I've just wrapped up the first draft of THE LOST PRINCE. Have I mentioned how much I love novellas? The scope is manageable, with an end in sight, and yet you can really dig into your characters. I started this book in early November, I believe, but I've worked on it only off and on.

I've mentioned Katriel, one of the protagonists. In romance, there are two Hero and Heroine (which are labeled H/h, not sure why). Or Hero/Hero, or Heroine/Heroine, however they like it. And there's antagonists, too, or at least some serious obstacles inherit in the relationship; TLP has both in the form of emotional baggage, the fact that they fought on opposite sides of a pivotal battle, and the Coalition: a six galaxy oppressive junta. (I realize I'm taking some liberties with the term but this is SF, and meanings of words change over time.) So far the Coalition is just a faceless military force, but if there is a next book, I think we'll have to introduce a face, someone who has it in for Katriel. Her old commander, I assume. There,  that's another thing to add in the first book as a plant for the second.

Kat has some bad damage in her past, including a dead, beloved husband and some serious emotional debt. Her culture needs a bit of mention in the story, as its a prime motivator, and that's something for revision. For instance: there is no divorce. It is literally death-till-we-part, and even so, she considers herself still married, though free for dalliances (something Aric may have to come to terms with in the next book, if there is a next book).

So anyway, I'm excited for revisions on this one, because though I do rolling revisions, I still have a bit to add (and maybe a bit to remove, as it's going to run a bit over my editor's sweet spot for word count). The additions will all take the story deeper into the characters; my favorite kind.

Sometimes I keep lists, make notes at the start at each chapter, keep notes in my plot file, or even jot key words on  scattered notecards, which are satisfying cuz I throw each one out as I install it in the book. For novels I do the big storyboard. And yet, I always feel it's a very haphazard system.

So, advice? How do you organize your revisions?


Erica Orloff said...

I have two sets of revisions. One is a set of overall macro notes (make character less timid, get hints about conspiracy closer to front of novel, whatever . . . ). For them, I don't really need detailed notes . . . just more reminders to myself.

The others are chapter by chapter notes taken during my writers' group critique sessions, along with, in that set, word choices crossed out and so on.

Then I generally start from page one, get through 25-50 pages. And then start AGAIN, to see flow, then move forward and so on to the end.

sex scenes at starbucks, said...

Yes! I forgot to mention my critters' notes! I have those too! I'm trying hard to keep up on those as I go, for sure. Next book will be hard as I'll be doing critting as I draft... Sigh. We'll see how that works.