A casual comment from a good friend of mine last week clicked a synapse in my head, which, in turn, triggered a series of cascading ideas regarding my fantasy novel I started too many years ago. A radical re-write is now in the works, especially (and most importantly) the beginning.Here’s the low-down….
This whole mess started when I began thinking back one day to my later days in high school. I had written a short story for an Honors English class which had received very good reviews from my instructor (a Ph. D. who had studied under Tolkien, no less!). The actual story has been lost to the ages but I still remembered it pretty clearly. So, I sat down one day to see if I could re-create it. And one thing led to another and I started thinking that maybe I could make a book out of it. Problem is, the original short story really wasn’t strong enough to hang an entire book from it. The further I went along, the less enthused I became with the project in its entirety. Mind you, there are a lot of pieces of it which I really like and I still think can be part of a good story. And the over-all story arc, I think, could be pretty interesting. It was the “connecting-the-dots” part I didn’t like. Which leads me to the re-write portion. My friend expressed a good deal of “like” for my short story “What You Do Best“, which had no connection to my novel in the slightest. And that is where the idea cascade hit me. I could add it to my novel and add a measure of complexity to the story that was not there before, plus open up new avenues of confrontation and struggle for my heroes. I think it might be a win-win situation.