What I learned writing my novel.

Discussion in 'Insights & Inspiration' started by nippy818, Dec 7, 2015.

  1. Hwaigon

    Hwaigon Member Reviewer

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    Second to the right, and straight on till morning.
    I mean. Who hasn't felt like that?
    I do believe though that one has to bring a project to completion. That in itself has some kind of mysterious, driving force. For me, at least, a project
    does not need to be perfect, reasonably good, sure, at least having a passage here and there, the wording of which I'm proud of, but finishing it is
    the saving merit.
     
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  2. Megs33

    Megs33 Active Member

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    Totally agree. In my very specific case, as someone who has spent entirely too much of my life telling myself what I SHOULD do, what I HAVE to do, this will be a wonderful exercise in letting go. I'm well-versed in rigid, unforgiving discipline and the accompanying anxieties and fears; now I'm hoping to get myself a little more chilled out and well-rounded before wading in to the authorial deeps. Scrivener and I have a very cautious and juvenile relationship.

    I always knew I was a newbie, and now I'm learning that the "newbie" status carries more subcategories than I care to name. So i'll keep plodding along and hope I get this thing right. Here's to blind faith. :-D
     
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  3. karanveer41

    karanveer41 New Member

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    Wow, what an inspiring message. Thank you for sharing these insights.

    God bless you for your effort.
     
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  4. honey hatter

    honey hatter Banned

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    N818 inspiring words I'm going to take to heart. ❤️
    You made the vein on the left side of my neck tingle. That only happens when I feel inspired... or...
    This is another tool I can add to my chest. So helpful thank you. I am taking things one step at a time.
     
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  5. nippy818

    nippy818 Active Member

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    I'm glad to see that this thread is still inspiring other writers! This last 7 months have been so hectic that I haven't been nearly as active as i used to be. It came down to another thing I learned, the more I consumed, ie. tv, movies, books, comics, internet, ect. the less i had for my own creativity. I'm still working on being more of a creator than a consumer, but since i placed myself in that mind set my productivity has been through the roof. I'm on the 5th or 6th draft of the second book in the series, on the 2nd draft of the third book, and I have recently started a pulp sci fi noir serial.
     
  6. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll Contributor Contributor

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    Glad to hear you got your groove back. :cheerleader:
     
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  7. nippy818

    nippy818 Active Member

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    thanks! its been a long process, but I'm defiantly killing it these days!
     
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  8. honey hatter

    honey hatter Banned

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    Megs33 such a good post! Words to live by. The accompanying anxieties and fears i am too well versed in... That is now like an old decrepit vampire metaphor for my neurosis that i have driven a wooden stake through it's dried up desiccated heart and watched the ashes float away on the wind. My apologies, even though my heart no longer beats, i wish to defeat my old demons and move onto something greater.
     
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  9. cutecat22

    cutecat22 The Strange One Contributor

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    1. make notes. Your brain tells you it will remember things, but it's a bloody liar. Write notes.
    2. don't pay as much attention as you think you must, to the word count. It's important in some instances (certain publishers will only take novels of a certain length) but the story, the plot, and readability are all far more important than upping that little counter in the bottom corner of the screen.
    3. there are no rules to writing fiction. Pay attention to the rules of spelling and grammar, fuck everything else and tell your story.
     
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  10. honey hatter

    honey hatter Banned

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    This may be some of the best advice I've seen, I'm actively following it everyday, I constantly forget things so I'm trying to write out my ideas as soon as they come.
     
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  11. cutecat22

    cutecat22 The Strange One Contributor

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    I'll often email myself from work if something hits my brain as I know I'll forget it.
     
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  12. honey hatter

    honey hatter Banned

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    i'm getting ready to write, hopefully i'll come up with something good.
     
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  13. Spirit of seasons

    Spirit of seasons Active Member

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    Wile I don’t use physical notebooks, I have a drawing pad at work, and a good note taking app on my phone.

    I had such a hard time with my first project. I had to many outlines, and everything felt very forced. I’d barely get 500 words per day. Followed by long strings of writers block.

    Fast forward to when I got the idea for Evergreen. It flew out of my head and onto the page. I’ve made a habit of typing instead of hand weighting because I can do that much faster. Disabling spell check and auto correct helped a lot. I consistently write at least 1k words per day, but I don’t beat myself up if I don’t hit my goal. I’ve only missed one day of writing so far.
     
