Saturday, June 5, 2010

Chapter Three

So, over the course of this week, I've been working on Chapter Three of my urban fantasy project. I finished that chapter just a few minutes ago. Woo-hoo!

This was basically a rewrite of a chapter I had completed a few weeks ago. As I mentioned earlier in the week, I'd changed the voice of one of the characters, and the previously written chapter didn't work with her new personality. So . . . rewrite, revamp, revise (in no particular order). Then, I somehow knew that the third section of Chapter Three needed a revamp as well. Yeah, I just keep piling the work on myself. Go figure.

Still, I'm happy (perhaps not ecstatic, but happy nonetheless) with the new direction (btw, did the rewrites while listening to Glee) of the chapter . . . which sets the stage for the rest of the novel. I have the tone I want, the various conflicts for two of the characters, and a path of where I want to take these characters as they deal with their conflicts. There's also a bit of backstory interspersed throughout the first three chapters. Backstory is necessary. There's a rich history for all these characters and to not mention that history, the events that led up to their present conflicts, would diminish the story as a whole.

Yes, I know, some people think backstory is a bad thing. Perhaps it is. Perhaps it isn't. Perhaps it is up to me to decide how much, and when and where, backstory to use in my novel.

The thing is - backstory, adverbs, adjectives, blah, blah, blah - are all things that can change within a novel at any given point. I can strip it all out in the beginning and yet, every book I've read lately has these elements within the books.

So, sparingly, here and there, just not everywhere!

Have a great weekend.


Davin Malasarn said...

You have a great weekend too, Scott! I love it when a writer says "it's up to me to decide"! It's so inspiring!

Congrats on finishing the chapter.

Mary McDonald said...

I kind of like a bit of backstory.

Jemi Fraser said...

I think your advice 'sparingly, here and there, but not everywhere' is awesome :)

Scott said...

Davin - the more I read recently published books, the more I wonder why I'm paying so much attention to all these 'rules' that other authors are ignorning. Yes, some of them are established, others debut, and yet . . . So, I'm just sort of winging it right now, and maybe always, and writing what I want to write, even if it's about characters who laugh softly sometimes, and loudly other times.

Mary - I think backstory is a necessary part of writing unless you're taking a character from birth to death, and then the backstory is hapening right then/now. In any other circumstance, backstory (perhaps sparingly, pehraps not) is necessary . . . at least in my opinion.

Jemi - thanks.

Michelle Davidson Argyle said...

Congrats on finishing your chapter! I don't think backstory is bad - it's just how it's presented, and that's completely up to you. :)