How I wrote a novel in five weeks: Part two

So, now we’re on to the second draft. What I do when writing the first is make notes in Scrivener (my word processor of choice) because I’m a pantser and the plot evolves as I go. But because of that, changes occur which create plot holes etc  I do not, and let me stress this, DO NOT EDIT A FIRST DRAFT. I never go back once a chapter is written. Ever. I keep on going and make notes on what to change or add.

Now, when I start the second draft, I look at said notes and go in order. This means, starting from the beginning and making sure the story is clear and concise. I change the things I need to change, add dialogue, fix plot holes, and make sure there’s no continuity issues. SECONDS DRAFTS, for me, DO NOT INCLUDE EDITING GRAMMAR, SENTENCE STRUCTURE, etc  No. This is about the story ONLY. If I see something, sure, I’ll fix it really quick, but I don’t focus on it. My mind is set on the plot and making sure I’m telling a good story.

Second drafts usually take me anywhere from one to two weeks, depending on how many notes I’ve made throughout the first draft. In this particular case, it took me about a week to add and change what I needed to.

My novel went from 74k to 94k in just a week’s time.

Now, it’s third draft time!


To be continued…

How I wrote a novel in five weeks

It starts with an idea. Everything does, doesn’t it? Be it a song or a movie or a book or even something someone did or said. It only takes a moment to spark it.

For myself, I’ve learned over the years that in order for the idea to become more than that is to let it sit in my mind for a while. Not all ideas are good ones. Not all ideas are going to be novels or even short stories. Not all ideas have to be one entity. You can have many ideas that can become one big one. An anthill into a mountain.

My anthill began with an idea of attempting a split POV (point of view novel). I wanted a female and a male lead and I wanted bad, bad things to happen to them.

Show me a hero and I’ll write you a tragedy-F. Scott Fitzgerald

The idea marinated a bit. I took a break from writing to play a new video game. I play

RPG’s like it’s nobody’s business, by the way. Anyhow, this particular game highlighted the essence of friendship in a time of complete and utter tragedy. The emotion it gave me, I wanted others to feel. So, I began a tragedy.

Let me start off by saying that I am a pantser when it comes to writing. I do not outline. All I do is plan the idea in my head, as I stated earlier, and then i sit down and I write. Most of the time I know how the story is going to end. The middle just comes along naturally.

Most of my novels begin with a song. This one didn’t have a song, just an idea. The second I heard “the one” the writing became quicker and more fluid. The stories of my two protagonists came quickly, with a few changes here and there. I knew I didn’t want to write another princess novel. This one was going to be regular people in awful situations, learning to find the strength to go on.

This wasn’t my first novel. In fact, it was my seventh. When you’re writing as long as I have, you find your knack. In other words, you discover what works for you in terms of how you write, when you write and how you edit. This includes, daily word count, drafts, time allotted etc.


The first draft was completed in just under five weeks at 74k words.


Stay tuned for more.