Sunday, April 12, 2015


LOL - I just cliffhangered myself!

Am reading the rest of draft one of Night Shift, so I have a better sense of how to handle the details left out of the outline. Read the last chapter I wrote over a year ago, #33. It ends right in the middle of something very important! But nooo, now what, there's gotta be more! My eyes popped wide open when I realized that in fact, that's where draft one ended.

Reading old stuff is fun. Chapter 33 has some dramatic stuff going on and I got caught up in that. I don't clearly recall writing all of it so it was great fun to find out what happened. Right at the tail end of one dramatic part, Kazimir said something very irreverent about angels and I just cracked up laughing. Of course I know the characters deeply so it's natural that I found it so funny. My aim is to make other readers laugh out loud at that spot too, assuming that plot point survives into draft two!

There's a bunch of great dialogue between Kazimir and Devorah that's specific to the situations it happens in; much of that doesn't make it into the outline so it's not going to be in draft two. Sad, so sad. What I love about it is not just seeing Kaz's wacko sense of humor, it's also seeing Devorah react to it and seeing her own personality adapt to the new environment she finds herself living in.

I don't (at this point in time) intend to write a sequel or a prequel, but as a writer, I can't help thinking about showing readers how Devorah got involved with demons in the first place. One of the big reasons I dumped draft one is that Devorah asks way too many questions. She's a deer in the headlights most of the time. Not good for the Point Of View character! I could probably swing a great novel from that point in her history if I told it from Kaz's viewpoint. That would put the focus on the person who has a better idea of what's going on.

That thought was what led me to the realization that for draft two, I should have switched the main characters' roles and made Kazimir the initiate and Devorah the long-time Crosser. That would have presented her the way I wanted when I was first developing the story idea. But I whined about that in a previous post so am not going to rehash it here.

It's not as if I don't like Devorah the way she is now. It could be said that I am showing the beginning of her Crosser career and why her personality develops as it does, even if I'm not starting with the day she first met Kazimir.

Readers of my blog, if you're a writer, feel free to comment on things you've had to drop from early drafts and why it hurt to cut it. If you're a reader but not a writer, let me know about scenes you've read where it felt like something got cut out and whether or not you're satisfied with that. I'm always curious about other writers' processes, and curious about what average readers think as they read.