Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Back to work, starting second draft

I'm returning to work on the novel today after about 2 1/2 weeks off.

In spirit I'm starting the second draft. Technically, there was one significant scene that I went flying by and left unwritten so that I could get into the scenes that were holding me up from the ending. So my first order of business today was writing some new material to fill in a gap. The result is 1,700 words of new material and about 8 pages. For the sake of consistency in the count, we'll just count those as part of the second draft. Emotionally or psychologically, that's where I was before today anyway.

That will probably be the biggest single new chunk added, I suspect, but I expect the typescript to grow and grow by little pieces if the experience of my first book is any guide. That went from about 135,000 words in the first draft to 225,000 words in the second draft without me having the conscious intention of adding anything. Just scene by scene as I clarified, developed and dug in deeper the material grew. I expect the same to happen here, but hopefully not to such a great extent. One, it just can't. I need this to be a much shorter book. Two, I still hope that my first draft is in much better shape than the first draft of my other book and so won't need so much digging and developing.

Still, I can't let those hopes get in the way. If it needs developing, I have to get out my own way and let it develop and worry about the page count later.

Next up . . . I have the beginnings of a to-do list here, and the next thing I need to do is to change the names of a couple of my secondary characters who lend their names to the working title of the book. They've gone in a different direction from what I originally imagined and need different names to reflect that. My plan is to read over the scenes that develop them with an eye toward renaming them and possibly the book.

After that I need to write a new scene early in the book made necessary by the direction the conclusion went. Hopefully I'll finish those two errands by the end of the week.

After that I'll start at the beginning of the typescript and start working my way through the whole thing. At that point, I think I can make reasonable prediction of the timeline.

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