The Fantasy Novel History

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.

New Year Writing Update

Yes, it is a New Year. 2020 is going to be great. This is positive thinking on my part. And no, I am not making a New Year Resolution, because resolutions are promises we never keep.

At the end of last year, I made a big decision. After many years of subscribing at Ancestry.com and building a large family tree, for my family and for my husband’s, I have decided to cancel the subscription.

Why?

There are two reasons:

  1. The cost is getting so high, it’s ridiculous.
  2. I don’t need the distraction.

Why? You may ask again.

This leads to another decision I made last year. A writing decision. In 2020 I intend to work on and publish an adult fantasy novel. In fact, the original manuscript was written 30 years ago when my boys were very young. I used to sit up late at night, tapping away at a typewriter, and later my first computer. The computer was nothing like today’s computers. The only working software was a word processor. There were no distractions and that time of my life was when I was most productive.

The manuscript I am referring to had a word count of just under 200,000 words. That is an epic tale, but I always knew it was too long.

There have been numerous rewrites, but none that I felt happy with. Eventually, I lost confidence in myself and my writing.

But I love the characters and the original storyline. So, I have made the decision to dig out the original manuscript and rework the history and the characters and rewrite/edit the plot into the (shorter) story I have always envisioned.

Over the past six days, I have been sorting through my research and world-building. To help sort all this out, I am using a locally installed wiki. Decisions are being made regarding which names and profiles I want to use for the characters. I am also in the process of adding new research material to the old stuff that I decide to keep. And, no, I am not keeping everything.

Thirty years is a long time, but I have grown as a person, as a writer, and in life experience during this time. I am not afraid to look at the original manuscript and point out the errors I made, add the information I overlooked, and delete the stuff that needs to be gone.

Now is the time for this book. I feel a renewed excitement to be working on it again. This time, I will not lose faith.

The title of the book is yet to be decided. In the meantime, I intend to refer to this project as The Fantasy Novel.