Novel Writing Q&A | Answering Your Questions – Part 1

Let’s hang out and talk about writing! In this video I answer some of your novel writing questions. A complete list of questions is available below the video with time stamps.

List of Questions

Below you can find the list of questions and their start times if you would like to skip around in the video.

00:44  What Makes a Story Interesting?

01:50  What are some of your favorite books and why?

02:53 What are guidelines for book and chapter word count and chapter titling?

04:33 What should happen in the first 250 and 1,000 words of a drama thriller?

05:27 How do you handle character flaws and growth in a series?

06:58 If you can’t change POV in the middle of a scene, what’s going on with the Essex Serpent?

08:25 How do you show instead of tell the character’s goal?

09:37 Can you switch away from the protagonist’s POV to show events the protagonist isn’t present for?

10:15 How do you know when your work as a writer is done and the book is complete?

11:13 How many query rejections should you get before revising?

12:31 Can the character flaw be something that isn’t inherently bad?

13:00 When should I stop brainstorming and begin writing?

Goodbye Novel Boot Camp

Today is the last day of Novel Boot Camp! It went by so fast! I had a great time putting together the course this year, and you were all a pleasure to work with.

If Novel Boot Camp helped you and you would like to make a donation, it would be greatly appreciated.


Thanks so much for all of your support throughout the month!

Want to connect with other Novel Boot Camp Participants?


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9 thoughts on “Novel Writing Q&A | Answering Your Questions – Part 1

  1. Bret says:

    Thank you so much for organizing this bootcamp! I find the videos very helpful; please keep them going, if even just one per week or so. The collaboration with, and feedback from, others has also been so helpful! I would love for this, also, to continue. If anyone feels they would like to post a scene for critique, I would be happy to help, as much as I can.
    Thanks again Ellen, and everyone.

  2. Helena C says:

    Ellen, I’ve found this boot camp invaluable! It has taken me a while, but I feel like I have finally found someone who offers practical and prescriptive advice to help me wade through the enormous task of writing a novel, especially a first novel as is in my case. Most importantly, you’ve given me hope that it is achievable. A hell of a lot of work, but achievable.

    Thanks a mil and keep up the great work.

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