Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Things I learned (so far) while writing a novel (so little)

If you didn't know (and I'm not sure how you would since I haven't posted here in a month), I'm participating in NaNoWriMo this month! This is the video that finally convinced me.

What I've learned so far:

*You will never, ever, not in a million years, ever read the draft that I finish this month. I may not even read it again. I'm estimating that I'll keep maybe, MAYBE 5 percent of it in the final manuscript (which adds up to most character names, the page numbers at the bottom -- those prob won't change, and a couple of paragraphs).

*I still prefer writing beginnings, but those middle parts are actually pretty fun. Still scared of the ending. How can you possibly live up to the build up? How can it ever be satisfying enough? Worth all that time?

*1667 words is a lot, but 3000 is a hecka lot more. Which is what I've had to do to catch up for all those nights I decided to skip.

*"I'll do it later" is never a good idea.

*Every three pages or so, I think to myself, maybe this would be a better place to start my novel. Where IS the best place to start a novel?

*Writers are a pretty impressive bunch. It takes so much more time and energy and emotion to write a novel than I ever imagined. Good reading = hard writing.


Tara said...

So last summer I started obsessively writing. I would stay up til like 2 a.m. writing this novel. It was SO fun! But after about 30 or 40 single spaced pages (seemed like a LOT to me), I decided to leave it alone for a while and come back to it. When I did, it was AWFUL. Terrible. Like, no hope. So I know what you mean by not letting people read stuff! I was embarrassed for myself. (although in your case I'm confident you have come up with something pretty interesting). So yeah, it is hard and not to be underestimated, but it sure is fun!

Erin King said...

Best place to start: as close to the inciting event as possible! I learned that lesson after cutting about five chapters :) Good luck!

bex said...

Writing a novel?! Really! Is there anything you don't do!

lease said...

Tara! You are a fantastic writer--you should totally keep with it (I've read your storybirds--don't try and hide it!)

Erin--you have no idea how happy it makes me that you're writing. Giddy even.

Bex--yeah right. Coming from you. Miss makes her own beans. P.S. How's baby?? Coming soon?!