This comprehensive, sane, and fun writing course is the answer to the question "How do I write a novel?"--from coming up with ideas all the way through to publication. Gifford, a writer, editor, and associate publisher, and the owner of the Forward Motion Writers' Community, guides you one logical step at a time through every step of writing your novel. From making sure your idea is a good one (or coming up with a new idea), through developing your characters, building your world, outlining your story, writing your first draft, rethinking and reworking your second draft, doing final edits, and finally sending your work off to an editor or publisher, Gifford makes sure you'll never need to ask the dreaded question "What do I do now?" -- Holly Lisle
I can't teach you to be a great writer.
I can, however, show you the one thing I'm very good at -- moving through a story from start to finish. I can point out things which might help you in your goal to be a successful writer.
I can show you how to take hold of your imagination, and let it help you write the book that is there in your head, ready to be told. I can show you some tricks to writing a good book which might have a better chance of drawing the attention of an editor.
Nothing, of course, is guaranteed. You have to do the work. You have to be willing to learn and to experiment.
For the next two years we're going to work our way through the writing of a novel. Depending on the genre you work in, by the end you will have written between 80,000 and 150,000 words. If you dedicate yourself to doing the work, you will have also edited the work and begun the process of submitting the material to markets.
Some of you will work through the material faster. Some of you will take the sections in a different order than I've listed them. That's the joy of having this class in a book format. In the class I give at Forward Motion (fmwriters.com), we are forced to stick to the structure of one class a week and the somewhat artificial order presented here. By buying this book, you are free to do it as quickly as you like and in whatever sequence works well for you.
This is not going to be a fast romp through the work of writing. The 2YN course will be easy for some of you and more difficult for others, but I hope you will all learn something helpful -- if nothing more than knowing some of the suggestions don't work for you.
That is, by the way, an important aspect of writing to learn. Sometimes forcing yourself to try to write to someone else's perfect method is a good way to kill even the most inspired story. Here is the most important thing we all have to remember in this class:
So why should I teach this class? I'm not the best novelist in the world, but I do know how to start, continue and complete a novel, as well as how to move on to rewrites, editing and submission. The act of writing is one of my strong points, and I believe I can help others refine the way they work, look at new ways to approach novel-writing, and find the best pattern that helps them to continue writing to the end of a project.
This program is as much about dedication, direction and exploration as it about writing. We are all committing to follow through from the first idea to the end of the novel.
You're about to start an adventure. Good luck, and remember to have fun.