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Anyone up for a novel writing support thread?

(282 Posts)
Cel982 Wed 13-Jul-16 01:00:57

Just thought it might be nice to have a place we could give each other a kick up the bum cheer each other along as we try to get our novels written.

I'm currently on the eleventy-hundredth draft of my first novel - hoping to have it ready for submission in the next month or two. Have been stuck on a niggly plot point for the last few weeks but had a bit of a breakthrough the other night so now the words are flowing again. Am a SAHM with a toddler at the moment so all my writing is done in the evenings when I can tear myself away from the TV. I know, I'm inspiring wink

So... you?

ChequeredPasta Wed 13-Jul-16 11:06:40

I'm currently on maternity leave, making the most of some mental breathing space!Usually write whenever I can.
I'm about 52000 words into my novel - A crime novel. And I'm completely stuck, I've sewn loads of threads that I'm now struggling to try and bring together.
On the plus side, I never thought I'd get this far, and when I reread some of my work, it's not dreadful.
The hardest thing I find about writing crime fiction is avoiding cliches - It feels like everything has been done before!
What are you writing?

SooWrites Wed 13-Jul-16 11:15:53

Ooh, can I join?

I'm in the middle of trying writing part two of a series. People are waiting for it two whole people

And I keep getting distracted by Brexit and the complete shitstorm of our government.

The first half of this one is written from a different POV to the last one and I'm finding it really hard to get into.

I'm only 6000 words in after three weeks.
I'm self published is that okay?

StrawberryQuik Wed 13-Jul-16 11:30:42

Ooh me too please.

Am on maternity leave and writing during nap times grin

Am about 10,000 words in plus a notebook of handwritten notes and drawings, I guess I'd describe it as high fantasy.

I'm not a real author, am boring office type. I veer between 'I'm just writing for fun, I'll only show DH and DM the finished thing' and 'ooh wouldn't it be nice to get published and then I could afford to be a SAHM' on a weekly basis.

ChequeredPasta Wed 13-Jul-16 11:45:16

Ha, me too Strawberry!
Most of the time I'm firmly in the 'oh it'd be so nice to just have finished a book' camp.
Then I find myself spending the imaginary £10000 advance from an eager publisher....
Although, I find that imagining success and riches helps with my motivation. It's easier to convince myself to sit down and write something if I tell myself: maybe you'll earn loads and be able to give up work!

Soowrites - self publishing definitely allowed (from me anyway grin, have you already self published? How's it gone?

smallmole Wed 13-Jul-16 12:38:28

Ooh, I'll join! I'm just starting my second draft but since I've decided on a total change of voice it's more like a first draft really. I think that, Brexit and a feeling or pressure because the summer holidays are coming up is making me procrastinate - I'm currently spending far too much time on here or looking at property websites. We're not moving - I'm just wasting time. A few friends to help move things along would be excellent!

TopiaryBun Wed 13-Jul-16 13:18:58

Count me in. I'm also on my millionth draft, but as I started the most recent one with a blank document, having jettisoned one of my two narrative voices and moved the whole thing seven years later than the original time period, I suppose I should say 'I'm almost finished draft one. Though draft one is also, admittedly, about draft 40.'

I had to stop just before the end of this draft, annoyingly, because I had a work writing deadline which I'm still trying to make, and will hope to get back to the novel for at least a couple of early-morning hours a day in a week or so.

I anticipate struggling with the ending - in which a relationship has to end and a death has to be remembered (based on real people, so no wiggle room there) - while my conviction is that it should actually be a fiarly upbeat affair.

TopiaryBun Wed 13-Jul-16 13:27:21


SooWrites Wed 13-Jul-16 14:34:04

Soowrites - self publishing definitely allowed (from me anyway grin, have you already self published? How's it gone?

Yes, I've published two, plus one short story/taster.

It's not going, not atm. I made about £50 off the back of my first novel last month (it wasn't that great a book tbh, I'm much happier with my latest one)

It's not much but it's more than I had before I published. My latest (the first of a series) hasn't done much at all. I don't do any promotion, I don't care/don't have the will to piss about 'optimising keywords' and I have a fear of social media (I do have a FB page but no followers yet) so I do everything wrong as far as self publishing goes grin

But £50 is a lot of money to me. If I made that every month I'd be happy. I don't have the time/energy to market. I work full time and I'm carer on top of that but I love writing, so it doesn't feel like work the way promoting does. If I pick up readers along the way - great. If not, then at least I'm doing something I enjoy in my spare time.

I'm currently spending far too much time on here or looking at property websites. We're not moving - I'm just wasting time. A few friends to help move things along would be excellent!

I do a lot of that grin I have already decided on my dream house when I hit the best sellers list.

Cel982 Wed 13-Jul-16 19:08:18

Hi everyone!

