I completed another edit of The Dragon’s Mate. I added some more things that help add and explain some parts of the story. Then I went and re-wrote the synopsis. I still think there are some more things to tweak, but it’s getting close to completion 🙂
This next draft took some time to get into. I was a little put off by the idea of changing the ending, but those re-writes would only affect the last chapter. In the end, I didn’t do the changes as I’m still undecided. I spent yesterday afternoon working out my synopsis because I didn’t like the one I made. I think it has helped me flesh out my story some more and I might need to tweak some parts of the story. Like adding a bit more of a back story or adding some more characterisation.
I’m also cooking up another story. I haven’t worked out all the genres or plot points yet, but I like what I have. I think I already have a title for it as well 🙂 Anyway, this is what I did during the last ten days 🙂
- Edited 2 1/2 pages.
- Edited 7 1/2 pages.
- Edited 15 pages.
- Editing 10 pages.
- Re-wrote/updates synopsis.
I can write a 20+ thousand story, but can’t push out a faithful 250-word synopsis.
The Dragon’s Mate is a five-chapter, third-person omniscient novella that switches POVs each chapter with the last chapter being a combined POV. It goes between Osbert, a young wizard’s apprentice and Estrid, a 14-year-old woodcutter’s daughter. It’s a low-level medieval fantasy set prior to the 1100’s (if I give you a rough time setting).
My first attempt was to focus on Osbert’s character and his journey. However, it completely ignores Estrid, who has an active and equal role in the story progression. The second attempt focused on both characters but I made it seem like they team up to take down the baddie which doesn’t happen. So my next attempt I figured I take out the characters and focus on a more grand scale focusing on the antagonist of the story. But it’s misleading because his character isn’t the focus, it’s Osbert. I do this new synopsis is an improvement, it’s not exactly faithful to the story. I am liking the direction it is heading though so I might tweak my story to fit it 🙂
These last ten days have been lazy for me, though it never felt like it. I let The Dragon’s Mate rest for a few days and then did an entire edit in two days.
- Wrote 700 words.
- Wrote 800 words.
- Edited 30 pages.
- Edited 5 pages.
I’ve been in the Netherlands for six-ish weeks now. I literary arrived the day before everything shut down, so it should have been a paradise for me. I was already going to have some time off work so I had been psyching myself up to it.
And then I get here and my ability to perform fails.
I’ve made some progress editing the beginning of a novel (which I gave up on). I also started a novella that’ll I have done by the end of this week. I’ve been keeping track of what I’m doing and I feel terrible about all the days where I did nothing. All that lost potential. Why can’t I make writing and editing a 9 to 5? It’s almost like I have burnout again, but I’m not sure if I do. It doesn’t help that I’m having a lot of negative thoughts that have no relation to my life at present. They are taking up a lot of time in me. Maybe it’s because I can’t socialise in person anymore.
It’s not a good day unless I’ve written more than 1k and I hardly ever do that. It’s not a good day when I spend hours playing computer games, even if I do manage to write. That’s still time spent elsewhere. From memory, I used to be so efficient at writing. But now my body and brain says no 😦
So where do I go from here?
I’m slowly getting things done, but not to my liking. Do I just keep chipping away at it? Maybe I have to as I can’t seem to do anything else. Maybe having a day job was something that improved my writing. It gave me some eustress about my finite time and made me manage what I had. Now I have all the time in the world I have no immediate rush to do anything 😦
Did you guess that this post is going to be about novellas? Let me go on.
You could say that it’s the novel’s little cousin. The unwanted and barely tolerated child of the publishing industry and pushed aside by society. People do not realise that there are some very prominent novellas; Animal Farm, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, A Christmas Carol, The Little Prince, and The Metamorphosis. These stories have left a major mark on people’s collective consciousness.
You too can do that (whether it’s because of good writing is up to you)!
So how do you write a novella?
Well, just like how you write a novel. You need a lot tears (or repressed tears if you don’t cry), feels of inadequacy, some imposter syndrome and a sprinkling of hope and desperation. Oh and maybe have a story to tell as well.
Here is what you need to do to write a novella;
- Stick to one major conflict and revolve around that. No side quests, they’re a distraction, especially that insta-love bull.
- Focus on one or two main characters/POV. No one else matters, especially that one character whose purpose is to say one line and then disappear forever into the abyss.
- Use fewer words, with fewer letters. After all, big city fancy words are for novels written by pretentious wannabees who talk about writing rather than actually writing.
- Pick an idea that it total unoriginal, but totally original to you because only you can write it like no one else.
- Find time to write. Have one less kid if you need to, or maybe ditch the child-rearing onto the other parent and then wonder why your kids have a favourite parent, that just happens to not be you. After all, it’s a novella you’re writing, not a novel. What’s their problem?
- Step back and see that story you were working on has become something and that should make you proud because completing a story no matter the size is not a task done every day. And not just anyone can write a novella. It takes someone with just as much muchness to create a novella as a novel.
So this is what you need to do to write a novella. Use all this and you’ll at least create something that resembles a shorter version of a novel.