How I Write - Secrets of a Bestselling Author

Book Reviews


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Janet Evanovick has not only written several books but has made a career out of writing. She and Ina Yalof have taken the questions that have most often been asked by her readers and compiled them into this manual that offers its readers an up-close view of how she has done this.

Eight chapters are used to divide the book into topics. The first focuses on creating characters for books and includes giving them names and doing research so they are credible.

The chapter called "Nuts and Bolts" teaches how to put these characters into context by developing plots with language, settings and other factors that match the way that the characters think and behave.

Structure involves setting up the story so that it makes sense but also intrigues the reader as well as working on series.

Revising and Editing can be tedious, so the authors recommend that checklists and involving others help with the task.

Getting published requires skills and persistence. Janet goes into details about this part of the process and warns about the consequences of not doing it properly.

Bits and Pieces offers encouragement and advice for those who truly want to be successful as a published writer.

The reference section of the book suggests resources and organizations as well as sample letters and techniques that can be used to reach a writer's goals.

Besides covering the questions that the author has answered, there are extra nuggets of wisdom from her daughter, Alex, who works full-time with her mother and the co-author as well.

Perhaps you are not interested in learning how to write but are just interested in learning more about the author of some of your favourite books. If that is the case, you can read the book and feel even closer to Janet Evanovich because she offers clarity into how she functions in her career on a daily basis.

Because I have authored books and am interested not only in the process but also in the Stephanie Plum series, I found this book to be interesting and helpful.

After reading this book, you will likely be able to strengthen your writing, learn new ways to capture the attention of publishers and be sparked to think in a different way about what and how you write.

Interesting that Janet has such a wide range of talents. She not only has created romantic novels and a large mystery series but now has shared with us how she has actually done that in the form of a technical manual. The uniqueness involves the fact that she has added humour and transparency that might not be expected in a how-to book. She also holds one's attention with graphics, different fonts, shading and charts.

The book ends with autobiographies of the three women who have contributed to the book.

Even the sub-title to "How I Write" captures the reader's imagination as it is "Secrets of a Bestselling Author" - the goal of so many who just don't know how to get there.


Dr. Linda Hancock, the author of “Life is An Adventure…every step of the way” and “Open for Business Success” is a Registered Psychologist who has a private practice in Medicine Hat. She can be reached at 403-529-6877 or through email office@drlindahancock.com


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