So I struggled somewhat this week in getting the first act of DRAGON’S HEART started. I restarted my first chapter at least three times before finally hitting upon what I think is the proper beginning, but it took more doing than I would like. Generally, I have a very clear picture of my setup, so I found this more than mildly frustrating.
I came to the understanding that this was going to be the most complex story I’ve written, and that it’s going to need some more development work. It looks like I’m going to need three main POV characters instead of one. I also haven’t tapped into the “voice” of it yet. It’s rhythm and cadences aren’t coming to me as easily as it does with most of my other projects. I think because it hasn’t percolated enough up from my subconscious yet, which means I’m going to have to coax it further.
Usually, it’s the other way around. I have the voice of the story, but the story itself has to be pulled up from the dark dreaming of my creative mind, usually getting stuck at least once, usually in the same place. This time I know the story, but I’m not feeling the soul of it yet.
It’s slowly coming to me that what I’m writing, really, is history. Of this world I’m making of whole cloth, with clashing cultures vying for supremacy, struggling with ferocious cultural pride warring with the compromise necessary to ensure their own people’s prosperity. In the middle of this three would-be leaders come to fruition and power.
Coming at it from the angle of history, I think, allows me to come at the story from the right frame of mind. History is people doing things for certain reasons, not always immediately accessible, and far-ranging consequences of those few influential individuals’ actions. It’s also about what led them to those actions, so that posterity can understand.
These three characters then, are rising to power and clashing and forming alliances and making enemies and the effect all this has on their people. But, in the end, these leaders are people, too. And they’re all trying to do what they see as the right thing, often at cross-purposes.
Part of the problem is that things were busy for me a the day job this week, so I didn’t have a lot of mental energy to spare. Hopefully, this week will be a little easier.
One thing I did manage to finish this week was the cover art for Blood & Steam #1, which turned out so incredibly pretty. I want to hang it on my wall, which is generally a good sign. It makes me happy to look at. The manuscript is still with my independent editor, aka The Pink Hammer, and I’m looking at getting a pre-order up later this week.
As soon as I a get my projected 30K in on DRAGON’S HEART, I get to launch into Book 2, which will be about middle sister Becca getting her brother off of mutiny charges with the assistance of a barrister. I’m not sure what the actual adventure will be, but I know Becca Carlisle well by now, so I know whatever she does will resonate with readers.
1. Draft DRAGON’S HEART Act I (27K-30K Words): Failed dismally on this one, for reasons mentioned above, so this week I’m working hard to get back on track. This is my only goal for this week, so it’s head down, nose to the grindstone. I want three chapters in by the end of the week, so I can build up enough momentum to get me going on a chapter every one or two days. Before I can do that, however, I need to solve my current story problems.
How’d you guys do this week? Hopefully better that I did!