Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Speedwell War – Draft 2 - Status Update 1

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.


Saturday, September 1, 2012

Chapter 8: Persecutions - Draft Complete : Novel: The Speedwell War - Draft Complete!

So, remember when I thought I had tons more to go before I finished the last chapter and the draft and it would take until the end of September?

I was wrong.

I didn't even get into September, I finished the first draft on the last day of August.  Sweet!

There were some big blocks of bullets in my outline that I thought were going to fill some pages and I found a better way of presenting the information by combining them with another scene and just summarizing.

Final Draft Word Count: 62,084 words

Part of me wants to set aside the draft and let it cool a couple weeks before starting the big work of Draft B corrections and additions.  Part of me wants to get started immediately.  I think the latter is the better path.  I will take the Labor Day weekend off and resume next week.

The next step is hammering out the timeline so I can verify that it is not time crunched and could actually happen in the time allocated.  The entire novel covers just under 10 months, but there are some big time gaps at the front and I don't want things to happen at too quick a pace.  It is science fiction and needs the verisimilitude of reality to work best.