on the writing & reading trail

Edit diary progress

Day 51 (April 17)

Saga editing: Late start because of accompanying a relative to a medical appointment – always delays. Continued focus from yesterday. I breezed through two chapters making only minor changes, then got badly stuck on the next two.

I immediately recognised the problem with both – they haven’t received any attention after the first draft which was written in haste with the intention of ‘getting it down’.  I’m wondering how many more are in the same state. So, handicapped by a nasty migraine and some dullness from having taken a couple of Panadol, I made do with identifying where the problems are with colour highlights and suggestions, but did not feel clear enough to tackle them in detail.

In the first awkward chapter I need to work on capturing the flavour of Freya’s friendship with Dora, a Dutchwoman undertaking a different nursing course from her own at Edinburgh University. Although clear in my thoughts, it does not leap from the page. Important to get right as the pair meet again in dramatic circumstances at the end of Book Two, and again in Book Three. I’m feeling a bit handicapped as I still haven’t found fitting working titles for any of the three books since deciding to carve up the whole saga.

Getting there

In the second problematic chapter the issues are similar – mainly the need to bring more energy to the interaction between two very different people. Back in Australia, Alexander’s new friend, Tony Bolton  (mentioned yesterday) becomes smitten with Halima, a Muslim girl, but is only vaguely aware of the magnitude of cultural difference. Heartache is ahead for him.

Will try one more chapter and then get out into the air before the rain returns in earnest. It was very heavy overnight. Later: The rain came and spoiled that idea.

Overall, progress today was better than expected. Maybe the end of April deadline for completing the work on both parts of Book One before a final sweep in May is within reach still if I can substantially reshape around two chapters per day.

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