Hi Last New Year’s Day I decided that I would start my first novel and that I would try and complete it by the end of the year. Seven months down the line I am 63K words into my first draft. I have become obsessed with my book. Sometimes I believe in it, sometimes I feel like giving up. I am frustrated, neurotic, with fragile self-confidence but am underpinned by a determination to see it through. As Magnus Magnusson would say, “I’ve started so I’ll finish.” Here is a summary of my current neuroses. Any words of advice or comfort would be much appreciated. 1) My plot is too thin and predictable, and my ending is weak. Each scene lurches clumsily into the next. 2) My lead character is lifeless and lacking dimension. I am concerned that the reader will not care what happens to him. 3) I have several supporting characters with distinct personalities, problems and agendas but am not sure how to bring any of them to a resolution without making the overall story seem cluttered. 4) I have not found my writing style. This is a big problem. My style seems to shift day-by-day, week by week depending on which author I am reading at the time and what mood I am in. If I feel lyrical and contemplative I turn into Ian McEwan’s talentless twin. When I feel wired I write like Nick Hornby on speed. 5) My story is music based. I am passionate about music but I have never “lived” the music industry and am concerned that no matter how much research I do, my prose will seem at best uninformed, at worse farcically inaccurate. 6) I have a demanding job, a wife and a young daughter. I only find the time to write at 9 at night when the house is quiet. As a result I rarely communicate with my wife anymore (some of you may see this as a positive). Well, they are all the negatives. The positive is that I am enjoying the process. It is cathartic. The pleasure of stimulating the creative part of my brain after years of dormancy is making the whole thing worthwhile. Are there any other first time novelists who can identify with any of this?