How to Finish Writing a Novel

Q: Usually, my creative process goes like this: I find a good plot, I start to write, am veeeery enthusiastic about it, but before I reach thirty pages I get bored out of my mind with what I am writing. So, is there any way I can ever finish a first draft? -Valeria

If it’s any help, I know the feeling exactly. I think just about every writer goes through some version of this.

This might be a backwards answer, but you finish the first draft by being a real writer. It’s the very definition, in fact – a real writer is the one who finishes. (And yeah, if it was easy, anybody could do it.)

Seriously, how else are you going to get it done except just making yourself stick through those middle pages? It’s not fun for me, or for anybody, believe me.

You’re way past enthusiasm, or any vague notion of why you even thought this would be a good idea in the first place. Some days it’s just horrible.

But even then you’ve got to keep going. Especially then.

You’ll pick up a second wind when you get closer to the end, when you start to see a real book coming together. Just make one brick every day until the house is built. Then go back and fix everything.

Steve Hamilton, Author of the Alex McKnight Novels
Winner of the Edgar and Shamus Awards for Best First Novel