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Advice for writing a novel

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by NDub, Sep 19, 2010.

  1. NDub

    NDub Guest

    Hey, everyone. It's been on my mind all summer as I mowed through a few books; I'm thinking about writing my own novel.

    Although I'm unsure of the plot, I have a premise and some ideas that I really like. I've started some preliminary work - characters, storylines, research.

    But I've never written a novel, only a few short stories for college classes.

    Does anyone have any advice? I'm open to anything. If there's been a recent thread about this topic, please direct me to it. Thanks for your help.
  2. BYH

    BYH Active Member

  3. Sports_Scribe

    Sports_Scribe Member

    What type of novel?
  4. forever_town

    forever_town Active Member

    I'm actually considering writing a novel as well. Have been thinking about doing it for a while now.

    I've had some informal training while playing an online RPG. One of the things you want to do is develop believable characters. Think about both good and bad characteristics and all that stuff.
  5. NDub

    NDub Guest

    Thanks for the link, BYH.

    I think my idea is good, but characters are where it's at. I could have an incredible idea but if the reader doesn't care about the people involved, then it's worthless. As you might already know from here, I'm a huge LOST fan, so I'm very aware the importance of character development.

    I'm going the science fiction route with this story. Nothing whacky like Star Wars, but a little more real... in the LOST mold.
  6. EagleMorph

    EagleMorph Member

    Rule #1 - Don't tell anyone you're writing a book. If you never publish it, or never even finish it, that's all people will ask about.
  7. TheSportsPredictor

    TheSportsPredictor Well-Known Member


  8. NDub

    NDub Guest

    Ha ha ha. No vampires!

    How much did you guys have planned out before you sat down and started writing? Did you create an outline? Or just a few paragraphs for the plot, and then fill in the details in your 200 pages? Did you come up with character names, personalities, backgrounds, etc. beforehand? Or did you make it up as you went along?
  9. HejiraHenry

    HejiraHenry Well-Known Member

    Get off the internet. You'll never get anything done.
  10. Baron Scicluna

    Baron Scicluna Well-Known Member

    This. I've completed a first novel (68,000 words), although it probably could use some revisions. I haven't told anyone about it yet, although I really haven't gotten myself geared up to send out proposal letters to agents yet. I don't really want to tell anyone (family or friends) about it because I don't want them to think, "Oh, Baron's just trying some new fad of being an author. That'll last five minutes." Instead, I've been working on a second novel ( I'm up to about 5,000 words). I guess someday, I'll send out the proposal letters, and hope that an agent calls, and my wife will be wondering what the heck I've been doing while she's asleep.

    What I've done is just basically write. Sounds simple and nutty. But I just sit in front of the computer and put down what comes to mind.
  11. Interesting insight at the end of John Irving's latest, Last Night in Twisted River
    He describes his writing process, which is essentially back to front. Needs to write the last sentence first.
    Also, how he'll write a sentence that he likes and then will find a spot for it somewhere in the book.
  12. Stephen King's "On Writing" has some interesting insight on how to get the job done.
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