Novel Progress #3 (Progress on the Hook)

I struggled with how to write this week’s Novel Progress and what I wanted to share. This post honestly could have been upwards of 2,000 words, but I didn’t know who would benefit from that. So I ended up trying to be concise here and share things unrelated to my novel in other posts scattered across this week which I hope you’ve seen and liked.

Unlike last week, when I didn’t have much progress to report on so I talked about deadlines (see: Novel Progress #3 (On Deadlines)), this week’s post is entirely to do with my story which I hope you enjoy and find motivating. This is definitely the direction I want to see these posts take as I get deeper into my writing!

Progress Made

I’ve made a lot of progress on my story over the last week. I’ve only written about 3,000 words of the actual story (consisting of two scenes and one setting “info dump”), but I’ve made a lot of progress in world-building, discovering the direction I want the story to take, and how I want to continue writing from here on out.

World-Building

Last weekend I decided I needed to make a map so that I could have a better sense of the world in which I have chosen to write. I wanted to know cities and geography and wanted these places to have names to which I could refer. So I did that and it opened up a world of possibilities for me. Nothing is quite set in stone and I don’t think many of the places with feature within the overall story, but it has been so helpful in helping me visualize the world with boundaries.

Story Direction

Last week I was really stuck, wondering how the story was going to beginning. I felt like I needed to know how the story was going to begin before I could do much else and I knew I wanted the story to start off with a big bang. What I had been imagining early on was something very simple and low-key, but then I thought about all the books that I’ve loved and realized they start off in a really exciting place. So I knew there was something missing from my story, until I realized it was what I’ve been calling a “Big Day.”

So I did some brainstorming and realized what my protagonist’s “big day” could be and realized that it could also actually provide an opportunity to introduce the villains and the world conflict at the time. So that’s what I’ve been working on for the past few days, trying to get a feel the setting and characters. As well as decide specifically is going to happen, because I want to carefully orchestrate these opening scenes to hint at what will happen at the end of the story and possibly even future sequels.

Shifting Points-of-View

I have not been happy with the way I’ve been writing, I’m writing from the third-person omniscient, but I feel like my narrative voice at the moment is kind of…removed…from the story. And I really want readers to be able to connect with the characters or at least become immediately invested in the story, so it needs to be stronger.

I realize I could change the point-of-view later on in future drafts, but I think I’ve decided to go back-and-forth as needed in this draft between first- and third-person. I’m also jumping between characters and writing a lot of things that I’m not sure I will want to end up in the final version of this first novel, but I need to write them to understand the characters better. So I think doing first-person writing will really help there.

Goals for the Week

I am actually going to be pretty busy this week with reading for Bookentine and completing my Twine-powered adaption of the myth of Persephone & Hades for my Multimedia Portfolio which is due next Monday. But I still have a goal I want to achieve before next Wednesday.

I would like to reach 10,000 words in my novel or finish writing the Hook of my story, whichever comes first. We are almost half-way through February and I’d like feel like I’m half-way through my novel by the 29th, so I really do need to start writing more. Now that I have a map and ideas for how I want the Hook to foreshadow the rest of the novel, I’m hoping the rest of this story will be easier to complete.

End Note

I hope you’ve enjoy this week’s installment of Novel Progress! I actually had two previous versions of this post, as I take notes throughout the week and try to write these posts throughout the week so I don’t forget anything. But I ultimately decided to scale back and stick to reporting on what I accomplished and my plans for future writing. I’m hoping to do the same next week and have even more to talk about.

If you want to hear more about my writing that’s not novel-related, earlier this week I shared my post about my new project Persephone & Hades | Multimedia Portfolio and shared my thoughts on Twine | Text Tool Review. I also have two more writing-related posts going up this week. Thursday I’m going to share some thoughts and ideas about fanfiction. And Friday I’ll be sharing some news about my potential use of Wattpad in the near future! I hope you enjoy!

Thank you for reading!
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