The fact that I created a program called #365daynovel kind of gives away my bias. And the fact that #365daynovel itself is the improvement upon its predecessor, the “12-Month Author Challenge,” should leave no doubt that I wholeheartedly believe a novel doesn’t need to take any longer than a year.
The time estimates run the gamut, to be sure. Some say you should start promoting your novel three years before you even start writing it. Others say you should spend a year just doing research. At the other end of the spectrum, I’ve seen courses that claim to help you write a novel in thirty days. Even the folks over at NaNoWriMo believe you can churn out the better part of your novel in a single, Pumpkin Spice Latte-fueled month. Sure, what you end up with is only a rough draft, but at that point, those that preach a six-month time frame from first sentence to publication will be happy to take you under their wing. And in six months, you probably will have a polished story.
But there’s a little more to writing a novel than just writing it. There are logistics involved—it takes time to coordinate self-publishing services to get the book into e-book and print format. Cover design. ISBN numbers. And the big one: editing. You really should have your book looked over by a professional, by the way. And don’t forget, all the while, you need to be promoting on social media so that you can start building hype for your upcoming release.
It can be a little overwhelming. #365daynovel takes the edge off, though. One lesson a day, 365 lessons altogether. And the information is in the order you need it so you can learn how to write, how to promote, how to publish, then how to sell—step by step.
In a year!