My journals for my handwritten novel project arrived. I definitely recommend these to anyone wishing to write by hand. Not only is their size ample enough to allow a good number of words per page, but they’re college ruled, which I prefer.
They open nicely too. Nothing is more odious while trying to write than the book closing on your hand. These open and lay flat, which will make them a breeze to use. I also like that they’re hard cover, as I’ll be carrying whichever one I’m currently working in with me at all times.
This is the pen I will use. It’s the only pen I like to use. I first discovered the Pilot G-2 in college and marveled at the way it allowed me to take notes faster than ever before. This pen has been well-rated all over the place and is very inexpensive. Furthermore, many stores sell ink cartridges for it which cuts down on both cost and waste.
I wholeheartedly recommend this pen to everyone, whether you’re writing a book or a grocery list.
God’s War: A New History of the Crusades by Christopher Tyerman
This book has been both my inspiration and first source of research for my handwritten novel. Of course, I haven’t finished reading it through yet. It’s nearly 1,000 pages and it’s not the only book I’m reading right now. But thus far, I think it’s well done.
Research is one of the elements of historical fiction I love. Perhaps it takes longer to complete a story but writing historical fiction makes me feel so enriched–almost as though I’ve traveled in time (which I would only want to do for a day or two at maximum).
Of course, I also want to find some accounts written from the opposite perspective. Tyerman’s work is written through the Western lens.
So I know I’m still working on Out of the Sea, but I’m always planning the next project or two (or three, four, etc…). During the months of April and May I will hand-write fifty thousand words of my next book. That’s right, it’s a spring-time hand-written NaNoWriMo challenge. I’ve figured out that on average, I write about 150 words per page (size A4–that’s 8.5″ by 11″). To write 50,000 words, I must write 333 1/3 pages by hand.
To that effect, I’ve bought some notebooks on Amazon. They will arrive long before April, it’s true–but I have a reason for having ordered them early (other than being obsessed with the promise of a blank page and a new journal).
By keeping these three notebooks around, I’m hoping I will be further inspired to think about my next book. All I know so far about it is that it will take place during the Crusades–I haven’t even decided which one yet!
At any rate, I invite you to join me in this challenge–because back in the day, people wrote things by hand. Not only will you come out of it with a start to a book, but you’ll develop an in-depth understanding of what it might have felt like to write a book years and years ago. In an age where anyone and everyone can write a book and publish it on their own, I think it’s important not to forget how much more challenging it used to be. (No spell check, no editing with cut, copy and paste, etc…)
So…will you join me? If so, reach out to me and when April gets here, we will start on our endeavor. By the by, I recommend the journals I purchased. They’re the full size of a piece of paper. You don’t want to *think* you’ve written 50k only to find you’ve really written 20k, because the pages are smaller, as with most journals. As for their construction, I have never actually used one–but they’re well reviewed.