By: Wren H.

The Types of Writers

Finding what type of writer you are can be difficult. It takes time and experience to learn your particular steps to writing. 

In this article,  I will share with you how to write with base steps for all types of writers. 

So what types of writers are in the writing spectrum? Well, it all depends on how much you plot or plan your novel. 

Plotters are what they sound like. They plan everything. They will not just plot out their novel but their world and characters to the smallest details. Another writer type are the Pantsers or Discovery writers. These writers make everything up as they go. 

Every writer has a different way of creating their story and you may not know what yours is until you are a bit down the road but when you're about to hit a roadblock don’t give up.

The Steps to Prep

Prepping for your novel may be hard when you think about it so you may put it off but don’t because all you have to do is take it one step at a time.

The first step to plotting your novel is to come up with an idea. The first part of that is, a scene or world idea that you like then find a character and then start putting those two things together. 

The first phase is the idea. The best idea is a simple idea that you can build on like for Star Wars, wars in space, or The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe, a magical wardrobe. Once you have the base idea you have to continue laying out the groundwork like who’s the Main Character or MC? Where does the story take place? What are the rules of the world? Answer these questions and finally you’ll start stringing together a plot.

World exploration is different for each novel or piece of writing. Some novels, like contemporary ones, have little to no world exploration while in fantasy you’ll need to map out the world in detail. The hardest part is to not get overly distracted by the details or you could be working on your novel forever. 

The first step to all world-building is to look at your genre to see what world-building you’ll need to do. If it's a fantasy or sci-fi you’ll need to make a new or altered world while if you create a world for a mystery you might  need to do more studying for the location on our planet where your story takes place. 

I think characters are one of the hardest things to make since you’ll need to not just create the characters but to find their flaws and then figure out how to fix them because deep down that is the most important part people are looking not just for a good plot but readers want character development. 

The first step I use when creating characters is to write a backstory. This is finding your character's past. Make sure your backstory matches with all your ideas in mind and your world.  

The second part of character building, your character’s personality, kinda goes with the first because their personality is based on their history.

The last part of the prep is the hardest and most difficult to describe since it’s different for everyone. This would be how you plot your novel. Some writers get their base ideas like the inciting incident and the end and just write from there.  While others plot out more complicated things. This is one way to discover what type of writer your are. So try both! 

There are different book formats like Save the Cat, The Hero’s Journey, and The Three Act Structure for building your plot. Keep in mind all of those structures can all be edited to fit your needs. 


Research for each type of novel or story is different. You’ll have to study and make sure your facts are correct and don’t offend people with false facts. If you're writing sci-fi you’ll want to get your science right. For fantasy you’ll have to study how to make everything all seem magic but possible at the same time. 

First we are going to talk about fantasy. When researching fantasy, you’ll want to start by looking at what type of fantasy you are writing. Are you writing a historical fantasy story where you write history with a magical twist? Or are you writing cross worlds fantasy, where you write two worlds, one magic? Or is it more like the real world? And finally, is it futuristic fantasy, a fantasy world where you blend the future technology with magic? 

Once you are at this point you’ll want to figure out if you have magic in your fantasy and if so what type of magic? There is a sliding scale of magic: soft magic is a magic system with fewer rules and has more of a mystery element. Hard magic is a magical system that is rooted in rules and logic. And if your story is more of a tech world you’ll want to read about our next topic

Sci-fi is more of a technology-based genre and has many ways it can be used. First, we're going to talk about Space sci-fi. There are two main routes for your story: either you're already in space or you leave on a wondrous space adventure. Time Travel sci-fi is all about going into the past. Then we have our last one which is Apocalyptic sci-fi.  Apocalyptic it’s all about monsters taking over the world. 

Once you’ve figured out your subgenre you’re going to want to figure out what science is needed and study up on what parts you don’t know. 

If fantasy or sci-fi aren’t your type then maybe you should try this next topic.

Then for this topic, we’ll be blending in two very similar subjects that are linked together by the fact that they both take place in the real world: Fiction like Romance, Mystery, and Historical. Nonfiction is most like Historical but instead of some sort of change in history, it’s all facts that tell a story. For all of these you will need research and facts to make your story believable. 

Now onto the next step in the writing process.

Finding your Writing Routine and Making Goals

A writing routine is not going to be easy to find. It’s hard to find all those little things that make you able to work. I know you are thinking that you shouldn't wait. You are thinking you should start as soon as possible because if you wait you're never going to find it and every book has its process but one of the main things your going to need to start are goals.

Once you know what you are writing you should start goals and make sure they're simple. I think one of the hardest parts of making goals are deadlines. At first all deadlines will be made by you. So you're going to have to find a way to keep yourself accountable for meeting your goals, like set a treat for when you get your goal on time or early so you can make sure you're getting it done. 

