For the next week, watching bird and cat videos really _is_ research

As are any number of other things.

Finished the third draft of the still-untitled raven book Friday, right around lunchtime. The ending needs work (the final chapter is entirely new), the usual various things need to be threaded through more thoroughly, the descriptive details and vividness of the second half need their also-usual work, I have several dozen different “research this” notes to address, and at least one central thing that made no sense in the last draft now makes some sense but still needs to make real sense, but …

… all in all, the book is in pretty good shape for a third draft.

I have some hopes of coming close to wrapping it up next draft.

Interesting to look back at other books and how they vary my five draft process. For Faerie Winter the early drafts were particularly rough, and as late as the third draft I was still working out who belonged in the story, combining and swapping out characters. Faerie After had a closer first/exploratory draft (at least it had the same concerns and same setting as the final one), yet fought me through the fifth draft and into the sixth for the details of just what was happening and just what our protagonist needed to do about it.

Anyway, the first and hardest between-drafts step is to take a few days off to gain some perspective before charging on. Because right now I want to charge on (I always do), but the next draft will go better if I don’t let myself do that quite yet.

Janni Lee Simner

About Janni Lee Simner

Janni Lee Simner is the author of the post-apocalyptic Bones of Faerie trilogy and the contemporary fantasy Thief Eyes, as well as four books for younger children, more than 30 short stories, and the script for the video game The Huntsman: Winter’s Curse. Check out her Writing Life Series for practical tools to hone your writing craft and unlock your creative power or join her email list for ongoing updates here.
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