Hurrah! I’ve just finished the first, handwritten, draft of my ‘Irish Novel’.

In the spirit of NaNoWriMo I decided to prioritise my writing during the month of November. In doing so I wrote maybe 32,000 words which brought home to me what an achievement 50,000 words is. Yet people manage it no problem, even those with full-time jobs. For example Jae at Lit and Scribbles is submitting 80,000 words. Michelle at 12 Novels fell a bit behind and had to write 17,903 on THE LAST DAY 😮 Huh?

That would have been it, more or less, in my early writing days. Tidy it up a bit, print and self-publish, no bother. I know a bit better now, though I still often wonder if some authors agonise overmuch about following all the advice available out there from very clued-up people. The trick, I suppose, is to take on the best of the advice available without losing the flow of the story, and one’s own voice, in the process.

So, a second draft. Even if I’d written the thing in a logical order I know that much now. As it is there are sections all over the place. For example, the scene I intend to be the opening one only came to me at the halfway stage.

It’s too short at approx. 62,000 words. I have endless material but it needs to be knitted in properly without it feeling like a patchwork quilt.

I’ve been less careful with pen and ink, knowing it’s only a rough draft. It’s going to be a total re-write with what I’ve written just a guide at best.

For this project I’ve invested in Scrivener. It will take some getting used to but I need something to create order out of chaos. Lots of writers swear by it.

And a title? Again, with my first three books, I had the title fixed virtually from the start. There’s plenty of time yet though and I might throw it out to bloggers for ideas in due course.

Finally for this post a shout out for a new website dedicated to Channel Island fiction. There’s poetry and short stories together with links to published books. Have a look.