How did you come up with the idea for your novel, and how long have you had the idea?
I came up with the idea of this Novel a while ago. The idea process is a little complicated, so please have patience with me.
The novel idea in question being a journalist that solves crimes and has a little dog as a side-kick. Now I meant this is a throw away joke about writers who come up with cliche “write whom you know” ideas but end up not actually doing anything about it, people who proclaim to be writers but are all talk and no action. However, my treacherous dysfunctional brain decided, “You know what… We could do something with that”, which is how I came up with a story about a journalist who contacts a Private Investigator about a missing sister.
At the beginning (before the journalist shows up), the Private investigator finds a a dog abandoned on her door-step, she takes in the dog, to the PI’s surprise, the dog starts talking to her, the PI dismisses the talking dog as a manifesting symptom of her PTSD from serving in the Military. Then the journalist shows up on the PI’s door-step with her twelve-year daughter. The journalist wants the PI’s help to find her sister whose gone missing in the red light district of Germany. The journalist is currently going through a divorce and decides staying at the PI’s place is a good idea, that way they can both investigate the missing sister together (hilarity ensues! Or at least I hope it does). I don’t have a title for this novel idea, but I’m just going to assign it the working title of Wrongful Assumptions.
However, while Plotting and Scheming for Wrongful Assumptions, I realised that Wrongful Assumptions wasn’t Book 1 in this new series of books I was supposedly going to write. As per usual, my dysfunctional brain works backwards, it came up with Book 2 in a series before it realised an ENTIRE novel needed to be written before the events of Wrongful Assumptions takes place. so, just to make it clearer (if that’s possible):
01. Pushing Boundaries
02. Wrongful Assumptions
So, for NaNoWriMo 2015, I will be attempting to write a first draft of Pushing Boundaries. Now, I know that a lot of people might not be interested in Pushing Boundaries (mostly because it is a Romance Novel with Family Drama as a sub-plot), in fact I suspect (if I ever get it written and edited to publishing standards) readers will probably skip Pushing Boundaries and start reading Wrongful Assumptions (if I even get that far), and I’m okay with that, however Pushing Boundaries is still a novel that needs to be written, whether it’s ever read by another person is another thing altogether
Why are you excited to write this novel?
Excited is a strong word, more likely Afraid and Highly Anxious
What is your novel about, and what is the title?
The working title thus far is Pushing Boundaries. Pushing Boundaries is about a large extended family living in Kirkby Stephen (United Kingdom), one of the main characters being a male with Autism and how he deals with family situations like his step-father having a heart attack and needing triple bypass surgery. His grandma, who is his main support and will be a prominent Side Character, takes in a University student lodger (from Australia) on an exchange program with the University of Cumbria to help earn a little extra money.
The Private Investigator from Wrongful Assumptions is introduced in this novel and is a prominent Side Character, she is the male MC’s best friend (they’ve been best friends since they were children). Now, the other main character is the University student lodger from Australia, and while I hope to write wacky adventures in between studying, she and male MC do develop a relationship of a romantic nature, but there will be conflict about it as at the end of the semester, the female MC will be going back to Australia and her family there (the female MC has a sister with Autism as well but the sister is non-verbal and mostly communicates through Auslan, which is Australian Sign Language for Deaf people)
Sum up your characters in one word each. (Feel free to add pictures!)
Male MC – Honesty
Female MC – Optimism
PI Side Character – Persistence
Grandma Side Character – Empathy
Which character(s) do you think will be your favourite to write? Tell us about them!
I think my Private Investigator SC and the Grandma SC will be my favourite characters to write, my PI is snarky and cynical, my Grandma is such a patient understanding person, and I think both of them will be good comic relief
What is your protagonist’s goal, and what stands in the way?
I’m not entirely sure thus far but I have a feeling that my male MC’s biggest obsticles will be his social anxiety and his feelings of obligation to his family (he puts a lot of pressure on himself to fix the financial situation they’ve gotten caught up in)
Where is your novel set? (Show us pictures if you have them!)
The setting of my story is Kirkby Stephen, here are some pictures:
What is the most important relationship your character has?
My male MC’s most important relationships would be with his best friend and grandma, they help him understand social situations and keep him from essentially locking himself away from the world
How does your protagonist change by the end of the novel?
I hope to make him realise he didn’t need to prove anything that his mother and step-father always saw him as a family member that contributed to the family (instead of as a burden), I would also like to try and repair some of the relationship problems between the male MC and his mother, I also hope that he’s more self-confident and happier by the end of the book. I also hope that my female MC is also a happier and more confident person as well (look I know these sound like lame narrative objectives but it’s still a work in progress), my female MC’s big problem is that she really doesn’t know what she wants in life and her exchange trip is a part of that.
What themes are in your book? How do you want your readers to feel when the story is over?
Different Does Not Equate To Less, it’s a big theme in my writing, however there will be other themes involved
BONUS! Tell us your 3 best pieces of advice for others trying to write a book in a month.
01. Be Brave and keep going, you can do this, it’s better to try and fail than to never try at all
02. Find like-minded writers to connect to and to help keep you accountable
03. Read lots of books, non-fiction and fiction, across all genres, don’t limit yourself. Form your own opinion of what works and what doesn’t work