Saturday, February 19, 2011

NaNoEdMo: The Spanner RePlanner, or The Ream of Editing Notes

Sorry, fellow FAWMers, but I've been distracted. Spanner's been occupying my muse lately, even in the face of my WriMo Burnout back in JanNoWriMo.

What's been occupying me this month instead of songs? A huge new set of editing notes I'm calling the Spanner RePlanner. NaNoEdMo is coming, and the muse is determined to get a head start on it.

I've found myself unable to complete Chapters 22 and 23, leaving their first drafts still fragmentary. That's because the Spanner I've written so far has been a first draft. Sure, it's the best first draft I've ever written. But even though the writing may be awesome for a first draft, first drafts by definition still suck. And so the events of Chapters 22 and 23 remain orphans, unforeshadowed. And that's why I can't finish them until EdMo.

Here's what I did:
  1. I neglected certain very important characters.
  2. I left other characters out entirely.
  3. I neglected various important plotlines; some I left hanging.
  4. I wrote certain scenes without knowing that they were even part of important storylines at all.
  5. I left out important themes and gave others far less urgency than they deserve.
For example, here's two storylines that should be important throughout Book 1 but only got one chapter apiece:
  1. The big Corporate shindig in Chapter 1 (which I fused with the 1984 Apple Macintosh commercial), which serves as Spanner's "Spectacular Entrance". But though Spanner appears later, not a single scene follows it up in any later chapter of the first draft.
  2. The general strike during the election in Chapter 23. There's no lead-up to the strike itself, and very little to the election.

And thus the RePlanner. It includes the original writing notes I wrote for JulNoWriMo and NaNoWriMo. I'll be using it to rework the first draft's plot and put in what I left out. Of course, I'll have to kill some of my "darlings" and remove various scenes, and perhaps even entire plotlines, that are far less important. The result is that the plot will finally be the equal of the style. I'll have something publishable at last.

No comments:

Post a Comment