How to write an important book!

Hello all, I have a very *ahem* serious post today about how to write some serious fiction! Usual disclaimer: this is for humour purposes and not to target any particular book/author (funnily enough, while I did draw on bits and pieces I don’t like in fiction, writing this actually made me think that *thankfully* most books dubbed “important” do none of these things). Also, a lot of this is based on my own personal likes/dislikes. Thank you for your understanding in this matter 😉 Now, onto the guidelines!

you choose

#1 Choose a suitable genre– your options are: contemporary, historical fiction, dystopia annnnd that’s it.

 

 

opinion toy story meme

#2 Find a topic that’s on trend and run with it! Make sure it matches up to whatever’s on various manuscript wishlists, because you know, this isn’t really about writing your ideas, it’s about parroting whatever *important people* think. *Do not* choose something close to home or write from any personal experience. If you run out of time to publish this grand idea before the trend dies- never fear, you can just recycle it later! For instance, if you were writing important historical fiction a few years ago, you could’ve gone with the secretly sympathetic Nazi trope- but now you may have to adjust that idea to… some seriously sympathetic Stalinists! (just my prediction for the next trend- you’re welcome! 😉)

reading#3 Loosely research this topic. You don’t want to interfere too much with your preconceived ideas, so don’t do actual research or find data that might muddy the waters. Ignore information that may contain nuance or will make readers uncomfortable (for this reason, I seriously recommend not looking into any kind of psychology or history or the like). Go with popular media takes- then you should be safe from criticism, cos all the people who might evaluate the book already hold the same opinions anyway. I recommend using Buzzfeed as your primary source- that should suffice.

strawman

#4 Moralise! This is my favourite step, because it’s so gosh-darn-easy and oh-so-satisfying! This should involve (but is not limited to): strawmen, pointlessly obvious statements (eg “war is bad”), contradictory ideas, invasive authorial intrusions, a heavy dose of nihilism (if you can manage it), irrelevant information and some illogical arguments. Remember, your view (and that of the powerful people you’re parroting) is the only one that matters!

 

 

character conveyor belt#5 Make all your characters walking stereotypes and tokens! This is great, cos you don’t actually have to put in the work to make them seem remotely realistic. On that note…

 

listen to me#6 Characters are merely mouthpieces for the author’s intent– so don’t you forget it! At every opportunity, put your own (stolen) words into their mouths. The more inane, the better!

 

 

 

doesnt matter#7 The more important a book is, the less the plot matters… so don’t bother to have one! I know I just love reading a book and realising that nothing actually happened for 400+ pages- so this is the model you should work with!

 

drama#8 Add plenty of nonsensical melodrama (nothing says serious like melodrama!). Try to have the emotional range and logic of a hyper, high on sugar, possibly caffeinated five-year-old- that should do the trick. Especially since everyone knows unrealistic is better (personally, I love that Hollywood trope where the unarmed plucky rebels run at a group of armed, evil soldiers and miraculously disarm them- peacefully of course!)

 

i'm awesome#9 I had a think about style and came to the conclusion… it doesn’t matter if you use an extreme version of pared down or purple prose- just as long as you tell other writers this is the *only* way to do it! Prescriptive advice is the best and the most important writers are really into it- so you should be too!

 

closing argument#10 Your ending is super important– use this as an opportunity to moralise more and drive home whatever message you were going for!

 

 

I'm offended#11 Get sensitivity readers to check that your work is sensitive enough for every person on the planet– because it is totally possible to write a book that everyone relates to/loves/doesn’t have problems with (and because there has been no case *ever* of a book going through this process and being cancelled anyway… oh wait, that’s the case with most cancelled books, hmmm nevermind! Do this step regardless! Your job is not to think for yourself!)

 

sympathy#12 Write in your acknowledgements about a dead friend/relative/acquaintance whose real-life story you were inspired by– preferably naming them- so that you can milk sympathy on their behalf. This doesn’t look tacky at all!

 

sarcastic sorry#13 Prepare an apology of sorts that you can put in as an introduction to make up for your lack of research. You can also pre-emptively say sorry on twitter for whatever you’ve written, whilst simultaneously self-promoting and virtue signalling! Look at you, killing three birds with one stone! (also, while you’re on twitter, try and destroy someone else’s career- this is both fun and will make people want to buy your books when the time comes! There are only loads of a few cases of this backfiring…)

***Congrats: you’ve written some propaganda an important book***

Now you can sit back and wait for people to admire your genius! You’re welcome!

(And yes, the observant reader will notice this doesn’t involve much writing- that is only for unimportant writers!)

43 thoughts on “How to write an important book!

  1. lol I loved this. This is the Ayn Rand checklist 😛
    Also ‘secretly sympathetic Nazi trope’…I have no words….this is a trope?
    So some of the backlash I got for my book ‘Incel’ was that if a type of person is evil enough, nobody should write them as a sympathetic character. And to be honest, I agree with that….just dudes saying rude stuff online doesn’t meet my bar of ‘too evil to sympathezise with’
    Now, Nazis…..yeah, that is a group to evil to sympathesize with…..what would be the point in writing some soft boi Nazi?
    People are freaking wild.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Thank you! haha well I have to admit I was channelling Ayn Rand at times 😉
      Shockingly yes (there was a successful prize-winning book that had this- that then spawned other historical fiction… and even romances :/ )
      And yeah I agree that incel doesn’t qualify as evil enough to never have sympathy for- but yeah, I think sympathetic Nazis is too far. But what do I know? 😉

      Like

  2. 3 birds with one stone is most excellent. You should probably tweet about that as well, just so your readers understand how awesome you are at multi-tasking. Wouldn’t want them to overlook an obvious clue to your greatness after all 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

  3. When the wave of sympathetic Stalinist romances appears, I’ll blame you. (I know, romances aren’t important, but there were a lot of sympathetic Nazi romances a few years ago so…)

    Liked by 3 people

  4. As soon as I read the disclaimer, I knew I had to prepare myself for a fit of uncontrollable giggling, and I wasn’t disappointed. I’d say stereotypes are a tricky thing to tackle, because when you think you’ve come up with an original, interesting character, you realise that there’s so many stereotypes you’ve actually touched, and your character is basically made up of a mix of different stereotypes, which is rather unpleasant!

    Liked by 3 people

    1. hehe I’m glad to hear it!! hahaha yes- that would kind of undermine the whole endeavour of making your characters as flat as possible (so as to carry your moralising statements and authorial intrusions) don’t want to make them too deep!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh I didn’t say writing a dedication to a loved one that passed away was tacky. I said saying that your book was inspired by someone else’s tragedy (and naming them) is tacky (for instance- I’ve read a book that was about a victim of rape and their suicide- I wasn’t very impressed with the way the author referred to the real person in his q&a at the end of the book, because it wasn’t his story to tell). There’s a big difference between that and a dedication. Sorry I wasn’t clear enough and sorry for your loss.

      Like

  5. 🤣🤣 The sarcasm in this post is off the charts. I commend you lol. All these points are genius and so on the nose. I’ve run into a few books that meet all these points and it’s so strange.

    Liked by 3 people

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