On Writing The Real

Tips from Karen Bender, author of A Town Of Empty Rooms (Counterpoint Press, 2013).

photoKaren Bender’s second novel, A Town of Empty Rooms, came easier than the first.  She prefers the short story form and her first book, the novel Like Normal People, was spiraling in its first draft. She had thought that writing a novel was the same as writing pages. So she had many many pages with no narrative arch. She found herself asking: what is it that my character wants?

By book two she had learned to write only the scenes she needed to tell the story. Have a core question that you are aiming to answer, and write to that.  Some examples are – is he going to get the girl? Or will he find his way home? Reduce the story to one question to find out what’s necessary to include. Continue reading On Writing The Real