My Favorites

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

A Novel, How I Start part 1

I wish I could spend every moment writing on novels.  The problem is that I can't physically or mentally do that.  I begin to write a novel when I have a novel length inspiration.  They come about once every six months now, so I can potentially expect to write a novel every six months or two a year.  My usual inspiration is an opening scene or a developed scene.  These usually manifest themselves as a theme question.  You can see some of these theme questions in the novel secret pages at  In the case of the newest novel I wrote, the scene was a girl being beat up and a young man rescuing her.  The question was what incidents would drive the circumstance of an Anglo-Saxon maiden in the modern world.  That's the plot statement of the novel.  Once I had a plot statement and an opening scene, I could begin on the novel.  The novel called for me to write it.  I couldn't stop the flow of ideas.  Once I fleshed out the major characters in the first chapter, I began to outline the novel.  I usually outline very loosely by scene.  I add scenes and develop plot details by chapter.  When I am writing, I write daily from about 7:00 am to 9:00 pm.  I usually write a chapter a day about 6000 words or 20 pages.  I aim for a novel of around 100,000 words.  About 20 chapters.  I finish a novel after about one month.  Tomorrow, I'll give you more details on writing my latest novel and generally about how I go about writing a novel.


  1. You say you finish the novel in about a month-- am I correct in assuming that you mean the first draft of the novel? How long do you spend editing?

  2. Hi Barbara, I'm sorry it took me a while to answer your question. Don't get too mad at me, I am still trying to figure out this blog site!

    You are correct; one month for a first draft. I have more info on editing in my writing secrets on my website at I spend a lot of time editing, but I answer your question better there. I think I'll take a one day break from my current topic to better answer your question. Look at 8 or 9 Sept 2010.