Now that grad school is over and I have completed my long trek to the desert (I’m now living in Arizona, which is a big change from the Virginia mountains – it was 100 degrees at sunset tonight! Sheesh!), I finally have time to write again. As I think I’ve mentioned before, I have never really gone for the whole “writing an entire book” thing because I suck at worldbuilding and I often have trouble having time to finish such a large project. However, I decided in the interests of self-improvement and strengthening my writing, I should give it a go. Plus, I had a really cool idea that came to me in a dream one night (involving Neal, one of the writers for this blog, getting stabbed in the eye with a tattooing needle), and I quickly became obsessed with it, as characters and plot lines and almost entire chapter structures for this post-apocalyptic sci-fi fantasy novel started playing out in my head. I’ve written the prologue, which is about 12 pages single-spaced, outlined some main characters, and started working on the first full chapter. It’s pretty exciting! The main thing I’m doing differently this time from the other few times I’ve tried novel-writing is that I’m not worldbuilding all in advance; I’m making it up as I go along, which is very helpful (my next post will be on that subject). So far, it’s going well, and I’m hoping to finish up chapter 1 this week. I am bound and determined to finish this book, come hell or high water, as my very Southern grandmother likes to say. Any of you more experienced novel-writers have any tips for me as I work through this process?