It’s that time again!
National Novel Writing Month 🙂
Wanna join? Get thee to the Nanowrimo site and sign up.
I’ll be joining in spirit, of course, since I’m technically almost done with DARK RIFT. However, while on this journey I’ve learned a few important lessons about writing a novel (and doing it well).
- Don’t underestimate the OUTLINE. Even if it’s a skeleton, I do believe an outline is better than none. Why? Well, how many of us really sit straight through and write an entire novel. We get up, we go do things around the house and (hopefully) leave the house…sometimes I may not look at my work-in-progress for a week. There are details or concepts you may have forgotten, or plan to change, etc. and having an outline helps you keep track of where you are and makes it easier to implement changes.
- Pace yourself, then brace yourself. Sometimes we’re so excited to get to the “wow” moments of the story that we neglect the rest of it. Pacing out your story so that it’s an enjoyable read all the way through is very important. You don’t want a super-short scene just so we can hop to the action; you certainly don’t want to linger on another scene just to push across “a message.”
- Character is key. As a reader, If I don’t like your main character, I’m not sticking around–especially if it’s a first person narrative. Could you imagine hating Holden’s guts throughout Catcher in the Rye? (I loved that book in high school just because of Holden!). There are plenty of resources that will help you craft a great main character/protagonist as well as interesting secondary characters.
- Finish the darn thing! Kind of obvious, but if you never finish…then where’s the fun in that? You’ll never improve your skill set or strengthen your endurance for writing if you have three or four unfinished projects sitting around.
So enjoy Nanowrimo, learn all you can and improve your skills…and happy writing!