In the past three months, I have been working on an engineering project and haven’t been able to write very often. Now that I have finally gotten a break from life, I figure it is time to update what has been going on in White Destiny.
For newcomers to the novel, you can find all the information about White Destiny here or by searching the keyword “White Destiny”.
PLANTING THE CHEKHOV’S RIFLES
Chapter 1 to 6 were full of potential but remained unpolished. When I wrote them, I–as a novel writer–was new and so was the world of Ashlora. After chapter 7 and the conclusion of Ironheart’s battle, I sat back and gave these chapters a pass through Text-To-Speech software. Each of those chapters takes up to 20 minutes in audiobook format. Listening to all of them at once gives me a better view of the overall story; much better than listening to them separately.
I discovered that chapter 1 to 3 were my best chapters thus far. I only needed some minor punctuation and rewording here and there before they’re up to my expected standard. A few more details that were not in the original plan are added to these early chapters. The prominent bit was the mention of Silverflow Academy in chapter 2. Originally, there was no Silverflow in Ironheart. It only came in a spark of inspiration, much like the Priestess character, when I was writing chapter 4. Now I have a chance to rewind time and put such details into the story as Chekhov’s guns.
They are not quite Chekhov’s guns to those who have been following the development of White Destiny, of course, but they will be to new readers.
A NEW STORY LINE
At the same time, I discovered that chapter 5 and 6 were terrible. I had a hard time convincing myself that I authored those chapters…
I wrote chapter 5 and 6 during industrial internship and the environment wasn’t exactly as conductive as at home. In hindsight, I have always suspected they are the reason why so many inconsistencies and plot holes appeared in many later scenarios. One way or another, if I were to create a great story, I must address the cracks in the foundation lest the entire thing collapses some days.
So, instead of pushing forward with a scenario I know would eventually fail, I scrapped the whole thing and started over.
Half of chapter 4 was alright, some early parts of chapter 5 could be reused and the Horseman’s encounter in chapter 6 could still be salvaged. I pulled together the usable parts and added new things to connect the scenes. It always hurts to watch three chapters becomes two but that’s how editing ultimately is: cutting off the tumors and leaving only the healthy cells.
Oh, don’t worry, I’m not completely pansting it. I have a story outline with a list of check points in mind from day 1. So far, we have finished:
- The Witch meets The Inventor
- The Archbishop dies
- The Inventor saves the Witch
- (SPOILER!) The Witch escapes the mob in Azeth
I’m merely setting up what needs to be done to reach the next check point and there are many ways to reach Rome
This time, I’m switching to the “the Witch cooperates with the Inventor’s plan” scenario. I guess this means she was sane enough to know what’s good for her. I haven’t finished fleshing out this scenario yet. I suspect this change will steer the story from the portion I have written in chapter 7 and give off a different impression on the characters involved. Not necessarily for the worse, I hope.
Another major change in chapter 4 was the omission of the Baron’s outburst. I noticed the character was being way too melodramatic for a veteran knight. He needs to appear stronger, calmer and more decisive to fit his backstory. Additionally, I’m toning down the relationship between him and the Priestess. Sure, Lilia was still precious to him but not as possessive as in the old revision.
THE RUINS OF FA’EL
The world of Ashlora has received yet another expansion. I have finally decided on a name of the fourth city and its basic characteristics. Fa’el was a sky city held together by the magic of its guardian dragon. It was the birthplace of Spellweave and its Library of Prism housed the largest collection of magic tomes in Ashlora.
More about the city and its fall will be mentioned in passing references in future chapters.
Editing and next chapter release will be done in 2 weeks. That’s all for now.