I have been sick. Sicker than I have been in a very long time, with chills and a temperature up to 102 (which may not sound like a lot, but since I have a hard time registering a normal temp on a thermometer, it’s something significant). I’ve been on antibiotics since Monday evening and am finally starting to feel human again (if that is indeed my classification). At least, I feel like I won’t get knocked over by a chair, so I can handle, I hope, children tomorrow. So, when not sleeping or trying to drink as many fluids with electrolytes as possible (not even fluids are good enough any more, but I guess I had sort of dehydrated myself with the whole chills/fever thing) I started to go over some of what is later on in the series to make sure the stuff in the second book matches up.

What the hell was I doing? I can forgive the bad typing, because it wasn’t so long after my nerve injury and I hadn’t really learned to retype without my left little finger. It is embarrassing how many wrong words are there (they’re not being used for there, as an example), sentences that make no sense, and my favorite, Geoffrey meeting someone for the first time three times within the span of only about 20 pages.

The horror of it all! That’s what first drafts are for. It would probably be useful if I used an outline. I’ve never been an outline type of person. I used to want to do continuity for movies. I would have been terrible at it. I would have made the movies that people would talk about, remember the scene where the blood stain was at the middle of the shirt and then it was at the top? Or, didn’t there used to be a large tank of tarantulas on that table? Why is there an angora rabbit there now? It never would have worked.

And ages. I have sat down I don’t know how many times to figure out character ages. Part of the problem is I can’t decide exactly how much past the first novel the second one is set. That would help. Still, it should just be running numbers up or down, but then that doesn’t work. It’s worse when you go back to their childhoods and try to figure them out from then. I don’t know why this is such a problem for me. It’s not rocket science. I wasn’t good at math but this isn’t even really math, it’s just ages. I have whole charts of those written up too. I have family trees written up.

Another one of my favorites is because of how many times I changed the ending, all of a sudden, Adrian just has an assistant, like magic. Here’s the assistant I intended him to have, and it’s more fully fleshed out in one of the endings I cut. I’m not sure if I should fix any of that now I just concentrate on the second one. I think that’s the most abrupt shift where it’s really obvious something has been cut and not fixed.

I do write notes, and generally a chapter outline, mostly to help me keep time straight (you know how that timey wimey stuff can get) which keeps exact track of how many days go by in each chapter (or more likely, how many chapters go by in a day). I’ve had situations where the mighty Octopus of Time rears its ugly head and somehow manages to keep one group of characters going at one speed and another group at another until they’re about a month apart. Simultaneously. Pretty cool, eh? I told you there was timey wimey stuff involved. Except there isn’t any time travel in any of the books. There is an incident with a clock, but that doesn’t count.

I spent a whole afternoon drawing up a seating chart for a council meeting just so I’d know where people were sitting. There are scattered maps in my notes, lists of names. Sometimes my angst written notes with possible directions to go, or who can I kill? The latter not as often as you might think. I killed off so many secondary characters in the first one now it’s more centered on immediate family, and I don’t want to kill any of them right now. Actually, in a ending I cut, I did kill Brion, but that was from an illness, not assassination or anything. That one got a little too wild. So Brion lives. I just did something else to him instead. But then after all that was taken care of things just started to get weird and I think I’m going to have to cut back again.

I think I need to go through some of the cut scenes and pull out the parts where, say, Elvan has a little more active role before he becomes Adrian’s assistant? Little things like that.

I think that’s about all I am capable of today.


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