Hi everyone. I'm in the middle of writing my first Detective/Crime Novel. I'm up to just under 26,000 words. Does anyone have any useful hints or tips on putting your first novel together?

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It feels great as it is all coming together. When I started putting ideas down on paper I didn't realise they would start to build into a proper story. I'm probably aiming for about the same 75-80,000 would be doable without killing the content. All killer no filler for an entertaining thriller...I'll be quiet now, hehe.

Indeed I.J. I have got a secondary plot going on that, at various points, is intertwined with the main one. It is something to fall back on.

I too am writing my first book and I am now starting to come to the end of my first draft. 

What I am beginning to realise is that this first draft is not so much the story I am going to finish with but more of a very detailed outline. I think that after this the real work starts on the story when you go back through everything, cut bits, change bits, flesh it out and make the conversations a lot sharper.

The biggest bit of advice a well known writer friend is always telling me is

"Show don't tell".

I forget who said this (might have been William Goldman), but it has been said by someone a lot smarter than me that "writing is re-writing." 

So, you've got that part figured out already. Well done.

Yes, just keep writing until you're finished.

Hi. Just to update I'm up to 80,000 words on my debut novel. I'm just wondering is the minimum 80,000 or 90,000 words? I've heard both mentioned.

I'm working on novels 6 & 7 and all have been just a bit over 70,000. I like that 70-75,000 word range for a few reasons--it feels right, looks right, that's the length I enjoy reading most in crime fiction, and the publishing economics work. For me at least.

Thanks Jed. I'm over 80,000 now and the story completed in theory. Just going to check that it all holds up.


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