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Writing Your First Novel - Framing A Long Story
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Writing a story of any length is an exercise that confers lessons in persistence, patience and commitment. The accomplishment of a long story is by no means a trivial feat. An idea for a story may seem appealing and the writer anxious to begin, when it is still in the mind. Actual writing is no walk in the park as it involves painstaking attention to various other strands in the fabric that makes up a good story outside the idea in itself.
It is not uncommon for young writers to abandon a story midstream. This happens when motivation is lost due to confusion and lack of clarity about how to connect various parts of the story and bring it to the interesting conclusion as played out in the mind. Most of the time, the writer is just overwhelmed with the complexities that go into weaving together a good story.
Having a good idea for a novel is priceless, but the one thing that is more important than the story idea in writing a novel is the possession of an ability to organize the idea into a detailed outline. An outline is a general, preliminary plan or account of the story that concentrates on the main features of the development of the story without going into details. Creating an outline forces the writer to come face to face with the nitty-gritty of the organization of the various parts of the story. After a proper outline the actual writing becomes straight forward, easy and quick.
A good Outline is as good as a finished novel. Anyone can use a good outline to develop an interesting story even if the outline was done by someone else. An outline settles and clarifies gray areas between the introduction, beginning, build up, conflict, conflict resolution and the end of the story. It gives you an immediate feedback and answers questions like: do you have a good story? Is your plot development properly done? Have all your ideas been brought to a satisfying conclusion?
After a thorough and satisfactory outline the writer can begin the flowery embellishment of the story; such as character introduction and description, scenery depiction and description, explanation of the motivation of the character(s) as well as a dazzling display of beauty of words. At this stage, various layers of flesh may be added to the outline to give the story character and feel.
An idea is not all you need to begin to write a novel. Begin with a succinct outline and write the story like a pro.
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