When something is finished, that means it’s dead, doesn’t it? I believe in everlastingness. I never finish a painting – I just stop working on it for a while. -Arshile Gorky
I was fired not too long ago. Rather than look for a new job or trying to find work on my own, I decided to work on a couple of books that have been kicking around in my head. My thought was that these were going to be fun little books about vampires and I could bang them out in no time. Sure enough the rough drafts were mostly completed in a matter of weeks. I’m wrapping up the third, and for the time being at least, the final book in this particular series.
Which leaves me going back to my first completed novel. A story about love, betrayal, and the end of the world. I was flying high when I finished the first draft. I was still feeling pretty positive after the first two revisions. I felt very good once I got a bit of polishing done. But then I went back and found all these odd little things I had missed. Open loops that needed to be closed, names I had changed at some point that were still appearing in odd places, and an overwhelming desire to put backstory before real story.
During the first season of Rosanne, we saw Dan building a boat in his garage. This bit of business was quickly tossed out the window, as Dan was a bit of a loser and building a boat shows an amazing amount of faith in the future. My novel is kind of like Dan’s boat, I’m working on it, but I wonder if it will ever be finished.
I keep taking breaks from editing and working on one of the other books. I only have a few thousand more words to go on the third book’s rough draft and I like it best of all now. I have a small subplot to add to the second book which is turning out to be fun. The first book, well, I’m conflicted.
I watch a lot of movies and TV, but I also do a lot of reading. I watched Captain America II the other day and hundreds of people died on screen, not a single one meant anything. I’m also watching Game of Thrones, where hundreds of people die, but a small handful of those deaths are very meaningful indeed. Then there are hundreds of amazing books where no one dies at all. Of course, in my vampire book, most of my people are already dead.
Going through that first book is a bit of work. Line by line, word by word, image by image. It’s a little over a 120,000 words at the moment. I can’t do it all in one sitting, but for some reason, I always think I can. I have looked into Agents and many want a synopsis and that’s like hard work. Especially since I keep changing things.
I’ll have to give one more good going over and then say that’s that. Easier said than done.