In September 2014 I started my first draft on Birds of a Feather – and when I say ‘first draft’ I really mean ‘bunch of scribbled notes’. I scribbled them over two glasses of wine in about an hour. It was a true epiphany.
Since then I’ve storyboarded each scene, written a true first draft, updated my storyboard, re-written my first draft, and completed and re-written a second draft.
I’m now on my final draft.
The story has changed so much in that time it’s forced me to re-think my genre. As a result, Birds of a Feather is a
YA fantasy, children’s fantasy, adult satire, new adult satire, absurdist fiction, YA fantasy, absurdist fiction, adult satire.
I also thought I finished the story once, but then I realized my prologue belonged in another book. And I thought of a better way to present the perspectives of my secondary characters. And although the ending has never changed since I first thought of it, I had a lightning-bolt realization of a much better way to do it (one of those ‘duh’ moments. Honestly, I still shake my head over that one).
Originally, I thought I could do this by June 2016, with book 2 and a search for an agent well under way by December 2016. Part of that length of time was because I started a new job with intense training. And I mean intense – but that’s another story.
Realistically, this is just Book One in a series. The world I’ve built, its rules of operation, its laws of physics, the level of understanding of its occupants, their backgrounds and intended growths – none of this can change once the first one’s in print. (Yes, I know, I should have said ‘if’ but I’m being hopeful and positive, ok?).
So my revised date for completion is end of August 2017.
The sequels shouldn’t take anywhere near as long – mostly because the world will be built solidly, but also because I think I have a more realistic idea of how to write good reading.