Top Ten Tips for Writing Paranormal Novels

Writing paranormal novels can be fun. When I first started writing stories with paranormal elements, I thought I had to stick to the rules. I began to read other paranormal novels and they included various elements like romance and supernatural ones. Today, I’m sharing some tips that have helped me along the way when writing paranormal novels.

  • Characters-Creating characters is exciting when you start a new novel. I found the Writer’s Guide to Character Traits by Dr. Linda Edelstein to be helpful when it came to character traits during character creation. I always create a character sketch for every character I create whether they stay in the final story or not. This will help you when you start writing. Also, it will come in handy if you are writing a series and can’t remember something about your character.
  • Plot-One thing to consider that is important is if your plot is a stand-alone or a series. I usually have decided this while I’m creating my outline. Sometimes it doesn’t happen at this stage. It might hit you when you are nearing the end of the novel that you can tell the stories of some of the other characters because they are linked to your main character’s story.
  • Research-This is something that needs to be done no matter what genre you write. Not doing research can lead to readers pointing out things that are not right in your story unless you mean to go against the norm of the paranormal elements you are writing about.
  • Genre-Within genres like the paranormal genre there are rules for writers. I believe in bending those rules just a little bit to make my stories different from others. I don’t see anything wrong with paranormal stories having a bit of fantasy or romance in them if they are right for the story and make sense.
  • World-building-This can be done when using a real location as well as when creating a fictional location. You can create a world within the world of the real location. Creating a fictional world to me is a bit more fun than using a real location sometimes. With the real location, you need to get things right when it comes where landmarks, streets, and other places are within the city. Building a fictional world takes a bit more time but is fun because you are in control of how you want things set up.
  • Timeline-Creating a timeline is helpful in so many ways. Having one keeps you on track for depicting major events within your story. I create timelines not only for the fictional worlds I create but also the ones where I use a real city or town like New Orleans or Savannah.
  • Be unique-This is important as well. You want to create a story that sticks to the rules of whatever genre you are writing in but add an element that gives it a new twist. For example, in the Twilight series, the new twist or element added by the author was that the vampires glittered or shimmered like diamonds in the sunlight. Don’t be afraid to be different or unique when telling your story.
  • Series-If you decide to write a series make sure your story arc (main plot) can carry over a certain number of books. Also, set up the books in the series as individual stories with their own plot but tied to the story arc (main plot).
  • Setting-Do your research when it comes to setting (location). This is important, especially when using a real town like New Orleans as your setting. With a fictional town, you have a little more room to be creative.
  • Don’t just stick to paranormal story elements-When writing your story don’t be afraid to add other story elements like supernatural ones. Also, you don’t have to include romance if it doesn’t fit the story you are wanting to write. A book that I found useful when adding other elements like supernatural ones to my stories was Writing the Paranormal Novel: Techniques and Exercises for Weaving Supernatural Elements into Your Story by Steve Harper.

Hope you enjoyed reading these tips and they help you in some way when writing your story. I enjoyed putting together the tips to share with you. I look forward to your comments.


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