Getting Started – a recipe
Take a good selection – two to three million – phonetic symbols. You may not need them all but if you run short make sure you have more to hand.
A few thousand of your favourite punctuation marks, mainly stops and commas. A rather more meagre batch of secondary punctuation marks, question marks, colons, hyphens, etc. Include one or two apostrophes, but don’t use them unless absolutely necessary.
An adequate amount of white space. Don’t stint on this.
A large waste-basket.
Some kind of writing implement, preferably a computer with a keyboard. Quills are traditional and OK if you can relax with them but may lead to later problems.
Plenty of time and concentration and quiet.
From your phonetic symbols sift out approximately two-hundred-thousand vowels. Stir well and put to one side.
Isolate the numbers from the remaining symbols, and put them to another side.
What you are left with will be a good selection of consonants. Stir.
With the consonants in a large bowl and the vowels in another, smaller container, clear a space on the worktop and combine consonants with vowels until words begin to appear on the white space.
The best way to do this within an ambient temperature is to form ideas and let them ferment within you until meaningful word-clusters begin to clamber to the surface of your mind. What we’re after here are basically strong nouns and active verbs; any descriptive words that attempt to modify your nouns and verbs should be discarded.
Although this stage of the creative process is concerned with the manufacture of single words, you may well find that you are producing whole phrases, or in some cases, sentences already formed.
If phrases and sentences don’t come of their own accord, you will have to do this manually by combining selections of words together. These should approximate to your ideas but don’t get stuck on exactness here, it is quite all right, in fact often essential that your phrases and sentences describe one thing in terms of another.
When you have enough sentences and paragraphs you can combine them with some thematic or plot-based material and title them as chapters.
Finally, take your chapters and make absolutely sure that each one works as intended and combine together until smooth.
The result is called a book, and all that remains is for you to give it a nice title, carefully sprinkle in a few adjectives and adverbs where necessary, spell-check, and serve to a waiting and hungry world.