As the holidays approach, my free time to write is being squeezed by invitations to be with friends and family. All good things. Regardless, I’ve been making good forward progress, finishing chapters 15 and 16, “Recovering” and “Passion Punished” this week. It has been enjoyable to go back through these scenes—I still love my story, so I guess that’s good.
The content of “Recovering” didn’t change a lot, although I combined short, related scenes, brought the writing itself up to my current standard, and added some text to round out some of the interactions. It didn’t need a lot of work, but I am forever vigilant about keeping things consistent as plot changes happen.
I moved “Passion Punished” from Part 2 into Part 3. I did this to split up the body snatching that Rahl does—I had them back-to-back before. In this revision, I have added some limitations on the wizards, where practicing their magics can leave them weak for a while. Baldru’s need to recover went into my decision to move the chapter, as well. I’ve been fleshing out my mythology around wizards, witches and demons, which is a really good thing, and this idea of recovery time came up. I didn’t change much of the storyline, except at the end, where I added two new scenes.
The new scenes in “Passion Punished” added transition of time to get to the next big battle in Trandilon. Now that I’ve been keeping better track of time passages—and adding content to occupy the time between these battle scenes—I’ve also been keeping close track of the lunar phase, especially since so much of the story takes place at night. Sometimes the light—or lack, thereof—of the moon is important to the scene. Full, bright moon; pale moonlight from a quarter or even crescent moon; no moonlight whatsoever. The moon became a character in the story, much like the wagon has.
I took advantage of one of the new scenes to introduce a character, a witch—I want more women in the story, and it seemed like a good opportunity. I’m not sure yet if she will come into play in this book, but I want her for The Final Battle (in what is currently Book Four: The Golden Key). She and Maglin meet—via amulet—in this scene. It will give Maglin another witch to collaborate with. It might change the story up a little bit when Gentu goes off with Maglin in couple of more chapters. Of course, that leave wide open the possibility that I’ll revisit this chapter in the not too distant future.
I have been making Gillan be more vocally in charge of the warriors and, in the scene “Gentu’s Trauma,” she pushes back at Coltan for not standing his share of watches—he spent all day and night with the injured Gentu. With both of them off the watch roster, I realized it would be difficult for the four remaining warriors to pair up on watches—they would each get only four hours of sleep during the night.
I need to give Toran more responsibility as well—right now, besides being an entirely adequate warrior, his only talent seems to be locating safe, suitable places for the group to camp at night, well, beyond being a good lover to Gillan, although I don’t tend to be a voyeur with them like I am with Coltan and Gentu. I might have to go there, just for balance.
In terms of making my goal of finishing Part 3: Travels and Battles, by the end of the year, I might still make it. But the holidays can be strange times. Wish me luck with that.
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