Monday, December 12, 2011

Developing the themes.

Went out to the Badlands again yesterday for a few hours to try to write.

Well, more like think. I'm not really in writing mode right now, but more in a musing thinking mode.

When I wrote the first draft, I concentrated on plot and characters.

I'm finding that the more I think about how to improve the first draft, the more I'm thinking in terms of "theme." The themes are running through the story from the very beginning, which wasn't thought out on a conscious level -- but there it is. It's a mystery how that happens, and rather miraculous.

The themes are there, and they are in turn fleshing out the characters and plot. I think I've got a pretty good handle in what I want to accomplish with a second draft.

I'm thinking it will add about 50% more content.

Linda warned me against unnecessarily "complexifying" the story. Which I'm leery of. But in fleshing out the characters and the plot and fully developing the themes, I feel like it will make it a better book.

It's the old eternal dilemma: Do you want it fast or do you want it good?

(The answer is: I want it fast AND good.)


Anonymous said...

Listen to your wife. Overly complex plots, themes, narratives, almost never bear their own weight.

It's easy to mistake adding complexity for adding depth. They ain't the same thing.

Duncan McGeary said...

I agree.

But I also think a book has to have a satisfying "chunk" if you will.

If all it took was fast paced superficial plotting and characters, I could write a book a month.

So, depth -- that's it.