Stop Distracting Me, Companion Novel!

Last week, I faced the realization I’m going to have to rewrite a lot of things to improve book 2 of my series. I’m pretty amped up about it, because I’ve figured out a way to change things to make the hero’s chapters actually tie in to the main plot and the final battle. The gears were turning and the excitement built… and then my mind leapt off into a complete tangent called book 3.5.

I’ll tell anyone I talk to about how this series is 4 1/2 books long. A guy from my critique group jokingly said he’d like to see this half book of mine. I boasted that it only had one POV, to which he responded, “Yeah, but how many characters?” (11 by my count)

Smelted revolves around a girl and how she gets mixed up with the family from the series. Among the characters is Ason, who I consider the perfect subject to bring in everything I love about Steampunk. He invents and tinkers, and based on his history, harnessing the power of steam just seemed like a natural course for him. I figure that since this book takes place 130 years after book 3, it’d be perfectly reasonable for fashion to change to reflect the Victorian style.

Well, thinking about this book brought on some problems. I’m the type of person who likes to figure things out and have logical explanations for why things happen. It drove me to write Ason’s backstory a few years ago just to figure out why he’s on the run from his sister. That had appeased me back then, but now I had new challenges to face. Obsession took control and last week, I typed up a “summary” (if one can call 11K a summary) to lay out everything that happens in this book from start to finish. I had to answer the questions in my head: How were they going to undo what he did and what was done to him so that he and his sister could reconcile?

Short answer: They don’t. He stays the way he is, and there’s no fixing what he did.

This is a major deviation from the original plan. That had included a love story between Ason and Rio (the POV). That’s gone. And her unflagging loyalty to the guy who she knew for about three years and left over a decade ago? Yeah, that’s gone too. Rio’s no longer trying to protect Ason and is now trying to catch him. Everything’s a shade darker.

On the bonus side, it does give me the possibility of having a Happily Ever After for a different character now that Ason’s not hooking up with Rio anymore. 🙂

Have you ever had the outcome of a story change from your original thoughts? Has your quest for logic ever led you down a darker path? Do you think 11K for a summary is a tad excessive?

Loni Townsend

About Loni Townsend

Wife. Mother. Writer. Ninja. Squirrel.

6 thoughts on “Stop Distracting Me, Companion Novel!

  1. Sounds like you have a good plan concerning your story. I think you’re correct to look at logical progression of events and societal conventions. Best to keep the story consistent or somebody is going to start pointing out holes in the story and the world surrounding the story.

    I’m a bit obsessive with logic and I can go down a dark path as well as a brighter way depending on what story I’m trying to tell. There is a great void of logical rational thinking in our world today.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

  2. 11K isn’t a summary. It’s the “short draft”. That’s what I call my first run through. It’s too long (and detailed) for an outline, but it’s not quite a rough draft (as the scenes are more told than shown).

    And yeah, I’ll think up side stories and sequels that have to make sense, and they sometimes change what I’m writing. But it all makes it better, I think.

  3. I think, after 5k, you’re not writing a summary anymore.

    I wound up distracted for a short story. Well, I say distracted, but I was virtually typing two completely different stories at once. And yes, I’ve had quite a number of stories change direction… typically for the darker path.

  4. It sounds like you are figuring out a dramatic change to your story. I’ve never done anything so bold and haven’t figured out my series as well as you have. I wish my thoughts were as well-planned out as yours because that can make the writing go so much faster.

  5. I have story outcomes change all the time. It’s why I don’t plot much. =P

  6. Anna

    That sure is a lot of thinking/reorganizing, but it sounds like it’s working better for you. That’s what happens when the characters take over. hehehe

    Anna from elements of emaginette

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