Whenever I am asked about how the inspiration to write my first novel struck me. I always tell my age old seven year itch story. Oh! You don’t know about it yet?
Well ! Here it goes…
I have been an out an out romantic thriving on a healthy doze of Mills and Boons in between the serious reading lists (meant to widen my intellectual horizons… yes I am talking about those must-read-for-an-mba-aspirant Ayn Rand books and several Business Management books) . And everytime I read a love story, I wanted to write one. I started my writing stint with some fan-fiction stories on a public forum and from there began my journey to becoming a blogger and subsequently a writer.
I can’t thank Dr. Amrita of healthwealthbridge enough for informing me about the NaNoWriMo challenge. Three days ahead of November 1, 2016, I registered for this challenge and started fishing the crevices of my nervous system for a plot. I was very clear about two things –
- It can’t be only a love story at its core
- It has to portray a strong female character
With no, actual plot, I started writing 1700 words everyday, and build up on my story with each passing day of November. On 30th of the month, I sat on 50k words and the NaNoWriMo winner certificate.
Rest I would like to call a history.
But there are challenges that a writer faces in the face of writing within plot restrictions. In this post, I wish to share, some of my insights into the process of writing and completing a long form story.
How to Maintain The Writing Momento
To write a novel, the most important thing to do is, to write. Yes, a lot of writers, keep themselves away from the task, because they think that it is a high ask, to come up with a perfect plot. What they do not understand is that one can edit a wrongly written draft, but not a blank paper. So please continue to write without fearing too much about editing. Specially when writing your first novel, you may be tempted to keep going back. Know that this step only slows you down, and in some cases steal you of all your enthusiasm.
Get Beta Readers for Your work
Before you approach a publisher or an editor with your work, it always makes sense to get some enthusiasts to read your beta version. Apart from the beta readers community, you could approach your friends too for this job. More often than not, the beta readers are able to point out the structural insufficiencies in the plot and help you tighten up your plot. The work of the editor definitely becomes easier and while the bride is still on the aisle, you have the option to make even major changes to your plot.
Do Not Fall In Love With Your Work
You may think that I am being oxymoronic. Aren’t we supposed to fall in love with our work, only then will other’s value it. Right? Wrong! Though you may chose to fall in love with every character and plot point of your novel, the editor in the editing phase will definitely ask you to re-write some portions. At that point of time, if you are too much in love for your work, you may lose out on constructive and critical feedback for improving the quality of your book.
Start Social Media Promotions Sooner
Its not about boasting, its about creating a buzz. If you aspire to publish your first novel sometime in near future and garner a healthy crowd who will appreciate your work, start as soon as possible and promote yourself on social media. No you don’t have to go around beating the trumpet, saying ‘ I am going to become an author’. No. What you actually need to do is, find a community for yourself. These are established and aspiring authors, and are always ready to help each other. Also, you may share your writings or writing excerpts with the audience on social media. This way your audience will start recognizing you as an author and some will definitely look forward to your book.
Have Patience And Persevere
Being an author and publishing a book, does not give you instant gratification – neither from financial point of view, nor from popularity point of view. You have to work on it and know that it’s a long battle. If you are a social media recluse like me (ummm… or rather the former me) you may have a harder time, reaching out to the larger audience on social media. But trust me that the online communities are very forgiving and even if you have missed one bus, there’s always another one coming up. So whenever you are up for the game, tighten your belts and take the plunge.
Remember that good work, along with hard work and sincerity always pays.
This article is written as a part of SuperBloggerChallenge conducted by healthwealthbridge.