Second Drafts Are Like Soup

For about a year now I’ve been working on my third fantasy novel, the first book in a new series. The original goal was to have it out sometime during the spring. So much for that. I did finish the first draft with enough time so that I could have done a quick pass of editing. Clean up the language. Establish a few more plot points. It would have been a fine novel. Certainly not the greatest ever or anything, but good enough. But two things happened.

First off, I have an alpha reader who does an amazing job of telling me when my stuff needs to be better. That is huge. He pointed out enough flaws where correcting them would take a touch longer than I scheduled for.

The second, was that my daughter was born. This isn’t one of those stories where my daughter being born changed my perspective and now I need to write something that gives hope instead of something that is layered in grays. My children are both little angels, but I still live in the world.

Instead of that she just occupies my time. Commandeers it. She is lovely, but she has this habit of wanting to be held and for some reason when I pick her up it is really hard to put her back down. Okay, enough of this.

The point is that having a new baby in the house does not lend itself to having a lot of time to just writer, especially when you are already pretty time compromised. But, strangely enough, it does give you a lot of time to think. Newborns are demanding, but they aren’t exactly the most talkative people.

A decent amount of that thinking time has gone into figuring out how to make this next novel better. And at least around 20k words thicker. I’m still breaking down story points and trying to work on a few outlines to keep things connecting. And then there is the actual writing. And then reading and editing. And then rewriting. And reediting. Again. A few times.

Anyway, I still hope to have this book out before the end of the year. Maybe even by the end of the fall. We’ll see.

But the ultimate point, is that while there are many writing styles and various methods of putting a novel together. But there is a lot to be said for just putting it on a shelf and letting the ideas mesh and then spread out. It does tend to make the flavors of the novel both really stand out and come together at the same time.

Like soup.

Tomato Soup with Chickpeas and Pasta

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