5 Things to do if You Finished Your Novel

If you’re one of those lucky people who finished their novel in the month of November, you’re probably wondering what to do next. Before you go back to spending all of your hours at the television, consider doing one–or all–of these more productive things.

1. Write a Short Story You’ve spent your whole November in the brutal process of novel creation, which is in some ways just as painful as giving birth. Your novel probably isn’t as cute as most babies either. Anyway, now is a really good time to sit down and write a short story. No commitment, no lofty word goals, and no need to sit down and hack away at it every day for a month. Have some fun. Pick a prompt and work with it, or do something all your own.

2. Read a Good Book Give your wrists a break. I’m sure they’re not feeling to healthy, and your eyes are probably strained too from all that extra computer time. Read a good book to replenish your heart, mind and soul and hopefully inspire you to write more. Pick up an old favourite or try something new. If you haven’t read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, I highly suggest you do.

3. Try your hand at a couple Non-Fiction articles We all love fiction. If you didn’t love fiction, you wouldn’t be here. But it’s always good to diversify your income as a writer and to try new things. Give non-fiction a shot. Write up an article about something you already know all about–your favourite sport, your favourite kind of craft, working in the field you work in–and then let it sit. You don’t have to do anything with it; just trying non-fiction is worth the experience.

4. Learn about Editing You’ve got a first draft of a novel. It’s sitting there, on your hard drive, and it sucks. So what should you do? Spend the next month reading books about editing and start figuring out how you’re going to approach that monster. I highly recommend Self Editing for the Fiction Writer by Renni Browne and Dave King.

5. Plan your Next Novel You are going to write one eventually, right? Might as well start brainstorming it now, even if you’re going to wait until next November to write it. After all, if you start now, by the time we get to November, you’ll be more than prepared.

Don’t forget to check out the I Finished a Novel, Now What page on the Nanowrimo site. Have some fun, try something new, and enjoy your December.

What are you working on right now?

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About Dianna Gunn

I am a freelance writer by day and a fantasy author by night. My first YA fantasy novella, Keeper of the Dawn, is available now through The Book Smugglers Publishing.

Posted on December 7, 2011, in Inspirational, Nanowrimo, Novels, Short Fiction, Writing, Writing: The Process and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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