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Self-Reflection: Novel Writing

Updated: Jan 26, 2023

Last post I mentioned I was posting story 'chapters' every week to every other week, depending on the story to try and secure two different types of writing contracts.

I'm gonna be real with you, I went into this with a basic outline for each story and nothing has stayed the same yet except the general concepts. This isn't helped by the online novel format, which is LONG but with like... smaller chapter uploads. Each chapter is ~1500 words (though Drone Girl goes over that rule occasionally), and apparently uploading daily would be like... the best way to go about all of this.

But who, with a full time job, has the time to write ~3000 words a day that are ready to be uploaded to the general public daily?

I've been a bit plagued by this and by how my stories are hitting lulls due to world building and shorter chapters.

The first step, I think, is to take some time and outline the next five chapters of each novel in more detail and I'll have a much better grip on the pacing of my work. Both novels have to be slightly (super) dragged out due to the web novel form, but that doesn't mean they have to be boring. They just have to have more expounded upon subplots and little excitements. In that aspect, I think Drone Girl is really suffering. It was originally meant as a short story (the prologue) and then a novella, but I don't think I've given it enough plot and character structure to create a novel yet. Plus, this story is much more prone to world building as it holds sci-fi aspects that I want to take the time to explain a bit better.

On the other hand, YA fiction seems to work really well for the time being for online posting. Where Nightmares Roam still needs to be plotted out a bit more, bur each 'chapter' tends to end on much more interesting points than Drone Girl, which is currently exploring the different relationships within The Desert Palace. Another point about novel writing I haven't struggled with before: making characters unique. As I push forward I'm noticing I need characters with distinctive traits and...characteristics (ha.ha). I've made one character that I'm starting to be proud of. Dawn, from Where Nightmares Roam. She's messy, loves horror movies, and is generally excitable. She's just a side piece at the moment, but I like the way I've been able to show her personality so far.

In contrast, I worry that my lead characters from each story may be a bit boring. Cierra seems pretty basic, but I want to build on her not knowing what to do with her future and choosing more and more to immerse herself in this new world that she's found herself in. And then I want to start killing some people off, but I need their deaths to in some way push Cierra further as a character. Right now she just wants answers, in the end I want her to be a badass.

Sybil on the other hand.... I don't know what I want from her quite yet. She's cautious, but in some cases daring. My issue here is I think I wanted her originally to be a very intelligent character, but the limitation here is... me. I'm not smart in terms of engineering or mathematics, so I think there will be some areas that are lacking in description when she does things. How will her character arc end? Not sure. I just really like the idea of her out there fighting the government via technology. New updates: None.

I got my subs back to 30, sent out my poetry manuscript to a few places, but have heard no good news yet.

There is no update in terms of novel contracts either. I still need Drone Girl to get to chapter five and Where Nightmares Roam is currently still under review.

You can, as always, read my works here: Drone Girl: (updated every two weeks)

Where Nightmares Roam: (currently updating weekly, with the hope of soon switching to daily)

To support the author (me!):

My Patreon: I'm off to go create detailed outlines of the next five chapters of each novel! Woo! I leave you with one of my favorite panels from a webtoon I was reading earlier this week:

(It's Windbreaker, check it out here:



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