In 2017 I finished two NaNoWriMo projects that I started (one in 2016) and now have two potential novels. What’s the next step?
Chuck Wendig gives a clue – write with intentionality.
But in writing this thing, I tried to take it slow, even as I wrote it fast. I tried to pause with scenes and chapters and ask myself along the way: why is this here? Not only that, but what do I want this scene, this chapter, to do? Specifically, what do I want it to do_to the reader_? I want them to feel a certain way, so how do I engineer that feeling with story and character?
Wendig talks abut being in touch with the purpose of your writing from the earliest moments. The writer’s intentions will dictate word choice, character development, scene and setting.
In a very tl;dr piece C. H. Knoblauch takes a deep dive into intentionality and writing, arguing that intentionality is the third leg of an Aristotlian stool, supported by subject and requirements of the situation. This suggests that you can start with great characters and a compelling setting but without intention you’ll be flat on your ass.