How To Write a Book in 5 Not-So-Easy Steps by Tonya Burrows


Seasoned writers and newbies alike are always looking for easier ways to write a novel. Well, I’m here today to share my method…and I don’t recommend it. Really. Don’t do this.


Step 1: “What if I Can’t Do This Again?” Procrastination



My least favorite part of the writing process is starting a new book. It’s terrifying, and I waste at least a week every time being too scared to start.



Step 2: Research Rabbit Hole



I honestly love this step, but it’s a time suck to beat all time sucks. But it’s SO. MUCH. FUN! I mean, I definitely need to know how to perform battlefield surgery. And how to make a bomb… the most effective way to disperse a bioweapon…the ins & outs of kidnap and ransom insurance… suitcase nukes….


(Yes, my Google history has most definitely landed me on a government watch list.)



Step 3: Start book. Delete. Start over. Delete. Start over. Delete.




This. Step. Is. Hell.



Step 4: The 40K Word Slump Netflix Binge



At about the halfway point, I run out of steam and end up doing everything in my power to avoid writing. This usually means Netflix binges. (Hello, The Great British Baking Show!) But it can also mean cleaning the house, the toilet, the litter box. The Boyfriend always knows when I hit this stage because the house is never cleaner and I spend most my time complaining about how much I hate the book.



Step 5: Frantic Typing To The End




There are copious amounts of caffeine and candy involved in this stage. It usually lasts about a week and I probably write 30 to 40% of the book in that time.





So why do I put myself through this over and over again?






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It’s a good thing Gabe Bristow lives and breathes the Navy SEAL credo, “the only easy day was yesterday,” because today, his life is unrecognizable. When his prestigious career comes to a crashing halt, he’s left with a bum leg and few prospects for employment that don’t include a desk.

That is, until he’s offered the chance to command a private hostage rescue team and free a wealthy American businessman from Colombian paramilitary rebels. It seems like a good deal—until he meets his new team: a drunk Cajun linguist, a boy-genius CIA threat analyst, an FBI negotiator with mob ties, a cowboy medic, and an EOD expert as volatile as the bombs he defuses. Oh, and who could forget the sexy, frustratingly impulsive Audrey Van Amee? She’s determined to help rescue her brother—or drive Gabe crazy. Whichever comes first.

As the death toll rises, Gabe’s team of delinquents must figure out how to work together long enough to save the day. Or, at least, not get themselves killed. Because Gabe’s finally found something worth living for, and God help him if he can’t bring her brother back alive.



Tonya wrote her first romance in 8th grade and hasn’t put down her pen since. She received a B.A. in creative writing from SUNY Oswego and is working on a MFA in popular fiction at Seton Hill University. Tonya shares her life with two dogs and a ginormous cat. She’s from a small town in Western New York, but she suffers from a bad case of wanderlust and usually ends up moving someplace new every few years. Luckily, her animals are all excellent travel buddies. When she’s not writing, Tonya can be found at a bookstore or the dog park. She also enjoys painting, watching movies, and her daily barre workouts.


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