Thursday, October 12, 2017

“Make your characters want something right away even if it's only a glass of water. Characters paralyzed by the meaninglessness of modern life still have to drink water from time to time.” 

Kurt Vonnegut.

Conceptually, the first 100 pages of Takeover were exactly what I was after. I wanted the book set in the real world, paralleling real events. I got into the heads of a bunch of different people, character sketches, really, that tell a story. There's some rich potential there, but I realized that I didn't have the chops to really pull of a serious literary work. Or perhaps I didn't have the interest. Or both.

So I turned to thriller plot about halfway through.

But that left the first 100 pages lopsided. Character development, lots of set up for the second half. The second half is all action, but there apparently wasn't enough action in the first half.

What the characters needed was motivation. They needed something they wanted beside to protest. I mean, once they were there, they'd done the protesting and all the remained were the consequences.

So now I'm back putting trying to add to the tension in the first 100 pages. Fortunately, it can be done. Just inserting a few scenes, not overbearing, but changing the tone of the story.

Later: So now that I've done that, I need to go back and slant everything in that direction.

I think I got lucky. It could have proven to be insoluble.

I'm pretty pleased with the solution I crafted. It doesn't contradict anything I've done before, just puts a different spin on them.

It does mean a detailed rewrite, but the book probably needed that anyway.

One more new scene to write and then on to the rewrite.

Finished the last new scene. I've spent three days collating all the different readers and editor suggestions. Start the rewrite tomorrow. Mostly all there.

I like this book. 

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