Yes, all types of writers and publishers welcome, of course - it's great to hear what everyone's working on. This is my first attempt at a novel so very much a novice here; my only publishing credit to date (in fiction) is a short story that was shortlisted for a competition a year or two ago. Am going to try to get an agent anyway, once this is ready to go out. I'm at about 63,000 words; I anticipate it'll finish somewhere between 65 and 70,000 - not massively long, but for the genre (lit fiction) that's a reasonable length, I think.

SooWrites Thu 14-Jul-16 00:07:38

Great smile

Some forums get a bit odd about self publishing confused

70,000 is a great length.

I finished today on 8,750, so wrote near enough 3000 words. I feel a bit better about my progress today. I just need to not get distracted again.

I hope everyone else has had a great day and good luk with all your novels. I'm sure you'll do great.

Dakin1 Thu 14-Jul-16 00:18:44

Hi everyone! This thread is great idea.

I'm about half way through. Mine is a satire of blackmail in the royal family, the style is similar to Ben Elton. If anyone is up for swapping first drafts for suggestions and inspiration please feel free to PM.

SpiderAndMouse Thu 14-Jul-16 15:27:50

Hi all!

I'd like to join - I've 50k words through book one of a YA trilogy.

I'm impressed at Soo writing 3000 words in day. I think my 'best' is 2,000 - usually its around 500!

I'm also writing around work/toddler (DS is 16 months) - I'd love the luxury of being able to dedicate hours to writing. But I'm also an excellent procrastinator, so perhaps it's best that I can't!

Cel982 Fri 15-Jul-16 16:41:38

How's everyone doing? I got nothing actually down on paper yesterday as I realised I still had to work out some kinks in this last troublesome plot thread. So put in some hardcore 'thinking time' instead - think I've got most of it sorted in my head, which should make the actual writing of it fairly straightforward (fingers crossed).

SpiderAndMouse Fri 15-Jul-16 17:50:28

I'm quite sad and keep a progress spreadsheet on how much I've written... I've done 933 words yesterday, and 58 today (spent an hour editing chapters to send to a friend).

Hoping to get a good 500+ words down once DS has gone to bed though.

I hate plot planning. I find it the most frustrating thing, especially when it's trying to solve problems that I've created! Glad you got it sorted Cel.

Lorelei76 Fri 15-Jul-16 18:04:57

I'd like to join please.
I posted another thread asking what others do
I've decided to compromise rather than try daily stuff so my plan is to do two hours on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday evenings after work, then a big chunk on a weekend day.

I'm away this weekend so Monday will be first up. I actually had a good idea on the train en route here so I guess something is ticking away. I'm not sure what draft I'm on...I seem to have redrafted and then realised I need to make changes. Hopefully where I am now is the finalised plot!

Naicehamshop Fri 15-Jul-16 20:14:49

I'd like to join as well. I'm currently about 20,000 words in to a fairly "light" women's novel (I'm trying not to describe it as chick-lit!)

I recently asked people on here to read the first few chapters and I got some really helpful feedback, so would be happy to do that again or read someone else's stuff if anyone would find that useful.

My main problem is that I write very slowly - mostly because I spend hours messing about on here instead of getting on with it! blush

StrawberryQuik Fri 15-Jul-16 20:16:05

I had a good day yesterday, wrote about 7 pages in my notebook and figured out how to get some expositiony/dialoge bits without them sounding too terrible.

Today i've done no novel and barely anything else either...DS is teething and so grumpy with it. I've mainly ate crisps in my pjs while rocking the baby.

SpiderAndMouse Fri 15-Jul-16 20:42:01

Same, Naice. I am a wonderful procrastinator... 20,000 words is a good chunk though! Do you have a total target?

Strawberry that's probably how I spend 80% of my non-work time. How old is your DS?

Enjoy your weekend away Lorelei - hope inspiration hits!

Naicehamshop Fri 15-Jul-16 21:29:04

I've just written 650 words inspired by other people's output - I will aim for 1,000 tomorrow!

I am aiming for about 75,000 words Spider but God knows how long it will take me to write that much.

SpiderAndMouse Fri 15-Jul-16 21:54:57

That's awesome, well done Naice! I got distracted by Tumblr... Oops.

Lorelei76 Fri 15-Jul-16 21:59:30

Hi think Ive got 30,000 words but just recently switched to long hand for the redraft, so all extra stuff is long hand now. So there's more, but it's mostly planning.

I want to have the whole thing planned scene by scene before I do any more fully written scenes. My plotting and scene planning hasnt been tight enough.

BacktoZak Fri 15-Jul-16 22:05:03


SpiderAndMouse Fri 15-Jul-16 22:15:08

Same Lorelei. I started going with the flow from chapters 3-10, and they're structurally weak. I'm far more confident with the later stuff.

I've just done 537 words for today, so just over my (new) 500 words a day target. It used to be 400, but I was hitting it comfortably so stretched it in a bid to get the damn thing finished quicker grin.

SpiderAndMouse Fri 15-Jul-16 22:16:52

*later stuff = things I'd pre-planned out meticulously. Most of it has overrun, but I know what I'm doing and where I need to move the story to.

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