Updates, News, and Miscellany
For the past few months I’ve been working on a middle-grade fantasy novel about an ogre named Mulrox, whose terrible ideas come to life. It’s an adventure story about Mulrox learning to have confidence in himself and the value of even his worst ideas.
It has been a much-needed change from working on Parallax, the literary fiction novel I’ve been pounding away on for years. The new novel is action packed, whimsical, and fun. It also has the added bonus of giving me ample opportunities to write really bad rhyming poetry. Not surprisingly, it’s been a blast to write.
Last week I made it about ¾ of the way through the second draft of the novel. I’ve been following along with the Story Grid Podcast, and have been trying to use Shawn Coyne’s methodology for editing, laid out in his book The Story Grid: What Good Editors Know. This has been an intense, but also rewarding experience. There was a lot of prep work required (months) to start the second draft, but the insights from his rigorous methods have made the process clearer.
In my second draft, I have focused on tightening up the plot, characters, and pacing. So I’m shuffling scenes around, deleting some, and adding new ones. I’ve also been clarifying world-building details and sprinkling this information gradually throughout the book. My first draft delivered most of it in two giant info dumps at the beginning and end. Ahhh, first drafts…
I hope to be done with this draft by the end of next week, but we’ll see how it goes. It’s always impressive how new hurdles come up.
As I was reading back through my novel, it struck me as a story that needs a map. For fun I’ve started some doodles of that as well. Obviously still early days.
For those that are interested, here is the description of the book from my Writing Projects page.
Mulrox and the Terrible Ideas
Mulrox, an ogre, harbors a secret desire to become the world’s greatest poet. But despite his dreams of perfection, he can come up with nothing but horrible ideas. Mulrox is ready to swear off poetry forever when his bad ideas suddenly come to life. The malcognitos, as they call themselves, have escaped from their land fleeing an unknown beast that is hunting them down.
Mulrox soon finds himself on a quest to protect the very ideas he loathes, pursued by hoards of glamoured animals, and stalked by the beast from the malcognitos’ realm of Sounous. But when Mulrox starts to receive visions that tell him of a different destiny, Mulrox must decide what is important, whom to trust, and ultimately confront the truth about his creations.
If you are curious about what “Middle Grade” is, you can check out this article by Malinda Lo from the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America Website: “An Introduction to Middle Grade and Young Adult Fiction, Part 1: Definitions.”
Thanks for stopping by!