Thursday 15th April 2021
I’ve felt like I have more energy and as such I’ve been working to catch up on all the things I need to get done.
There’s two big tasks in front of me: The Accursed outline and pre-writing, and the Powered detailed outline.
I want to get The Accursed done and out the door by Monday. That way, while my agent reads it I can busy at work on Powered.
So what do I need to do on The Accursed? First and foremost, I need to turn my outline into a synopsis. Because of the way I write up my outlines to create my chapters, this should be a simple enough process. It’s possible that the outline needs some refinement. This book has a bigger cast of characters than any of my other books and I’m sure I’m committing some rookie mistakes here. However, being able to turn that outline into a synopsis should be simple.
There’s a lot of work to be done in the pre-writing though.
Chapter 1 needs finishing off. I did some work on it today and I reckon a session or two and I’ll have the first draft of the chapter complete. It still needs editing but I’m planning to do that once I’ve got everything drafted. The reason for this is that there’s always this big dump of information at the beginning of a book as you set up the world. You try and conceal it, and what I’ve learnt over the years is that information I want to dump in a 2000 word segment can sometimes be spread over a number of chapters. There are things referred to in chapter 1 that could possibly move to chapter 2.
Chapter 2 needs its tense changing. I’m going to swap from past tense to present. Again I need to look at the info dumps and get rid of anything that’s just repeating chapter 1, and move stuff that can wait for later chapters. It’s probably not as bad as I think but it’s something I’ve become aware of in recent years.
Chapter 3 might needs some minor revisions given that chapter 2 got inserted after it was written. Again, a lot of it is about flow of information and details. Descriptions of characters needs to be in chapter 2, not in chapter 3 or, worse, in both.
I need to see how many words this gets me in total and then decide whether I need a chapter 4. Chapter 4, if it happens, will be a POV swap, and seems focused on establishing character but it might need to do more. We’ll see. I have a rough idea for it if needed but I’m not going to worry about it until I know whether it’s needed right now.
They say every novel is different and for this one I find myself writing all over the place. I usually write linearly, but I’m working on several chapters simultaneously. I think I can get away with that given such a small sample, but if this was a full book, I don’t think I’d ever be able to do it. Who knows. If this project gets greenlit then maybe we’ll get to find out.
Of course, once the chapters are done I need to edit them. Ordinarily, I like to go and work on something fresh before coming back to them but I just don’t have the time. I need to give myself a couple of days to get the first draft writing done and then a day to jump in and edit what I’ve written.
Is it doable? I think so. Is it doable in three days? Who knows. There’s that tightrope between getting done by an internal deadline and getting it done well that needs to be walked and I’ll always err on the side of getting it done well. But any delay will impact my work on the Powers detailed outline and that’s paying work.
Could be a busy couple of days
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