First, a layout I did for a challenge, but I believe I'll print this up to sit on my desk or hang on the wall as motivation to actually keep my butt in this chair and my fingers on this keyboard, not the mouse!
I'm struggling with Sword and Illusion, and I really mean struggling. For years, Moonrazer has resisted me telling any story about her I guess it's her personality or something, but every time I thought I came up with one for her, she's balk and the thing wouldn't get written. Now that Attack of the Queen has been out for almost two years and is still selling, I know it's time to get the sequel out and I have what I think is a good idea for Olaf's book, too. However, that one is dependent on THIS ONE getting written!
I know where I want it to go, but there's a lot of stuff in the beginning that I have to muck through and it often feels like walking through a briar patch. I wanted a book that would explore some of the traditions and culture of the Sarl life, and that's what's happening, but it's very, very complicated. For instance, I have three versions of how the Exalted Warrior is chosen.
Moonrazer is unusual, as readers of Attack know. She didn't come to the throne in the ordinary way, so I've never had to figure out what the ordinary way is, and it's proving harder than I thought.
Also, she's getting older (as the author is) and I wanted to explore what that means to a warrior people. Age and the lessening ability to fight has to mean something pretty intense to the leader of that people, right?? Well, that's the beginning of the book before we even get to the "quest" part where she has to help a man find a daughter he didn't know he had to save his kingdom. I've written eleven chapters and she hasn't even met this guy. He's in the book, doing his thing, finding out that the Sarl may be his best bet in finding his daughter, but they haven't gotten together yet.
I thought I had an idea to cut through all this tangle and get to the heart of the book, and in a burst of creative energy I wrote the pivtol scene, only to discover that I found myself in another patch of thorns.
My beloved husband, when I poured out all my woes to him about this book, suggested that since I know what happens at the end, I try working backward. I've never done that before and it seems to be working, but will another briar patch lay just out of sight?