So You Want to Write A Novel? | Four Traits You're Going to Need & Why


Writing a novel can be a fun, but stressful process. So, today I’m sharing a few things I have found help me get through it. 


LOVE
If you want to write a novel, you’re going to need some love—for your story, for your characters, and even yourself.

If you don’t love the story or the characters, it can be really difficult to invest yourself and your time in writing a novel, which in turn will make writing all the more difficult. I’m not saying that loving your stories and your characters will mean that writing won’t be hard from time to time, but you’ll have a reason to return to your novel and keep trying.

And don’t forget to love yourself too! When the writing gets tough, it can be all too easy to tell ourselves how talentless we are and how we shouldn’t even try to write anymore. Instead, just take a deep breath, and find the things that you like about your story and/or writing style. Do you like how you describe the setting? Think that one bit of dialogue is sparkling? Great!  Focus on those details to keep you going when you need inspiration.

DETERMINATION

When you’re in the middle of a novel, sometimes it seems you’ll never reach the end, even if you do love the story! To keep yourself from feeling like you haven’t made any progress, make smaller goals.
 
Here’s how I usually set up my goals (if I’m aiming for a total of 50,000 words):
1,000 words
5,000 words
10,000 words
15,000 words
25,000 words…
And so on.

If I’ve mapped out a definite number of chapters, I’ll set goals by those as well. You could also think of page count goals. Whatever works for you.

By thinking of your big novel in terms of the major goal (finishing the novel) and minor goals (each finished word/page/chapter), you’ll find little moments of success throughout the process of writing your novel. And it doesn’t make reaching your major goal feel any less significant. 


When you feel like you’re making progress, it’s easier to keep up the determination and hard work.

PATIENCE
Writing can be slow. There are moments that you just have to trudge through. Being patient can be difficult.

When you feel like you’ll never finish your novel, go back and think of all the things you love about your story and the reasons why you want to finish it. With those goals in mind, it can be easier to allot patience in reaching those goals.

COMPASSION

When writing is tough, we writers can get grumpy, and take it out on those around us. (I’ve often mentioned to my mom that perhaps I should wear a hat like Jo March did, and the condition of the hat will let them know my mood.)

So, as a courtesy, we should be compassionate toward those around us as opposed to letting them suffer for our bad writing days.

And, going back to #1, don’t forget to be compassionate toward yourself. Even if the writing is going well and you miss a day, don’t beat yourself up because you missed that day. Just get up the next day and try again! 



What are some things you think are necessary for writing a novel?


Comments

  1. What perfect tips for us writers! I certainly needed these reminders. Thank you so much for sharing, I loved it. ^_^

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  2. These are some pretty important attributes for writers. The only other I could think of to add is passion, because how else could we get through what we do? Lovely, lovely post, and you're completely right!

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