Back to the grind, and killing my darlings.

Hi friends, here’s another quick update. Our 10-day vacation to the Caribbean was fun but marred by the sudden onset of the flu a few days in, which sadly kept us from doing any diving (you can’t dive if you can’t clear your ears and sinuses). My wife and I toughed it out though and we managed to do a fair bit of sightseeing, and even some snorkling. Most importantly, we also managed to spend some quality time with several of our dear friends who still live there (and got none of them sick, to the best of my knowledge!). I am mostly recovered from the flu but have a lingering cough that is driving me crazy. Thankfully, spring is not too far away!

I only completed about 16 hours of writing last week spread over 2.5 days…not my best effort. But it was the best I could manage between the lingering flu bug and the handful of minor hardships that found their way to me last week, including a busted pipe that flooded half my basement. I share this mostly for the benefit of my fellow writers, who fully understand how annoying it can be when life gets between you and your work! The good news is that this week is off to a great start and I intend to make a lot of progress toward finishing my first revision of The Fourth World.

It’s taking longer than I planned because I wasn’t happy with the pace of certain chapters and have decided to rewrite them. If you have read Restoration, you know that I like to keep things moving in my stories. As I read The Fourth World, I realized that I was spending way too much time narrating/telling vs. revealing/showing through my characters. So, I am currently working to turn about 30,000 words of boring fluff (out of 110,000 total words) into about 12-15,000 words of interesting story you’ll actually enjoy reading.

I did the same thing with Restoration and I’m glad I did. They call it “killing your darlings” in the script-writing business, and its probably one of the toughest things for a new writer to master. No matter how much you love the words (and the many hours of hard work they represent), they have to go if they don’t help move the story forward in a way that keeps the reader interested and fully engaged!

In addition to The Fourth World, I am currently reading The Mazes of Magic by Jack Massa and Rise and Grind by Daymond John. I’ll post full reviews on Amazon when I’m done, but I’ve read enough of both to confidently recommend them. After all, you need something to keep you busy while you wait patiently for my next book to hit the shelves, right?


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