I hit the wall last weekend. I’d read myself into a stupor. I tried to pick up a new book after finishing ‘The Motion of the Ocean’, but my give a damn index for reading had suddenly hit zero. This happens to me every once in a while. Sometimes it’s after a really good book that I don’t think any other can measure up to. Sometimes I’ve just read so much in a short time that I’m just tired. I believe this was a case of the latter.
In fact, I even had trouble reading a magazine for work this week, something I have to do for my job. I just didn’t want to read. I couldn’t concentrate. My mind was blasé about reading, but it was spinning with something else.
Instead, I wrote. New stuff. We’ll, not exactly new. It’s still in the Jake Clarke world, but it’s a short novella currently called Izzy’s Story. One of the criticisms I’ve had with ‘The Forgotten Road’, is that not enough happens in the first 50 pages, and another is that the antagonist isn’t introduced until the third act. I’ve resisted making changes to the story to fix this because there’s no easy way to do it. I can’t just go and add two hundred words somewhere and call it good.
In order to do what needed to be done, I would have to shunt in a complete second story line into ‘The Forgotten Road’ without spoiling one of the plot points of the first story line.
What I decided to do was to write the second story as a novella unto itself. I figure it’ll run somewhere between 8000-10000 words. When it’s complete, I’m going to inject it into the appropriate places into the original story. Of course I’ll have to chop out a few thousand words from the original story, and edit this one down a bit as well, but that’s pretty doable. I know where I have to cut.
I do have a fear that the story will end up being too choppy and the dual story line will feel too separate. But if I’m going to fix the issue, I need to start somewhere.
My worst fear is that people will like the second story better than the first. That will completely screw up my vision for where the story is going. I’ll try not to make the second story too good.
Anyway, progress on the second story is going well. I should wrap it up in the next few days. Then I’ll edit it down, figure out where to make the breaks, and insert them into TFR. Then I’ll edit for length and flow. I figure I should be done this revision by the end of March.
That’s the plan anyway.