Novel Writing Winter (NWW) 2013 — quote of the week: “The authorities won’t approve of that!”

The first week in February has got off to a positive start, with me managing to organise myself into a work routine not achievable during the first month of Novel Writing Winter (NWW) 2013. I’ve written from 11 a.m. to 3.30 p.m every day, only allowing myself to go on-line to check facts relevant to my work in progress.

I’m not going to disclose what my husband was referring to when he said “the authorities won’t approve of that”, other than to say it was one of those “how-to-do” things freely available on the internet. He seemed relieved when I assured him I wasn’t intending to write a step-by-step account of this particular procedure but just needed to get my head around the subject to prevent some smart arse reader accusing me of talking crap.

When I started my latest work, research was far from my mind. Since then, the story has grabbed hold of me and demands I put an end to playing it safe. This is a challenge I can’t afford not to take. A beta reader of my previous novel (and the novel before that) said to me “this is great, but when are you going to write a serious work?” By serious, she didn’t mean a novel devoid of humour, but one that raised the literary stakes and took more risks.

There are lots of “how-to-do” books out there about the writing process. Quite a few of them are written by people who’ve never had a work of fiction published themselves. I think the best way to learn about writing fiction is to read, read, and read an eclectic range of published fiction, and to write, write, and write, all the time raising the bar.

A psychologist friend of mine once remarked, “Skills acquired through trial and error learning were the best remembered, as long as you didn’t kill yourself in the process”.

What risks have you taken this week?

Author: Sarah Potter Writes

Sarah is a British eccentric who writes offbeat fiction, haiku and tanka poetry. When stuck for words, she sketches or paints instead. She's into nature conservation, sustainability, gardening, dogs, natural health, and reading. Her sociability is something that happens in short bursts with long breathing spaces in between.

8 thoughts on “Novel Writing Winter (NWW) 2013 — quote of the week: “The authorities won’t approve of that!””

  1. Can’t say I’ve taken any risks this week. Although, I am talking to a random dude in Israel if that counts as taking a risk 😉
    Glad your month got off to a good start Sarah, and it always pay to do the research…


      1. He’s just another random – good to kill a few hours with on occasion 😉
        but thanks – I can use all the luck I can get!!


  2. Good point Sarah….I think there are many, many routes one can take…and hoping they don’t kill us in the process…quite impressive that you are writing for 4 hours a day and let us know how not playing itself is going….You got my attention!

    On a separate note, I finished the guest blog post and had the writing coach give her stamp of approval, so I’m ready when you are….Should I put it on my blog and let you retrieve it from there? Or send it to you?


    1. Sorry, I’ve only just appeared on-line to reply to your question. This is what comes from us living in different time zones. I’m probably asleep when most of my blogging friends are most active.

      I’ve retrieved and reblogged your post. Thanks, ever so, for taking the time to write such an honest and inspiring post 🙂

      In answer to your other question, I’m finding not playing safe most exhilarating, and long may it continue!


  3. I am doing well with my Nosedive Crawling despite life being very turbulent at the moment. The fragmented nature of the haiku means the project is not overwheming.


Please comment, whatever your planet of origin.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: