Writing A Novel Seriously Is A Lot Like A Romantic Relationship

by Shelton Bumgarner

I’ve finally begun writing a novel seriously and it’s a lot like a romantic relationship. You start off with a lot of passion, dreaming big dreams of what you’re going to do only for that to fade and you realize you have to be a lot more realistic about what’s going to happen.

When you first start a novel, you don’t know what you can and can’t change. So, I, for one, found myself writing and re-writing the beginning of the novel because I simply was unsure as to what the story exactly was about. I say this, I must note, even though I wrote a fairly lengthy scene summary. Once I actually starting writing the novel that scene summary went out the window and now it’s more of a general guide than actually something I’m following.

Now that I’m pass the passion phase of writing the story, I find myself really enjoying writing a novel, but realizing it’s a lot more work than I ever imagined. I try to work a little bit every day on the novel until the muse comes back and I write a lot in a huge burst like I did initially. At least, I hope that’s what’s going to happen. If it doesn’t, it could be a long, long time before I finish this novel.

But I’m trying my best. I really enjoy the process of writing a novel, it just takes a lot of out me because I have done little or none of the really important backend work of a character development you absolutely have to do for a successful work. But this is just the first draft. I have a lot of work to do yet. I definitely am not going to show this first draft to anyone. It’s just going to be too horrible.

Add to that my general grammar and spelling ability and it’s probably just for the best if I keep the first draft to myself. But the key thing is to keep going. I have to keep writing. I can’t grow distracted by this or that other stupid daydream. This concept is really strong for a first scifi novel and I need to keep going if I’m going to finish this at all.