So now I’ve finished the first draft of Light, book 1: Shadows (yes, this shall be the “official” title at least for now, just so you know what in the Seven Hells I’m rambling about). Now of course there’s the question, what’s next and how to plunge myself into the editing process?
Well, here are some thoughts about what I want to do:
First off, whoever thinks they don’t need more than one edit to actually ‘finish’ a novel is wrong 😉 Just thought I’d get that straight.
Personally, I’m not sure how many edits it’ll take for me to be completely satisfied with my work (and given that I’m damn self-critical I don’t know if I ever will be), but here are some things I’m going to do:
Step 1: Analysis/Scene Cards – This is basically the spreadsheet idea I mentioned here . Basically it’ll help me to structure things better as I can see which scenes are linked to which character/event/subplot. It makes it easier to see which overall “motives” I’m using and where there are possible gaps that additional explanation or even scrapping are required. Same for repetitions.
Step 2: Second Draft – The second draft is less actual editing in a sense of grammar, spelling etc. but is supposed to make a “whole” of the fragments and gaps of the first draft. It’s basically a rewrite with the modern setting to replace the initially medieval one, but I need to introduce a bunch of characters that were simply “there” in the later chapters. Also need to work in the Ares&Damian relationship, which I’m especially looking forward to. All in all the purpose of the Second Draft is to make the story “work” and tie some loose ends that aren’t meant to be loose in the first place as well as clearing up some confusing parts. It’s basically a ‘story-based’ approach that I’m taking here.
Step 3: Editing: So now we’re at the stage of ‘actual’ sentence by sentence editing, including grammar, spelling and all that. Of course I’ll pay attention to those things while writing the Second Draft, but it won’t be a major objective then. The actual editing will probably take the longest time as it’ll be very detailed and I’ll have a printed version of the Second Draft that I’m using to make handwritten changes before then transferring those changes into my word-document. That basically gives me two edits in one, something I found rather helpful in the past whenever I did similar stuff.
So that’s my little 3-Step-Plan. Let’s see how many edits Shadows is going to take me in the end.
Also, Clairvoyance (Light, book 2) is planned for this year’s Nanowrimo, but I still have a good deal of brainstorming to do on that side. The good thing is that it continues right where the end of Shadows has left off so it might actually help me in the editing process as I’ll have to take everything that has consequences on later events into consideration.
Let’s just say this will be a lot of work, but I’m looking forward to it 😀