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Fifteen Ways to Write a Novel

Fifteen Ways to Write a Novel
Every year I get asked what I think about NaNoWriMo, and I don’t know how to answer, because I don’t want to say, “I think it makes you write a bad novel.” This is kind of the point. You’re supposed to churn out 50,000 words in one month, and by the end you have a goddamn novel, one you wouldn’t have otherwise. If it’s not Shakespeare, it’s still a goddamn novel. The NaNoWriMo FAQ says: “Aiming low is the best way to succeed,” where “succeed” means “write a goddamn novel.” I find it hard to write a goddamn novel. Some of these methods I use a lot, some only when I’m stuck. The Word TargetWhat: You don’t let yourself leave the keyboard each day until you’ve hit 2,000 words.

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The Review Review Story In the spring of 2008, I stopped submitting to literary magazines. As a fiction writer, trying to get my work published felt as futile and inconsequential as trying to write my name on a snowflake. I spent so much time sending work out and buying envelopes, printer ink, stamps, and paper only to receive one after another rejection letter, sometimes not even written on a full piece of paper but cut from the bottom third, as if rejection of my work were not even worth wasting a full page.

How to Finish What You Start: A Five-Step Plan for Writers How to finish what you start Do you have a bunch of first chapters tucked away in a drawer – for seven different novels? Is there a folder full of abandoned short stories on your computer? Have you left a trail of abandoned blogs around the internet? Did your ebook fizzle out after a few pages? 25 Things You Should Know About Character - StumbleUpon Previous iterations of the “25 Things” series: 25 Things Every Writer Should Know 25 Things You Should Know About Storytelling 10 Ways To Stop Worrying And Start Writing by Dara Girard Many people claim that they want to write. Most won't because of a giant monster called FEAR. It looms over individuals and paralyzes them.

New York Times 50 Most Challenging Words (defined and used) The New York Times recently published a list of 50 fancy words that most frequently stump their readership. They are able to measure this data thanks to a nifty in-page lookup mechanism, which you can try here. Try double-clicking the word “epicenter”. Since the NYT didn’t include definitions of these words, I decided to post a job to MediaPiston to produce an article defining and using each word in the list. Voila! Just a few hours later, here it is.

Researching Literary Agents There are hundreds of reasons an agent will pass on your pitch—doesn’t connect with your story, not currently looking for clients, reps thrillers and you submitted a romance, is a Red Sox fan and refuses to rep a Yankees fan, etc. Your goal is to find agents most suited toward your writing to minimize the reasons they will pass. When I was ready to pitch OH BOY, YOU’RE HAVING A GIRL to agents, I didn’t have time to waste. A publisher had approached me about taking the writing style of my blog and turning it into a book. Within weeks I had an offer (which was amazing!) Write Like a Girl (or Guy) If all the characters you create talk exactly like you do, no one but your mom is going to want to read your book—and maybe not even her if you haven't called recently. That's why you need to understand how to write dialogue that sounds authentic, even when your character differs from you when it comes to their age, region, education level, social status, background, personality, and/or gender. Each of these factors plays a role in how a person (real or fictional) speaks, and you need to consider all of them to make your characters’ dialogue sound truly legit. But today we’re focusing on gender. Let’s preface this whole shebang with a disclaimer: Like anything involving differences between sexes, this can be a bit of a touchy subject.

Writing Historical Fiction If you've thought about writing and publishing your own book, you should also consider making a ebook for easier distribution. Jump to:Writing ResourcesGetting PublishedFinancial Survival and Thrival Many authors whose books never hit the bestseller lists still find their work deeply satisfying because they love researching and writing about the past. A few authors even make a good living writing historical fiction. What I've Learned From 10 Years Of Writing & Independent Publishing It’s been a long time since the writing bug first bit me. Before I started blogging seriously, I had always been writing fiction. In 2nd grade I wrote my first short-story. (It was about a man who befriends a robot and subsequently quits his nerve-wracking office-job because now the robot does everything from cleaning the dishes to wearing his tie… At least that’s what I can remember of it…)

Stephen King's Top 20 Rules for Writers Image by the USO, via Flickr Commons In one of my favorite Stephen King interviews, for The Atlantic, he talks at length about the vital importance of a good opening line. “There are all sorts of theories,” he says, “it’s a tricky thing.” “But there’s one thing” he’s sure about: “An opening line should invite the reader to begin the story.

Grammar Rules: Split Infinitives Q: I was taught by my English teachers over the years not to split infinitives, but now I see writers splitting them all the time. What gives? —Anonymous 50 Excellent Writing Exercises to Cultivate Your Creativity & Craft If you’re a good writer, you can succeed in any industry, no matter what kind of online degree you have. But even great writers sometimes have trouble organizing their work, polishing up the details, or even picking a cohesive idea to write about. Here are 50 excellent writing exercises to help cultivate your creativity and craft, from brainstorming to beating writer’s block and remembering your motivation. Brainstorming and Organization Try these brainstorming exercises to map out your ideas, spur on your creativity, and plan your project.

How to Write a Novel - Novel Writing Tips Here, you'll find essential advice on how to write a novel. Find out: What type of novel is right for you 7 ways to get great creative writing ideas 4 ways that novelists turn ideas into stories 6 top tips on how to make your novel a success And much more!Advertisement: Using Real Psychology in Your Writing Using Real Psychology in Your Writing Using Archetypes in Your Stories Writing Better Romantic Relationships This series looks at the Anima/Animus archetype, which is most often seen in romantic relationships, and how to use it to create more compelling romantic relationships, regardless of genre. Looks at what the anima and animus are, how they're formed, and why fiction writers need to understand them. There's also some and what makes love grow - and how happily ever afters really work.

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