NaNoWriMo and saggy middles


This picture of my cat, Alan, has no relevance to this post, but if you’re feeling a bit down, it might cheer you up. 

Last November I was an official NaNoWriMo coach – answering questions on Twitter and generally encouraging participants along. (For those who don’t know, NaNoWriMo is an event where participants undertake to write a 50,000 word novel in November.) As part of my duties I also wrote a blog post for the NaNoWriMo website. We’re now nearly approaching the middle of November, so for those participating this year, I thought some advice on saggy middles might be appropriate. And if  you’re not doing NaNoWriMo, but taking your time about writing a novel hopefully these suggestions could be helpful to you too.

For many writers the middle of your novel is often where your story starts to sag. You might have an idea of the ending, or even have it all planned out, but how you’re going to get there is unclear. Here, then, are six ideas to work those saggy middles to keep them strong, toned and looking good:

Make things even more difficult for your main characters.

Continue reading