This morning I thought of the analogy that editing a story is like renovating a house. You may think that you’re only doing some cosmetic changes like a new floor and a fresh coat of paint, when really, you are suddenly motivated and find yourself changing the entire layout of the house and building an addition.
This is what I have discovered while working on my story Misconception this week.
I went into editing hoping to just give the book a quick refresh, fixing grammar, changing some sentences, and lightly touching on the plot of the story. Well guess what? I found myself deleting almost an entire chapter and writing two new ones.
The goal of this was to make the story appear more logical, (since everyone knows what a stickler I am for trying to have my stories make sense.) So, without spoiling the end, here’s what’s changed in Misconception this week:
1. Introducing the Candlelight Vigil:
Originally, chapter 8 featured a small few paragraphs about Taliah, our main character, attending the memorial service for Molly, the girl she supposedly killed, during the day at a park on the college’s property.
I got myself thinking, “Wait. How could the school have a memorial service if they weren’t entirely sure that Molly was dead?” No body was ever found. If the school didn’t know that she was dead, a memorial service would make no sense.
This is where the vigil comes into play. Readers are introduced to Megan and Giovanna, two friends of Molly who make two very different speeches about their “missing” friend. This is the game changer that caused the entire layout of my analytical house to be changed.
2. Everybody Knows Something New:
Before writing the vigil chapter, readers and Taliah thought that Molly was of course, dead. Now we all learn at the vigil that that is not the case. This requires me to write a brand new ending, as well as some searching scenes.
3. Beware The Vampire Hunter:
Chapter 8 started with the memorial scene and included the entire vampire hunter scene. This was of course, changed to expand on the vigil and include a bit of Taliah looking downtown for Molly.
Originally, Taliah was invited to a fake “faculty party” to lure her into a banquet hall where she would battle the vampire hunter. She essentially walks into an empty room at first before the lights go out.
Taliah is a lot smarter than that, so I had to put in a little more effort to try and convince my vampire gal that there was a possibility of a party going on. This included a lady near the doors handing out name tags, two doormen (who chain the doors shut after she enters) and speakers throughout the room with recorded voices on them. So, as Taliah descends down the long hallway towards the hall, she hears the noise and starts to believe that there may actually be a party.
Stay tuned for next Sunday’s update! I can’t wait to see what new ideas I’ll come up with as I keep working this week.