Since Our House was Summoned to Another World! is now available for pre-order and I’m mostly done with my proofreading work, it is time again to write about my journey with this light novel up to now.
Before I do that though, here is the blurb so that you have an idea what the light novel is about.
Our House was Summoned to Another World!’s Blurb
The shut-in Yuki Sakurai had received the first love letter of his life. This could certainly be called a miracle and for it to occur, it seemed he had used up all luck he had.
Just shortly after reading the letter, he and his little sister Katsumi find themselves stuck inside a dungeon cell. Apparently their house had merged with a throne room of another world and the king was not amused for some reason.
Genres of this light novel series include isekai, fantasy, romance, comedy, harem, game, action, ecchi, magic, school and demons.
Finding the Idea
Before one starts writing a book, an idea is needed.
My previous light novel Seeker was more in the realm of dark fantasy, a serious story grazing life and death, following the special relationship between Roger and Lili. This time I wanted to expand my horizons and have a clear contrast. For me it is important to have great variety in the stories I write. I like a lot of different genres and I want to incorporate that into my writing. That’s why I decided to tackle something I had never done before and write a light-hearted romantic comedy.
In addition to that, I wanted to try a different perspective as well as expanding the scope to multiple characters. And all of that led to Our House was Summoned to Another World! which is an isekai (jap. another world) romantic comedy. It is written in first person perspective and incorporates the viewpoint of multiple characters. Each chapter is told from the perspective of one character.
I started out by thinking of a setting that delivered something new to the isekai genre and thought that instead of the protagonist being almost overrun by a tractor and dying of shock, or suddenly getting stuck in an VRMMORPG, or being reincarnated as a sword, slime, vending machine, child or Fenrir, I decided that this time, an entire house was moved to the most awkward spot in the kingdom, the throne room.
And after that was set in stone, I wanted the story to be mostly light-hearted and funny while still having a serious backbone that ties into why the two siblings were summoned to another world.
And conveniently, a fantasy world with magic allows for a great variety of interesting situations that also tie in with the ecchi genre. While most romantic comedies are set in the real world, this one is an isekai, a story where the main characters from our world are dragged into a different world. And for those of you who are not familiar with the ecchi genre, it refers to playfully implied sexual situations that do not cross the line. It is still a light novel which targets young adults.
Planning Out the Story and Writing It
I had never written comedy before, so my first task was to learn how to do it. I took a great amount of time to think of interesting situations and scenes that could be incorporated into the story. When I was finished with my initial plan, I started writing until I had finished an entire manuscript. However, things got busy outside of my writing carrier, so there were a few weeks where I had less time to work on it.
After those busy weeks, I then got back to it with a lot of new ideas and new skills that I didn’t have when I started writing the first manuscript. It was a good sign that I had grown as a writer. My goal of expanding my horizon was slowly getting closer.
And so, I went through my manuscript and decided that I would redo it, with new ideas, more experience and turn it into something I liked more.
I began to plan out the story again. I created a list of scenes with short summaries what would happen and when I was satisfied, I started writing another manuscript.
For the most part, I used the technique I developed while writing Seeker to guide me through the process. Before I actually write a scene, I first make a list of bullet points that describe everything that happens in sequence. This allows me to draft out things in a rough way where I can easily change things I’m not satisfied with. Then for each bullet point, I write what it describes, adding more details and putting the words down into readable sentences.
I highly recommend this for any beginning writer since it will guide you to your destination and prevent you from getting stuck somewhere. The drawback of this technique, however, is the time required to write a single scene. It takes roughly double the time of just writing the scene normally. That’s why I switched to just writing the scenes straight after some point when I realized that I made the rough draft of a scene more and more in sequential order without any changes required. I had evolved my writing skills to the point where I could just write out a scene quickly the way I wanted without first drafting it out with bullet points.
This also ties into my goal of trying to speed up my writing so that I can publish a volume every three months. This time, it took a bit longer than I had hoped for, mostly related to my inexperience with this genre and the busy weeks in between. But now I am confident that I can deliver the next volume in less time.
Editing, Formatting, Proofreading
The editing stage was the best I ever had. The quality of my second manuscript was so good that I didn’t need to make many changes. In comparison to Seeker, it was bliss.
Also the formatting stage I still had with Seeker was already done during writing. I wrote directly into my print template and formatted on the way. This also saved me going through the manuscript again after proofreading to check for any errors that were introduced while converting the manuscript into a printable format.
I started proofreading after I had made preparations to set up the pre-order of the Kindle edition. Through multiple passes concerning spelling, grammar, punctuation and interruption of reading flow, I found and corrected about 120 errors that were still present after the editing stage.
Publishing and Pre-order
After gaining experience from my two previous light novels, I now knew a great deal of tricks how to have a good launch. With Seeker, it took a long time to get the categories set up properly because of some implications of hidden rules that I still had to find out. For example, I had my first light novel added to the Light Novel (Ranobe) category without any issues, but for Seeker I was then told after I specifically inquired about it that I had to set a certain age range under Children’s book age range for it to be ranked in Teen & Young Adult categories. Which was strange to say the least, but after doing that, it properly ranked Seeker in the desired categories.
Knowing this and a lot of other things related to publishing on Amazon, I now decided to set up pre-order to have enough time before launch for things to be set up properly.
And if I piqued your interest, you can pre-order Our House was Summoned to Another World! or simply purchase it in case you’re reading this after November 9, 2019, the official release date. The paperback will be available a few days before release to allow time for shipping.
In this section, I’ll give you a quick summary of my workflow when writing novels for anyone who’s interested, established writers, aspiring writers, or curious readers.
- Find an idea that excites you personally and that you want to write about
- Flesh out your idea and decide on:
- Perspective (1st/3rd, single/multiple point of view)
- Overall story of series
- Story of volume
- Write a scene list with short descriptions
- Write each scene from your scene list
- Go through your manuscript and change things you don’t like until you’re satisfied
- Read through your work and correct any errors (spelling, grammar, punctuation, interruption of reading flow)
Thank you for reading this far! I hope I could give you some valuable insight into my writing process. For now and in the future, you’ll find all of my works on my Amazon Author Central page. Any support is appreciated!