Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Writing A Christmas Novel - Part One

Last winter I was at an author event and one of the attendees talked about a romance writer friend who managed to pay her mortgage by producing two novels a year, one of them being a Christmas novel. I was impressed. I didn't have a mortgage but I did have rent to pay. Could I follow in this writer's footsteps and actually be able to pay bills with money I earn from writing books? Anything was possible, I thought to myself, but at the same time I baulked at the idea of writing a Christmas novel.

I wondered if it was for me. It's not that I don't like Christmas, I just realised I hadn't read a single Christmas novel in my genre! Something I remedied very quickly as it was that time of year. And very quickly I started to warm to the idea of writing my own.

Early this year an idea for an Xmas story title popped into my head and then a list of characters, followed by what I hoped would make for a really good story.

My biggest barrier to writing the Xmas novel was time. I'd already had other novel ideas brewing and I'd have to drop them, pick up my jingle bells (to get into the Xmas mood) and write my Xmas story.

I decided to write Single By Christmas.

Because I'm me and because I never do things by halves, I've taken on two writing projects. The first, to finish the Xmas novel by early July (that's edited, proofread, cover and everything) and the second, to write my next book which is now going to be a book series! A trilogy to be exact.

So operation, Manage My Time began.

I gave myself a 2000 a day word count (weekdays only) which means that after the Xmas book is finished I immediately start to write the series. With a 2000 a day word count I could write all four books at an average of 90,000 words each by early 2017!

Single By Christmas - Progress So Far...

I am at a word count of about 62k words and the ideas are still flowing. I am no longer averse to writing Xmas stories. In fact I'm loving it!

What Comes Next?

I've already got the book cover ideas in the form of some dodgy sketches and written notes and I've managed to find a fantastic book cover artist to work with after a search on Goodreads. That bit is going to be fun. Next I'll be lining up some Beta Readers, calling on my editor and my proof reader and asking for some book reviews. But I'll keep you up to date on the progress. I suddenly have a craving for mince pies. Do they sell them in June?

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