How to Write an Unfinished Novel


Unfinished Novels 350

Not everything that ends up as a novel starts out as a novel. As Stephen King has said, you don’t know what a piece of writing will become until you write it. Might be a short story, might be a novella , or it might be an epic novel. And if it doesn’t go the way you expect, maybe it won’t even get finished.

The concept of the Unfinished Novel is not one I’d considered before – all the books I’ve started have reached completion and been published as planned. Until now. And because I’ve not been in this situation before, I’m not sure what to do about it. See, when I started ‘Ariadne 7’, I knew it was going to be different, and part of the difference was that the title came to me in a dream. Sort of. And because of that odd beginning, I’ve never really had a firm grip on where it was going.Ariadne 7 COVER 150x

Now, before you suggest I might be a victim of writer’s block – don’t even go there! As I’ve said before, I’m not a subscriber to that way of thinking. The novel in question has simply not reached the stage it needs to reach in order to be considered complete. It is imperfect, underdeveloped, flawed. So it will remain unfinished until such time as it is finished. And yes, maybe that day will never come, but I’m sure I have it in me to do something with it. I’m just not sure what.

The aforementioned Mr King is a good example of a successful novelist – he writes novels and they get published and sell millions of copies. But of the fifty-odd tomes currently available, there are at least another ten of the great man’s works that remain unpublished. So it’s not like I have to feel bad about my own shortcomings – if a literary genius like Stevie has problems finishing stuff, I probably shouldn’t worry about it.

The only fly in the fictional ointment, is the fact of the book still being listed as a pre-order item on Smashwords et al. For the moment, I’m thinking along the lines of it maybe being a novella, in which case it may well appear in some form by the end of the year. Until then, Ariadne 7 will remain on Smashwords as a ‘too be published’ book, maybe in December. Or maybe not.

All that remains is to decide which of my other projects to work on instead. Hmm…

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