When I was writing my first novel, I received a lot of valuable advice and tips on the writing process, planning, and how to go about self-publishing. However, the most valuable was at a frustrating moment (the mucky middle) when many new writers stop, circle back, and rewrite started projects. I had been here before with a few started novels. If you write, you may know that feeling the perpetual writers with unfinished works in progress. What do you do?
FINISH! Go forward not backward – EVER!
This is your first draft, and all first drafts suck – and if they don’t for you… well, I hate you, in a jealous sort of way. Even jump around from scene to scene just keep going until all the scenes are done. That finish line, you’ll know it because you planned for it.
The other key – PLANNING.
It doesn’t have to be a rigid outline, but you gotta know the general direction. Most people don’t drive a car aimlessly, same thing here, get to your destination. You may not look like a model when you get there, but that is what revision and editing are for. Think about it, models are primped, primed, and photoshopped – you’re gonna do the same with your novel. The key tip for revision is a limitation of 2 times through your entire manuscript then off to the editor.
That’s it, if its brilliant EXCELLENT, if its average WONDERFUL – IT’S DONE!! Stories are never perfect and striving to be so is tough, don’t let it paralyze you. Do you want to be perfect or do you want to be published? Each story is an experience, some better than others. The more experience you have, the better you become – I truly believe this, and not just in writing, but in life.
In fact, you may not like my novels and stories, that’s okay. You may not be my target audience either, but in the end, I’m sharing my work and getting more experience along the way and damn I’m happy! I really love developing stories and writing because as a reader it’s what I enjoy. If you’re reading this blog, I bet you like writing too. One foot in front of the other and keep moving forward in writing and in life.
In the comments below, what practice will you do over the next week to ensure you’re moving forward?
For me – I’m waking up early, not for exercising, but for writing 1-hour each day before the day job. I have a deadline, and hell or high water I’m gonna make it!