It’s been a while since I gave an update. Almost a year, actually. Time flies. I was working on my novel, working title Romance 1, even when I was not posting updates. I maintained an hour a week until August, when some travelling increased my reading, and decreased my writing. I never recovered the regular schedule, but still finished the draft in October. At 22,000 words, it’s too short for a novel, but long enough for an e-book, and the final version should be longer.
The story came together nicely, but there are some gaps. The couple are forced together for several days, and during that time the possibility of a long-term relationship appeals to both. The bulk of the story is this time and discovery. Then some misunderstandings suggest a long-term relationship is not possible. That’s the all is lost moment. A chapter follows, where the hero learns a few things. Months later, the couple meet again, and, both having thought about things, are prepared to try the long-term relationship. That’s the happy ending. But the ending came too long after the all is lost moment, and then seemed rushed. I put the novel aside, to take a break and focus on other projects.
In recent months I’ve been busy with my day job and my freelance editing work (and reading Christmas book purchases), and am now behind on all my writing projects. However, the last few weeks have been productive, and I’m getting back on track. Although Romance 1 is not my top priority, it’s never far from my mind. Occasionally I considered how to fix the end.
Yesterday afternoon, while walking home from some shopping, I realized what I need to do to fix the end: Write another chapter, after the hero’s growth. It can show where the couple are, halfway between their break up and getting back together. Since they are not together, and both think it will never happen, even after they have reconsidered the misunderstandings, this chapter will have the all is lost moment – and sow the seeds for their reconciliation. This should fix the pacing, make the ending less rushed, and will add a little length too.
I was not puzzling over the story when this came to me. It came to me while I was thinking about something else. There’s a lesson in here about not forcing things, and the joys of serendipity. This is the sort of happy accident that makes me think my time scribbling is not wasted. That may just be rationalization, but in fairness scribbling time does come after the day job and other adult type responsibilities are met.
I don’t have time to work on the story this week, but made a few notes on the draft. Now I need to clear another project so I can get back to polishing Romance 1. And maybe someday, when I’m not thinking about it, a better title will come to me.