Category Archive: New Project

On Finishing a Sequel

I have started lots of sequels in my life. None of them ever got to the halfway point, either because I lost interest in the characters or because it was too obviously just the same old same old story. Some of them would make decent books on their own if I went back to them, …

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Epigraph for Book 2

Yes, the newspapers were right: snow was general all over Ireland. It was falling on every part of the dark central plain, on the treeless hills, falling softly upon the Bog of Allen and, farther westward, softly falling into the dark mutinous Shannon waves. It was falling, too, upon every part of the lonely churchyard …

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Time for an excerpt

The altar stone drew her. It was rough and rusty-red, an oblong piece of rock fallen from a mountainside, cracks and fissures in it and one end narrowing to a point. It was five feet or so wide at the widest point, and eight or nine feet long. The sides had not been shaped at …

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A Day in the Life

Today I cut over 3000 words.  Ouch.  It would hurt more if it had been good stuff that just didn’t fit, but it was pretty much crap.  I also relearned that if none of the changes I make to a bad sentence improve it, I probably don’t need the sentence.  The good side to this …

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Acts of Valor (When Discretion Won’t Do)

So the problem with having a protagonist who is neither careless nor stupid is that it becomes difficult for him to get trapped into disaster by the villain.  He has to overlook something, but it can’t be obvious, which means it is not obvious to me either.  Also, most of what I’m working on now …

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Scum and Villainy Part II

So here’s part of the scene that I wound up writing to solve the aforementioned villain problem.  I think it’s more interesting than chopping someone apart with a machete: Making the threat had given him back vitality that had ebbed with the long day.  He took a bite of goat meat.  He traced a pattern …

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Scum and Villainy

Right now I am a little stuck trying to think of villainous acts my villain can do that don’t consist of just killing more people.  That’s not very interesting.  (Or at least I can’t make it so.)  The problem is that he’s a loner type so he doesn’t interact with many people, which means that …

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New Project

Last week I got a very long e-mail from my agent about the current project, which boiled down to Good stuff here, but where’s your plot?  So I chopped a bunch, essentially combining the first half of chapter 1 with the last third of chapter 3, and sent off the new chapter 1.  Today’s e-mail …

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Plane rides are good for brutal revisions

I’m about 2000 words less on the sequel than I was before I got on a plane Thursday.