I sat down and worked on On the Strings of Oblivion last night. I’m still trying to let that settle in. It’s been over a month since I last did anything at all with it. My writing muscles feel weak and out of place. Creative gears are rusty and don’t like turning. Being bitten by the writing bug tends to leave me sore.
And it feels great.
By the time I wrapped things up last night, I’d hit two major pre-writing milestones for Strings. Most importantly, my checkpoints for the book are complete. This is my version of an outline, and I find it an invaluable layout for my writing process. It means I’m officially ready to concentrate on the manuscript.
The second is less important, but I have a preliminary chapter layout.
It’s exciting for a couple reasons. One, because it was something that historically happens much later in the process, for me. With All Flames Cast, I didn’t reach this point until I was about 85% done with the first draft. Secondly, Strings is a big step forward for me as a writer, in the sense that I’m dealing with a more complex narrative, with more major POV characters and more interaction among them.
In All Flames Cast, the three major characters were largely isolated from each other, which made plotting their arcs easy. Laying out the chapter order was mostly just lining up chronologies across characters and finding appropriate places to change POVs. With Strings, the characters interact more and to a deeper level, which made my character-based checkpoints and chapter layout more problematic. Getting this all done feels like a big weight off my shoulders.
And now it’s up to me to somehow crank out ~100,000 words before the end of the year to hit my internal deadline. Wheeee!