Today's phrase has me imagining that the person who wrote it is thinking about writing a novel, but have never tried it before.
So firstly, I want to commend this faceless person for not being stupid and going: "Phht. Writing schmiting. This is going to be easy."
Because it isn't. There are definitely some challenges, but they differ in size and variety from person to person, I think. However, here are some of my challenges:
1) The sheer scope of the story. I'm just going to give it to you straight: NOTHING prepares you for the work involved in writing a full-length novel. Not poetry. Not writing short stories. I know. I did both (and did really well with both) before I started novelling. Think about it. Poems can be long, but most of them don't go too far beyond one or two hundred words. Short stories: maybe 5- 10 k words. Novels' word count: 80-110k or more. Even if you write the equivalent of that in poems and short stories, it's not the same. Why? Because...
3) Time. If you're thinking: "Oh I want to write a novel, but I don't have time..." I'm going to have to say that you either have to change your thinking or change your mind about writing. The reason why I say this is that no writer technically has time to write, unless they do it for a living. And even then, life is full of distractions. The only reason we're still able to write is because we put it high on our priority lists. If you're not willing to do this, I fear that this challenge will prove to be insurmountable.
4) Finally: The Doldrums. This was probably the biggest challenge I had while writing Doorways. Basically, if I got writer's block or burned out after writing too much at a time, I'd have weeks of almost no productivity. These periods probably doubled the time it took me to write the story. Sad thing is, I don't have a remedy for them except to wait them out.
But these are definitely not the only challenges to writing your first novel. So I'm going to ask my writing bloggie friends: What were your greatest challenges to writing your first novel?