The Story of Us

In the interest of statistics, I compiled the story of Those Who Trespass. Begun in October of 2010, it's definitely been a journey. And here is the story of us--my book and me.
  • Those Who Trespass existed in 11 drafts:
    1. I stopped writing Draft A after getting 3/4 of the way through the story and getting hopelessly stuck. {This happened in Stratagem, too. It must stem from the fact that I don't know where I'm going until I get there, and when I get there, I have to re-write how I got there.}
    2. This was the first completed draft, and it had a completely different plotline {and villain} than the first. The ending is the same as in the final draft, and you can see that the story finally had a beginning, middle, and end.
    3. With a new beginning and a new ending and a lot of new things in between, Draft C could be said to be the new and improved second draft...amplified version. I considered this to be my finished first draft {not to be confused with the first draft of the first draft; I know, it's confusing}, and it was the one I sent to Aimee Salter when I won her critique contest. {If you have not benefited from one of Aimee's critiques, you need to. Hers saved this book.}
    4. So much new stuff in Draft D! Using Aimee's critique, I rewrote a good portion of the book, pulling a character, revamping the first chapter {with delicious results}, reinstated the original ending, and finally inserted some chapter breaks. Oh, and I also used the f-word. I sent this second draft to Shelley-the-awesome-beta-reader. {If you do not have a beta reader, you need one. There are no exceptions.}
    5. Not much to say about Draft E. I think this was the fixing-beta's-minor-comments draft.
    6. And Draft F was the fixing-beta's-major-comments draft, and I think it's safe to say that this was the beginning of the third draft. This was where I put Clayton's ever-present gun into play. This was also where I pulled a darling of mine because it was a) overtly Christian, b) bordered on the paranormal, and, most importantly, c) was very much telling and not showing. (My longest draft.)
      • I don't mind overtly Christian. But Those Who Trespass is subtle, and God is weaved through, not in-your-face.
    7. The villain got more screen-time. And after much internal debate about whether or not Those Who Trespass was going to include God, I began the process of weaving God into the story. Also, Clayton got some much-needed depth and backstory. The first line of Draft G went on to be the first line of the final draft.
    8. Small changes only in Draft H. I changed Clayton's name to Taylor and Jake's name to Josh.
    9. More small changes. Changed Taylor's name back to Clayton and Josh's back to Jake. Pulled the f-word out for good. I also started working in double-spaces.
    10. Worked one scene to what I hope is now perfection, making Jenn less angsty and more proactive, though not necessarily in a good way.
    11. The final draft, the one used in queries and full requests. Now in PDF form with formatted chapters! :)
And that is the story of Those Who Trespass.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think all manuscripts look like this when finished. The times started and stopped, the deleting of scenes and/or characters, and revamping. Good luck with your finished product!!