Changing Goalposts

Haven’t meant to go quiet, but my brain shut down after completing the STAR DOOR draft. I had lofty goals to try to line edit that while reworking BLOOD and beginning on that rewrite, but my brain said, quite firmly, “No.”

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So I moped a bit, unhappy that I wasn’t, apparently, able to do both. (Because I’m not a unicorn, I guess?)

A lot of the issues with BLOOD is that it doesn’t know what sort of story it wants to be. (Not that I should anthropomorphize my novel, but, again, see above GIF.) Is it a romance? Is it a gothic adventure? Answering that question changes the structure fundamentally, as I don’t think I can pull off the two in parallel.

My reading habits are a pretty good indication, I think, that I need to tilt towards the adventure, and the romance being a strong component. Because if it was just about the romance, then my two lovers could just run off in the woods together (literally) and that be the end of it. Instead, the novel is more about relationships with duty and authority. Our lovers reject, either actively or passively, such things, and it does not go well for everyone involved. (Hey, I’m Canadian! I love the downbeat ending that has hope stirring in the ashes.)

I’m also giving myself a new deadline. I’ve had some success with these, but they have to be worded and considered carefully. Originally I wanted a brand new spanking draft by the end of November. I’m two weeks into October and unless this rewrite has a mini Big Bang and soon I’m not going to have a 100K novel by then.

So, success conditions are:

1. I have somewhere around 60K or more on the draft.
2. I passionately love this fucker again.

If I don’t … I walk away from the novel guilt-free.

Because I have to say, the thought of this rewrite has loomed large and unsmiling before me for these past two weeks. I love the characters, but in an estranged relationship way. Lots of good memories, but the breakup was messy and we both left it with hurt feelings. And, it’s gloomy, like I said. No one gets out this unscathed. My current writing soundtracks include the original SHERLOCK movie, BBC’s THE TUDORS, and REPO! THE GENETIC OPERA, if that suggests anything.

That said, it’s the perfect time of year to write this: autumn giving way to a bitter winter that will dig its icy teeth into the isolated Keep while dire wolves howl at the walls for flesh …

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(Next novel is gonna be FUNNY, I swear to god …)

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