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How long does it take most people to write a novel? : Conversation question • Page 2 • Writing Forum | WritersDigest.com

How long does it take most people to write a novel?

Every month in Writer's Digest's InkWell section, we pose a question related to the writing life. Tell us your thoughts.
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Loren Killdeer
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Re: How long does it take most people to write a novel?

Postby Loren Killdeer » Mon Jun 20, 2016 5:36 pm

It depends! I have read some people here are really fast at writing!

Writing is my hobby, and that means work and study get in th way most time. I work up to twelve hours between real work, making my finals and school, so I'm a really slow writer (and a very tired one). But it takes me around a year to search the final work, making the first draft takes me around four months, cleaning it two times, rewriting and working with beta readers take me rest.
I don't like to work on speed. I prefer going at my rhythm.
Now, due to the lack of speed I write 1000 words per day (very little), but I used to write up to 2000 words per day.

So, take your time, and obviously and most important: Enjoy it.
“Substitute 'damn' every time you're inclined to write 'very;' your editor will delete it and the writing will be just as it should be.”
― Mark Twain



williamadams
 

Re: How long does it take most people to write a novel?

Postby williamadams » Mon Sep 19, 2016 8:54 pm


williamadams
 

Re: How long does it take most people to write a novel?

Postby williamadams » Mon Sep 19, 2016 8:59 pm

ps

there are a lot of books that show you how to write a novel in 30 days

assuming you already know the craft and you follow the process given then you should have a credible rough draft in a month

now if you have to take time out to read dozens of books on the finer points of plot and character etc then that will add a lot of time to the first novel

if you dont know the craft then you can still write A novel in 30 days
but it would take a lot of work to salvage it and make it publishable

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shadowwalker
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Re: How long does it take most people to write a novel?

Postby shadowwalker » Mon Sep 19, 2016 11:32 pm

"It seems rather like wanting to be ... a writer, rather than wanting to write. It should be a by-product, not a thing in itself. Otherwise, it's just an ego trip." - Roger Zelazny

It's really not that hard. Just tell me a story.

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deepenya
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Re: How long does it take most people to write a novel?

Postby deepenya » Tue Sep 20, 2016 5:05 am

I write every day and motivation plays a big part. I cannot speak for anyone else, but for me, I had to make a conscious decision to treat my writing as a business. Just like any business the success, or lack there of, depends entirely on how much time you are willing to commit to it. Once I developed that mindset my book that took me two years to complete the first three chapters was completed (first draft) within four months.

williamadams
 

Re: How long does it take most people to write a novel?

Postby williamadams » Sat Sep 24, 2016 3:58 pm


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shadowwalker
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Re: How long does it take most people to write a novel?

Postby shadowwalker » Sun Sep 25, 2016 12:10 am

"It seems rather like wanting to be ... a writer, rather than wanting to write. It should be a by-product, not a thing in itself. Otherwise, it's just an ego trip." - Roger Zelazny

It's really not that hard. Just tell me a story.

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onceuponwednesday
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Re: How long does it take most people to write a novel?

Postby onceuponwednesday » Sun Sep 25, 2016 4:34 pm

And to add onto what Shadowwalker said.

Stephen King is well-known for not outlining. Agatha Christie didn't know who the murder was until she got to the last chapter.

But even the pantsiest pantser thinks ahead a little. And even the outlineriest outliner fills in 80% of the actual words while writing the dang thing.

Where you slap your head on the spectrum is up to you, where you feel most comfortable.

For me, I like to know the ending. It's like a life-preserver I'm swimming towards and it informs who my characters are to get me there. I get spots of thing I'd like to include on the way, but that's about it. If I over think a story or start writing it AFK then it starts to lose it's magic and I have a harder time getting motivated to sit down and type.

And type you must if you want to finish a story in a good amount of time. I've written a 100k story in a month and slogged through another in six because my characters didn't agree with my ending. I don't edit as I go and I leave a mess that I have to edit down into shape.

But that's me.
The Rule of Three

williamadams
 

Re: How long does it take most people to write a novel?

Postby williamadams » Tue Sep 27, 2016 6:30 pm


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shadowwalker
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Re: How long does it take most people to write a novel?

Postby shadowwalker » Tue Sep 27, 2016 10:37 pm

"It seems rather like wanting to be ... a writer, rather than wanting to write. It should be a by-product, not a thing in itself. Otherwise, it's just an ego trip." - Roger Zelazny

It's really not that hard. Just tell me a story.

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