Still a long way to go before I have enough money to post Chapter Thirteen, but there’s been some progress.
On the writing end, I’m midway through Chapter Eighteen. I’m estimating the first draft will run twenty chapters, 60,000 words, which means the final draft won’t be as short as I’d feared; it might be as long as the original Nightside City, which ran 68,000 words.
A lot of the wordage I’ll be adding in the second draft (and subsequent drafts) will be atmospherics — details of the setting that I didn’t bother with the first time through, because the first time through writing anything I focus on plot and character. I’m getting to the point in the story where I’m starting to make mental notes about what I need to add or change when I get into rewriting it. Usually, some of these mental notes then get typed up as reminders to myself that I refer to as I work. This time, I’m thinking I’ll make those notes available to donors in a password-protected webpage, so that if they’re interested they can get a look at my process. Not sure when I’ll get that up; when I do I’ll e-mail the donors with the URL and password.
So far, the most urgent note to myself amounts to a reminder to include details of the climate and weather on Prometheus.
With the Ethshar serials, donors who got the finished book also had the option of getting a chapbook of a short story as a bonus. I haven’t written any short stories about Carlisle Hsing, or set in Nightside City, so I can’t do that this time, but I am planning to put together something about how Dr. Sheridan Simon and I (mostly Dr. Simon) designed the Eta Cassiopeia system. I hope that will do.
I’m into the stage of the writing that I think of as the endgame, where everything feels inevitable and is rushing toward its conclusion. That’s good, in that it means the first draft will get finished and probably get finished soon, but it also means I don’t want to be distracted by stuff like mailing out Chapters Sixteen and Seventeen, or putting up webpages, or having a life. It also means these last few chapters are a bit sketchier than the earlier chapters, because I’m writing them in a hurry, which I’ll mostly fix in subsequent drafts, but which is another reason I’m not in a big rush to mail them out.
I’ll get to all that other stuff eventually, I promise.