Thursday, May 17, 2007

Passing the 20K mark.

I decided to take a break from looking at my hook tonight, and I managed to write another 800 words on my actual manuscript for ALDEN RIDGE. This actually put me past the 20K word mark, so that's a very exciting milestone. At this point, everything written thus far has a pretty high level of polish already, so I feel confident that not a lot will need to be cut down later. I'm getting much better at writing tighter prose in my first pass, too.

The most unique thing about the content that I was writing tonight is that it is the first time in this book that I'm introducing new POV characters that weren't first introduced in the presence of the main characters. That gives these scenes the feeling of an interlude, and also makes these secondary characters somewhat less likeable than if they had been gradually introduced in the presence of the main characters. That was strategically done, of course, as was the timing of when this first interlude appears.

There will be a few other such interludes from the POV of a total of three minor characters (being that this is a thriller, that seems almost necessary to the genre), but most of the book is split between the POV of Darrell, Elaine, and Darrell's daughter Lela. Darrell gets the most POV time of anyone, as he is really the main protagonist, but Elaine and Lela aren't far behind him in their centrality to the story. Interestingly, I had originally intended Elaine to be the main protagonist of the story, but Darrell turned out to be the more interesting and sympatheic character.

This sort of POV switching is very different from how I wrote THE GUARDIAN (which was all first person except for four or five third-person interludes late in the story), but that's the nature of this book. The three main characters are very interconnected, and this sort of POV switching is the only way to tell the whole story. The few interludes with more minor characters provide context, as well as some dramatic tension from the reader learning a few things that the protagonists don't yet know. And yes, I am taking great care to keep the tension high even when these minor characters are in the driver's seat.

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
20,227 / 95,000 (21.3%)


Anonymous said...

Well done on passing that big 20K milestone. That's brilliant! :)

Christopher M. Park said...

Thanks Karen! I've been wanting to hit that for some time now...