In the last few posts for Bring Out Your Dead, I mentioned March Madness and a new novel. That novel turned out to be When She Calls. This novel has an interesting history, or at least I think so. You'll have to tell me in the comments if you agree :).
Carnifex Press (http://www.carnifexpress.net/store.php
) put out a call for short stories about assassins for Clash of Steel: Book Two - Assassin. Assassins have always held an odd fascination for me; a childhood spent creeping about getting into trouble and not getting caught probably had something to do with it ;). At the same time, I was running a 5th Wheel marathon at Forward Motion on character building (a request that had me a little lost seeing as I didn't work that way). I decided to try an flesh out the characters for my germ of an idea because it hadn't quite solidified into a viable story.
Now this was a complete disaster. I realized early on that all the fleshing out had expanded the scope of my story well beyond short story length and into novel territory. Thankfully, a bit of the backstory turned out to be a standalone that I could submit. It wasn't accepted and hasn't found a home yet, but I still think it's a strong story.
Anyway, so I ignored the novel in the making and went off onto other tasks. However, the story just wouldn't leave me alone and I thought it might make for a good marathon novel. Then I started outlining it and came to the shocking conclusion it wasn't one novel, but two. Okay, I thought I could survive this, but I was not going to be ready for NaNo, a realization that proved true. However, on the March Madness challenge (Day 2, I believe), I started to write Assassins, Book 1 or When She Calls.
Then life interfered and the story has been going in trickles ever since. I've set a goal of 1k a week in the hopes of continuing forward motion. We'll see how that works, though the fact that I'm writing this after 11pm on Saturday, having just finished my 1k (1200 actually) does not bode well.
So, on to present day and When She Calls:
This entry was written 6-15-06:
Well, I'm not making much progress on When She Calls because I've been pulled in other directions. I'm in the middle of selling my house and moving to another state, as well as the Forward Motion short story challenge that I treat myself to every year. Still, I started back this week and slipped into their world easily, something that gives me hope for finishing before the end of the year.
There's one thing that has worried me, though. I don't remember if I mentioned it before (I hadn't cause I wasn't blogging this :p), but my one concern was that this book was coming in short. It was a complicated plot with many layers and multiple POV, so I'd thought it would resolve on its own, but as I've been writing, the scenes have stayed mostly short and very little growth in the expected word count has occurred. Now, I'd prefer about 100k for this book rather than my usual 120k, but 70k made me nervous.
So here I am, scanning the outline to figure out what I'm writing and I discover a line that has absolutely no foundation in the book. "Grief, anger and hatred fought for dominance of his heart and hatred won. He knew who to blame. The goddess of life, of healing, hadn't saved his family. Though he could not touch a goddess, he could make her suffer. He raced through the streets that he knew as well as any who haunted them, heading for Noonrani's temple." Okay, all very good and necessary for the plot and everything so this should make me happy, right?
Sure. But there's one wee little difficulty. His family isn't dead! I have no idea how this happened, but somehow when I was putting together the outline, I knew that bit so well that I never bothered to put it in :p.
For the moment, my writing has stopped so I can clean up the outline and make this HUGE continuity flaw go away. I usually don't have this problem because of the outline, but in this case I had a mental hiccup. The good news is that I don't have to go back. I've decided that the loss of his family happens after his friend dies and even happens BECAUSE his friend dies. Look at that! New tension and threads tying together and all. It's grand, it's great, and it's one of the reasons I outline: to see how all these threads tie together. Only it's bizarre to trip over this at the writing stage.
Don't worry, I'll get over it now that I'm back on track ;).
17 complete - 30% of the novel
83786 Estimated length - with an average of 1496 words per scene.
25435 Current Total