The OtherLand Chronicles experiment continues, posting a new scene (almost) every day as a sort of NaNoWriMo exercise. I say sort of because you are technically supposed to just blast through and not edit and there are likely other rules I don’t know about, but this is my gig and I’m playing it my way. My goal was to post new work every day and to be as true as possible to the NaNo idea of moving forward even when things aren’t quite right.
Not that easy! By the time you see one of my books, I’ve been over it a dozen times (at least!). My agent and editor have read it, commented, made suggestions. A line edit and copy edit have been done, weeding out the obnoxious repetitive phrases and clumsy sentences I have missed. None of that has happened with this book, and it’s both thrilling and dismaying.
There isn’t time to edit much, frankly. If I’m going to get the new scene written, I can’t spend a lot of time polishing the work from the day before–I just have to GO. I have been writing the scene one day ahead, and giving myself and a beta reader a chance to catch anything that’s going to mess up the story, a dropped thread or anything like that, but not much more.
And you know what, this is FUN! I’m more worried about getting the story down, keeping the tension up, balancing what the reader needs to know with what needs to remain hidden. Planting clues, pacing, staying true to the character’s voice.
I thought I know all about the story, too, but stories have a way of birthing themselves into whatever they like. I am being surprised and entertained. I tell my voice students to play, to let themselves go, to take a chance every now and then to give the girls in the basement a chance to play. That’s what I’m doing. We are writers. We are in wild mind, beginner’s mind. A very good place to be.
Just posted the first scene of Chapter Four. http://theotherlandchronicles.com/2011/11/chapter-4-scene-1-2/