Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Exile Chapter 23 rewrites

I've finished the second draft of Exile Chapter 23 and it can be downloaded at the bottom of this page.

This is yet another chapter that was completely rewritten from scratch. This draft is taking a lot longer to complete than I thought it would, becuase I did not expect to have to completely rewrite so much of the existing text. I am quite happy with how the second draft has turned up up to this point, but I wish that I had put the effort needed into the first draft so that there would not be so much work now.

Anyway, this chapter brings some much needed action to the story. The last chapter where anything physical happened was back when Silmera and Anna fought, and before that it was all the way back to the beginning when Silmera fought the Fayt. So far there hasn't been much in the way of action to keep this story moving, and I'm hoping that the characters themselves and their own personal demons will keep people interested during the first half of this story where everything is set up. This fight marks the beginning of a sort of avalanche where everything that could possibly go wrong does, and Mal is forced to face all of the darkness he's let build up inside of him. I've spent a lot of time trying to build up his character in this draft and make him seem like a real person so that you actually care about him when his life starts to go to hell. This fight was rather short and unsatisfying in the first draft, and nothing really happened "on screen" just a bunch of howls out in teh forest and people fleeing in terror. Now we've got the howls, the fleeing in terror, and an actual attack fended off by two supernatural beings, which is a whole heck of a lot cooler in my opinion.

I really mean to rake Mal through the coals before I let him triumph in the end, which is how every protagonist should arrive at his resolution. If he has his victory handed to him, what has he learned? How has he grown as a character? It makes for a very unsatisfying ending if the protagonist hasn't suffered to find victory in the end. Look at Star Wars Episode One for instance? Anakin saves the day and wins the battle completely by accident. Was that very satisfying? No, it certainly was not. The hero of the story is supposed to work, and strive, and suffer before finally finding a way to triumph instead of randomly pressing buttons and oh hey look, I blew up the enemy ship, wonder how that happened.

The first draft of this story ended at 117,352 words.
The second draft is currently at 180,033 words.

That is a difference of over 62,600 words, which is the equivilant of 100 single spaced 12 point font pages, and over half again as much text as the first draft.

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