Saturday, December 26, 2009

Novel progress

I hit 200 pages today, which feels really good. I'm getting close to some kind of a climactic showdown in the story, which is going to be complicated. I'm hoping I can get the book to 250 pages, which I think is a respectable length for a first novel.

I'm heartened by a novel I'm reading - The Lathe of Heaven by Ursula K. LeGuin. It's less than 200 pages long, and it's been wildly successful. I think the classic novel Heart of Darkness is also about that length. So I'm in good company, even if I end up with a short-ish first novel. Ultimately, it's not the length of the thing that matters, of course, but I'm always intimidated when I pick up a tome that's more than 500 pages long, and I wonder - how the hell did this author write that much? In some cases, obviously, like pulp fiction, a lot of it is written from a formula. But there are a lot of authors out there with enormous imaginations - Frank Herbert comes to mind - who can just churn out thousands of pages worth of brilliance (mixed with incomprehensible crap).

Anyway - I'm getting there. I can honestly say at this point that I have a novel, and that I'm going to finish it.

I might post another excerpt of it soon.