Approaching My Second Draft

Well, I’ve started work on the second draft of my non-medieval inspired fantasy novel known to all but the chosen few who knows its true title as ‘Project E’

For me, the point of the second draft is to really tighten up the story itself. I’ve already created the basic story in the first draft. Now it’s time to take that crummy little story with its poorly explained twists and two-dimensional characters and turn it into something stronger.

I don’t know how other authors tackle this stage (or even if they have a stage like this) but I’ve begun by identifying and listing things in my first draft I’m not happy with and possible improvements I could make. As pleased as I was with the first draft, I’m pleased to say I’ve identified several possible improvements.

Most of it is fairly straightforward. The most significant changes I want to make centre around the main characters who I shall identify in this post only as Mr Protagonist, Ms Sidekick, Mr Major Antagonist, Mr Minor Antagonist and Ms Love Interest.

My main gripe was with Mr Minor Antagonist. He was being horrible to everybody, especially Mr Protagonist, though with very little reason. His backstory was under-cooked and much of what he did was never explained, especially his relationship to Mr Major Antagonist and Ms Love Interest.

To combat this, I’ve sat down and written out brand new detailed backstories for all my supporting characters, particularly Mr Minor Antagonist and Ms Love Interest. I don’t want to change too much of what happens, but by developing these supporting characters I’ve found the story suddenly feels a lot richer than it did in the first draft. Dare I say, it may even make more sense.

There’s still a lot of work to do, of course. I’ve taken a week off work and I plan on using as much of it as possible to refine my plan for the second draft so I can seamlessly get back into the swing of actually drafting during my daily commute.

I’ll let you know how it goes!

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