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  14. CerebralEcstasy

    CerebralEcstasy Active Member

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    What have I learned from writing my novel? I don't think I'm a writer, I spend all my time editing!!!!! Some days I will rewrite a paragraph, or two, or several and I don't even recognize the work I had previously. I have about 17 different iterations on my drive, and some of them still have good material, others, I should probably delete.

    Thanks to some good critique I've been working at fleshing out scenes, writing character bios, and surfing Deviant Art for things that make me go 'wow, that makes me think of this scene or that character'.
     
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  15. russellh92

    russellh92 New Member

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    YES, I agree with you that you need to continue to write every day, even the muse left you. But I can't, the story turns out very dry and ridiculous. Only when an idea appears, the story comes to life and as if breathing. You will edit the text and perhaps a good idea will come.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 7, 2018
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  16. jannert

    jannert Member Supporter Contributor

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    There is (what I believe is) a misconception that many new writers buy into—with either good results or not. The only way things will progress is if you're sitting churning out words on your computer. In fact, that can be the end result of a lot of other work, not the start. Thinking, planning, taking notes, doing research, time alone to envision things and play scenes out in your head ...these all contribute to writing. Just sitting and plodding along, tapping out words when you either don't feel the least bit inspired or are confused about what should happen next in your story is NOT necessarily the way to go forward.

    Do not let anybody make you feel guilty because you're not always writing, or don't sit at your computer for a specified number of hours per day, etc. You are a writer if you write, and you are an author if you finish what you write. But how often you achieve these things or how you achieve them is a very personal exercise. There is no right or wrong way to get there, as long as you do get there. Eventually.
     
  17. Carriage Return

    Carriage Return Member

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    OK, so as far as my novel writing process went, it had to come out of me organically: not be pulled.

    Editing is fine (Duh! essential): by all means pull out of you those scenes that are needed/necessary that didn’t come in the first pass, but I feel like if the essence of the thing didn’t get onto the page in the first pass then any “fake it ‘till you make it” lines will show.

    And how.
     
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  18. matwoolf

    matwoolf Contributor Contributor

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    But what does that mean?
     
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  19. Carriage Return

    Carriage Return Member

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    I hear King says that he writes his first drafts in a short period, like three months, to grab the muse by the arms and legs before she gets away. Its like that I guess even though it took me longer. I see people on the entire net who build their novels like tinker toys. I could never work like that.

    Your brain works faster than your fingers. When it gels you better get it onto the page ASAP.
     
  20. Carriage Return

    Carriage Return Member

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    To put it another way: to get the discrete idea out before it becomes polluted with other influences. Even something as “simple” as dialogue can take on different dynamics depending on your mood at the time you write it.
     
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  21. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll Contributor Contributor

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    That you can make a torture scene funny, with the right characters. :D
     
  22. psychotick

    psychotick Contributor Contributor

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    Hi,

    What have I learned? Very little from writing. I just write because I have to. I have a story in my head and I simply want to get it down in pixels. But I suppose one lesson has been that the muse only takes you so far. It doesn't quite get me to finishing a novel. Nearly - but unless I pushed myself right at the end I'd edit and rewrite my book a thousand times over and never finish it.

    Where most of my learning has come from is editing. For a start I learned that I hate editing!!! I'm not too keen on being told I'm wrong, I suppose. But it's also the grind of simply going through a work line by line, day after day. And Track Changes is by far the most horrid programme ever invented! But editing is also a valuable teaching tool. As well as getting your book to the publishing stage, it also teaches you to think more like a writer. The down side of this? It becomes very difficult to read another book without having this nit picking voice in my head telling me he shouldn't have done it that way.

    And publishing taught me a lot too. But the one thing it taught me above all else? How damned good it feels to have a copy of your book in your hands!

    Cheers, Greg.
     
  23. Alan Aspie

    Alan Aspie Active Member

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    If you have been reading a book a day, you have surely developed immunity to getting too much influence.
     
  24. LoaDyron

    LoaDyron Member

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    Although I am using fanfic to improve my writing, I can say I have learned a lot with my story. The process I went through ideas, even asking for advice, the thought of, this makes no sense or; this must be cut because will not develop the plot, it helps to become better and better. :supersmile:
     

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