If you’re thinking about writing a novel, congratulations! It’s an exciting and rewarding journey, but it can also be a little bit intimidating if you’re not sure what to expect. Here are ten things I wish I knew about writing a novel before I started:
1. Writing a novel takes time. Like, a lot of time. Don’t expect to sit down and crank out a masterpiece in a week or even a month. Writing a novel is a marathon, not a sprint. Pace yourself and be prepared for the long haul.
2. Writer’s block is real, and it’s not fun. No matter how much you love writing, there will be times when the words just don’t seem to come. Don’t worry – writer’s block is a normal part of the process and it’s something that every writer experiences from time to time. Just take a break, go for a walk, and come back to it with fresh eyes.
3. Your first draft is going to be terrible. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but your first draft is probably not going to be a work of literary genius. That’s okay! The first draft is just a starting point, and you’ll have plenty of opportunities to revise and polish your work later.
4. Your characters will take on a life of their own. As you start to write, you might be surprised by how your characters start to develop their own personalities and motivations. Don’t be afraid to let your characters lead the way – they might just surprise you with where they take the story.
5. Research is your friend. If you’re writing about a topic that you’re not familiar with, don’t be afraid to do some research. It will help to make your story more authentic and believable, and it can also be really fun to learn about new things as you write.
6. Writing can be a solitary activity. If you’re the type of person who loves to be surrounded by people, you might find that writing a novel can be a bit isolating. Don’t be afraid to take breaks and socialise with friends and family, but also be prepared to spend a lot of time alone with your thoughts.
7. It’s okay to take breaks. Writing a novel is a big commitment, and it’s important to take breaks and recharge from time to time. Don’t feel guilty about stepping away from your work for a bit – it will actually help you to come back with fresh eyes and new ideas.
8. Editing is just as important as writing. The writing process doesn’t end when you finish your first draft – there will be plenty of revising and editing to do. Don’t be afraid to cut out the things that don’t work and to seek feedback from others. It will make your work stronger in the long run.
9. Writing a novel is hard, but it’s also really rewarding. Writing a novel is a lot of work, but it’s also an incredibly rewarding experience. When you finally hold that finished product in your hands, all of the late nights and writer’s block will be worth it.
10. You’ll never stop learning. No matter how much you know about writing, there’s always more to learn. Embrace the process of learning and growing as a writer, and you’ll be on your way to creating something truly special.
I hope you are finding these tips helpful. I have written a wide range of fiction and non-fiction and if you want find out more about me and my work, click this link here.
Good luck with all your projects.