Writing a Novel


In writing my first novel, I am finding it is becoming a living thing. I know that so many of my blogging friends are also novelists. As a first time novelist, I would love to discuss methods with you.

I feel the need to be super organized. I am writing out the characterizations, in detail, for each major character and shorter characterizations for the minor characters. I am writing out the story line and trying to write the first layer of the plot. I will get to the other layers of the plot though I have not tackled those yet. I have built the story world, though this story will take place in a number of geographic areas.

Some say you should think about your theme last. Is that true? Jodi Picoult, for example. You know her theme almost from the first page. Is that a better way?

Do you jump in and just write and not worry about any of this? That is so tempting, but when you think about the things I’ve just mentioned, it seems a recipe for disaster.

Any comments? What’s worked for you? #amwriting #writing #amblogging


  1. I fill out a questionnaire for each of my main characters and jot stand-out traits about the minor ones. For world building, because my stories are in real places, I use one of the internet maps putting markers where the characters homes, work, and other places are. I do write out a one to two sentence/question theme before beginning chapter one. I also do a short summary of the story. After that I dive into the actual writing.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. First, if I don’t have a good mental handle on both the beginning and the end of my story, I don’t feel I’ve got enough to even consider writing. My story summary is pretty much my guide. The twists and turns that can start as early as the second scene, I device as I write. Definitely the style of a pantser.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I too need a good solid story summary, but I also need the theme of my story, which is actually what you are probably talking about. The theme and the premise. They seem to be guiding me and not letting me veer off track. Thanks for your comment!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Like you, I’m also a first-time (aspiring) novelist. I’m in the process of discovering my process of writing, but the one thing I do know is that I started with the theme. I know what it is, and everything else is unfolding from there.

    Good luck on your novel!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I tend to write and then go back and ask myself, “Where was I going with this?” I’m normally very organized for work and when I write just for me; some of my best work comes from messiness LOL

    Liked by 1 person

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