Am editing madly. I gave my sister my first three chapters, but I’m not sure she’ll get around to them. And if she does get around to them, I know it’s not really her thing. So I’m not sure why I did that. Just because I can, I guess. And if nothing else she does want to know what the hell I’m doing, so there’s that.
Meanwhile, I’ve been stalled on the edit of chapter 8. I got through the first 7 chapters pretty quickly and I’m fairly happy with where they’re at. Chapters 1,3, and 7 in particular needed total rewriting. I’m pretty happy with 7 at the moment, but it’s fresh and you know what that means.
So then we had some family drama and that distracted me from the chapter 8 edit, which is probably just what I wanted. The problem I’m finding (I don’t know how everyone else feels about it, I’m sure they find other problems) is that I was too keen to get to a the climax moment in the book, which in my mind was in the middle of the story. I ended up skipping over a lot of time, or just wasting my energy on having my characters sort of lounge around and make it feel as if time is passing, rather than just writing what’s going on.
Chapter one starts at the beginning of August. my original thought was that by the middle of the book I should be at December. My only real goal from August to December was to set up a few relationships, give us a general feeling of the place where we are, and that sort of thing. My ‘place’ is a school, of course, which is a pisser because I don’t really want to write about a school. That is really obvious in the first draft.
Well, I fixed these problems up to chapter 7. We have real classroom interaction happening in chapter 7. It’s not just a rush forward into something else, I’m actually lingering on things now.
So chapter 8. O dear darling chapter 8. It was experimental when I wrote it, and it’s an experiment that failed. I was trying to give a sense of time passing, to have my main character sort of look back over the last month of his life and think, “wow, I got used to a lot of new things,” rather than have him experience all those new things. Mostly because I hate writing about things that are new to a character. I love the mundane, the new and exotic just gets up my nose.
Anyway so I decided to break chapter 8 into two, so now it will be chapter 8 and 9, which pushes the draft up to 17 chapters. The new chapter 8 consists of a series of vingettes centred on various fears. My main character is experiencing his new world and keeps finding things that freak him out or gross him out (things that look like ghosts but aren’t, and he’s terrified of ghosts, the idea of dissecting human bodies, and so forth).
I can’t remember what I meant to put into the second half. I still haven’t moved anything over from the original chapter, it’s all new stuff.
Now, I have to go to a meeting in the morning so I must go to bed. I’ve been exhausted all day, what am I doing up at 1:30am?