The Big Four Ohhh! is the first short story I've written in a while and it shows. First, it's not exactly short, with the first draft coming in at over twelve thousand words, and second, it's written more like a novel than a short story in that the writing isn't particularly 'tight'. What I mean by that is that I'm not writing as if there is a small(ish) word limit but instead I've written it with as much detail as I could get and to hell with any limits. The actual "writing", that is the sentence structure etc, is just as 'tight' as I've always tried to write, each word chosen for its impact and meaning, and each sentence doing a job.
The biggest problem though wasn't the word count itself, it was how it was distributed. The story was written in two chapters, but while the first chapter was around five thousand words, the second chapter was close to eight thousand, which in a novel wouldn't be an issue but in a short it's too much of an imbalance.
To that end, I've looked again at the second chapter and decided that it would itself work better as two chapters. And the story as a whole would work better as three. Indeed, it would give anyone reading one-handed and looking to skip to the 'good bits' (nudge, nudge, wink, wink, know what I mean) could start at chapter three and miss out all that plot and character development crap.
This means I've still got some work to do on the piece before I release it, and that means I'll be pushing back my stated date of 31st August by a couple of weeks. Sorry about that, but I'd rather release it at its best that rush and do a half-hearted job.
Moving on, I've not looked at A Tortured Soul for a couple of weeks. I needed a break from it as writing it was becoming quite an emotionally draining experience. That's not to say I haven't been thinking about how to progress it. I have. Sometimes I wish there was a way to get my day-dreams out of my head and onto the screen without having to do all that typing malarkey.
Anyway, the point is that I've got a decent idea about how to proceed know. And it involves a past character from Westmouth coming back in a cameo appearance. Of course, if you're bringing back a past character, you really should re-familiarise yourself with her (or him), so that means I'm re-reading Kissed by a Rose.
Actually, I'm enjoying re-reading it. I know how that sounds, but after nearly five years, I'm able to look back on it as a reader instead of the author and I really am enjoying it. Yes, there are things I'd change. In fact, my editor's goggles keep slipping over my eyes and seeing too many mistakes and little changes I'd like to make, but that happens all the time when I'm reading - no matter who the author is.
But that is just the curse of being a writer I guess.
This post first appeared on my blog with images and links here