About this book: You’ve said it a dozen times before: If only you had the chance, you would write a chick lit novel. But between job, boyfriend, kids, school — life — you just can’t find the time.
The Chick Lit Cookbook: A Guide to Writing Your Novel in 30 Minutes a Day is the solution. This fun, cupcake-themed guide will take you from start to finish of your first draft. In 13 chapters, each with a short exercise that will get you writing now, you will learn how to create the perfect main character, her ideal love interest, a world for her to live in and an adventure that will draw in readers. You will outline your entire first draft — and then you will write it.
The Chick Lit Cookbook is a beginner’s guide to writing funny, snappy, sucks-you-into-the-story prose about modern women, life and love. It is full of tips and techniques, prompts and pep talks that will spark your imagination and inspire you to put pen to paper. The exercises can be done while sitting on the bus, waiting at the doctor’s office, or talking on the phone with your mother-in-law. This book will show you that you can and will write a chick lit novel.
Whether you’ve been wishing for years that you could write chick lit or are a brand-new fan of Bridget Jones and Becky Bloomwood, you owe it to yourself to pick up this guide. The Chick Lit Cookbook will prove to you that writing a novel can be fun and easy — it’s just like baking cupcakes!
About the author: In addition to being an aspiring chick lit novelist, Alicia de los Reyes is a freelance writer, editor, and teacher who writes about religion and American subcultures, among other things. She lives in Seattle with her husband and cat. Connect with her online at aliciadelosreyes.wordpress.com.
Judge this book by its cover? Hmm…I find the cover rather meh, actually–unlike the copy, which is full of personality and pizzazz. So no–don’t judge this book by its cover. It’s much better than that.
You’ll want to buy this book if … you have even an iota of ambition to write a chick lit novel. This artfully written how-to will give you just the leg-up you need to start–and finish–your project.
Why did I read this book? Well, I’ll tell you: the author contacted me and asked very nicely if I’d consider reviewing it, even though I don’t normally review e-books, self-published books, or how-to’s–all of which hers is. But Alicia de los Reyes had clearly read my review policy page, and because her query was so polished, and because she presented such compelling reasons for why it might be worth my time, and because I found the title and idea so appealing, I said yes.
Would I read another by this author? I would, if only for the fun of seeing how she puts her own good advice to work.
My take: The beauty of this book is its super-tight focus: How to write chick lit in 30 minutes a day. Not: how to write a thriller or mystery or YA (though this is so well done that aspiring novelists of almost any genre would find much to learn). Not: how to publish your chick lit novel (though if you follow de los Reyes’ advice, publication would stand a much better chance). Not: how to quit your day job in order to devote every waking hour to the writing of your novel. No, de los Reyes makes achieving this particular dream imminently do-able. Gotta love that.
I also like the title, though it threw me a little at first. A cookbook? Then I got it. Ah, a book that shows how to cook a chick lit novel. Clever! And then her enticing cupcake theme carries the idea through from start to finish. It works–and gave me a hankering for a visit to Cupcake Royale.
The author spells out that chick lit (as a genre) assumes a concluding kiss–and often something more. FYI, De los Reyes freely includes the “something more” in her instruction, also making room for the possibility of same-sex and transgender love interests.
I found The Chick Lit Cookbook to be a remarkably fresh take on the business of writing a novel. As one who has attended her fair share of writing classes and read even more how-to-write-a-book books, I can tell you that this one is unique. De los Reyes provides consistently insightful instruction, even including some helpful graphs and charts to clarify her points. Then she backs up her theory and technique with concrete examples–both from her own notebooks and from familiar, published chick lit novels–to help spark creativity. Throughout, the author’s tone is confident and fun–altogether pitch-perfect.
Thanks to Alicia de los Reyes for providing me a free copy to review. All opinions are mine.
Now your turn: Raise your hand if you’ve ever started or wanted to start writing a novel. If it never saw the light of day, what became of it? If you started, why did you stop? If you had the right how-to book, would you consider trying again?