A Little Magic Would Be Handy


Wanna See Me Turn a Book into a Diptych? Just tap the magic wand on the cover three times....and presto chango! Gahhh...I wish it were that easy!

If I had realized when I decided that the opening chapters of my novel needed a little fleshing out, that I was committing myself to writing a novel length prequel that would change much of the landscape for the main novel (thereby adding the prospect of another draft to that one), I probably wouldn’t have embarked on it.

After all, Avenging Glory was pretty much complete. I just intended to add a wee bit more colour, depth and detail to part one – because I was setting up one of my major characters and had just breezed through his potentially fascinating backstory with an “and then this happened” approach. And he deserved SO much more.

 As I worked on it, I kept finding valid rationales for dramatizing bits of this backstory and adding new scenes and characters, and before I knew it, I’d added several chapters. And then more, and a bit more...and damn! A year after starting that project – I am approaching the 65,000 word mark of draft 2 of the prequel. And I still have a ways to go!

 I haven’t decided yet if I’m happy about the way things are working out – but I do feel  that this book needed to be written. Avenging Glory wouldn’t make as much sense or be as much fun without it.  This way, I can publish it as a diptych, possibly giving away Book 1 (tentatively titled The Human Template) to get people to buy Avenging Glory – which is a great promotional idea. And it will likely be easier to sell a publisher on a completed two book series with books of 80K and 110K than it would be to sell a 160K multi-genre first novel. Which is where it sat last May. So this process definitely has an upside.

The downside? I am not a fast writer. My process requires four to five drafts before the work is ready to put out into the world. I cannot get away with shortcuts. If I leave something in third draft state, readers glom onto it pretty quickly. And I still have 10-15K words to the end of Human Template. Most of those will be first and second draft words. So, two more months, to the end of draft four if I push myself to my limits.

But perhaps what scares me the most is finding some new way to procrastinate once I get there. To my dear partner, Laura, who asks every time I get out of household chores because I’m immersed in a marathon writing session, “Is it done yet?” – I promise. Not yet honey, but I’m so close I can taste it. I’ve been tasting it for a year now, and like a fine wine, it’s just getting more and more complex.

Just a few more months...and I will have finished two books instead of one. The Arboreal World Diptych – an epic worth waiting for. Although maybe I should expand this...

No, no, just kidding. Really.

Photo courtesy of Pexels / Nitin Aria
Get the scoop on my new novel, The Human Template at https://dalelsproule.com.

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