And so the progress reports march inexorably on. Two months into 2018 already. My god, my god, where does the time go? Well, in my case, into drafting the last book in my latest trilogy!
Where are we now? Well, if you recall, I have taken leave of my senses and am undertaking the insane plan of writing a rough draft of all three books in a new trilogy set in the First Law world, in the hope that I can find out exactly where I’m going and who my characters are before I prepare the first for publication, with the other two to follow in a timely manner. If you haven’t been keeping up, you can look back at recent progress reports to learn more about what I’m doing and why. But where I am with it is perhaps the more important question right now.
At new year I’d just finished a quick round of reading and revision on the first book, and come up with a general plan for the third, and a detailed plan for the first of its three parts (that is to say, the first third of this third book, since each book is split into three parts). I’ve now drafted that first part, planned the second part, and written some 20,000 words of that one. Each part works out about 60,000 words, each book therefore about 170-180,000 words, so I’m getting towards half way through this third one.
This is very fast work for me. At least twice as fast as I was working on, say, Red Country back in the day (well, if back in the day is 2011, which I suppose it’s getting to be, these days). Very rough drafts, remember, but the aim is not so much to have finished, high-quality books at this point (though even these rough drafts are OF COURSE packed with unpolished jewels), as to have a framework that makes sense and enables me to tighten up that first book, get the character voices and trajectories right, then edit and polish ready to publish, safe in the knowledge that I know exactly where I’m going and I should be able to bring the other two in in a timely manner. Lots of work still to do on what’s already written, of course. LOTS. But in my experience, getting that first draft together is the toughest part, and as far as the first draft goes, I am, somewhat unbelievably as far as I’m concerned, starting to see the light at the end of a three year tunnel.
I’m hoping over the next two months I can push through to the end of this second part, get a workable plan for the last, and embark on the final part of the trilogy. Once the entire rough draft is done, I think we can look at getting a (reasonably) firm publication date in the works for book 1, A Little Hatred, I would hope for maybe late summer 2019. But I, of course, make no promises…