What the –?! A post? What madness is this?
Well, in addition to having time to write a post, I have a reason to do so. After about a month and a half of work, I finished my first draft of what was originally intended as the second Action Figures manuscript, but for reasons explained in previous posts has become the second half of the first story.
It’s been an interesting challenge because the concept itself is born of two different media: Action Figures was conceived as a TV series. Like continuity-based TV series I’ve enjoyed and count as influences, such as The X-Files and Buffy the Vampire Slayer, each episode was a self-contained story that had within it subplots, character development elements, and thematic content that linked several episodes together to create a story arc.
When I decided to re-do it as prose, I left the format in a sense unchanged; rather than telling one long story in each novel, each book would encompass several “episodes” that told semi-self-contained stories, and those stories would be bound together by some overarching element.
What I realized I had to do in combining the two manuscripts was adjust that overarching element to create a more coherent whole. Fortunately , I had a means to do that in my lead character, Carrie. As much as Action Figures is about a team of teenage super-hero wannabes, it’s also about Carrie undertaking a journey of self-discovery and trying to figure out who she is as a person, what she wants out of life. Once I realized I could carry that over through the individual “episodes,” the project came together a little more solidly.
The next step will be putting manuscripts one and two together and then reading it as a whole to find those spots in (the former) book one that enhance the character arc. My goal is to have a brand-new full manuscript done by the end of the month at the absolute latest, send it out to my test-readers for a look-see, make any last revisions, and re-submit it by the end of July.
That way, I’ll be so busy with a couple of shows I won’t have time to obsess over how long it’s taking the agent to get back to me. Clever, huh?