5 Ways You Can Evaluate Your Book Idea
Inspired ideas are the stuff of which great novels are made. As a writer, you wake up every day with the hope that you encounter the “lightbulb moment” which can elevate you towards literary greatness. If lately, you’ve been lucky enough to experience this, kudos to you! However, before you begin the journey of writing your book, you might want to take a step back and evaluate this idea. How successful will it be when it comes to fruition? Will your readers actually enjoy what you’ve written about? Further, if you’ve had more than one idea, now may be a good time to settle down and determine which would be the best one. To help you out, we’ve laid out certain criteria that will prove to be useful when you begin your evaluation. Read on below-
- Ensure you have exhaustive knowledge of the chosen subject
This is the primary advice given to any aspiring author. When you’re writing about a certain topic, you must not only be passionate about it but also have a thorough knowledge of the same. All readers are perceptive and if you don’t actually know much about what you’re writing, they will easily see through it. Furthermore, a well-researched book also makes for a more pleasurable read. This includes not just getting your facts right. You must be able to form an opinion on the subject and be aware of all possible arguments for the same. For instance, if you’re writing a book whose plotline significantly involves vaccines, you must be well informed on all its aspects. This will help you to engage in meaningful discourse about your chosen subject in the public domain.
- Determine whether your idea appears repetitive
Once you’ve chosen which genre you want to write in, research thoroughly on the ongoing trends. Moreover, you might want to dig a little deeper and analyse what has already been attempted before. Going with a tried and tested topic might seem safe, but will not help you stand out. Readers are perpetually looking for something new. Hence, don’t be afraid to experiment with the conventions of your chosen genre. For instance, at the beginning of the 20th century, writers like Virginia Woolf and James Joyce experimented with realist tropes to give birth to a whole movement in Modernist literature. Who knows, you might come up with an idea that sets a whole new trend for future writers!
- Make sure your chosen topic is relevant
You can evaluate your idea by judging its relevance to the present. Study your contemporary reality and identify issues that require attention. As a writer, remember that you have the responsibility to sensitize the masses by writing on subjects that truly matter. For instance, Toni Morrison wrote The Bluest Eye in order to foreground the issue of racial injustice. It has stood the test of time because readers can resonate with it even today as racial discrimination prevails throughout the globe. Thus, a story with themes that have universal relevance can make readers more aware and contribute to bringing about change.
- Try testing your idea first
Like they say, better be safe than sorry. Won’t it be better to know how readers receive your idea before you can risk it by publishing your book first? There are several ways to do this. You can write a blog surrounding the topic you’re considering for your book. Ask your readers to leave reviews so you can gather feedback. This will help you understand their perceptions and develop your initial idea. Another way to go about doing this is by writing an article. You need not give everything away, just touch upon a few key aspects you want to introduce in your book.
- Summarize your idea in one page or less
This is hands down the most effective method of testing your book idea. Spelling out your idea by breaking it down really helps. This concise version will allow you to analyse it more closely and whittle it down to its best version. This is how you can go about it- begin by outlining your story, name the characters and their purposes and then establish what you want the reader to take away from your book. This simple exercise has helped countless writers to work on their initial idea. This process will show you the cause and effect relationship between the various incidents of your story and allow you to narrow it down to retain the best parts.
Ideating is only the first phase and beginning the journey of writing your book can appear daunting. However, it doesn’t have to be. Once you know whether the blueprint in your mind fits the aforementioned criteria, you can feel confident about your book’s success. Remember, there are no bad ideas; each one is filled with potential. We hope that your next book idea is a phenomenal one!