Introducing: I Have Lived Today

St. Mary's for blogWith a little over 6 months before I plan to publish my debut novel, working title, ‘I Have Lived Today,’ I thought it was time to tell you a little about it and the process of its creation.

Last November Leslie encouraged me to write a novel, based on the NANOWRIMO program, National Novel Writing Month. The premise is simple: start a novel from scratch on November 1st, and write an average of 1,666 words a day for 30 days for a total of 50,000 words, the same length as Fitzgerald’s classic, The Great Gatsby. It’s a free online organisation that’s there to inspire new authors to both start and finish their writing projects, and I recommend it to any aspiring novelists out there.

As an aspiring novelist myself, I duly took up the challenge. Except after 3 weeks, I’d written 50,000 words and my story was only just beginning. I eventually finished it on December 30th, 100,000 words later. Since that time, I’ve edited the manuscript twice, and am currently getting underway with the 3rd edit. Through the editing process my writing style has changed a lot…of course, I’m a beginner so I’m still experimenting with styles…and the genre has fluctuated from young adult to a darker, coming of age adventure for my protagonist, Tristan. The experts say that most successful novels are edited between 7-10 times. Hmm. I think that because I’m going to self-publish my novel, I will settle for 4 edits…maybe, but I’ve no doubt there will be more style changes and character developments as the editing continues.

The date I’m aiming to self-publish my novel is May 1st, a little over 6 months away. For the months of February, March and April, Leslie and I will be living in Paris, so what better place to get literary inspiration. If it was good enough for Hemingway, Wolfe and Fitzgerald, I hope it’s good enough for me too. Glad to see Ernie had his Mo on for MOvember, too.Hemingway in Paris

A brief synopsis:

1960’s England, on a small, isolated island off the south west coast, an abusive man forces his wife to flee for her life. Tristan, weak and afraid, sets out into the world to escape his demons and search for his mother.  But instead, what he finds on his tumultuous journey sends him to the brink of madness and self destruction.

Every few weeks from now until late April, I’ll tease you with short extracts from the text and introduce you to some of my characters. By doing so, perhaps one day you’ll want to read the completed novel?

Okay, back to the editing.


14 thoughts on “Introducing: I Have Lived Today

    • Hey. Thanks for the comment.
      I guess we have to draw a line somewhere, or we may end up undoing some of our best work without realising.
      There has to be a point when we say, okay, enough already, and move on with the next project.

      Good luck with it though, and I’m sure you’ll find your limit.


  1. Having written a gargantuan 100,000 words, which would take a great deal of effort, why cut back on the edits? If you know a successful novel normally has 7 or 8 why are stopping at 4?


    • Interesting point…basically I’ll stop when I think it is as good as I can make it. I’ll have to draw a line somewhere, or when will I start my sequel??
      Thanks for the comment.


  2. Steve, as someone who has never written a novel I’m in awe. Congratulations! I have learned from past massive writing projects that my work improved tremendously as I edited, so I applaud your tenacity. Looking forward to the excerpts. ~Terri


    • Thanks Terri.
      It’s very exciting as it’s my first. Leslie, amazing writer that she is, has three almost finished novels, and she’s planning to self-publish the latest on the same day as me…ah, how romantic!! But, and mark my words, her’s is amazing and a guaranteed success. I’d put my mortgage on it, if I had one!!


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