Well, I’ve filled my quota for week 1 of the write-a-thon. Today’s totals are as follows:
- McWar: 1300 words (current wordcount 7363 words, but remember I began this piece before the beginning of the write-a-thon)
- To the Happy Country…: 2050 words (current wordcount: 10,986 words)
Daily Total: 3350
Weekly Total: 15,679
The big news is that a lot of rearrangement has happened in To the Happy Country… I realized that the prologue I was writing wouldn’t actually work as a prologue, but most of it could be rewoven into the body of Book II of the novel, so I did a lot of rearranging. It’s a very tricky adjustment in some ways, but in other ways it’s much better — I’m able to get in all the snapshots I need, without the drudgery of making people walk from room to room. (I seem to recall a past teacher quoting Chekov on the difficulty and boredom of stage management in fiction, but I haven’t a direct quote on the subject.) The big challenge for me now is maintaining some of the tone of the original in the second book: it’s one thing to satirizegood-guy/bad-guy battles and intercultural misunderstandings… it’s quite another to maintain it in a torture cell or a gulag, without losing some of the dramatic point of bringing your reader into a gulag. I think I shall give some Joseph Heller a read this weekend as well; black humor seems the way to go.
In any case, that simplifies the structure I’ll be using for To the Happy Country… to, I think, three main sections, though those shall be subdivided further and I doubt I’ll make the tripartite structure explicit. This weekend, I shall not be writing… I will be grading, as well as taking a break, and also doing some more North-Korea related research.
Oh, and though I’m declaring McWar finished, it still needs a new title and some tidying before I’ll even show it to my crit group, let alone consider it “really finished”. I’m hoping to get it down to 4000 words. I think it’s actually doable, too.
Tomorrow, I’ll post an excerpt. For now, I need to get away from this computer!