Warpath’s First Draft: Almost Two Years in the Making

On March 24, 2012, I started the second book in the Second Realm Trilogy. It was originally titled The Emeralde War, and changed to Warpath after the novel re-focused itself.

Today, I can say that the first draft is finally done. Warpath was a completely different creature than Shadow Assassins. With Shadow Assassins, it was partly a discovery for myself, as I was actively writing while building the world the story took place in. Not so much with the second book. The second book was a struggle to extend the world, give depth to my cast and further the plot for the better – with plenty of Lord of the Rings-style travel. (I could insert a Clerks 2 joke here if that helps)

Warpath was a rather large test for me. It wasn’t so much of just me writing because I enjoy it, but writing it because I had been planning to release the first book for a long time. I wanted to be far enough into the second book that I could have something new to present, whether it be in the excerpt at the end of Shadow Assassins, or just me talking about it anywhere online. So this was the first time I had approached a novel as a sort of business venture. Unfortunately, as a test of my patience, writing skill and self-worth as a writer, Warpath got to me. Various online projects broke my focus, as well as other writing projects, bad sleeping habits, issues in my every day life, stress, anxiety and thine old enemy, writer’s block. I went months without working before I was able to refocus on my novel as the project it was meant to be. And slowly, in bits and pieces, it came together.

One thing I’ve stressed about constantly was the length of the novel, which was shorter than Shadow Assassins. That might have been a part of where my bout of writer’s block came from. My first and foremost rule of writing beyond the initial plotting is: Get the story done first, worry about the details later.¬†One of my habits is to leave out filler. I hate filler content that doesn’t progress the storyline with such a fierce passion that my plot was practically starved for content. It felt like there were a lot of missing pieces to my puzzle of a novel. The story was incomplete if I had ended it on the planned note. So after some much needed head scratching and thinking, expansion happened. Empty holes were filled and it wasn’t in the way I was trying to avoid (by that I mean useless filler).

The first draft is fresh still and it’s nowhere near ready for publishing yet, but a major chunk has been taken care of. What I have now is redrafting and that fun process known as “editing.” Long, hardcore editing sessions are where I really want to pull my hair out and throw my laptop out of the first window I see, but while I suffer and complain, I refuse to present you all with anything less than something polished and ready for consumption.

And so…back to the grindstone. Editing awaits…as well as the beginning of the third and final leg of the Second Realm trilogy. Oh yeah, I’m excited.

PS: The pic used in this blog entry is possibly the only hint I will give about the upcoming novel…for the curious, I found it here.

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