Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A Quick Update

It's been a while since I posted about my progress with The Daughter of Three, which I will admit is because I haven't been actively working on it much. There have been a few major changes going on at work, and worrying about them has used up all of the energy I had to care about much of anything else. This week, that has changed.

I've accepted a position with a different restaurant in town, and have begun my training there. As that process takes its course, I am in the process of transitioning out of my leadership role at the bookstore. This is lifting an immense weight off my shoulders, as I will no longer be responsible for the overall operation of my department. I spent a great deal of time wrestling with this decision, but ultimately it comes down to this; I want to be an author, not a cafe manager or a bookstore manager. These things have helped to make ends meet for many years now, but they have often also stifled my creativity and taken up too much of my focus. The time for a change is long overdue.

With that change in progress, another piece of the puzzle fell into place when my coven held our Ostara (Spring Equinox) ritual on Sunday night. It was about a week late, due to various scheduling conflicts, but this year's theme had less to do with the balance of dark and light, and more to do with spring being a time of renewal and rebirth. The sun is growing stronger, and with its light, Mother Earth is waking from her long winter slumber. The land is growing green again, the weather is (grudgingly, slowly) warming, and people are going outside, being more active. It's a good time of year for creative energies, and I'm feeling that call.

So that brings me back to the book itself. Put simply, I know the general flow of the intended storyline. I know the course of the story and how long it should take for those events to come to pass. My intended word target was roughly 130,000 words, and at 65,000 words (about 50% of my target word count), I was nowhere near halfway through the story. Obviously there are a few things that need to happen. While I'm not done with the book, my writing had begun to slow down as I let myself get too mired in unnecessary details. There are scenes I love and want to keep, but they need to be moved around adjusted so they actually fit in a plot flow that makes better sense and has better pacing. There are others that I am trying to hold back before I simply throw them to the wayside. But most importantly, I have realized that even with those adjustments, I don't see how a five-year span of time (give or take) will fit into 130,000 words.

So as an experiment, I am splitting my plan up into two parts of about 100,000 words each. I've trimmed a few things off from Part I already, dropping it to about 62,000 words. I'll be spending the next couple of weeks re-reading, both to see where I need to do cuts or re-writes, and then will begin the process of refining what I've written thus far before I work to finish the book.

Supporting this process is the fact that I need to write a synopsis and edit my first three chapters to send to Lynn Flewelling for our private critique session during Writing on the Waves in October. Yes, I still need to get my act together and get all of that in. Go me.

So there's where things stand. Wish me luck.