The planning for The Fantasy Novel is going well. Extremely well, in fact.
The world history I developed some years ago is thorough and will not be discarded. I know how our world and the fantasy world are connected. The characters don’t and the reader won’t either. Not in this book, anyway. Maybe in the sequel, if there is one (and there’s no guarantee). Of course, I see gaps in places I never saw before. Those gaps leave questions that I need to answer. Some of the things I’ve been researching over the last few weeks are herbal medicine, how to find edible food, different types of religion and politics, what is needed to make ink, and magic. It’s been interesting.
However, the characters are a different matter. They lack substance. I know these characters well, but I realise that the reader does not. With this in mind, I see characters without a past, without deep motivations. They are going through the actions, but that’s not enough. Currently, I am working on the character profiles; writing voice journals and finding out what makes them who they are today. It’s interesting to see these journals take shape. Knowing why they act the way they do is important for me to know, and for the reader to discover along the way.
The research phase will continue until I feel I have everything covered. I’m in no rush and I want to do this right. Besides, this book is my main commitment this year.
Finally, I am pleased to say that I have dedicated on average at least two hours every day (except one day when I was unwell with a stomach bug) to The Fantasy Novel. I feel excited because my focus is real and complete, but more importantly, fresh and eager. I feel no pressure, no uncertainty, which only confirms that now is the right time for this book.