I have successfully revised the first 25 chapters of Doleful Creatures.
But that is a lie.
I’ve added quite a few new chapters to the beginning of the book. And these chapters, working with the older ones, still need work. I have in fact stopped revising the subsequent chapters and am going over the first twenty-five again. I’ve added so much stuff most of it has only gone through one revision, not the fourteen revisions the rest of the book have seen.
I’m alternating between elation and despair. The story is getting better – but also, nowhere closer to being finished. Maybe I have an inkling of what George Lucas felt. If only I can stop the revisions in time before I George Lucas too much.
The good news is I’m not seeing as many holes in the story as I was the last few times going through it. Bad news is my characters still need to stand out a bit from each other. One of them still talks as if his bum were stuffed with tweed.
I look in awe at the complex simplicity of other tales – I’ve revisited Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse-Five, and marvel at the complexity he put into this simple novel.
And I’m also reminded of the bloat of John Crowley’s Little, Big, and hope I’m not heading in that direction.