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22.3 writing update

So, gone three in the afternoon and I have hardly done any work all day, keeping getting distracted by different things. However, still a few hours left this afternoon, and my old timetable did have me finishing everything a little early.

Anyway, update on my writing projects, since I seem to be posting rather little about them and just rambling on about too much work:

Story 1, my fantasy novel involving young magicians getting mixed up in politics. It is finished, I am sure of that, I sometimes wonder if I could go back through it once more and make it better, but I can never seem to work out how, short of totally rewriting large sections of it. I sent it off to various publishers nearly three months ago, some did say it might take that long to get a reply, and I have heard nothing from any of them, not even the slightest mention that they are not interested. Still, maybe next time will go better.

Story 2, my supposedly vampire novel, though in which the vampires are only mentioned on a few occasions. Which draft did I say I was up to now? Fourth I think, anyway, nearly finished that, though it hasn’t gone very well. I was hoping just to add in a few details to give the characters more depth, a few extra scenes and such like, but then I thought the way I had set out their organising the school fair was unrealistc, that it would be better with a bit more work and a group of volunteers persuaded to join in. Except, then they were busy most of each day anyway, I had tried to avoid awkward spaces where everyone is sitting around with nothing to do, which actually leads to quite an argument between two characters at one point. Trouble is, this means it is difficult to find time for more work or for these extra scenes. So, I shall be writing out detailed timetables of every day so I can sort it all out better. And then, I have trouble rearranging a couple of scenes near then end when I discovered I had set one important part on the Friday instead of the Saturday where it should be. A lot of work ahead, but after correcting these few details, that should be about it, and I already have plenty of ideas for the sequel.

Story 3, my spy thriller, that isn’t that thrilling, set in the 16th century. I finished the first draft a few months ago, the second, in which I did little more than read through, at the end of last month. But, now I have lots of notes on what needs to be changed, and some more ideas to add in as well to make it seem a little more realistic, and a little more than just some names traveling to various places and sitting around talking. Meanwhile, I have plenty of notes done for the sequel to that, a whole detailed synopsis, lists of characters that might not even be mentioned and so on. though I have a suspicion it could be better with a slightly different opening, starting a few weeks later. Though of course this leaves less time for everything else, I shall have to see if I can fit it all in.

Story 4, that weird one with the zombies and the hole in reality. I finished a rather short and disorganisd first draft, with a couple of big holes vaguely patched over, little mention of characters, a few names missing, and only half a climax. Plan was to fix that this month. Well, plan was to still be finishing the first draft this month, which is similar, I suppose. I haven’t seen it for a while, though, I have little idea how to go about fixing it, and wonder if it is worth bothering at all, having recently decided that I would be better off looking at some of my more sensible ideas and coming up with plans of normal sorts of stories instead, the sorts of things I wouldn’t mind telling others about.

Story 5, another wierd one with two different plots winding around each other. I managed to catch the second plot up to the first, filling in all those spaces I left for it. Well, I say plot, nothing actually happens other than a lot of complaining and descriptions of different places, bits of ideas come and go at random, some seemingly important points lead nowhere, and I have not the slightest idea what should be happening next. So, plan is just to finish the first plot, which is going a little better, rush through the last bits of the other, then unpick the two into different files and totally rewrite at least one of them. Plenty of work to be doing over the summer.

Story 6, yes there is one now, an old idea I dug out recently, part of the working on more sensible stuff, it is set during the late Roman empire, following the ups and downs of a typical family in a rather difficult time. I struggled a little at first, but after some extensive research, I managed to work out what should be happening in the first couple of chapters, I may need to go back and make a couple of little changes, or perhaps not, and soon I can move on to chapter three. It is going quite well, I am getting a lot done each day, finding it easier to write than many recently, and it is starting to take over from my old timetable.

And then there is my history project, I have worked out I should be able to finish almost exactly on the day before I go home, though both it and the previous volume will need some editing, plenty of pictures, maps, diagrams and so on, an index, bibliography and so on, more work for this summer.

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