There is no shortcut

Remember when I wrote, it took me two years to write this first draft I have? Well, in reality it’s been about four months straight. I started writing through NaNoWriMo 2012 (around 57,000 words) and then through to January 2013. then life happened. I couldn’t write more than scene by scene since then. But now, I’m finished.

So what now?

My original idea for the book’s time schedule looked a bit like this:

edit and rewrite until December 2014, wax and polish (January), get a professional edit and during that time plot an outline for a follow up book, get a professional looking book cover, then upload to sell by March 2015.

However, while the editing is working fine (I cut an introduction snippet to one of my favorite sidelines characters and that was just sad – but it just stopped the flow of that scene), I’m also working on scenes that don’t seem to work in the way I wanted them too.

Here’s what I learned: It’s easier to rewrite than to write a first draft, but it’s still hard and tough decisions must be made.

So, the toughest decision I’ve made so far is to divide the book. As it was, the story was over 100,000 words long. That’s long. And long is bad. Especially if you’re a new writer no one knows, right?

I know my own buying habits and my own schedule: if I don’t know you, I don’t want to find out if I like your stuff by buying an epic sized book. Give it to me in small chunks – that’s more palatable. Right? And also, timewise: my day is very busy anyway, but read I must. I just can’t read epic long anymore. A few pages here and there, a chapter in bed before going to sleep.

And I’m guessing that I’m not the only one who thinks about purchases that way – far before pricing even comes into play.

So, on my re-read, I was paying attention to story flow and where I could break the story into shorter parts. And where cliffhangers could work. Now I have a five part “Season One” Book. Some “Episodes” have a longer wordcount than others, but they haven’t been reworked yet.

Five parts work great as an overall story arc, with the first part as the exposition, the second and third parts as upping the tension, the fourth part with the climax and the fifth with the resolution.

I’m getting comfortable with the thought of breaking the book down into something like a Season Pass. But it comes with new difficulties as well. Like what do I call the Episodes, should I rework the title, do I say Season One, Season Two etc, or does each “Season” have it’s own name (you know, like: The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, The Return of the King)?

I’m in the middle of editing the untitled Second Episode and can see soooo much more work ahead.


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