How long did you take to finish writing a novel? Q

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In my lifetime I’ve written 4 complete novels, published two of them. The first I lost. Don’t laugh! I must have thrown it out by accident thinking it was previously published poetry work! I wrote the first book over 6 months and consequently if I can focus on it, 4 months seems to be my period to write a book. But the editing can take at least another month with back and forth.

Thoughts to make yourself more efficient:

  1. Know where you’re going when you begin, otherwise you could be writing that novel for years
  2. Plot it out even if it’s not a mystery—I use Excel
  3. Be open to surprises that will throw your plot off—visitors who show up in your mind and jump onto the page without warning!
  4. Write, write, write—try not to go back over what you’ve written and edit. It’s hard to do that but all writing teachers will say write that first draft and then go back
  5. My personal challenge: be aware of plot holes.
  6. Have fun!!

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