And what a week it’s been with several “Big Blog Days” – a welcome from Bookman Beattie on Monday, followed by my official debut on the Out of this Eos blog Tuesday, celebrating the excitement of AREs arriving and also a cover quote from Robin Hobb: giddy and heady events for any writer as we approach the shortest and darkest day here in NZ – that’s the longest and lightest, of course, for northern hemisphere readers (The seasonal inversion takes some getting your head around, doesn’t it?)
Through all this, of couse, I’ve been working on getting that revision of Part 2 of Gathering (that’s The Wall of Night, Book Two for those of you who’re new to the blog) done as well – and guess what, today it was almost a wrap … You may recall that last week I spoke about how sometimes, as an author, I find that the way I originally envisage a character will change and evolve in response to the action of the story and other characters encountered. When that happens, it’s necessary to go back and ensure that the character, as originally written, will evolve in a real and believable way.
So that’s the one task I have left to do with Part 2: I’ve gone through it sequentially from beginning to end, but this means that I am now aware that there are still a few tweaks required to one of the characters for the sake of continuity and believability.
Did I hear someone say, “so what’s the problem that needs fixing?” Here’s the thing: the way this character evolves, it becomes clear that s/he (not givin’ too much away here) is actually quite kickass, but there’s some earlier passages where I’m concerned that s/he may come across as too passive – and although there’s a good reason for the character coming across this way, I still need to make sure that the later transition is believable.
Next question: so why do it now rather than waiting until I’ve written the whole book? Every writer’s approach and experience is different, but I have found that it is better to address issues like this while they are fresh in my mind, especially if the effect I am trying to achieve is nuance, rather than big picture change. And in this case, the evolution of this particular character is critical to the next stage of the story, so I suspect that getting matters right now will save a great deal more work in the future.
So not quite done with Part 2 yet, but very close – and the parts I was rereading this afternoon were really rocking along. And I have to say, enjoying your own story is as good a reason as any to reread from time to time.
But for now, whether you’re celebrating the longest or shortest day – enjoy your weekends!