Yeah, it's been a while since I've done a writing progress update, isn't it? I confess I've gotten a little knocked off the tracks with respect to blogging in the past month and I keep reminding myself that one of my New Year's Irresolutions was not to beat myself up about that. (Poor Abiel LaForge is sitting there on the front lines waiting for the war to end.) So where are we...?
Looking at my revised chapter outline, I have two and a half chapters to go to complete my zeroeth draft of Floodtide. "Zeroeth draft" because there are still a bunch of placeholders and "expand this"s and "this needs to get moved elsewhere"s. But in two and a half chapters, I'll have written through to the end of the book. That's something.
When people ask me about my writing process, my usual response is, "I'll let you know when I've used the same one twice." And Floodtide is no exception. None of my previous first drafts were quite this chaotic, in part because I've usually broken my rule about "no re-writing until I'm done writing." For the two previous books, having a complete draft felt like I could predict fairly solidly how soon I'd be ready to present the manuscript to my publisher. This time, I haven't even sent off a formal proposal letter yet because I have no good estimate of how long it's going to take me to whip the story into shape.
Part of that is because I plan to go out and hire myself a developmental editor who knows something about what a good YA fantasy should look like to help me make Floodtide the best book it can be. And I don't know how long that process will take, either finding the right person or working through the revisions with them. It's a bit of an unsettled feeling, but since I want Floodtide to be a book that can be an independent introduction to Alpennia, I figure it's worth taking the time.
(Oh, and the river isn't actually still rising at this point. The waters have started to recede. But not the troubles.)