I just wrote my first novel! Here’s what I learned.

Writer 6 Comments

Last night I was finally able to write ‘The End’ to the novel that I have been working on since May of 2014. As a writer, I should be able to describe the feeling, but I can’t. I’m still on a high from completing the book. Maybe it feels something like graduating from college. I haven’t done that yet, so I don’t know. What I do know is that I belong to a small group of people that can say “I wrote a book”. I didn’t just start. I finished.

When the process of writing first started, I knew next to nothing, and still don’t know much. I do, however, know what a good story is. I just try to convey what I see in my mind on to the paper. It was a slow start, but as the words appeared on the page, something happened. It became easier. I didn’t know how the story would go, but as I wrote, the plot unfolded itself. I sat back amazed at the flow of creation and wondered where that had come from. Any artist knows what I am talking about. To create something from nothing, and find the shape of what it is to be somewhere inside yourself, is a truly authentic experience. To create a world, conceive characters, and bring them to life was a wonderful, exciting journey that I will never forget.

I wrote the book by hand. All 400 pages, close to 60,000 words, all done with pen and ink. This is not the ideal way to write a book, but I am proud to have done it. This was how it started; writing at work on my breaks. Halfway through, life happened, and I found myself working overtime and bouncing from job site to job site as an industrial electrician. In July of 2014, my wife had our second child. Needless to say, I was exhausted and my mind wasn’t in writing. I took a year off and told myself I would wait until everything was right to begin writing again. So here’s what I learned.

  • You can create. But you have to start somewhere. Sometimes you find treasure in places you never thought to look
  • Don’t just start. Finish. You’ll thank yourself you did. That work ethic will continue to drive any task or goal you set out to accomplish in the future.
  • Don’t let fear control you. Things in life can be out of control-don’t let that stop you. ┬áTake a risk, try something new, and stand at the finish line with your head high.
  • Life happens. It’s ok to put things on pause for more important things. Looking back, I wish I wouldn’t have made excuses. I should have wrote, even if it were just a few words per day.
  • Be patient. Nothing of worth comes easy. Take your time, don’t be in a rush. Enjoy the ride. Keep your eye on the prize, make a commitment, and stick to it. Don’t stop.
  • Read. Read. Read. I can’t express how important this is. I didn’t read in earnest until I was 28 years old; better late than never. It opens connections in your brain, and you can learn more than you ever imagined.

Now to go through the rewrite/edit process. This is a new age of self publishing. Writers of old only dreamed of the day we live in now. Come with me on this exciting discovery of what it means to be a writer.

P.S. Details about the book are coming soon. I will reveal details about the book and share chapters along the way after they have been edited. I’m looking forward to sharing the whole experience, and hopefully I can inspire you to reach for your dreams along the way.

 

Comments 6

  1. Nice job, Matt. I’m very proud of the accomplishment you feel in writing and FINISHING your 1st novel ( I’m sure there will be more! ) Keep reaching for those dreams and stretching the talents God has given ! Love my Matt.

  2. I’ve never read a novel. I wrote plenty of papers about books I’ve “read”, but never actually read one. I’ve finished a few non-fiction books about politics and I actually read one book cover to cover in college. It was about manufacturing and was 50% of my grade…so I toughed it out. Perhaps your first novel will be mine as well.

    1. Hopefully sometime this year you will be able to read it. I’m shooting for 6 months from now but we’ll see. I love fiction, and can recommend you some of my favorites if you want. Trust me, I’m the type of guy who never used to read, so I’m writing stories that I hope will find those types and bring forth a newfound love for reading.

  3. congrats Matt delighted for you. Fantastic you have finished your novel. Now remember quite some time ago you said I could proof read……..:)
    I am looking forward to reading it can’t wait!!!

  4. Matt,
    I can’t wait for your book to come out. I will be one of the first people waiting for your autograph. lol

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *