Today we have a guest post on writing by David G. Pearce
In some ways, finishing a novel is like finishing a piece of homework. The initial sense of relief is followed by worrying how many marks you’ll get for it! Of course, it is a bit different because none of your homework will take you three years from start to finish – even if it feels like it sometimes!
When you start writing a novel you don’t really know much more than the overall story. In my case I had my main characters in place pretty quickly and I knew how I was going to start it, but after that it was something like a history essay – well my history essays anyway!
You’ve done your initial research but you’re still not sure why some people act like they do, or what they’ll do in a particular situation. Then you work out how each event affects them. Sometimes you use their past experiences to give you clues, but sometimes you just accept the way they react. You also have to get rid of lots of unnecessary information otherwise you just end up boring everyone including yourself. I also set myself a word limit because it keeps me focussed. Finally I check the whole story to look for spelling mistakes, grammar mistakes and story mistakes like writing the wrong name for a character. I often change my characters names towards the end of a novel because the original names don’t seem right.
I’m now ready to hand it in! My readers – if there are any- will decide if I get A* or E.
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