helping floundering authors find their way. She teaches creative writing masterclasses for The Guardian newspaper in London. She is a senior book doctor for a major literary consultancy in London, writes fiction under her own name and has ghostwritten bestselling fiction for high-profile writers with major publishers, including Random House, Puffin and Mammoth.

Her websites are and

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All You Need To Know 23 Oct 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
One of the best books on writing I've read. A proper project plan for writing a novel from scratch, or finishing an abandoned one languishing in a file somewhere!

Written in an easy straight forward style, with a 'can do' attitude from the off, Roz Morris, tells you how it is going to be, then shows you why you need a system, and how to get there, then coaches you along the route to the finish line.

This book not only shows you how to avoid the main pitfalls, but if you're like me, already wading through fields of treacle, Roz will help you to get unstuck and get going again.

Incredibly motivating, as well as being informative and easy to follow. If you truly want to write, and finish a novel, then this book is for you.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A useful book on writing 28 Jun 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
I've spent years looking for a creative release. I've tried various things but time is a major issue with the amount of hours I work. Through the Kindle I rediscovered my passion for reading. The recent e-book phenomena led me down a path of discovery into the life of an independent writer. After reading independent works and endeavouring to make myself useful as a volunteer proof reader I decided to try my hand at writing. The result being, I've begun to consume literature on the subject of writing at a furious pace. Happily, I seem to have found a book that's going to be of considerable use to me. There are plenty I've read that aren't and some of them have very respectable names on the cover. Success doesn't stop even famous authors from stating the obvious in a bland manner page after page.

The first comment is on writing style. This book comes across as light hearted but doesn't contain any fluff. Some teachers lecture while others impart knowledge without you realising. The rigid lecturing style of some works on writing portrays this creative art as a chore from start to finish and attempt to formalise the whole process, which in the end stifles creativity. Roz acknowledges the more difficult aspects of writing and suggests creative exercises to overcome them while satisfying the critical more logical sides of our character. Keeping the critical mind at bay while you create and letting it loose later on is a theme that runs throughout this book.

Some of the exercises regarding the generation of ideas aren't really relevant to me at the moment and won't necessarily match my personality in the future. The use of memory aids and playing games irritates me a little. It reminds of those useless management courses.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Process-driven but much more 26 April 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
On the surface Roz's book is a logical, step-by-step guide to take a novelist through the process of starting (and finishing) a project. I've completed the first five tasks and am using NYN as a constant reference as I plough through the first draft of my third novel.
What made this book work for me was what happened as I worked through the tasks in its first two sections detailing what to do before you start writing. The logical and progressive approach seemed to release the creative side of my brain which took me to places I hadn't imagined at the outset. (I should say that the author makes this an explicit aim of the process.) The end result is the most innovative and exciting project I've embarked on. Whether the rest of NYN maintains the standard and sees me through to the end remains to be seen but, this is almost irrelevant. The first two sections alone make it worth the money.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
What strikes me about this writers' guide is that it is very practical. There are plentiful "real-world" ideas to get your creative juices flowing, to create structure and to just keep plugging away at it. I'm just now using the "hat game" to get my various book thoughts together before starting to bring order to them. I'll then go on to cards and thence to start actually typing. Have the book both on Kindle and as a paperback, and I've also bought the author's "Writing Characters Who'll Keep Readers Captivated" and I'm sure I'll be avidly perusing that soon as well.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars very useful 29 Jun 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I found this book extremely helpful. Unlike so many writers of these kinds of books she can talk from real experience
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nail Your Novel review 16 May 2014
By meg
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Unlike most items on novel writing, this book goes into great detail of how to plan the structure of your novel. It gives practical ideas to use to avoid writing yourself into a corner. Parts of the book need reading a couple of times to understand exactly how to adapt the ideas for use. But a very down-to-earth practical guide to novel writing.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding advice on the fiction writing process 16 April 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
What many writing books do is discuss the craft of writing or specific aspects of it – all helpful stuff – but it's hard to know how to approach the actual task of writing a novel.

What Roz does is different – she presents a way of working for novel writers; a plan of attack, a method of breaking things down logically into a process you can work through – even before you put pen to paper as well as afterwards. But this is by no means cold and formulaic but open and dynamic, and packed with hugely helpful advice from her considerable experience not only as writer, but as an editor responsible for helping existing authors fix their developing books. Because of that she's wise to the things that can go wrong in the writing and she'll tell you how to fix them.

This book, along with her other really excellent, don't-leave-home-without-it book on Character – "Writing Characters Who'll Keep Readers Captivated: Nail Your Novel ( and James Scott Bell's outstanding, Plot & Structure (, form a powerful triptych of volumes to help any aspiring fiction writer hit the ground running.

There are more books about writing you should read, sure, but this is a great place to start (or somewhere to discover a better way of working for existing writers). I've noted and noted all three books obsessively – even printed and bound the notes(!), they're that good – and feel I've learnt a massive amount to kickstart my writing career. :)
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Buy it! You won't regret it.
Entirely readable and helpful book which has helped me edit a book I was on the verge of abandoning. Thank You! I totally recommend this.
Published 26 days ago by Wendy
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely recommended
Like so many writers, I’ve read a lot of books on writing and have been disappointed by many of them, as they’re often long on faffle and short on actual useful information. Read more
Published 5 months ago by SWFbr
5.0 out of 5 stars No nonsense, fast read
If you're stuck in a rut and not getting anywhere on that first manuscript this book offers great advice that shows you were you're probably going wrong. Read more
Published 7 months ago by BritReader
5.0 out of 5 stars Full of useful tips (even for published authors)
I may be a little biased, as I met Roz at a Books Are My Bag event this year, liked her and got my own signed copy. But I must say I really was impressed with Nail Your Novel. Read more
Published 11 months ago by gingerdoodles
5.0 out of 5 stars Writing Your Novel From A-Z
This is the second book I have bought in the Nail Your Novel series and I am glad to say that this book was a useful as the first. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Wendy Jones
4.0 out of 5 stars Very helpful book
Ros's book is easy to read and packed with tips and advice to help authors finish their manuscripts. A good buy.
Published 11 months ago by Travelholic
5.0 out of 5 stars an informative insight into a technology of novel writing
In this brief, straight-to-the point book on the craft of writing, Roz Morris gives us her own method of novel writing. Read more
Published 17 months ago by GRIGORY RYZHAKOV
4.0 out of 5 stars Very helpful and practical
This book provides very good advice and guidance for less experienced writers of fiction. The most useful sections are those which emphasise the need for careful planning and... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Jabberwocky
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