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Next Project

Culture shock (or method shock) time. The book I just finished was almost entirely Pants. I had a general goal in mind for the hero, and chapter by chapter (sometimes scene by scene) I dreamed up what would happen next.

Now I'm going back to a book I wrote three chapters of 12 years ago. I sort of started in on this book a couple of years back (maybe three), and I see what got in my way. I was very busy getting a house ready to sell and then getting it sold--a process which took more than two years out of my life, along with trying to keep up with business at the same time.

I knew this book was an ambitious project, and today I was reminded of how ambitious. I have two warring factions of 23 characters each. Why so many? LOTS of them are going to die, and I need someone left at the end to write about. Each of these 46 characters need some history, personality, current motivations, and relationships with at least a few of the other characters. Then I need to plot around when each gets introduced, what they contribute to the story, and if they die--how they die. It's a daunting task.

So as opposed to "seat of my pants" for the just finished project, to succeed in meeting my goals, this book has to be meticulously plotted before I start writing Chapter Four, because the first death or two needs to happen in Chapter Four.

Talk about going from one extreme to the other!

So I downloaded both Scrivener and yWriter today to start testing them out. I put several characters into yWriter first, and I'm about to start the Scrivener tutorial. So I'll work with both just enough to get a feel for which one will help me plan and track the character paths, then go with that one.

Actually, by the time I flesch out the information I mentioned about about each character, I'll pretty much have the book plotted. I already have a framework for why the conflict has arisen, and why it continues despite casualties on each side and many who wish it to end. I know how the hero is going to unravel the mystery of why it's happening, and his plan to end it. So once the character paths are defined, each of their contributions to the story will carry the plot along. I managed to leave myself with a 1300 world synopsis from before to remind myself of all this. LOL

I do have one hurdle to clear. First person. I have to decide how to narrate complicated machinations, some of which will have to happen outside his ability to witness, and still make detailed, compelling scenes of them.

Wish me luck again! LOL

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