Saturday, August 16, 2014

YA Guy Participates in... The Work in Progress #WIP Blog Tour!

YA Guy's been tagged by the prolific YA/NA author Carol Oates for the #WIP Blog Tour. Here's how it works:

Provide the link back to the post by the person who nominated you. Write a little about and give the first sentences of the first three chapters of your current WIP, then nominate four other writers to do the same.

Here's the link to Carol's post, where you can read about her three current works in progress. My hat's off to you, Carol!

In my own case, I've recently completed the (very!) rough draft of the final book in a planned three-book series that begins with Survival Colony 9. Book Two in the series, Scavenger of Souls, is in the hands of my editor. Book Three, Skaldi City, is in my own hands, and there's lots to do before it'll be ready to show anyone else.

As I've probably told you, I'm pretty much a pure pantser: I just sit down and write, with very little if any planning beforehand. That method generates considerable creativity, but it also produces supremely messy drafts. In the case of Skaldi City, I was planning to write a 75,000-80,000 word draft, but after months of struggle, I just plowed ahead and let it come in at a skimpy 67,000. So obviously, much of my revising will involve fleshing it out, deepening scenes and character relationships and world-building and so forth.

But this being the final book in the series, I also struggled to resolve everything in a logical and satisfactory way. There was much I needed to resolve--my narrator Querry Genn's family history, several romantic relationships I left hanging in Book Two, and (not least) the fate of the world--so wrapping it all up is no insignificant task! already have several pages of revision notes, and having looked the draft over, I've discovered certain embryonic ideas lurking there that I'll have to draw to the surface. I'm not concerned about the revision process; I just know it'll take time, and I'm hopeful I'll have it done by year's end.

And so, having provided you with A Portrait of the Pantser as a (not very) Young Man, I offer for your enlightenment the first sentences of the first three chapters of Skaldi City. Not sure these will make any sense out of context, but here goes!

In the darkness of my cell, a woman’s face floated before me.

Korah. A girl I'd known back home. A girl I'd loved.

The thing that looked like my half-brother approached the circle of Skaldi, which fell away to let him through.

I hereby nominate the following writers to follow me:

Jaye Robin Brown

Lisa Maxwell

Kat Ross

Sarah J. Schmitt

Take it away, gang!


  1. I was at this very same point a few months ago. I remember being really anxious over it. I felt worried about tying things up for all the characters who'd been introduced in the prior two books, plus the new characters from Book 3. (I was even wishing I'd killed more people off so I didn't have to deal with them ... ha, ha.) My first draft was a horrible mess, too, but I pulled it together and so will you!

    Now I'm waiting for my edit letter. It's late ... *chews fingernails*

    1. I know exactly what you mean--I introduced like 10 new characters in Book Two, and now it's like, how do I deal with all of them?

      And the dreaded editorial letter.... Yeah. In my (very) limited experience, it's not as bad as you fear, but waiting is still utterly anxiety-producing. Good luck!