But how do you get goals if you're not even writing?

You'll want to make a small routine. Routines are different for each person. I work best when I’m working a little bit each day but I don’t hold myself too tightly to a schedule since I have a busy life and sometimes it gets in the way. 

So you need to not just care about your book. Sometimes you need to step away. But how do you start a routine? It's by finding the things that make you inspired to write like an image that you see that makes you think of your story or a certain smell that gets you into that headspace. 

Now you’ve made a goal and a routine and done your research for your story. What's next?

Your First Draft

The first two pieces of advice I’ll give you that I learned the hard way were one, to not be afraid to break your plan, and the second piece of advice, don't look at the beginning until you're finished. 

Breaking your outline is only normal. It's an important step in learning and growing as a writer. You can break from your outline at any point but just make sure you think that it’s truly the way the story needs to go.

Once you realize a fix you shouldn’t immediately write but instead make a note of it either in whatever you're writing in or on a blank page somewhere that is easy to access. If you get more ideas that you want to find how to fit in but think it’s too late make a note of that as well. Keep these ideas in mind while you write or implement them halfway through or later.

The last thing for this section is that you make sure the laws you put in your story don’t break or if they do break do it with purpose and not on a whim.


What is editing? It's cleaning up a piece of writing to make sure that everything works together. Editing can take place from character development to a line change. 

Do you need an editor? The simple answer is yes. You don’t just need you and your friend combing over your manuscript, you need someone with fresh eyes and who knows what they're doing. It may be expensive but it’s worth it. Editing can make or break your novel so you need to make sure your editor will fit not just with your genre but will work with you and see your ideas and help you. 

But what editors talk about is the first kind of editing.

What is Developmental Editing? This is the first edit. It's about character development, pacing, and voice, which are very important. This is where your manuscript will change the most because you must find out the big plot points you need to fix before you can go on to the next step.

Line edits are just like they sound more focused on the words and what they mean in a particular order and voice you use. Line edits may not seem as important but they are. While Developmental edits work on the story and how it affects your reader, Line edits work on all the things the readers find on the book jacket.


Are you finally done with your masterpiece and want to show it to the world? Then you need to decide how you want to publish your novel. Will you do indie publishing or will you do traditional publishing?

Indie publishing or self-publishing is more difficult in some senses but you get more control over every little detail of your novel and how the public views it. Pros of this type of publishing are that you make the decisions like you get to either create your book cover if you have artistic talent or go to someone who knows what they're doing but you get to look over their shoulder and help guide them to what you want.  You also get to create your author blurb. You learn how to format your novel and how it works on all platforms from paperbacks to ebooks. You get to see reviews from not just your Beta readers while writing but you’ll also get and ARC reader when you're almost done with your project. 

If you intend to have a blog you’ll be about to come up with blog tours. The cons of indie writing are that it’s all on you. Every choice big or small is on you, you’ll have to take a lot more time and you’ll have to get the money for your freelancers like a cover artist and even finding freelancers is hard and the last con is if your book flops it’s your fault. 

But there is another way to publish your novels if indie doesn’t sound like your cup of tea.

Publishing companies are complicated things but they are very helpful. The downside to them is that you lose some of your control over the project. They edit some of your writing so it fits the company's needs as a story, as well as take a cut of your pay plus they’ll own the rights you give them for your novel. Another downside is that you won't have direct decision making on the your cover for your project. Publishing with a company takes forever to do and the last downside is that you get rejected a lot. 

On the upside, they will help you with marketing and with the distribution of the novels. Another upside is you don’t have to do all the jobs. 

Literary agents are another upside: they take care of some of the things you don’t know and the final upside is that it will be easier to get into events like book conventions. 

Now it’s up to you to decide which pathway is right for you. 

Last Words of Advice

If you're looking at your manuscript and you don’t think it’s original you should know that everything has been done before the only thing you can do to stand out is take a chance and tell the story your way. 

Another tip is to write what you truly want to write. If you think the public isn’t going like you should know that there’s a market for everything and even if there somehow isn't, write it for yourself if that’s what you want.

It’s okay to write a few things at a time just to make sure they're different from each other and there are not too many things in development. I’ve gotten carried away with my writing projects and before I knew it I had so many starts but only one end. 

My final piece of advice is not to be afraid of failure; it's all part of the process. Your first novel isn't going to be a masterpiece but it’s a start and that’s something to cherish and look back on to see how far you’ve come. You did something that most people haven’t done. So be proud.


  • Reedsy on a blog and YouTube

  • Natalia Leigh on YouTube

  • Alex Donne on YouTube

  • Abbie Emmons on YouTube

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