Revision: A Disturbance in the Plot

Disturbance in the Plot

During the revision process, your author begins to suspect his own motives…

Several times during this big rewrite, I’ve found myself cheerfully writing scene after scene when I begin to suspect that something is not quite as it should be. 

Usually, it turns out that a character hasn’t spoken in forty pages (or the damned horses have disappeared, died and reappeared again). 

It’s the literary equivalent of that “Have I left the oven on?” feeling. 

Most recently, it was motivation that went wrong. After chapters of a building supernatural menace, suddenly everybody became thoroughly distracted by a crucial political issue.

Now, while the political issue was indeed crucial, the original supernatural menace really ought to have been on their minds. (To be honest, it ought to have been burned into their minds in such a way as to defy generations of therapy). But they simply forgot.

It’s this kind of thing that creeps up on you. It’s the growing sense everything is consistent and polished and sensible and solid — but fundamentally and increasingly wrong.

My hope is, it never happens again!

Yours from the last week of summer,


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