Despite the fact that I began this novel in 2009 and have already written partial drafts of three different versions, I am beginning anew today. Writing a novel takes hard work, inspiration, time, a good plot, engaging characters and lots of surprises and twists. Without those ingredients in your novel writing stew it won't work.

So taking what I have from the latest iteration of this novel--which is 43 pages-- called "Safe Places" I am basically starting from scratch. And if writing a novel is like preparing a stew then before you cut up and blend the ingredients you have to get the ingredients.

I am following these steps in the first stage of writing this novel.

  1. read the first chapter that was already written and revised it to make it stronger and have it make better sense
  2. went online and found images of people to represent the characters in the book and added them to the character section of my novel writing workbook
  3. created a new story blueprint to solidify this version's plot
  4. printed out pictures of houses to represent the main character's house (Meghan O'Hara), the counseling center (Warwick Teen Counseling), and Jared Carlson's house (the romantic involvement for my main character
  5. created a Beat Sheet to outline the main points of the novel.
Novel writing is an exercise in craft, creativity and endurance. It will take time and hard work but this time around I must finish this, and I mean finish to the point where I can begin to query editors and agents.

I plan on a lifetime career as a novelist and there is only one way to make that happen. While the exercises in "The Success Principles" make sense and I'm sure are worth doing, I want to use my limited creative time to actually write this book. I'll refer to that book when I need a boost of encouragement and motivation, but most of my time needs to be spent writing "Safe Places" Because you can't write and finish a novel unless your writing that novel.

That's all for now as I need to get back to my plot and characters.


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