|(one of the) broken biro 'techniques'|
But meanwhile, here are my Top Ten ways NOT to write a novel. I think most of the books I've got will probably agree on much of this:
- Make your opening the least interesting part of the book
- Fiddle about editing what you’ve already done instead of finishing it – at which point you realize whole beautifully-edited chunks are no longer required
- Stop working on it for a couple of weeks so you can’t remember where you’re up to
- Change genres half way through like Tarantino did it in Dusk til Dawn, leaving you sitting there with your mouth open
- Do a wholesale ‘find and replace’ for a name change when a name could be part of a ordinary word. e.g. change the name Wish to Noon and end up with ‘Noonful thinking’ and ‘a yellowNoon hue’
- Write sections so dull you fall asleep over them and end up with a keyboard pattern on your head and 25 pages full of the letter ‘Y’
- Stressed about the parts that aren’t working, put it all away in a box for 9months to see if it sorts itself out
- Wait until you’ve written 50k words before deciding it would work better in third person.
- Send the first three chapters out to readers – or even better, agents – when you haven’t finished the rest of the book
- Write a blog post that implies you’re disorganized and the novel isn’t any good, when actually you’re pretty pleased with it.
On writing - what started me back into my novel
A novel request - appeal for volunteers to read by first three chapters
Bringing back the dead - changing genres mid-novel