The first draft of Liliana is finished (and other updates)

Let me take a moment and just flop down and catch my breath for a moment. There’s a lot of updates to slew through.

On January 26, 2014, the first draft for Liliana started. Today, I can say that the first draft is finished.

When I started, I had some vague pre-planning beforehand, but most of the raw drafting took place in two notebooks, one a tiny Dollar Tree spiral notebook whose spiral binding I’ve had to fix several times, and a journal with a pretty wolf of it that I found at Wal Mart. I buy my notebooks cheap but they serve a good purpose.

Liliana notebooks
You know it’s something of mine if there’s zebra in it somewhere

As much as I disliked slewing through Warpath, Liliana was a dream – albeit one that had several setbacks, as I’ve mentioned before. Liliana gave me a chance to explore my big bad antagonist in a way that wasn’t like, “Okay well she’s evil. She does things because she’s evil and her actions are a result of her being evil.” This was a chance to draw out why Liliana acted the way she did, what drove her to the point she was at by the time the Shadow Assassins found her. In a way, I grew fond of my big bad.

However, my Shadow Assassins are still the main focus of Liliana, even if scenes delve into Liliana’s life before she became the big bad lady she is when the Shadow Assassins meet her. I’ve said it before but there are parts of the book that are emotionally intense. I want to go back through and make sure I’ve done the scenes justice. The first draft is over but by no means am I finished. My least favorite parts of this process are coming up, in editing, redrafting, editing and book formatting.

Outside of Liliana news, Warpath’s cover never had a proper update. The cover ended up being different than the last update I gave, after I realized that the myriad of colors on the back cover art were just frustrating to work with. The new cover looks like this:

warpath

The Second Realm Trilogy will also be the last time I use CreateSpace’s cover creator. It’s convenient, but incredibly restricting as to what I can do with it, as I’ve had to learn the hard way. I’ve come into several good, free stock photo sources and my collection is growing.

That also means that the website will be making use of stock images, instead of found and credited pictures. I’m trying to move away from the content I’ve used before (that is, mostly wallpapers whose original creators are hard to track down or credit properly). So if things look different, don’t mind me. I’m just playing around with things.

The future is looking bright, my friends! With the first draft of Liliana finished, I am one step closer to coming to the close of the Second Realm Trilogy. This is both exciting and terrifying for me. When I was younger, most of the projects I’ve started never came into fruition. Before, the largest work I’ve attempted was a “fan series” – a large series of fanfiction broken up into “episodes.” That never saw completion, either. This will be the first major project I’ve finished.

Be still, my heart.

That said, I’m terrified out of my pants to finish this trilogy. The Shadow Assassins have been with me for so long that it would seem strange to close their story, or at least shelve it for a while, and move on to a new trilogy that I’ve been planning. There may indeed be more Shadow Assassins stories with me, but they would be along the lines of prequels before the Shadow Assassins stepped foot in the Second Realm. Their progressive story line ends at the close of Liliana.

There’s a lot of work to be done with Liliana but right now, I just need to take a moment and float on this sweet feeling of victory. I’ve basically withdrawn from most of the external projects I used to be busy with in order to get Liliana finished and there were periods of time where I was so burned out that at the end of the day it hurt to think and I was incapable of making simple decisions. An incredible amount of work has gone into Liliana.

There is work to be done but for now, I am floating on this victory.

PS: Blog image courtesy of Pixabay. Oh, and it’s a vague hint at some events that happen in Liliana. What that is though, will remain to be seen 😉

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