Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Writing that first full manuscript

As I said yesterday the only way to write a book is to start writing.

My first full length book was born when I was in the 8th grade. At that time it was 22 typed pages [quite a feat for someone in Jr. high] and had a cast of characters who still talk to me. It would be 14 years later when I'd pick that story back up and expand it to an over 55k manuscript. It took me just over 7 weeks to finish the first draft and a full year to get it to the full 55k. I entered it in a contest and was in the top 20 of a national, full-length novel writing contest.

My second book was written in 21 days, my third-which was much longer at 76,500 words, took two months to write and three weeks to edit. The second was requested by two publishing houses [although it is yet, unpublished] and the third won the Daphne du Maurier Award in the inspy unpubbed division. It is also being read by two agents right now.

Now I'm gearing up with NaNoWriMo to start work on my fourth. It is by far the most intense story I've written to date. To call the plot twisty is an understatement. And I can tell you five years ago I would never have attempted this book. Too much depth, too many balls to keep in the air, too many red herrings, to fast-paced.

But writing is a process and the only way you're going to get on your way is by starting. The only way you get there is by moving. The only way you'll ever get closer to your dreams is by doing.

So go out, start with the first chapter, write the first draft, get the words on paper.

Then keep coming back here. In November I will post every day. Friday-Sunday will be committed to helping you develop your writing as I move through NaNo.

So if you're NaNoing add me to your friends list. My screen name in NaNo is WritingCareerCoach you can watch my progress and I can watch yours. Together we'll do something most people dream of but few do...write a novel.

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