Lucy Has Opinions – Finding the Focus

In the grand writers tradition, I am going to deal with my writing problems by blogging about them, instead of actually writing…

I’m editing the first draft of the third Freya Snow book and it’s the messiest first draft I’ve written in a while.

But, as I’m sitting down to sort through it all and wonder what was missing, I’m realising that I didn’t really know what I wanted from the story.

It was literally:

Thing A happens.

And then Thing B happens.

That was all I had.

This very much drives home the idea that I am not a pantser. I used to be, but then my old stories would often end up in as much of a mess as this one.

There’s no structure or narrative flow. Things happen without foreshadowing. Plot points appear at the end which have barely been touched on before the final chapter…

This is all fixable with editing, it’s just been a while since I’ve had to be this extensive with my edits. Since I’ve looked at something and gone “yeah, bloody hell, this is a mess.”

Book three exists to resolve a plot thread that has been going since the first book.

But it had no focus beyond that. Freya had no arc other than resolving this thread, and side characters had arcs that just sort of appeared and then disappeared.

So editing is now about finding that focus. Figuring out where characters are and where I want them to end up.

And, as with every time I wrote one of these books, I’m probably going to pull forward a storyline from a later book, because I really can’t put it off during the events of this one.

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