I used to do my writing updates around the end of the month, but given that I already do a couple monthly posts around that time, I’ve decided to move my writing based posts to more mid month. I’ll continue to talk about my goals and the projects I’m working on, but the posts will probably be a little more fleshed out. This isn’t to say that I won’t make any more posts about my writing outside of this general update, but it’s good to have a designated place for it.
So here we go!
At the beginning of July, I finished up the second draft of Hero of Darkwood. This means that the book is finally ready for my first readers. This is always when I’m at my most antsy. Hero of Darkwood hasn’t been seen by anyone but me since I started it for National Novel Writing month last year. That’s just over eight months! There’s always the terror that people won’t like it, or worse, they won’t be able to be specific about what didn’t work. It’s one thing if someone says “I found the magic system to be confusing,” because then you you know what the problem is, and can try to fix it. If they just shrug and say “it just didn’t work for me,” then you’re in trouble.
Since then I’ve put The Dragon Guard, a short story I wrote during the spring, through another round of revisions and submit it to a magazine. Hopefully, it will be accepted!
Looking forward, I’ve done a lot of thinking about what project I want to work on next. I have a great novel idea that I want to dive into, but I always assumed that I would work on it during National Novel Writing Month. Now, as I wait on my first readers, I find myself with some spare writing time. Right now, I’m submitting to agents (just did two today), but I know that I’ll only be able to do that for so long without going nuts. Part of me says I should work on short fiction, but none of those ideas are developed to the point where I’m ready to start putting pen to paper. But this new novel on the other hand…
The working title is The River King. The River King was actually my first NaNoWriMo project, which I did back in 2004 when I was a wee a sophomore in college. I managed to hit 50,000 words, but never finished the actual novel (a pattern that continued until my third NaNoWriMo, Leader of Darkwood). Unfortunately, the fact that it’s unfinished is the least of this novel’s problems. Beyond the typical issues that come with rough drafts, the novel has some serious issues with characterization and worldbuilding, and well… logic. Basically, the entire rough draft (or proto-draft) needs to be scrapped and completely re-written. So regardless of when I start writing it, I do need to tackle some prewriting first, a new experience for me. I do a ton of thinking about a project before I actually sit down to write it (as you can see, this idea has been in my head for ten years), but while I’m still not much of an outliner, I suspect that actually sitting down and organizing my thoughts will result in a stronger rough draft so you know, I don’t have these huge issues in characterization, worldbuilding, and logic (well, maybe logic just a little).
And if everything goes well, I should start to cobble together the first draft in August. Now this might mean that I’ll be too burnt out to do NaNo this year, which would be a bummer (it typically takes a month and a half for me to write a rough draft, and I don’t see The River King as being any longer than Hero of Darkwood), but if I already have the idea in my head, and it’s quite well formed, what’s the point of waiting?