The task of rewriting Of Earth and Ice, the monster 171,000 word draft I had finished writing last year, has begun. More or less, the writing itself is slower in progress than that of the new outline. Frankly, I didn’t take the story where I wanted to take it. Now, in the revision, I can correct that.
As I wrote several notes about characters and their backstory for the new draft, I noticed that there was a HUGE chunk of the story involving other characters that didn’t really fit. I used them to move certain aspects of the plot along, but their existence in the story was what helped to bend the book into the wrong direction.
But I still loved the characters.
I thought about it, how to integrate them into what I was aiming for. Then it occurred to me that I was doing it wrong. I was trying to fit them into this story when in fact, they belong in their own story, a story separated from the rest of Of Earth and Ice. Not even in the same universe.
I realized that I had two, distinct stories in that 171,000 word draft. Two stories; not one.
It was an interesting revelation, considering that so much of my writing life as of late has come into question. I’ve been more tempted to trash stories lately, starting from scratch over what I wrote, but here is a situation where at least a portion of a story can be pulled out and expanded.
Lately, given the struggle I’ve had getting myself back to routine, this was a great revelation, although it only means more work. Writing is fun work though. It’s tough; it’s satisfying. Finding the right paths to maneuver plot is often like solving a puzzle. In recent times, the challenge have been that I thought I found the correct pieces, but when I stand back to view the whole of the puzzle, I realize that I’ve grabbed pieces from the wrong puzzle while also mixing up the assembly itself. Rewriting is like taking the puzzle back apart and trying again.
Even though there are a few puzzles, or projects rather, that I have to work on, seeing that I have another story that popped out of one that already existed was a nice revelation. I am not sure when I’ll get any of these out (since not having the resources for a proper editor slows the process down), yet they will be released. I certainly look forward to it.