Failures and Successes in Novel Writing | Back to Blogging

Welcome back faithful readers. And to those of you who have just found my blog, welcome for the first time. In my previous blog, I announced that I would be taking the month of November off from blogging to participate in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), a website that challenges you to write a 50,000 word novel in the span of 30 days (the month of November). I would like to share with you all my experience, so you may all experience my failures and successes in novel writing.

First, the failures: I did not write a 50,000 word novel. I did not even complete my novel, but I got a little past the halfway point in my outline. My total word count was 13,910 words. so I even though I got through hafl of my outline, I didn’t get to 25,000 words. Also, I did not write everyday in the month of November. I got sick on Thanksgiving day, and I was incapacitated on Black Friday (not that I ever try to brave the crowds for deals anyway), but it would have been nice to get some writing done.

Now for the successes: besides Thanksgiving and Black Friday, I did write every other day, even if it was just 250 words. I consider that a win. Even though my novel is going to end up short, I have a good start for a short novella, and I am actually pretty happy with the way that it is coming out. Even though I didn’t finish writing through my whole outline, taking my time has given new facets to the story, and with every word, I am getting better at writing prose.

I have never written anything as long as a novel before. The longest thing I have written is several feature length screenplays. Screenplay writing is much more terse: it’s only what the audience can see and hear, with no indication of what is going on in the characters’ minds. I have read plenty of novels before, but I have never paid as close attention as I had now that I am writing a novel of my own. The great writers always tell you to read more to become a better writer, but what they don’t tell you is that you actually need to sit down and try to write a novel to really get in the mindset to truly learn from the novels you are reading.

Case in point, I have been listening to the audio book of the science fiction novel Friday by Robert A. Heinlein, one of my favorite science fiction authors. Now that I have tried to write a novel of my own, I can really appreciate all the little breaks from scenes that he adds to his novel to give the character time to reflect upon the circumstances she has gotten herself into. It is really quite a fun novel: action packed, a little dirty, and quite an interesting story.

Now that the month of November has ended, I will sadly not be focusing all my time on finishing my novel, but you can bet that I will be working on it a little at a time for the next few months to get it finished. I do have other writing projects that I am interested in, and I want to get back to writing this blog, which is still very important to me.

The novel I have been writing, entitiled The Other Dialysis, is a very important story to me, and could be classified as literary fiction, but I think for my next attempt at writing a novel, I will stick to one of my favorite genres to read: science fiction.


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