I’ve been slowly typing my way through StarDancer over the last few months, currently up to chapter 21, and to give myself a break between chapters, I’ve been going back and editing my earlier ones, taking on board suggestions my readers have been making as well as running them through Grammarly, AutoCrit & a Text to Speech program (Which is hilarious).
I’ve just finished chapter 1’s second draft, and while I was saving a copy, I came across a version of the chapter that I wrote way back in 2007. I’m sure I have older versions floating around that are handwritten. I may dig those out at some stage… then again probably not, 16 year old me was cringe-worthy.
I was curious to see how much my writing had changed in 11 years… The results are interesting.
Back in 2007, chapter 1 started like this.
As he raced through the stunning rock formations on the planet Dirjack, Star Ziebach was reminded how much like home it was and made a mental note to visit when this race was over.
The twenty-five-year-old had spent the last ten years being Star, hiding from his past and his personal demons. Considering it seriously now he decided that maybe he was finally ready to stop running and face his past, claiming his birthright.
“Damn, I think I just grew up” he ruefully admitted to himself.
Star was leading a field of seventy-six cars in the Passadfena to Glass City road race. The nearest competitor was twelve miles behind giving him time to enjoy the scenery, and after fourteen hours of staring at the barren desert, the granite formations were a welcoming sight, heralding the start of the home stretch and the end of the race.
And today’s version (which seems to have gained 100 words instead of losing them)
As he drove through the stunning rust coloured granite rock formations of L’Nari on the planet Dirjack, Star Zeibach, was reminded how much like home it was and made a mental note to try to visit sometime after the end of the racing season.
He had spent the last ten years of his life hiding, first as ‘Storm’, a Fyay Civil Air Patrol pilot, and more recently as StarDancer, the current Vlentary Intergalactic Racing Champion. Considering the visit home seriously for a moment, he wondered if maybe he was finally ready to stop the running and face his past, conquer his demons, claim his birthright and all the responsibility that went with it. It didn’t horrify him the way it used to.
I think I just went and grew up, he ruefully admitted to himself.
Star was leading a field of seventy-six cars in a race that wound its way from the Passadfena Crystal Mines on the northern coast of L’Nari, through the Eluv Forest, across the top of the Ra’ual Mountain range before descending rapidly to the Kukrax Desert to end at the famed Glass City on the southern coast.
With the nearest competitor still descending the mountain range, Star had time to enjoy the scenery. After fourteen hours of staring at the barren desert, the granite formations of Adevelai Ruins were a welcoming sight, heralding the start of the home stretch and the end of the race
Things I’ve learnt as I’ve been editing … I use dialogue tags waaaaay too much, my characters are inherently happy (even when I’m crushing their souls) & I got more descriptive 🙂 Not sure if it’s a good thing or a bad thing. The story is currently sitting at 130,000 plus words and I’m not even at the mid point yet. Oh well, I guess that’s what editing is for.
I may post a few more “improved” passages as I slowly go through and edit the first 20 chapters. It has been interesting to go back and read what I originally wrote and compare it to what is now planned.
In other news, I participated in a communal writing project created by the wonderful AJ Watt. It was a blast to write, and part 10 of Lord Logenburt should be posted in the next few days. Click here to check it out