Birth of a Book: Week One #amwriting

Hardly an auspicious start, but I broke through my first 1,000 words this week and named two characters.  I’m off the ground at least.

Here are three things which are already blindingly obvious to me:

  1. I may like to think I’ve learned from writing my first book, and that I can bring those learnings, newly acquired writerly abilities and Book One experience to bear; but at this point, I feel like a child who’s been given a pencil for the first time, and isn’t quite sure which is the business end.
  2. I need to re-read all those posts I’ve written on ‘show not tell’. Two pages in, and I’m already stating the bleedin’ obvious, line after line. A bit of self-flagellation is in order.
  3. Inciting incident… conflict… what?

This is going to be tough. But I promised short-and-sweet, so that’s it for tonight.

33 thoughts on “Birth of a Book: Week One #amwriting

  1. 🙂 The start of a story is the most exciting… all these new untried characters, we don’t know yet what they’ll get up to, if they will turn out like us or someone we know…

    “Show don’t tell”? TBH it took me years to figure out what they even meant! To quote some piratical character, “I think of them more as guidelines” :-D. To quote another weird character from Roald Dahl: “We are the music makers – and we are the dreamers of dreams”. You go, girl!

    1. Wow, thanks again… Singled Out is a gritty psychological story. I published in February this year. In case you want to take a look, it’s available on Amazon, and there are links to multiple Amazon pages from the Singled Out page here on the blog.

  2. In no time at all you’ll be back in the swing of things. And showing is okay in a first draft, right? Lets us know what we want to get across. We can put it into telling action next time around. 🙂

  3. Each new book is an experience in its own right. I often get anxious as to whether I can do it again during the first few chapters. But you’ve made a start, you’re getting to know your new characters and you DO have the knowledge to do this again, even better than the last time. So stop worrying how it looks now, allow yourself to write poorly if necessary and get the story down. Everything can be made better in the edit. 🙂

    1. Thanks Dylan. After a couple of false starts, this is the one. I’m taking advantage of the quiet ‘holiday season’ to get going. That, plus my new Mac of course. 😉

    1. Ha! That makes it sound like one of those Enid Blyton novels of our childhood…. “What Brenda Did Next”!! Now, *that* I’ll be keeping quiet about. 😉

    1. We all have to keep and eye on those goalposts. In publishing – especially self-publishing – things change so fast. I was very struck with the way the landscape changed in the 4 years I was writing Singled Out and had my back turned. This time, I won’t be so insular!

    1. I can’t say I much like self-flagellation either 😉 (glad to see you got the hang of those emoji’s!)

      It’s a start, and I will get back into it. At the moment, it all feels a bit strange, as it’s quite a while (ahem… 5 years) since I last begun to write a novel. I will do better.

    1. Hmmm… The second 1,000 will occupy the next few days! Hopefully sooner or later, more time will open up and I’ll be able to get more momentum.

  4. Don’t micro-manage your own first draft, Julie, or you’ll never get past the first ten pages. Just keep going and see where it takes you. You’ll warm up later. Then you can go back and fix (or drop) the draft beginning. But you already know that! You just want us to hear it from us, right?

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