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on 16 November 2012
This brief (novella length) e-Book has to be the most useful "how to write" book I have read in a long time. Written by fantasy author Rachel Aaron, it is clear, straightforward and pretty easy to follow as a writing method. Having struggled to wrangle the first draft of my first novel into shape all I can say is I wish I had read it before I started writing... but I'm glad I have now read it before commencing another novel!

The author shows how she went from writing 2k to 10k words a day while producing a five volume fantasy epic. Part 1 focuses on the triangle of knowledge, time and enthusiasm. While the word-count levels Rachel achieves sounded high to me initially the book reveals the amount of preparation, planning and working out that goes in beforehand - knowledge of what one will write. These are word counts while actually writing the novel rather than something achieved every day. That is not to diminish what she achieves but to highlight that her method is to be well-prepared by working out plot outline, character sketches, time-line and setting before starting to write. This approach avoids meandering off and ensures focus while writing. Good time management supports this, as does enthusiasm - if the writer is not enjoying what they are writing why are they doing it? What is the likelihood their readers will enjoy the final product?

Part 2 is longer and gives a chapter by chapter focus on the topics of plot, characters who write their own story, structure, making each scene count and, finally, editing. Each chapter gave me ideas on how better to approach my next writing project. How to edit more effectively also gives me hope for also being able to salvage my first novel!

Rachel Aaron's method is very structured throughout so may not appeal to all writers. In the chapter looking at the three act structure she refers to herself as a "story architect" (rather than a "whimsical artist"). However, even those looking for a looser approach will, I believe, find value in this book, if not during the story creation then during the editing stage.

It is nice to see that the author is also an advocate of Scrivener, my favourite writing tool. She provides some tips to use it more effectively within her method. For me, it has changed how I use the outliner mode to make use of chapter word counts and the synopsis feature as a scene map.

At an Amazon UK price of just 77 pence (or 99 cents in US) this e-book is ridiculously cheap - if you own a Kindle and want to write (any genre not just fantasy and SF) then I strongly recommend it.
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on 13 January 2015
This is a short, inexpensive, book which describes how the author increased her daily word-count as an author. It's not so much about the nitty-gritty of the detail of writing as about how to organise that effort, and it is a description thar resonates with my own experience. And maybe the biggest lesson is to channel your enthusiasm.

The famous NaNoWriMo challenge, every November, is to write 50,000 words in a month. That's less than 2,000 words in a day If you applied the ideas of this book to NaNoWriMo, you would spend a few days getting nowhere, though I suppose you could count the outline, character details, and such towards the total. But just doubling your writing rate gives you a lot of spare days. Last November, there were days when I beat 6000 words. They were the days when I was writing pretty much as Rachel Aaron describes. I knew what I was writing, and I was enthusiastic about the text.

No two writers are the same. I'm still not wholly sure this will work for me, and I can have no clue whether it will work for you. But it feels a good starting point. And, for me, this is the sort of stuff my schoolteachers never mentioned. (One of my mother's schoolteachers did know this stuff.)

It also cost me less than the cup of coffee I was drinking while i read it. I reckon that's a pretty good deal.
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on 10 April 2017
I like this book and the concepts of how to move to 10k a day. I wanted to love this book - but I'm not entirely sure I can. The book basically has 3 points - knowledge, time and enthusiasm as the factors that make you write faster and in all honesty - you need to be able to plot A LOT to do this. Nothing wrong with plotting and I'll certainly try to plot more, but I do wish there was a method in there for people who don't plot - because I'm just not sure if I can get the foresight needed to do what she's saying - plus I'm still not entirely sure how she did it - sure she tells us how the tools and mechanisms, but enthusiasm adding 3000k a day? Or whatever the figures were.......?????????? I'm super enthusiastic and I haven't added even 1000 extra words to my daily average. That being said, I liked her style, I liked her suggestions and I certainly will try them all, even if I can add an extra 1/2000 per day that would be handy. Good book, good suggestions, wish it wasn't all on the plotter side though.
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on 26 July 2017
Many writing books that I've devoured provide vague details on the actual writing and planning process and they offer up very little substance. But 2k to 10k has tons of practical tips that will help you write the story you've always wanted to write in a short space of time.

Rachel explains the barriers that prevent a writer from actually writing and she gives the much needed advice that will get you thinking about your writing differently. Once you begin to learn about her planning process, it makes you think more enthusiastically about planning your own novels.

Rachel provides valuable tips that I wasn't even expecting to be in a book focused on writing faster.

This is definitely one of the books on writing that I would recommend. I also recommend taking notes as you read it.
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on 18 September 2014
This book is ideal for anyone who wants to pull together a story 'roadmap' that still leaves room for creative development in the writing. She offers help with a middle way between 'free-writing ramble' and 'death-by-outline'.

Making it clear to yourself what you're aiming to write before each session really helps increase output.

Above all this book describes a successful novel-writing process, a 'how-I-did-it' method that you can use or adapt. Loads of writing books give help with the 'what to do' of writing but very few offer help with the 'how'. (See also Thomas Emson's 'How to Write Novel in Six Months'.)

(For me personally, one of the most helpful tips was her advice about making sure you have chosen the correct tone for your novel. The example she used was about deciding whether you were writing say a romance with some adventure in it, or an adventure with some romance in it, as trying to alter the tone in edit means re-writing the entire draft. This really helped me sort out a stuck 50k draft as I realised the problem was due to a mix of two competing tones.)

Where else can you find a successful author willing to share the nuts-and-bolts of her process with you? This book is worth far more than the cost of the download.
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on 3 November 2017
I have the utmost respect for anyone who can be this disciplined. Clearly the system works for Rachel Aaron but I’m afraid I’d lose the will to live if I had to tie myself down like that. I totally get that it’s more productive to know what you’re going to write before you sit down and to a certain extent, I do this. But writing is my therapy (it’s less expensive than buying shoes!) and I totally accept the limitations in terms of word count and titles published.
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on 1 September 2017
I was breathless when I finished this book. I tried to keep up with what I imagined the author's typing speed was when she wrote it. Many of us writers want to be more productive and churn out an ever-increasing number of words every time we hit the keyboard or, in my case, take up the quill. Unfortunately, we spend our time seeking distraction techniques, doing anything but getting the words out.

The author shows us how, with discipline, we can increase our output and even improve our editing techniques. We might not reach the dizzy heights of 5-10,000 a day, but if we follow her guidelines, we will undoubtedly improve our productivity.
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on 26 June 2015
A gift of a book. I love how generous the indie writers community is and this book is yet another example of that. I have read the original post for this a couple of times and I am now the very happy owner of the book. I am not yet writing 10,000 words but I have more than doubled my work rate (4,000 - 5,000 words per day). Thank you for sharing your techniques Rachel.
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on 6 August 2017
A short informative guide for writing efficiency, packed full of useful information and advice. I made notes the whole way through this book, and intend to try everything as part of my writing process. The best writing guide I've read so far, and I'm definitely recommending this book to friends who write.
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on 17 July 2017
I've come back to this book over and over again to remind myself of Rachel tips and trick and I can tell you that they work, particularly the planning and editing. Once I'm writing new stuff again, I'll definitely be back to reading the 2k to 10k section! Written in a lovely chatty manner it's not patronising at all, a great book.
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