Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Ready to Start Your First Novel?

Many writers think they want to write a novel.  A whole lot more actually start one and never get to the end. At that mpoint many give up, but a few persist collecting a whole file full of partial novels bugun, but not finished until they actually work their way all the way through to the end.

Wow, what an accomplishment. And that is the real trick. Finishing the novel you've begun. Sounds pretty simple, but there are a few stepping stones to getting you there and here are some suggestions.
You need to lay some groundwork, not just for your readres but for yourself.
First - you have a great idea for a story, all sorts of interesting charcters and a cool setting and you want to dive right in. Enthusiasm is great, but hold up just a minute.  First you need ot thoroughly know the world you're creating. You have to know it intimately wheter it is the world totaly of your creation as in fantasy or science fiction or if it is based on some reality such as the town you live in. No exceptions. Check out or determine colors, details, sents and relationships. Look around, whether in the real place you're using as background or inside your own mind if a whole new creation. Think of yourself as a visitor and focus on all th etiny details that make up a place. It's the details that make up life. The splash of oil on the gound at the service station that everybody thinks looks like Jesus, the door handle at the house that always sticks, the smell of popcorn on the air whenever you get near Harold's Hardward Store. All these things and so much more you need to know about your world - and then you'll use many of them, some you won't, but you'll know them and because you do you'll write a more convincing world your readers will love.

Second - know the characters  you're creating with the same intimacy. You have to know so many details, be so connected to your characters that it won't surprise you if you put them in an awkward situation and they rise up to tell you they aren't going to do what you want them to do. Be thoughtful in choosing a name that fits, but remember the name is only a small fraction of character development. And this includes all your characters, not just your "hero" and/or "heroine".  Don't make your main characters alive and kicking, but allow secondary charcters to become cardboard cut-outs.

Third - embrace the conflict.  A story without conflict is no story at all. Make notes, be sure you know what the main conflict of your story is and don't cheat by going so broad you encompass all known relationships and stories. In my Ebook, Stormrider, a fantasy novel, the overall conflict is Stormrider committing her life to pursuing justice for her home world.  A big, overarching conflict putting her at odds with the bad guys and at times with her superior. The closer conflict is her assignment to retrieve the Ring of the Suontar, the ring of power, to he who should wear it and return stablity to her home world. The most perdonal of conflicts is between Stormrider and the mercenary sent to replace her when she's believed to be dead and the unexpected bond she's formed with the Wolves of Nashira of which she now finds  herself to be a pack member. Note your conflict(s) and you'll have something at your side to remind you where you are when you begin to stray from your original exciting path.

Fourth - figure out what voice you're going to write in.  First person is fun, but can be very difficult with many limitations.  Third Person gives you much broader scope, but beware of slipping off into directions that drag you away from your main plot. Third Person is genreally a better choice for the newer writer - however, my first novel, a western titled Night Of The Flaming Guns was written in the first person.  There are other choices as well, but don't go too crazy with your first novel .

These are a few of the most important things to get straight when you begin your novel. Think about them. Work with them and you'll be off to a running start.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Other Posts Of Interest:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...