The Novel Process: START IT UP!


What we have here is a desire to communicate. I came up with the idea to create a novel completely out of blog entries and then I realized today that the process I go through will probably be as or more interesting than the novel itself. So this category, The Novel Process, will be some of what goes through my head as I brainstorm and futz around with the idea, trying to make it gel.

Tim Reynolds`writing tools
The Writing Tools of Tim Reynolds


I knew it was going to be notes from a young man to a young woman, but would they be…

…to a woman he is spending his life with

…or a woman he started to spend his life with but she died

…or a woman whom he knows (a coworker or roommate) but isn’t romantically involved with but wishes he were so he writes journal entries addressed to her that she probably won’t see

…or a woman he’s never met but has dreamed about and knows she’s out there

…or a woman he’s stalking?

You see my dilemma, I hope. The novel/journal could be written exactly the same for each of the situations, but his motivation will be different, varying from creepy to sad to loving and back to creepy.

Another question is how much do I tell the readers up front? Should they know where his head is at or will it be cooler if they have to watch as clues unfold? Also, is his writing to a dead woman too much of a cliche? Are the readers likely to quickly say “Oh, she’s dead. Boooooring.”?

Those are some of the questions I’ve asked myself. I also had to pick the right character name, the right location/setting, the right back story, so that it all works together in a believable tale all told through the journal entries.


Last name: Cotsan. First name: William. Why? Well, I think “Cotsan” is a nationality/culture-neutral name. Could be from a number of Western European nations and it’s not too difficult to pronounce. As a matter of fact, though, it’s an abbreviation of Cry Ourselves To Sleep At Night. I came up with idea when the main character/writer was definitely going to be a sad character in search of his dream woman. So, his name really means Will Cry Ourselves To Sleep At Night. I know, it’s cheesy. Whether the story is a sad one or not, I like the name and it’s going to stay… for now.

And HER NAME? Sara. Multi-cultural, but specifically Hebrew. It means “Princess”. It’s a strong name. Sara/Sarah was Abraham’s wife in The Old Testament.


Frozen Mountain Lake
Walking on the frozen lake at the resort.

A mountain resort. Why? because that’s what I know. I spent eight years living in one and I want to capture that lifestyle as the story unfolds. The resort will remain nameless, but it will be somewhere in the Rocky Mountains of North America. Could be Canada, could be the US. I won’t be specific until it becomes absolutely necessary. For my friends and family and anyone who has lived there it will be quite apparent where the story is set.


Of all the jobs I’ve had in my life, the most unique was renting canoes on a glacial lake in the shadow of stunning mountain vistas while avalanches thundered in the valley. The winter half of the job included standing on the frozen lake next to the castle made of ice, dispensing hot chocolate and chatting with visitors to the area, stargazing and listening to avalanches thunder in the distance. So Will is a Canoe Wrangler, our nickname for a Sports Attendant.

Those are the first things I had to bounce around in my head before I could actually start writing the blog-novel.

Ciao for now,


NEXT TIME: The title possibilities. This is where the brain storm becomes a typhoon. Not a pretty sight.

All Words & Images Copyright Timothy G.M. Reynolds.


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