I’m sitting here working on my pirate novel. Still. Amazing how long it takes to actually write a novel. Hell, I finished the first draft in October, I think. Maybe September. And I’m still beavering away. With great hope, I might add.
But wow, the devil or god is in the details.
When you’re flinging 61,000 words around, there is a ton of room for error. Especially as some things change and some do not. This is also true for a screenplay, but, in comparison, a screenplay is short. At least it seems that way to me.
What I’m driving at is the idea that you need to make sure that logic or continuity or details don’t kill you. Is she wearing a red silk dress on page 120, but then on page 202, she is suddenly wearing the barmaid’s dress from an earlier draft? Which pirate has knives and which has a sword? Where does he wear his knife — around his waist, or on a sash over his chest?
I’m about to change the lead bad guy’s name from Jack to Bart because, duuh, every pirate lately has been named Jack. So I’ll do a global change, but I better make sure “Jack” doesn’t appear as a part of a word any place. What a nightmare.
Plus, the logic flaw that led to this post… the bad guy, 300 years ago, ran the hero’s girlfriend through with a sword. She died. And now, 300 years later, the hero (or sidekick, really, cause the 12 year old boy is the hero!) sees her tombstone… that all sounds swell, until I realized that, “Hey, dumbass, if she died 300 years ago, she didn’t have a son who became the hero’s great, great, great, great, something grandfather… and the map would not have been in the family sea chest for generations.” I’ve done a lot of read throughs on this puppy, and only just found that GIANT mistake. Better now than later, I can assure you.
It’s tough to keep all this logic straight, but you must. It’s fun, but agony at the same time.
And, oh yeah, my computer got a virus, so the whole book may be lost, or whatever the most recent changes were from the last time I saved. I’m working off the hard copy now and praying the computer guy can find the virus and fix it. Cross your fingers for my pirate book.