I started writing a new novel!

my current WIP- the first draft.png

Previously I have uploaded two blog posts talking about my process of writing and editing my WIP at the time. But a couple months ago (March) I decided to step away from that project. If you read those blog posts, you would have noticed how excited I was to get back into working on that novel. During April Camp Nanowrimo, I was planning on finishing the edit of the first draft. However, I was struck with two new novel ideas, and when this happened, I realised that I no longer had the passion or determination to continue working on that novel.

So the first new idea I came up with I loved and it came to me after I finished reading Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira (one of my favourite books of all time). So I sat down over a couple nights and wrote out a chapter outline thinking that I would start writing it after I finished editing my ex-WIP.

But… that’s not what happened.

After watching the 13 Reasons Why Netflix series, I was struck with another new novel idea. I was so excited to start writing this, that I decided to scrap the novel I had already written and push aside the outline I made (I do plan on writing the draft for that one during November Nanowrimo) to start working on this new WIP.

I am going to give a few points on what my new WIP is about;

  • It is told from the perspective of four different characters (teenagers)
  • It’s a YA contemporary (I honestly don’t think I could write anything else)
  • It focuses on mental health with themes of suicide, depression and anxiety, along with issues of domestic violence, physical abuse, emotional abuse, eating disorders, bullying and rape
  • Each character is completely different and are going through their own things (which evolve throughout the course of the novel). However, their stories all intertwine in a way (I’ll keep this a secret for now)

That’s all I’m going to share for now, but hopefully if I continue to write these blog posts then I will definitely be sharing more about it!

So, April Camp Nano came along, and I didn’t really have a large goal to write. I set my goal to 20000 words, but I wasn’t going to pressure myself into writing if I didn’t feel like it. I just wanted to get it started. I decided to write one character’s story/perspective at a time to make it less confusing for myself to have to switch between voices all the time. So my plan for April was to finish one characters perspective. I ended up writing the first character and half of the second character’s perspective which was so much better than I thought I was going to do.

I estimated to write about 20000 words for each character’s perspective, which would make the draft about 80000 words. The first character’s story ended up being around 25000, so I was already above the limit I set myself. I also wrote about 10000 words of the second character during April Nano. So you could say that April Camp Nano was a success.

After April, I had to go back to uni (I was on mid semester break for most of the month), so I was planning on taking it slow from there and just writing what I felt like. But then I discovered The Ampersand Prize where you submit a draft of your manuscript and the winner gets it published (long story short). The deadline is the end of July sometime, so I set myself a goal. I was going to finish this book at the end of June and edit during July and no matter how unedited it was, I was going to enter anyway because I had nothing to lose.

I aimed to write about 1000 words a day, so in May I finished the second and third characters’ perspective, and on June 15 I finished the first draft when I completed the fourth and final character’s perspective. My first draft ended up being 87000 words which is probably a bit too much for a YA contemporary, but that’s what editing is for! I wrote two first drafts for novels last year; the first being 40000 words and the second being 60000 words. Even though I really was only working on this draft for two and a half months as opposed to the one month that I spent on the other two, I put so much time and effort and love and passion into this story so when I finished (5 days ahead of schedule), it was the biggest relief.

But I finished it!

It was long and hard. And reading back on it now, it’s far from perfect and there’s a lot of work to do before I won’t cringe reading it. But I’m actually really happy with it overall. I think it’s a really important story that I am passionate about and WANT people to read. I decided last week that I’m probably not going to enter it in The Ampersand Prize. I’m going to see where the manuscript is at that point of the deadline, but I doubt it will even be readable by that point.

If you enjoyed this post and want to know more about my editing process (which I am starting during July Camp Nanowrimo) then comment below and I will be sure to keep up with posts like these.

 

*** Also if you are interested in being a Beta Reader for when I’m ready for someone to read it, then you can DM me on Twitter (please… I have no writing or reading friends!). Just keep in mind that there are trigger warnings for the topics I mentioned above!

 

Also something I didn’t mention above, each chapter is titled a name of a song which I think sets the mood for each chapter. So with each writing blog post, I’m going to share one of these songs/chapter titles and a character so you can get a better grasp on the novel.

Character of the day:
Aidan is probably my favourite side character from the book. He is loud, full of fun and laughter, and he’s a hip-hop dancer. I only wrote one romance (if you even want to call it that), and Aidan is one half of this couple.

Image result for jordan rodrigues

Song of the day:
Chapter One: The Last Day on Earth by Kate Miller-Heidke

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4 Comments Add yours

  1. Wow this story sounds fantastic. You should feel proud of the fact you got it to the first draft stage so quickly. And if you need someone to beta or edit, if be more than happy to have a look.

    Like

    1. Thank you so much. Awesome – do you have Twitter that you can dm me on? Mine’s @rbrgabby 🙂

      Like

      1. Will message now, didn’t know your twitter handle before.

        Like

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