Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Backtracking

I haven't been able to settle to anything after finishing The Trickster Society, which surprises me. I finished it some two months ago and NaNo's coming up. I should have dug into something new by now, but I can't leave Trickster Society alone. I keep going back in and rereading parts of it. I even did a full editing pass earlier this week.

Last night I realized the problem. It's not done. This is not a good realization when you've got 20-some queries out to agents.

The problem is the beginning, which is unusual for me. Usually I have trouble with endings. The book starts way too slow and the inciting incident doesn't occur until a third of the way in. I spent an hour last night trying to figure out how to rearrange a very closely-plotted book to make things start faster, and finally moved the book's opening back about twelve hours of book time.

Now there's a brand new first chapter where something alarming takes place, which hopefully will add a sinister pall over events in the next few chapters. I was able to introduce the shadow people properly in the new first chapter, too. I plan to cut several thousand words from the scavenger hunt since it's no longer as important (and just drags on way too long). I'm also shortening chapters when I can, which will help the pacing seem faster.

I wish I'd done this before I'd started querying agents. I should know better than to start querying so soon after finishing revisions, since I always come back to a book after a few months to fix stuff. But there are still a lot of agents out there I haven't queried yet.

7 comments:

Aaron Polson said...

There are always more agents. They multiply like Harry Potter garden gnomes.

Cate Gardner said...

As, Aaron said, there are plenty more agents out there. Plus, if any ask for a partial or a full, you can always tell them about the changes.

K.C. Shaw said...

Aaron--That was an interesting mental image. I picture grubby little garden gnomes with tiny cups of coffee and pencils stuck behind their ears.

Cate--I do have one agent with a full. I may very well finish the changes and email her the new version with many apologies.

Natalie L. Sin said...

*reads above* I'm pretty sure the cups of coffee would be huge, regardless of gnome size.

K.C. Shaw said...

They would have to use thimbles for coffee cups, probably. The full-sized mugs would make coffee spas.

Richard said...

HB!

K.C. Shaw said...

Tnx!