As of 3pm this afternoon, the 2nd draft of my novel, The Fractured Isle, is finished. It comes in at 99,896 words according to MS Word. That’s in between Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets (85,141) and Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban (107,253) in terms of length.
With that milestone, I can say that I am currently on track with my writing goals. ‘But wait, where do you go from here?’ I don’t hear you ask. Maybe you thought it though, so thank you. Tomorrow is the start of another Camp NaNoWriMo. I’m going to use July to put together some short stories set in the same world as The Fractured Isle. I’ll use them as a means to write more backstory and further develop Serevan, my fictional nation. Some of this may influence the 3rd draft of my novel/ editing my 2nd draft.
However, I now feel like I’m at the stage where I could use some outside opinions. So I’m making a call for some beta readers! If you like fantasy books, it would be brilliant to get your opinion of my efforts. Some disclosure: It contains some strong language and violence. Sex is occasionally mentioned but there are no sex scenes. It’s probably grittier than Lord of The Rings, but a whole lot less gritty than A Song of Ice and Fire.
What I’m really looking for is some people who are not shy of being completely honest. If you agree to read my draft, you do not need to worry at all about sparing my feelings. I’m pleased with my progress, but I’m certain that there are things wrong with it. I want to know what they are. If you don’t like something, feel free to tell me. If I’ve missed a plot hole the size of a planet, I’d love to know. I also want to make sure that the writing is not just plain offensive to anyone (I was looking through some Irving Berlin lyrics the other day and man did he write some racist stuff in places).
So I’ve done the update. I’ve made the request. Now: The offer! If you read and critique my 2nd draft, I will write you an original piano composition. I have a degree in music and work as a professional pianist, so I have some credentials to back this offer up with. The composition will be about half a minute long, and will be in a style of your choosing. (I have one friend who’s agreed to do this already, and he says he loves Slayer, so that’s gonna be interesting!). I’ll likely start doing compositions in August, providing anyone’s read the draft and offered feedback by then. If you want to get an idea for my composition style, here’s a link to a friend’s video, with music I wrote in the background: https://youtu.be/-4LZ0O3L8Do (The video maker’s name is Stuart Carson, Hi Stuart if you’re reading this!)
I’ll send you an MP3 of the piece, which will likely be a recording of me playing it. I’ll also send you the sheet music if you’d like. Just tell me what style you want, and give me examples of music you like so I’ve got some ideas for what you’re after. Also, if you want something you can play yourself, let me know your level of ability and I’ll try to write something to suit. You can use the music for anything you’d like, I’d just ask that you give me a shout out if you post it anywhere. Also, if you end up making millions from it somehow, perhaps send me a nice bottle of wine or something ;).
So there it is, update, request, offer. Thanks for checking in. And even more thanks for anyone that agrees to read my 2nd draft.
You can reach me regarding this on twitter, or e-mail me at email@example.com.
Featured image used courtesy of https://pixabay.com