This week:Edited by: Robin Bateman
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“You cannot change anything in your life with intention alone, which can become a watered-down, occasional hope that you'll get to tomorrow. Intention without action is useless.” --CAROLINE MYSS
This includes writing. With the new year here and all those New Year's Resolutions perched on sticky notes slapped on bathroom mirrors and refridgerators, why not add revise my novel for you nanower or write my novel
here is some advice from fellow novelists.
If you're not finished with the story, keep writing. If you are finished with the first draft, let it sit for at least a month or two. I made that mistake with the second one and I missed a plot hole big enough to drive a tractor through. Once you've put some space, then just read it and see if you think it's worth a second draft.
In the mean time, you might want to read Stephen King's On Writing. I don't read writing books very often, but that one was a good one.
I usually print out the book and read it with a red pen. You have to be merciless. Cut out everything that doesn't add to the story, and correct all the grammar and spelling and style issues.
I hope that helps. It should get you started, anyway.
Let me know if you need more pointers.
Actually, no I haven't because of my past employment status prevented it plus there seemed to be other things popping up. But since I no longer work, I plan to finish the one I began this year and the other two I began and won in the previous years. I just have to wait until the holidays are over before I can get any writing done though. Do you plan to finish yours?
For my first round of edits I do one of two things. I might print the whole thing out as is and then get out my red pen, read through, and mark grammar and spelling problems as I go. Or I might just read it on the computer and make changes as I go. I'll also make notes of big glaring plot or character development errors/holes. The only software I use for writing is RoughDraft, which is just a light weight word processor. After that round of edit(s) I try to go for an over all storyline edit, looking at the big picture and subplots and making sure everything works. After that I try to get someone that isn't me to read it and give me feedback (this is the hardest part). And I haven't got any farther than that!
Good luck :)
Thanks, Robin. I don't have any software I can recommend, I'm sorry. Gosh! There are so many. A first draft, believe it or not, is not the one you want to submit to publishers. I was told and I firmly believe this - the first draft is the writer getting to know the characters they are writing about about. It's the second draft and maybe even the 3rd that is manuscript reading.
Edit! Edit! Edit. If you can't afford a free lance editor to help you, then get a book about self-editing and go from there. Writing is 10 percent writing and 90 percent editing. What helps me - create character bios and emotional bios. Outline a plot. keep the outline loose though because your characters might want to go in another direction.
This month's writer's digest has a great article about writing the novel and talks about defining your main character's goals. Know it.
Here's an example. Katherine wants to be part of a family, a family she hasn't really had growing up, but she falls in love with Matthias who is a werewolf. Can he give her the family she's always wanted?
That's the GOAL statement for my character Katherine. The main character (Kate) has a goal (be part of a family) but is challenged (by falling in love with a werewolf) Can she overcome the obstacle? KNOWING THIS about your characters and their directions can help you firm up your story.
I hope I helped Sweetie.
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Thank you for the interview. It's always interesting hearing how other writers do their thing.
I love to read mysteries, but I haven't written one myself. I couldn't see how to do it without being predictable. This article helped me to have a different attitude about it. My next story will be a mystery. Thanks.
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