I’ve just finished reading my Nanowrimo novel as a whole piece for the first time. I’m pretty pleased with the story, apart from one thing right at the end (which I’ll address at the end of this post). The whole point of Nanowrimo for me, as a first-time novelist, was to gain confidence in my writing and discover if I could write a novel. A big part of that was finding out whether I can tell a decent yarn or not. I think I proved to myself that yes I can. Still, there are parts of the novel that need tidying up. In particular my description of the cyber world of Social-Kinetics Ltd needs some fleshing out. Some other small chunks of writing need to be polished, but really all of this is to be expected in a first draft. The most important thing to me is that the plot largely sticks together and I developed the characters in interesting ways.

Over the holidays I will read Erik’s Nanowrimo entry, plus any other ones I can find. If anyone reading this has posted their Nanowrimo entry online, let me know as I’d love to read it. As 2004 approaches, I’m thinking about how to further develop my writing…and, not unrelated, develop my career in web technology. It’s my goal now to get something published in paper form, perhaps even earn some money from writing. That would be the ultimate goal for me, to earn my living and support my family from writing. But one step at a time, I have a lot of work to do.

Now back to the one thing at the end of my novel that needed fixing. I realised a day or two after I’d finished that I’d left Declan typing at his computer while his partner Florrie was getting ready for their date. It didn’t seem quite right, but at the time I was too tired to fix it. However Andrew reminded me of it the other day, pointing out that Florrie was being treated unfairly again. This is a very valid point and one which I have fixed up tonight, simply by adding a few more sentences. I will re-post the PDF tomorrow, but here’s the amended ending which places the final emphasis back on Declan and Flo’s relationship – where it belongs:

Declan read the email from the alien a couple more times. He pondered it for a few minutes, his brow furrowed in serious thought. Then Declan’s eyes relaxed and he smiled. He hit the “Reply” button and started writing.

“Declan?” Florrie was standing at the door. Declan turned around and smiled at her. “Flo, you look beautiful”, he said and Florrie blushed. Her brown eyes glistened with a mix of tiredness and happiness.

Declan saved his email and then switched the computer off. He got up and took Florrie’s hand.

“Shall we?” he said.