Yay! I finished a novel! Now what?

So the title basically sums it up. I feel like the dog that caught the car.

Thursday, October 12, 2017, I finished a novel I’d started planning in early July and begun writing on July 31, 2017.

Actually, this was my 2016 NaNoWriMo attempt. I “succeeded” in the flimsiest and most technical manner: I wrote 50,000 words, but they were spread across two stories, most of them were unusable, and neither story ever got finished.

So, Friday I didn’t do much writing, except think of a couple of small points that really needed to be added or clarified. Saturday morning I added those.

Then, I sort of stumbled around for most a week, trying to plan a second novel before NaNoWriMo came around November 1.

It had taken me a whole month to plan this novel, and it had already been partially planned and even partially written.

I have only half that time to plan the next novel, from scratch.

And I was all out of ideas. I was starting to get stressed. But then, on Thursday, October 19, a conversation with my wife just cracked everything open.

Yesterday, I got the lead character and what she wants, her motivation. I got the rough shape of the conflict, and part of the setting (my novels tend to involve a lot of travel, so there will be several settings).

I really feel like I can write this story, that it will hold my attention to the end, and, aiming I do my part, that other people will actually enjoy reading it.

I guess you just can’t force these things. But you can relax, read, look at cool pictures of fascinating places, listen to music you love,walk around outdoors, and let things brew.

You’ll be stuck until you’re not, and it will seem like a magic breakthrough, but it was really a result of feeding your mind, giving yourself silence to create, and taking the pressure off.

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