OK, so I took two weeks off from writing…here on my blog. Not what I intended, but there it is. During that time, I’ve gone through and performed a red-line edit of a hardcopy of Draft 1. My red pen bled a lot. I created a time line convertor to translate from things like “[+5 months, +2 weeks, +5 days]” to “Saturday, July 11, 2235”. I also listed out the scenes by number and a short description so I could see how the story events cluster and where time scrolls without much happening. Very enlightening.
I found some discrepancies in my date notations, like the first two chapters only notated weeks or months passed, not days, so everything was happening on Tuesdays. Plus, I missed time cues in the text at least twice, spreading an event and the reporting of that event too far apart. All of those corrections are now scribbled into the redline copy.
Additionally, making a complete read-through after finishing the writing let me see where I left gaps in the story or forgot to work out when some important events actually happen, which is critical when there’s a war on. I wrote in place holders for those scenes so I know where I need to add material. All told, I’m adding about 15 new scenes to the manuscript in order to cover everything that needs to be covered for the baseline story to actually flow with no gaps. I think I still want to add additional intrigue scenes that serve to enhance the political tensions, but I may need to wait for Draft 3 before I do that.
Finally, as I read through the manuscript in its entirety, I noted scenes where the writing was something I’m proud of and where I was just dropping text on the page to get to the next bit. Those latter sections will need some polishing (or re-writing) to get up to snuff.
As I haven’t touched the electronic file the past two weeks, the word count hasn’t changed from last time (and I can’t get to it while I’m writing this), so I’ll update the word count next time.