While I’m not completely finished with my revision of Calyn’s story, I did manage to make it through all the way to my notes at the end of the manuscript. And even though I’m going to keep smoothing and polishing the manuscript for the next three weeks, I feel like I can say that I have a complete draft of this latest revision. I know everything that happened even if I need to fill in some transitions and descriptions. I also know that I’ll have to tweak at least one conversation. And then there’s this new character who essentially popped out of the book’s chorus to take a small, but significant role in the darkest moment, climax and resolution. This isn’t the first time that a character has arrived late and insisted on stepping into the action. But at least this character didn’t threaten to take over the story.
A quick check in the Calyn category revealed that I started this revision almost exactly eighteen months ago. The first chapter literally took months as I struggled to find my way into the story. Fortuantely, my live group at the 28th Street Schuler’s in Grand Rapids gave me direction and approval. The manuscript grew from about 42,000 words to 62,000 words. I confess that I had some dreams of finishing this story up a year ago. I had, after all, already come up with a new opening. But this sent waves and ripples throughout the entire manuscript that I had to address. Other characters came along. I also devoted close to four months of that time revising SUSPECT with some horrifically tight skeds. Yeah, yeah. Excuses. Excuses. I’ve always been slow.
I might still be lacking some transitions when the whole manuscript goes to my Schuler group for a complete read. But there is absolutely no point in making things so polished that picking the words and scenes apart for important changes is impossible.