How a novel came to life…

Friday, January 25, 2008

It seems I have always had several stories twirling about inside my head, but for reasons even I don’t understand, I never thought of actually writing them down.

I have always been involved in many sorts of creative outlets for my imagination: everything from painting watercolors to intense enhancement of photographs using Photoshop. I have sold my paintings successfully on eBay, and worked many years as a portrait photographer.

After many years of playing as an artist, I’ve realized I can write down all of those stories constantly playing through the stages of my mind. Stories that have been for my own personal entertainment, I now realize I should share them. It’s about time, really.

FATEFUL did haunt me more than the others dancing through my thoughts, and because of that, I finally got the idea that maybe I should be writing it down. Still, I was hesitant. At that point, I had a clear vision of the beginning of my book and a basic plot for the entire thing, but I didn’t have the big climactic ending. I knew if I didn’t have that, I had nothing.

So, strange as it may sound, I prayed for it to come to me. And even stranger, it came! Maybe those of you who are religious will understand…Anyway, after that point, I had the beginning and the end. And from there, it was just a matter of filling the space in between. I was actually quite surprised as to how easily it came to me. I never suffered a writer’s block, and I wrote a 115,000 word novel, and about a third of a sequel in the span of only two months. The story just came at me so fast and so hard, I couldn’t stop it.

That being said, it wasn’t really a piece of cake for me to write this novel. I was forced to type as fast as I could to get the ideas down that seemed to flying at me faster than I could actually type. Writing something that fast, pretty much guarantees that you’ve made a lot of mistakes. I knew there were a lot of typing errors, so I then took the next 3-5 months to edit, polish and finish the book. After about 5-6 months I had it done, along with a good 6-7 chapter start on the sequel.

The editing process was a great deal of work, but I was blessed to have help from friends, family, some experts (An English major/teacher, and a former editor from Covenant Publishing.) I even got help from members of the local book club. I was also lucky enough to get the honest input from people who didn’t know me personally, but had heard about the book and wanted to read it. I am grateful to all of my friends and family who didn’t hold back, and were willing to honestly tell me what they liked and didn’t like, and offer suggestions. I couldn’t take everyone’s advice but what I did incorporate, after putting my own spin on it, did help to strengthen my book.