Isn't it great!
I finished Zombie Wife yesterday. It's all backed up and loaded onto my wife's Kindle for a first read.
Isn't she brave everyone?
I like to think so. She's like a test pilot that keeps getting back into those planes I build even though they crash every time. She must love me.
Still, with that said, I think this is my best novel yet. It's shorter, by more than half than Speaker of the Winds. It clocks in at just over 42,000 words. Likely that will grow by another couple thousand in the second draft, I already know of several things I need to add and expound on. It was intended to be a short story of 16,000 words or so. Something to keep me busy while Brittany read Speaker of the Winds. But it grew... and grew.
That's a good thing I suppose.
So what's next?
Well it should be Draft 2 (well, three really) of Speaker of the Winds. Once I finish that I can finally get it out to my Beta Readers. I'm going to say that, but I've never sent anything out to anyone yet. Nothing has been polished enough to do so. I have at least four willing and uber brave volunteers. Maybe more.
O.k. half of these are family, but we hurt most those who we love.
However, I must procrastinate. November is NaNoWriMo. National Novel Writing Month. Last year I didn't participate. Which is a shame! I had just started Speaker of the Winds. Knowing it was going to be epic in length I didn't want to have the pressure. I did participate the year before and got half of Lightning Child out of it. In one month!
50,000 words in one month is great for writers like me who slave away in the wee hours of the morn' before work. I'm going to do it again this year. I want to kill it in November and knock out most if not all of the next novel I've just got to get out of my head. With luck I'll have it finished by mid-December and can then revise Speaker.
I've spoke of it before I think. Monster in the Woods. Like anything that's a working title, but I think it's evocative It comes from an amalgamation of concepts and has grown over the past few years in my mind. It combines plot lines similar to (the classical) beauty and the beast, phantom, snow white (again classical, which means not Disney), Quasimodo and more. Not full plot, just elements. It has a feel similar to a fairy tale, but without the 'fairy' elements or creatures. Kind of like something M. Night Shyamalan would write. Everything will be real, but so strange and creepy you'll swear I made it up.
Remember when you were growing up and were being read a really well told fairy tale. How it seemed anything could happen. It was magical, mysterious and moving. Maybe some other M words too.
I'm headed in that direction. It will have a love triangle, a twist in that and a big plot twist. It will keep you guessing to the end. You'll expect one thing and then it will change, believably just like in real life, and when it's over you'll be relieved, pleased, pissed and slightly sad.
I grew up in northern Idaho and spent a good deal of time out in the mountains. Truly some of my best memories. Today in Utah I still love getting out and hiking the steeper slopes up here. Nothing beats the great untamed north. There is an edge when it's just you and mother nature. She can have you gazing out into glorious visa's one moment and clinging to life the next and it means nothing to the heartless girl. You're just as valuable to her as one of her gnats.
Have you ever walked a game trail miles from anywhere in the pitch dark? Or in a deep fog? Have heavy things moved just out of sight?
Fear moves in all of us and we've tasted it. Not knowing what lays just out of sight or worse believing it might come into sight, this frightens us. It's the unknown. I think the woods are the perfect setting for such a mystery. As all good Mysteries, the most horrible come from the workings of man's own hands. Bathed in sin and twisting in debauchery. The darkness comes from within. With no where to run, we are entirely alone. If we live or die it is entirely in our own hands. Will your heart fail you out of your own imagined fears? You wouldn't be the first.
In Monster in the Woods, we'll follow a hero-ess who will be forced into finding out if the legend of the Monster in the Woods is real, and further more if she'll survive it.
Although it could be classed as a monster story, I think it's more of a fantasy romance with a fairy tale feel. It won't be half as dark as Zombie Wife, but it will have it's scary moments. After all... There is a Monster in the Woods.