The aim of this session is to help introduce you to the course, its structure and to help guide you to work out how you are going to write your novel in this year. Because if you want to write a novel from beginning to end, you need to seriously think about how you’re going to manage that in a practical sense.

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WHAT’S COMING UP

The Year of the Novel fortnightly content is structured into three parts, taking you through the beginning, middle, and end of your work.

But it’s not just the exercises that make the course valuable – sometimes the most important insights will come from your fellow writers. With this in mind, this fortnight is devoted to some introductory exercises where we get to know you and your novel. These exercises will also get you to think carefully about when you’ll be doing your writing, and any potential problems or struggles you can see on the horizon.

red avatar 5FORUM ACTIVITY: GETTING TO KNOW EACH OTHER

Use this forum to introduce yourself to the rest of the class. You can add a picture to the entry by attaching a file.

Introduce yourself in the third person as if were someone else introducing you. Keep the entry very brief – no more than 300 words. Include:

  • What book you are reading at the moment,
  • Something about yourself that is unusual or unexpected and,
  • The working title of the novel you will write!

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AUDIO FROM KIM: PLANNING YOUR PROJECT

Managing your time, space and resources effectively is the begin of the journey to completing your novel. Listen or download the audio below for this week’s lesson on how to approach the task of writing your novel.

Don’t forget to download the audio notes below too (available in PDF or Word format) before you listen to this week’s lesson so you can take notes.

PDF (right click on the link and ‘Save As’): Audio Notes – Planning Your Project
Word Doc (right click on the link and ‘Save As’): Audio Notes – Planning Your Project

red avatar 5EXERCISE:  YOUR WRITING PLAN

Creating a finished manuscript will require some time and effort. But it is also worth putting in some thought to how you are going to achieve your goal.If you want to write this novel, beginning to end, you should think seriously about how you’re going to manage that in a practical sense.

Ask yourself the following:

  1. What times do you have to write?
  2. What spaces do you have for which tasks (e.g. research, plotting, writing)?
  3. How many worlds/pages are you going to write and how often?
  4. Do you have some mini‐goals for the course (e.g. beginning by date, research X by date?)
  5. What strategies do you have for down times?

For example:

  • Place: at home for writing, at library for research and planning.
  • Time: write 1000 words a day between 5am and 7am Mon, Wed, Thursday.
  • Goals: Finish chapter one by April 17.

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red avatar 5FORUM EXERCISE:  PROFILE YOUR NOVEL

In the forum below, answer the following questions about your novel.

  • What is your novel’s working title?
  • What genre is your novel? (If you’re not sure, have a guess. Often novels are hybrids of a number of genres)
  • What is your novel about? (100 words max)
  • What do you struggle with when writing?
  • What is your greatest challenge to completing a full draft?

It is probably worth writing all this up in a Word document and then creating a reply to this thread and cutting and pasting your words into the post.

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