Do You Need Some Help Getting Un-Stuck?
Here we are months into writing your novel. You laid the ground work and built your foundation. You feel pretty good about your characters and your world as a whole but now you are hitting a new difficulty.
Maybe your word count isn’t where you want/need it to be?
Maybe you feel as though your novel is taking too long to write?
Maybe you simply can’t look at it anymore?
Not to worry we have all been there! First thing’s first, stop, take a deep breath and relax. Let me start by saying, writing a novel is not a race (not even NaNoWriMo). This is your story you are creating, it is not about putting pressure on yourself but rather learning how to bring it to life or even breath life back into it. It is true you normally need a minimum of words when writing a novel but if you begin to focus on word count negatively, that is when you can add useless text instead of valuable text. Re-read your story and consider what it may be missing. That is what you will want to focus on adding as you are expanding your novel. You could have a missing subplot or one that simply doesn’t make sense later on.
With that said sometimes the best thing you can do to keep adding to your story or to fill in the missing pieces, is to walk away. I know sounds a bit crazy doesn’t it? I assure you though it works. We as writers are deeply rooted and invested in our work. Sometimes the best thing we can do is walk away from it. I had to do it with my own novel. At one point I had read the first chapter so many times I no longer knew what needed to be added or changed. I eventually walked away from it for a bit. When I did come back to it I picked up in the middle. I started in a random spot and began re-reading/editing. It made a world of difference. The questions I had later on in my novel helped develop new answers at the beginning. Little by little I felt the pieces falling into place.
Throughout your writing journey and writing process you will have moments of feeling stuck, maybe even wanting to give up and throw in the towel. We assure it is normal. Writing a novel is fun but we also know it is hard work. It takes time and dedication. Think of your novel as a marathon not a race. It doesn’t matter how long it takes you to finish, as long as you finish is what matters.