We all have those dreams of great accomplishments from time to time. Of climbing Mount Everest, skydiving, or writing the great American novel. Maybe that is you, the writer who is ready to break out. Or maybe you just want to give it a shot. Regardless of the setup, you are reading this article because you are either writing a novel or you want to write a novel. I understand you because I am you. I am on the journey of writing my first novel and hope to finish my first draft soon. However, the pages I have written in my novel only account for a portion of my writing over the last year.
My theme is fame. My approach to fame is that people in our society need fame so badly they create people to carry fame for them without any regard for how those people really feel.
Delving into the background of the victim, the detective was able to determine that he had dealing with organized crime. This led to the construction business and politics in Atlantic City. The detective soon found that government agencies were interested in the victim’s activities. Organized crime wasn’t interested in who shot the victim but they wanted the investigation stopped.
Whatever ending you decide on, decide something. Do not be inconclusive. Readers do not like an unresolved, open-ended novel. They don’t want to figure it out for themselves. Readers come to be entertained, to be told a story and that includes a beginning, a middle and an ending. If you went to a play, thoroughly enjoying Act I and Act II, but when the curtain rose on Act III instead of the players there was a big sign on stage that said, “Guess!” how would you react? That play might have been Neil Simon at his best for two acts, but you would have gone away saying bad things about him and his abilities as a writer. Do your readers a favor, write a complete remarried empress for them. Don’t leave the ending vague.
Do the Twist. In film scripts it’s called a turning point. In my system it’s called a surprise. Whatever you call it, it’s a major, shocking story development that throws a whole new light on your lead’s situation and makes matters worse in terms of her reaching her goal. A surprise can be a discovery your lead makes; an action by another character that affects your lead; revelation of new information that is truly bad news for your lead; or an event that has a negative impact on your lead’s situation. The surprise should raise the stakes for your lead and thereby make your readers sit up and take notice.
Virtue. She should be a moral person who knows right from wrong and understands the difference between good and evil. She needn’t be a saint, but at the end of the day, if she’s done something illegal, immoral, or unethical, she knows it and seeks to make reparation.
The vast majority of novels are written as a collaboration. That is, most authors work with a team of writers to write a good novel. Sometimes the credited author created the story premise and other times he or she learned about the idea from another writer who sold the idea that would later be developed into a novel. Some novelists have a rough draft and need to hire a ghostwriter to expand, edit, and improve the novel.