Draft 1 of Hester and the Kookaburra King is complete after 8 months, 6 days

It’s been 8 months and 6 days since I started editing Hester and the Kookaburra King, my 2010 NaNoWriMo novel written in the Guineawick Tales universe.

It’s been a long haul, and there were plenty of distractions along the way. In fact in the middle of editing HatKK I made the decision to revisit Pawsgaard to fix some plot issues. I re-released the story soon after, and in multiple ebook formats.

The original draft of HatKK, Draft 0, was 100,227 words long. I printed it out on 430 double spaced pages, almost a whole ream of paper! It was 2 inches thick!

They say that in your first revision you should cut down your story by 10%. This revision, Draft 1, is 86,746 words, for an overall cut of 13%. Not bad.

The novel is, unfortunately, not yet ready to be shared. It is however, a great improvement over Draft 0. The plot and pacing have been restructured, and most if not all of the inconsistencies have been addressed. All temporary or substitute text is gone. A lot of unpleasant and unnecessarily repetitive themes have been cut out. The complete story is there, readable, and is actually enjoyable.

There will be more work, more revisions. I need to read it through cover to cover and take copious notes. I need to revisit the language and bump up the writing from good to excellent (especially in the first half). I also need to do the same work for Pawsgaard.

I’ve completed a huge leg in what seemed at first like an insurmountable journey. I’ve edited a one hundred thousand word novel, often putting in twenty hours a week on top of my normal job. And now NaNoWriMo is just around the corner; I’ll post my plans for that soon. In the meantime, Hester, the Kookburra King, and I are taking a well-deserved break.

At least until December.


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