Coming from an advertising background I think I approach all my stories from the view point of how they will be pitched to the reader in the end. As such there are a few things I like to do before, during, and after I've written a book.
- A one sentence pitch is a must! Trying to sum up your entire book into one sentence is hard. Really hard. But it can be done, and knowing it upfront will help you stay on topic while you are writing the book.
- The synopsis can be your friend! I have to have a synopsis (or close to one). Everything can change, but it's nice to get a start of something written. It helps me narrow down my thoughts and get to the meat of the story and what to focus on, and expands the one sentence pitch to something more workable. Otherwise my mind wants the story to go every which way and it's much more work in the end to focus it.
- Cover images! Last week I mentioned I like to make cover art. Every good advertising piece has amazing art work. And when I design stuff the picture is what I find first. Every time. Then my concept is centered around it. It's amazing what a little picture can do to impact a story in your mind.
What would happen if you are an exterminator, a plumber, or even a teacher. Interesting how you might approach a book project then :)