Wednesday, August 18, 2010
By: Marcus Twyman
Image Source: ralphmag.org
OK, this is by no means a rule book, it's simply a guide...a way to help those that have problems starting a book and writing it to completion.
Writing a Novel is a major project that demands dedication and discipline. The thought of writing three hundred plus pages can seem very daunting to most, which is why I don't think about how many pages my novel is going to be while writing. I write, I don't focus on an end target, I focus on getting the best possible story out onto the digital pages of my laptop and then I move forward from there.
Here's a quick breakdown of my writing process, this may not work for you or it may help you the same way that it helps me.
First, I take my journal and I write a basic non-detailed listing of events that I want to take place in the book. For example, my book, Khet Chronicles: Blood Ties aka The Nebu Khet's Cry, was sequenced via short remarks like, “Kalin has a dream about his deceased family> Kalin wakes up, senses enemy in home> Meets with Shane> Meets Krysia> Attends meeting; it's a trap> Saru saves them and kills ancient> etc, etc...
By placing a sequence of events on paper I ensure that I don't get off track while writing. You want to steer clear of rambling and unnecessary narrative that can take place when a writer is not focused.
Next I sit down at the computer and I start typing. I don't re-read what I write, I don't over analyze the dialogue that my characters use. I just write and focus on getting my main scenes down on paper as well as reaching a set number of words or chapters per day.
Once I finish with my first draft—which I consider the skeleton of the story—and all required scenes are present, I go back and start reading it from the beginning, typing more details where needed and filling out storylines and character descriptions, etc. I add the “meat” of the novel at this stage.
Once I've finished filling the story in and giving it substance, I go back and start line editing it. Then after the line edit, I start reading the story again after a week of letting my brain rest so that I can edit out any unnecessary parts and add others that may give the story more structure.
Once I've completed the main edit, I print a copy of my story and let a TRUSTED source read over it so that they can write recommendations and dislikes on the hard copy. This gives me a different, fresh perspective on the novel. I may or may not take into consideration what this reader says, but it enables me to understand how people who aren't biased towards the story will react to reading it.
After any edits are done that the beta reader remarked on or asked for, I go back for a final read through fixing last minute punctuation issues and overall creating a nicely polished finished product.
That's pretty much it...that's my process. Like stated earlier, this may or may not work for you. Good luck on your writing and please let me know if you have any questions.
Tags: fiction novel, writing a manuscript, urban fantasy, science fiction, scifi, syfy, general fiction, book writing, editing a book, manuscript editing, writing tips, nebu khet, sidhe, fae, fey, faery, fairy, unseelie, seelie, vampires, dragons, werewolves