The Three Month Novel

This summer, I will write a novel.

If I’d set myself that goal one year ago, I would have laughed in my own face. Write an entire novel? In one summer? Are you crazy?

No, but I’m confident. The story has been forming in my mind for the last few weeks, patiently unravelling. Now it’s ready.

Three months is all the time it should take to write a novel. I’ve mentioned Stephen King’s On Writing before on this blog, and here I go again – King says that a novel should be written at pace over a single season so that the characters remain fresh and the story doesn’t start to lose enthusiasm. I’m not talking about a fully fledged, ‘send it to the publisher – I’m done!’, kind of novel here. No, I mean an early, early, first draft. Energy disappears when you spend time trailing backwards and forwards over early chapters, editing and re-editing and wondering whether your opening paragraphs are exactly right, when really what you should be worrying about is how you’re going to lead your characters to the end.

So, here we go:

This summer, I will write a novel. Every day, beginning on 1st May 2015, I will write a minimum of 1,000 words. No lengthy edits or character re-writes. Just keep on writing. I’m not sure exactly where the story will take me, (and if I already knew, then it wouldn’t be very exciting, would it?), but I am aiming for between 60,000 and 100,000 words total. This means that by August, I will have finished the first draft.

Intrigued? I’ll be posting snippets as I go, and letting you in on some of my research.

Dubious? I’ll keep you updated on my word count.

Want to try it too? Please do – and comment below to let me know how you get on!

It’s going to be a busy summer … 🙂

3 thoughts on “The Three Month Novel

  1. Hi Kerrie,
    I’ve recently reread that part in Stephen King’s book On Writing too and am attempting to partially follow his advice for my current novel. I say partially because I think everyone writes in a different way, and so how you follow (or unravel) a story (and how long it takes) will depend on what kind of writer you are. From what I’ve read, there are ‘discovery’ writers and ‘planners’. I’m a planner, and sometimes spend more time planning and editing as I go than finishing a draft all the way through then editing it. At the moment I’m trying to be more of a discovery writer while keeping some planning going alongside it. I think it’s great advice to try to write on your novel every day and keep the momentum and excitement up. But, equally, if you don’t have a first draft at the end of the three months, I wouldn’t feel bad about it. Each story has to be written in its own way and it just takes the time it takes. Best of luck with it and I look forward to hearing your updates and reading your extracts :-).

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Kendra,
      Thank you for the positive words and encouragement! That is very true – every writer is different, and each story needs to be told in a different way. I’m glad to hear that you are trying out new ways of writing. Experimentation is great for learning new techniques. I hope it helps you to produce yet more incredible writing!

      Liked by 1 person

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