Day 17 total: 1265 words Total: 52,593/? (in progress)
Got a late start yesterday, no real excuses other than being afraid to confront the pages, which I sublimated into a mix of useful map-making mixed with cartographic procrastination. But it ended up all right. I went back through Chapter 1 and have almost whipped it into the kind of writing that I want. At the risk of jinxing myself, here’s the opening:
Fire rained down from the sky, setting canvas and flesh ablaze. Burning men and Goblins leapt from the rails and the rigging, falling like shooting stars into the sea, only to find that the water’s kiss would not extinguish the alchemical flames that ate their flesh.
Rone swam down, illuminated by the fires raging on the waves above him, pursuing the outline of a sinking wooden chest. He swam until the water grew murky and the chest was lost from sight, until the blood roared in his ears and he thought his lungs would burst.
In the fading light writhed a dark silhouette, a cloud of curious ink that paced his descent like a shadow.
D. Sims, Illyria’s Shadow*
Now, based upon reflection and advice from friends and family (and even from blogger vnw), I think the best thing to do is finish Chapter 1, jump ahead to the last chapter of Act I, revise part of it with an eye toward facilitating the transition to the next section, and then move forward to Act II, leaving behind notes on what I might correct within those intervening chapters. I think the key for me was feeling as though I could polish the prose and evoke something of the sensations and mood that I wanted to create. But, as wiser people than me have noted, that’s for the revision stage.
Thought I’d mention a few more books and other resources that I’ve enjoyed referencing as I try to polish up aspects of the setting and give it more depth:
- A Splendid Exchange: How Trade Shaped the World, by William J. Bernstein
- At Day’s Close: Night in Times Past, by A. Roger Ekirch
- Flushed: How the Plumber Saved Civilization, by W. Hodding Carter
- A Short History of Japan podcast,
- Shakespeare’s Restless World podcast, BBC 4
My tastes are nothing if not eclectic when it comes to history and sources. 🙂
Well, time to get to work.
*kind of a working title