Shit. I left out the central villain

You would think that I would have seen that before I got to the end of the revisions. But I hit the last page, wrapped up the ending, was all ready to post “Done with the proposal!” and I realized that thoughout the whole damned proposal, there was one, er, person, for lack of a better word, with whom I had not dealt at all. Not even to give him a name. And he’s hugely important.

So now I am going back through this thing a third time, and adding in scenes that will resolve into a different, and somewhat messier, ending. (Messy in the good, bloody, destructive, ‘let’s slaughter lots of good guys and bad guys and make much noise and smoke’ way, not in the ‘let’s leave a bunch of loose threads dangling’ way.

The book will be complete in itself — a standalone in a world I’d like to write in again. It will have a solid ending. I’m pitching it at 200,000 words, and at that length it will move very fast. I’ll take 250,000 words if I can get them, which would feel a bit less like a straightjacket. I like what I have, and am even happier now that I noticed the one dangling thread and am fixing it before anyone else has the chance to spot it.

But, goddammit, I could have noticed this villain issue sooner and saved myself a lot of splicing.

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About the author: Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and self-publish my new ones.