So I've recently started working on my first non school related piece of creative writing (a novel). I know a lot of people on this board write, so I was wondering if their is any general advice about making a novel that would be beneficial to hear.
A problem that I had early when I started writing was I was trying to make sure the reader actually got what I wanted to say that I ended up disregarding the story in exchange for the themes and symbolism. I guess my advice would be don't get too focused on what you want the reader to get from your work, just write a good story first and then focus on the themes later.
Don't get too caught up in having a perfect opening sentence/paragraph/chapter to set the "feel" of your work. A good book will do that for itself over its course if you have enough talent, education, and attention to detail. Plus editing.
>Read before writing.
>Read consciously, note how your favorite author construct sentences, describes events and landscape, how they use metaphors.
>Make notes before you writes. Write about something you want to, a scene or an event, instead of simply throw pointless words.
>Don't get stuck in details.
>Drop the novel for now. Aim at flash fiction or short stories until you gather enough experience to write a 300ish pages story.
Write until you hit a roadblock.
Then make a detailed outline of the story from beginning to end.
You'll throw out 75% of the outline by the end of the first draft, but it will give direction and concentration to the story, plot, characters, scenes, etc.