The McShane manuscript for book four moved along nicely. The first two chapters barely saw a difference between the first draft and the third. Then came chapter three. Almost five hundred words in and I knew it wasn't working.
I tried to edit by moving the text from the back to the front, deleting a paragraph, rewriting a scene, to no avail. I had to admit. The draft sucked. So, I deleted the whole thing and started from scratch.
The end result of chapter three speaks for itself, although I'll tell you anyway. Fantastic. It moved the plot along nicely. The problem, however, is that it moved the plot in the wrong direction from the original outline. *sigh*
So, I started chapter four with a new direction that either had to be brought to heel and conform to the outline, or rethink where these characters are taking me.
Two thousand one hundred and fourteen words into the fourth chapter and I knew it couldn't be saved. The whole chapter was one long conversation between two characters. While funny in places, and intriguing for the plot line in others, it would not work. If this weren't a novella, and I had to find words to fill space, this might have been an award winner.
But it's not.
So, not only did my time frame get busted, so did my plotline. I really like where I ended with three, but I have to go back and rewrite my outline to conform. Chapter four now has five hundred forty-eight words toward that goal.
With uninterrupted time, I still should have a new draft written in the next few days. But who in the world ever gets uninterrupted?
Wish me luck!