A New Year, A New Draft

January 2nd, 2007

I went through plenty of mental wrestling over the Christmas break. The novel is, I have decided, trying to sit in too many camps. It needs to be re-focused so that it is resolutely a techno-thriller, and a damned good one at that (it will need to be, if it is to be a debut break-through novel).

So while I may have thought that the third draft was the final one, it seems it will have to go a fourth draft (at least). That’s not so bad really, because the other product of my vacation musings is a new, stronger plot and a more satisfying ending for the reader. Any changes for the better must be a good thing. ’Better’ (in my experience) is a very subjective concept where stories are concerned, however there are some universal constants to making a satisfying story, and anyone looking to strengthen a story line from its roots could do worse than read Story by Robert McKee. Even though it is a book aimed at screenwriters, its theories on the structure of a story are useful to the novelist also.

The new draft won’t involve as much time as the previous draft, because it is a re-working of parts of an existing novel, which is less time-consuming than a whole new novel. Which brings me to the new novel … I thought about that too. I’ve come up with a pretty exciting premise and have started to develop it, but I’m curtailing myself to focus on correcting Broken Evolution first. I would rather get that right — go through the whole process of learning to sculpt a novel, and get it done on one book — rather than be a serial unpublished novelist!

Unfortunately new story ideas have a tendency to burrow untramelled into my brain, irrespective of any overriding priorities.

Entry Filed under: Writing

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