At first, I thought maybe I was just being lazy. You know, you get so far, and then you want it to be over, finito. Maybe it’s the laziness talking, trying to persuade me that the story is finished. Being that close to it, before another reader gets their mind around the concepts, the multiple threads, wondering if it all comes together, resolves.
That’s what I don’t know. It feels resolved to me, and I’m trying to learn the maxim that ‘less is more’ even as I pour more verbiage, more combustibles, onto the fiery flow of words. This is what I’ve wanted to understand about writing a novel: how to pace it, how to keep the pages turning, while still providing character studies, ambience, colour. Prequel has developed so fast, from a small beginning in December, to what I think of as ‘nearly finished’ by mid-March. That, I tell myself, is what dedication, perseverance, 1000 words a day, will do for you. It’s not rocket science, after all: 5000 words a working week should, in about 14 weeks, deliver up your barely-there 70k novel. The first draft, anyway. Perhaps the bare bones of the first draft. But the basic gist of the story, anyway.
I do know that writers for series on Amazon aim to get another book through the pipeline within a quarter. My ambition would be to begin promoting the series around about May, with Prequel coming online in June, and the main event sometime in September, after final editing and recording are finished. That would leave a final quarter, September – December of 2021, to develop the Sequel.
So, with rather a lot of trepidation, I’m putting the first draft of Prequel to bed, nearly ready to hand it over to the early readers, the ones I’m counting on to tell me if the effort feels finished, or if it’s less than fulfilling. Is it a story? That’s my salient question.