Ben Peek (benpeek) wrote,
Ben Peek

Vaguely Making Sense on a Monday

I have a student who tells me she is surprised that I know anything. "You live in your little bubble," she says, and indicates around me. "You have all your books and you write a book. Why do you know all this stuff?"

We'd been talking about K-Pop.

The wind is blowing, and it is starting to warm up around here, thankfully, and I've been reading and writing. A lot of vague notes I made in my head about the world of Children I am building on and fleshing out, and trying to make sure I'm not too repetitive. In Immolation, I had a relatively small scale, with most of the story isolated to one city. Now, I have countries, and a third will be bleed in at the end, which expands the scale of it. The trick, I am finding, is doing that without exploding the word count by twice what the first book is. Fantasy, in general, has a bad habit of being fat on the bone, with a lot of that fat put in through extra characters, subplots, etc. There's nothing wrong with that, so long as your work and your deadline can sustain it, but a lot of fantasy that I've read could've been cut down by a quarter without a huge loss to the central narrative. It's a lot more of a balancing act than I ever thought it would be, to be honest, but I have to admit that it's quite fun. No one will ever see the things I cut, the ideas that simply didn't get enough motivation behind them, and the ideas that came out of nowhere, but I'll know it, and it'll be interesting from point of view to see what I am left with by the end.

The centre of a trilogy is a strange beast, though. Traditionally, it's the darkest chapter, both informed by the concerns and failings of the first chapter, and setting up for the cost of success in the third. There's a lot to manage in it, and I hope I'm hitting the right balance to make it work and enjoyable, but I imagine I won't even know for years if I got it right.

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