Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Starting the Edit

Taking my time with Book Three

I can't believe that it is now 18 months since I started writing the third book of my trilogy about 'The Tenth Gateway'. There are so many distractions added to a lot of procrastination.

I’ve now finished the first very rough draft. There are 11 chapters but I'm not sure if that's what I'll end up with. The last chapter is really only notes.

The Edit Begins

Instead of being bogged down on the ending I decided to go back to the first chapter and begin the first edit. After all this time I’ve forgotten much of what I’ve written.

So far I have reviewed chapters 1-4. I’ve stopped at this point today because I’ve had to write this blog. I’ll finish the other draft chapters over the next 2 weeks. That’s the plan anyway.

I think some of the draft reads very well but in some areas there’s still too much narrative and not enough dialogue (the ‘show don’t tell’ that I’ve learnt about in my creative writing short courses), and some of it is still has blanks in the story line.

What I am Looking For

In this first edit I wanted to check that the story flowed, that my main characters are behaving consistently and that the imaginary enchanted world has continuity with the first two books. I also want to check that I’ve used appropriate names for any new characters and creatures. As I’ve mentioned before I find selecting or making up names very difficult.

In the second book, ‘The Spy’s Door’, I created the character of Perscrutor, the evil magician’s master spy. I wanted the children playing the magic game to have  new challenges but I also wanted to add more danger and mystery to the story.

Creating More Mystery

Perscrutor’s network of spies is still in place in the third book. It's difficult to know who they are (recollecting Agatha Christie, but of course no where near as clever). So I now want to check that this theme in the story creates enough mystery as the children play the magic game.

I still think my main characters are a bit flat, so I’m grappling with how to make them more interesting. I’ll let you know how I’m getting on with this challenge in my next blog.

Is this something you also find difficult or do you have other stumbling blocks?

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