Tuesday, 27 September 2011


Sorry I'm late in posting this blog but time just seemed to run away with me this week.

Various apologies were given .

Thirteen members attended this week's session which was devoted to Nick's workshop on "How To Write A Novel" based on his Western novel "The $300 Man".

Nick explained that novels were like babies in that from tiny beings they grew and grew always being nurtured by the author.

(1) Plotlines - The plotline was usually the start of the novel in that the idea was conceived, not necessarily completed and nothing so hard and fast that it couldn't be changed or developed. Ideas should be jotted down immediately for future use but do not overplan everything - let the story develop naturally.

(2)Characters - There is no definitive way to create a character. Character names can be changed as the story develops but remember to change all references to it. One way to create authenticity to the character is to do a timeline which will provide background. Layering will provide more information to flesh out the individual. Minor characters should not be skimped upon if they are an integral part of the story. Determine the point of view of the character- is it omniscient or third person ( singular or plural)?

(3) Research - Always research your facts before, during and after your work. This will allow you to prove or disprove your ideas. Every thing can and should be checked- history, geography, use of names etc. as this will provide credence to your story.

(4) Vocabulary - Restrict the use of vernacular and accents as these may limit the reader's enjoyment. Avoid the use of "it" or "the" at the beginning of sentences or paragraphs Limit the use of certain words by finding alternatives.

(5) Scene Setting- Always move the story forward by describing the scene so that the reader can visualise whay is taking place. Make sure the reader is aware of scene changes by paragraph breaks etc.

These were the main points discussed by Nick and the mambers and whilst this workshop was based on novel writing it was agreed that the same should be applied to all types be they short stories, features or poetry.

 Nick was thanked for the work he had done and the answers to the various questions posed to him.


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