by Shelt Garner
While I love the five novel project I’m working on, the more serious I become about it, the more I realize each of these novels is probably going to be a bit long. I’m an unknown, untested first time novelist and, as such, things aren’t exactly in my favor. In fact, as it stands, for me to sell anything would be the creative equivalent of winning the lottery.
As such, I find myself again thinking of a second creative track. I have a great concept for a novel that I originally conceived as a screenplay. But the learning curve for a screenplay is simply way, way, way too sharp for me to finish it as quickly as I’d like. Half my time would be spent just figuring out how to use FinalDraft properly.
So, a novel it is.
I’m hoping this second track novel will be safely within the 80,000 to 120,000 word range that any first time novelist should strive for. I’m giving myself 100 scenes, which would be just about right. The story is very much in the vein of Don’t Look Up, but it addresses global climate change in a very much more direct manner.
As I’ve said before, the people I’ve described the story to have been enthralled by it. But the problem is, I only have an ending at this point. I have a general idea about a beginning, but everything else besides the third act is a total mystery. I just hate the idea of spending all this time on a second track when I could be using that time to make the main five novel project better.
But, like I said, I need something shorter to serve as a calling card of sorts for what I’m capable of.
I think my best bet to speed up the process of developing this novel is to really focus on motivation. That’s been a real struggle with these five novels I’m working on — for a long time, I didn’t know what the motivation of my protagonist was.
So, I’m going to think about motivation really hard before I get too wrapped up in sorting out the plot. I hope, at least, that that will speed things up in the long run.