So today I was going to pass along some news about the book in a blog titled, “Why I don’t talk about Book Two.”
The blog was proving rather difficult to write until I realized it was really two blogs. So today we’re just going to get the news, and I’ll talk about the other stuff later.
Here’s the news: I’ve finally finished my latest draft of The Wise Man’s Fear.
Oot is shown in order to give a sense of scale. And because my baby is frikkin adorable.
This manuscript is about 200 pages longer, and about 500 pages different than the last one I took a picture of. I’ve fixed plotting, tweaked characters, cut scenes, added scenes, re-written, re-organized, re-read, and re-re-organized sections of it so many times that I couldn’t even begin to give you a number of versions it’s been through.
Now last time I posted up a picture of a manuscript on the blog, people got all twitterpated. They saw that big stack of papers and said things like, “Yay! That means the book will be out next month!!1!” and “Wow! How are they going to bind something that big?!?”
So before we all go leaping to a bunch of unfounded and erroneous conclusions, let’s talk about a few things.
First, this manuscript is printed in….(wait for it) manuscript format. That means it’s one-sided, double spaced, and printed in courier new font. That’s what makes it look so big. Typesetting the book comes later in the process. That’s one of the many, many steps that comes later.
That said, The Wise Man’s Fear is going to be bigger than The Name of the Wind by at least 100,000 words or so.
Second, let’s discuss what a draft is. A draft is a version of a piece of writing. Almost always it is an early or preliminary version. You can have things like a rough draft, which is… well… rough. A second draft, which comes after the first draft. Or you can have things like a final draft, which is… well… final.
Is this going too fast for anyone?
This is not the final draft of book two. If it were, I would have said something like, “This is the final draft of book two.” But I didn’t. So it’s not.
But it isn’t a rough draft either. The one I turned in several months ago was rough. There were some bad plot holes, some logical inconsistencies, pacing problems, and not nearly enough lesbian unicorns.
This draft is tighter, cleaner, and all around better. I’m really pleased with it, but it’s not quite perfect. Not yet.
What this *doesn’t* mean.
The book will not be out next week. The book will not be out next month. Right now there’s no publication date. Remember when I said there wasn’t a publications date? There’s no publication date.
What this *does* mean.
The book is a big step closer to being done.
The book is way better than it was before. That last draft of the book was okay. It had some great parts, some parts that were “meh” and some that were “huh?” Overall, it averaged out to about 70 percent awesome.
Which isn’t bad, but I’m not content with a C-minus book. This draft is way better. I’m guessing about 90-92 percent awesome. Way better. But still not perfect.
I’m working on the book, even if I don’t constantly talk about it here on the blog. More about this in the upcoming blog: Why I don’t talk about Book Two.
What happens now?
This manuscript goes to my editor, Betsy. She reads it carefully, maybe twice. She makes notes, then we talk about what she thinks might need to be changed/tweaked/fixed.
Then, depending on how much work we think it needs. We put it into the production schedule. That means we’ll have a publication date. Which I will tell you. On the blog. With words.
Then I do another set of revisions. Or more likely, several smaller sets of revisions, as I’m a freak like that. Luckily, these next sets won’t be nearly so extensive as my last round.
In metaphorical terms, the last round of revisions was like an organ transplant. Invasive, complex, labor intensive, and with a long recovery time. The revisions I do after this will probably be more like cosmetic surgery. Or an appendectomy at worst.
But first, I get to relax. I’ve been working on this fucker nonstop for months. And now, finally, I get to take a break while I wait for Betsy’s feedback.
I’m pretty excited to be seeing more of you too, Oot.
You see folks, Oot is one happy baby, all laughs and smiles. But in order to get this revision finished, there have been times over the last several months when I’ve spent weeks at a stretch working 10-14 hours a day. That’s not counting e-mail, dealing with translators, and writing the occasional blog.
That means on some busy days, I only get to play with him for half an hour or so. If our sleep schedules don’t match up, some days I don’t get to see him at all while he’s awake.
I’m not mentioning this to get sympathy. I’m mentioning it so you can better understand my life. I’m mentioning this so you know what exactly goes through my head when someone sends me an e-mail or posts on my blog, saying, “Just finish the book for fucksake!”
So…. that’s the news. The book is going well. There are parts of it that I’m so proud of that I almost can’t help but talk about them here. It’s coming. Be patient. And rest assured that I’m not just lounging around, doing whippets and eating the cotton-candy underthings off nubile young catgirls.
As for myself, now that the book is out of my hands for a couple weeks, I’m planning on catching up on some family stuff and playing Bioshock 2 until I puke.
Oh, and I’ll be catching up on a few blogs I’ve been meaning to post, too. Tune in on Monday and I’ll be announcing some of my upcoming appearances for convention season.
There will also be a chance for you to get me to come do a reading/signing at your local bookstore if you live in the right part of the country. Specifically in between Chicago and West Virginia…
So stay tuned….