And at the end of those five months, it had to be ready to go to copyedit.
I never, ever want to do that again.
Michael Moorcock used to write a book in three to ten days. How in the heck do you do that? Here are some of his suggestions:
* "Don't have any encounter without information coming out of it. In the simplest form, Elric has a fight and kills somebody, but as they die they tell him who kidnapped his wife. Again, it's a question of economy. Everything has to have a narrative function."
* "There's always a sidekick to make the responses the hero isn't allowed to make: to get frightened; to add a lighter note; to offset the hero's morbid speeches, and so on.”
*” The hero has to supply the narrative dynamic, and therefore can't have any common-sense. Any one of us in those circumstances would say, 'What? Dragons? Demons? You've got to be joking!' The hero has to be driven, and when people are driven, common sense disappears. You don't want your reader to make common sense objections, you want them to go with the drive; but you've got to have somebody around who'll act as a sort of chorus."
* "'When in doubt, descend into a minor character.' So when you've reached an impasse, and you can't move the action any further with your major character, switch to a minor character 's viewpoint which will allow you to keep the narrative moving and give you time to think."
Read more about Michael’s methods here. I just requested his book through inter-library loan!
April Kilhstrom has some tips for what she calls “Book in a Week” although it might be more about giving yourself permission to write, write, write. She says, “ I believe that Book In A Week is a gift we give ourselves. It’s a gift of one week to write as much as we can, as fast as we can without worrying about “rules” and “can” and “can’t”.”
Read more about April’s methods here.
And over on the Murderati blog, there are some tips on writing 10,000 words a day.
Have you ever produced a lot of words in a short time? What was your secret?