Friday, April 8, 2005

Writing a novel

I think I am going to write a novel.

What? But Ryan, you have a hard enough time finishing a short story. How are you going to write 100,000 words when 5,000 pushes your limit?

By taking several years to do it, that's how. See, I already know there is no way I could just start writing today and have a novel finished in eight months or something. So what I'm going to do is just write a two-page summary. Maybe next week I'll write some character vignettes and profiles. I'll do research. I'll add new subplots. And one day, in a year or two, I'll have so much raw material that there will be no excuse not to put it all together. In this dream, putting it all together will actually be simple; evolutionary, even. We'll see.

I'll keep writing short stories, of course. I actually have 3 now that if I sat down for a few days on each could be finished on at least a first-draft level. One is a series of chunks that needs to be tied together. The other two just sort of stop about two-thirds of the way through. But I am definitely on track to meeting my goal of getting my first sale or rejection by the end of the year. What I wouldn't give for financial independence to let me write when I actually get ideas rather than cramming in a few minutes between so many other competing interests. I can't begin to imagine the number of ideas that have been wasted because I forgot them in the hours between conception and regurgitation.

As to the novel, I do have a plot in mind. It's big. The sort of thing that if Hollywood ever wanted to adapt it into a film they would have to break it up into sequels or cut most of it out. Or hire Peter Jackson. I meant it when I said it would take several years. With my notorious writing discipline, look for it on shelves in 2015! Now that you know it's in progress, keep me to it.



  1. Good luck, man. Sounds like you feel strongly about the story, and that's neccessary to get others to feel strongly about it too. The 1000-word-a-day rule is good for novels, although I've never been good at keeping that up more than a couple of weeks.

  2. Good luck ryan. That's quite a goal. I can't wait to read some stuff.

  3. That's awesome, and inspirational at the same time. Good luck.

  4. Thanks for the words of encouragement, guys!

  5. I'm late in getting here, but I also want to wish you luck. I'm approaching -- far more slowly than I'd like -- the two-thirds mark on mine. I have now reached the point at which I am determined to finish the thing just out of spite.

    (Okay, okay, it's not THAT bad...I do enjoy writing it. But I'm really bad at putting things off, too.)

    If you're on the shelves by 2015, you can tell me how it goes when I get mine there the FOLLOWING year!