Many writers and especially the successful ones have their own tested and tried ways that they repeatedly employ to write novels. Here I will share some techniques used by Max Barry – an Australian novelist – to write a novel. He believes that every writer is different. Everyone has to find their own personal routines that works for them. At the end of the day it’s not the quantity but the quality that matters.
- Word Target
Discipline yourself to write almost 2,000 words every day. This practice will let you write your first without worrying about the perfectionism or editing or revising. Hitting your daily target keeps you motivated also. It can also develop a burn out or exhaustion. So, if you have a fear that you are getting too exhausted to do the non-writing thinking or research then sit back and evaluate. You can always reduce the daily target word count.
Adjusting the word count can help you deal with bad writing days or other mood swings.
2. The Cafes
Never underestimate the power of cafes and coffee shops. Go to your favourite one. Find a comfortable spot and type away your masterpiece. The best part of this practice is; it takes you out of your four walls and offer vibrant environment. Although your mind must be teeming with the ideas of another galaxy but you also need to change your physical environment every now and then. Yes, it can be a bit distracting and time consuming but once or twice a week is all you need to rejuvenate your mind.
3. Writing Groove
Decide about your own writing haven. Once, your writing space is established, close your doors on the world. Such a happy groove helps in removing distractions. It always creates a magical ambience as if you are in your Narnia to perform the impossible feats. If you do not have a separate room then do not fret over it too much. Just use your imagination. You can convert a corner in your bedroom or lounge as Your Corner and work from there.
4. Bursts of Writing
Do not become over ambitious and stick to your table for two hours. Rather write in the shorter bursts of 20 to 30 minutes and indulge in some fun activity for 20-30 minutes.
This practice freshens you up. You can find solutions to any problems related to the story. It is a comforting feeling that you have used time wisely and meet your daily target. Although for some, this can be a destructively distracting activity because some can even find excuses to waste more time.
5. Total Immersion
It will be much more fruitful if you immerse yourself in the whole experience of writing. Turn off the devices for those 30 minutes or until you achieve your word target. Time limits prove to be an essential tool for a more productive session. It also encourages thoughtful writing.
Use headphones or crank up the volume of your favourite music. It puts actually in a good place to tap your creativity. It is inspiring. For some it can’t be distracting and hampers a clear thought process. Of course, at the end, you are the boss of your setting.
Believe it or not but mornings are the best time to start your writing routine. Your mind is fresh and you can get a lot of work done without the distractions of every day routines. Of course, this practice also helps to have discipline in your life. For some morning is not the time to function at all. But do give it a try.
8. Or the Nights
Start writing in the dead of the night when everyone has gone to sleep. This is often distraction-free reliable time. Although you might have just very limited time before you are too sleepy to write anything but remember limited time is your friend.
9. Pieces of Puzzle
Plan out your book and write those scenes which inspire you the most. This way you will stay energized. Do not worry about the connections. Just make sure your novel revolves around the same ide. It might prove difficult at the end to connect all the pieces together but it will give you a margin to add extra details as connecting details to create a novel.
Or better still, stick to the chronological description of events, as you actually want to unfold them.
10. The Outline
Sketch out the plot, sub plots, scenes, characters, setting and all the turning points before indulging in the actual process of writing.
This is definitely the best technique but things can change while you are on page 100 of your book. You are the better judge of your book. Choose, decide and improvise.
You are stuck at some point in your story. For some reason you feel horrible, the whole idea and characters of our story feel bad. This is the time to stop. Abandon the writing. Give yourself a break. Indulge yourself, pamper yourself and stay away from your writing for some time. Change your setting.