Monthly Archives: June 2017

A Way Forward

Greetings! Things are progressing at a great pace, and I’m beginning to piece together a plan of evaluation. The first draft of book 1, Katsukami (working title), was completed nearly 10 years ago. It’s hard for me to believe how fast time has flown; however, watching the clock is a waste of time. Dwelling on lost time will not get pages reviewed, scenes organized or new content drafted.

Must press ever onward!

Series Structure

In an effort to begin looking for a place to dive in this very large universe again, I am faced with looking at the basics – the structure of the series’ narrative. Currently, the story is broken up into 9 main parts, where part 1 is the earliest events of the narrative and part 9 is the farthest on the right of the timeline. The first 3 parts make up a type of prologue. Parts 4 through 9 make up the main storyline (you may say, present day). Each book of the series contains 3 of the 9 parts – equalling out to a trilogy.

One may be thinking, “Sounds like there’s not much to consider as far as structure goes.” On the surface, this could be true. I could write the books in chronological succession, with the first book on the timeline released first. For many reasons, however, that would simply not work as the story stands now.

1. There are a number of plot devices that the first 3 parts reveal that would make events in the subsequent 6 parts predictable. What I mean here is, the main narrative is found in parts 4 – 9 for a reason – one I won’t get into here.

2. The main character serves little purpose in parts 1 – 3. Releasing a book as first of a series with the immediate sequel introducing a new main character would not be attractive to readers unless executed perfectly.

3. The points on the timeline are not equal distance-wise. What I mean by this is that part 1-3 are set a considerable amount of time before part 4-9. In addition, there are decent sized gaps between part 1, 2 and 3 as well. On the other hand, Parts 4 – 9 all happen in succession.

“So, what structure did you go with originally? You did write a big chunk of the story, right?”

The current structure of the series is to take a piece of the past events (parts 1, 2 or 3) to open each book followed by 2 parts from the main storyline (parts 4 – 9). Here, let me give you a visual. Below, I will list each book and follow with which parts are included, in the order as they appear in the book.

Book 1: Part 3, Part 4, Part 5

Book 2: Part 2, Part 6, Part 7

Book 3: Part 1, Part 8, Part 9

The idea behind this is to show the “past” backwards – the further back, the more the reader can discover the origin story… which provides answers to numerous plot points. The “present” is revealed like a typical narrative… and proceeds forward chronologically. Each book is given a slice of the past as an opening which coincides with much of the story revealed in the “present.”

Now, I am faced with a number of options concerning structure.

1. Keep it the way it is

2. Cut the prologue pieces, expand the narrative of the “present,” and release the “past” (parts 1 – 3) as its own book (probably just before the final book).

3. Expand the story – including yet unwritten/unplanned content between parts 3 and 4. This possibility, while allowing the narrative to progress naturally (start to finish), is not preferable – at least with the story in its current state.

4. Release part 1 – 3 as their own books (each). Expanding these stories to short novel status would not require drastic story changes. Part 3 would be released first, followed by book 1 (part 4 and 5). Next, Part 2 short novel would be released, followed by book 2 (Part 6 and 7). Finally, Part 1 (short novel), and finishing off with book 3 (parts 8 and 9).

Blah Blah Blah.

I know this is not a very interesting bit of information. I also know that making a decision on structure of release maybe shouldn’t even be a primary concern. My issue is that, every time I sit down to edit, I’m annoyingly distracted by my brain trying to work out story structure issues. Until I make a decision on this, I can’t go back and work on editing the narrative already written and move on to drafting new content.

What Is Currently Drafted?

Parts 2, 3, 4, 5 and most of 6 are drafted. This means book 1’s draft is complete with book 2 being nearly 60% complete. Of course, this is under current structure rules.

I currently have part 7 outlined. Part 1, 8 and 9 are roughly outlined with the main points of the story already decided. In addition, a specific plot point in part 7 has gifted me with a slew of potential content from which I would love to create a stand alone series.

Decisions To Be Made

Choosing the structure to a point that will allow me to move forward is the next step. I know that, until I pick a direction (however temporary it is), I will not be able to put my entire effort into edits and new content.

My current deadline for choosing the Move-Forward Series Structure is:

Before 5 July 2017. My plan is to write an update post weekly. As of now, I will strive to have a new post with updates/decisions made by 5 July.

Thank you all for stopping by! For those of you who actually made it to the end… bravo! This blog is mostly for me… I find it cathartic. So, anyone who actually reads my ramblings through to completion… deserves some kind of prize.

Until next time!

Back Again…?

With the insanity that has been my work schedule over the past 5 or 6 years, my blogging time has clearly taken a hit.  In addition, finding any time to work on the book has been difficult. Turns out, being married, having a son (who is now 4 years old and HUGE), being in the Air Force (I’ve been promoted to Technical Sergeant and recently selected to commission) and finding a number of temporary hobbies has filled up my schedule.

I have attempted, on numerous occasions, to sit down and pour over the story.  After not writing religiously for a few years requires one to review contents of their work to remember what they wrote.  Yes.  It has been so long that I actually forgot much of the book’s finer details.  Every time I start rereading, I find a number of things I don’t like, many that I love and several surprises – I like when I read something I forgot, especially when I love it!

So, why am I back now?  My audience is all but gone, I’m not any less busy than I was before (probably, I’ve never been busier in my entire life) and I won’t be able to write new content from book 2 until I review book 1 in its entirety.  So what’s the point?

Answer:  I’m going to make the time.

In 2006, I began this journey… piecing together a story, a universe, based solely on a dream.  I spent a great deal of time that first year, writing like a fiend and drafting the entire first book. The amount of work I put into it was astounding – and I, in good conscience, cannot allow my hard work and dedication to go to waste.

So I have decided to make myself a schedule.  I will set targets for myself, deadlines to keep my progress on track.  What’s stopping me from quitting or taking another half-decade hiatus?  I will use this blog to keep me on target.  I will summarize my impressions of each chapter, document areas I want re-written (without too many spoilers, of course) and keep myself accountable.

The tale of Kyosora cannot… and will not… go unwritten.  As arrogant as this may sound, the world deserves to listen to my story.  I don’t want to be the reason they never get that chance.

A new post will be written here soon, in which I hope I will be able to articulate my short-term goals.  As I will not be rereading blog posts (doing that will just be taking time away from working on the actual book), there MAY be contradictions about what I say going forward and what I may have said in the past regarding the book.  They are not intentional.  Memory is a fickle thing, and mine is filled with a lot more things now than it was 5 or 6 years ago.

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