Develop each sentence from your paragraph in Step 2 into a full-page description.
You’ve established your characters, their placement in your scenes, and a paragraph’s description of where your story is headed. It’s time to expand. On each page, along with the narrative, try to include at least two sound, two smell, and two feel details. Sensory detail serves to bring the reader into your setting.
For example, let’s look at the first sentence of The Time Machine summary from step 2: The book opens with the Time Traveler dining with learned peers in the late 1800s England, where he is trying to convince them that he has invented a time machine.
In expanding to one page, you’d describe the characters’ clothes, the smell and flavor of the food they’re eating, the feel of the tablecloth under their hands, the clank of the forks on their plates. This would also be the time for some preliminary research into the political issues, mores, and scientific breakthroughs of England in the late 1800s, so accurate conversational topics, correct clothing, and hairstyles would be part of the page.
Specific to the topic of a time machine, you’d brainstorm and roughly outline the give-and-take that would occur in a conversation if someone told you they’d invented a time machine. If at all possible, it's always a good idea to work some dialogue into your opening chapter.
If your story is a mystery, you may want to think about planting a clue to it’s solution, or a foreshadowing of an event yet to come.
Do this for every sentence in Step 2.
This step will commit you to a bigger time investment. But this, and the other things you’ve gathered to prepare you for your project, the actual drafting of the novel will be much easier.
Happy writing and have a good week,