I started my new Radwinter novel, Winterdyke, for the fifty thousand word writing challenge, and I worked really hard to complete the target number of words in the month. Since then, the month of December has been busy… as you might imagine! As well as Christmas there has been the family party in Cambridgeshire, two hundred miles away a birthday, and end of year meals for the various groups we belong to… oh and the book club party here at home. I have also been editing two different anthologies for two different writing groups ready for publication next year, plus all the usual every day stuff. Do it’s no surprise that I haven’t maintained my momentum with my new book.
Since December 1st, I’ve written nearly 20,000 words which isn’t bad, all things considered. I have got to a point now when I’m stopping and going back to the beginning and going through and editing what I’ve done so far. There have been things which have changed since i started – a Gerald has become Charles, Margaret has become Karen, and two people have become one. I had wandered off down irrelevant byways and those meanderings have been excised. I’ve begun to see the pattern of the plot more clear, but I’ve also spotted a whole lot of muddle which needs tidying up.
I didn’t deliberately pad out what I was writing to get to the magic 50k, but there certainly is a lot of baggage which I need to just chop out – some of it maybe be saved for something else, but i expect most of it will disappear into wherever deleted words go.
In some ways this story is like the first novel I published, Farholm; the story of Farholm was contained in two weeks – the main characters had travelled to an island for a fortnight, and the story had to finish by the time they caught the ferry home. Winterdyke takes place over a similar period when the main character Thomas is commissioned to explore a family’s history, staying in their country home to access their files and records. He can only stay there a certain amount of time, of course because he has to get back to his family. In my Farholm story, the narrative was broken down into fourteen parts for the days of the ‘holiday’ I’,m now wondering whether it would be clearer to the reader I did the same for Winterdyke.
The end is in sight, but one thing which did strike me as I read it through, there’s not enough action!!
Here’s a link to my books; you can find Farholm, my other Easthope novels, plus other mysteries, and my Radwinter books: