Posted by Jarsto in Gordian Knot, Writing
July 18th, 2009 | No Comments »

I haven’t been doing enough on the Gordian Knot edit lately, but today I took a fresh look at it. And though it’s taken me quite a while I’ve come to a decision: I’m going to break one of the rules I’ve set myself and not finish this draft.

I’ve been struggling with this for a while now, but after a lot of thought I’ve had to conclude that finishing this draft just wouldn’t be worth the time it would take. The edit has been an “off and on” project for too long, and my general writing style now isn’t what it was when I started the edit, so it would never truly read as one draft anyway.

On top of that I’ve been doing quite a bit of work on, and thinking about, the stories background recently. Adding in a lot of new worldbuilding, and rethinking some of the old. Once that process is complete it will need one or two major, and a lot more minor, changes to the narrative even in its second draft form.

All of which means that, all things considered, starting over from scratch once the worldbuilding is ready seems like the right thing to do. That will finally place my characters, and their actions, in the sort of rich universe I feel I’ve only been simulating thus far.

It will mean I need to put in more time to get a new draft ready, but I’m convinced it will be a better draft as a result. I’m hoping to map out a preliminary time-line with various targets on it tomorrow. And while I can’t guarantee I’ll keep to it, my current aim is to blog more actively about the project as it progresses.

And now, if you’ll excuse me, I really need to return to pondering faster than light sensor technology…

Posted by Jarsto in Gordian Knot
August 15th, 2008 | 2 Comments »

The whole Ring Binder quest for my Gordian Knot print out turned out to be more difficult than I’d thought. For some reason several shops have decided to kick out plain white Ring Binders in favour of – as the manager of one of them termed it – “fashionable colours”.

But I finally managed to find some today. To be honest I was pretty sure the shop where I found them would still have them, but I was also pretty sure they’d be a bit on the expensive side. It actually wasn’t too bad (€3.25 per binder as opposed to ca. 2.50 at other stores with only “fashionable colours”) but regardless of the cost I’m a bit annoyed at having to go to one specific shop just to get a plain white two ring binder.

But anyway given the difficulty in finding them I decided to go ahead and get 4 of them at once. Since I’ve already decided to print another first draft manuscript, to see if I want to put that one next on the edit list, that just leaves me two spares. And depending on how I count them I have things either completed or in progress already for both of those at least, quite probably for a third.

More distantly I have stuff going on for another 4 of them at least, but I don’t expect any of that to complete a first draft in the (even slightly) near future. Except of course for my NaNoWriMo project for this year. With any luck I’ll need another binder at the end of November.

Posted by Jarsto in Gordian Knot
August 10th, 2008 | 6 Comments »

I’ve just finished printing out the first, raw draft, version of Gordian Knot. It’s actually the first time I’ve printed the whole thing, since Ive been reading it from screen for the edit so far. But now I’ve decided I want to give the whole thing another read through, and this time I don’t much feel like doing it from screen.

So I’ve just finished printing some 60 double sided, single spaced A4 pages – containing a total of 92,340 words in 10 point Arial – punching holes in them, and putting them in a two ring binder. All in all I’m pretty happy with it, except for one thing. It’s a blue ring binder. Now don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with blue, but so far it’s been my custom to use white ones for first drafts.

Unfortunately I’m currently out of white two ring binders. So I’ll have to make do with the blue one for now. I may well try to fit a shopping trip to go get another white one into tomorrow’s schedule though.

Posted by Jarsto in Gordian Knot
July 27th, 2008 | 3 Comments »

As I mentioned in my previous post1 I did manage to do one thing: I did some editing. To be specific I picked up an edit that sort of fell by the way side back in 2006, though edit may be too weak a description, in parts it’s more of a rewrite. In short Gordian Knot is back on my short term todo list, with its own category on the blog as a statement of intent.

So what is Gordian Knot? In essence it’s a space opera, with evil Aliens, good Aliens, evil Human, and good Humans. To be more precise Gordian Knot is the current working title of that space opera. It’s also my attempt to prove that thinking up faster than light drive systems while cycling to university classes at 08:45 can yield worthwhile literature, but that’s not the main aim.

It’s also, if I do say so myself, a decent read even in its raw first version. Which is one of the reasons I picked it for this edit/rewrite way back in 2006. The idea was, and still is, to get it polished up to the point where I’ll feel comfortable using it to go looking for agents and/or publishers.2

I already know I’ll have to go over it at least once more after this pass, if only to make the stuff I wrote in 2006 fit what I’m writing now (which is better, I hope). I’ve also done a typical science fiction writer thing and printed a calender for 2317. I’m working out the details of my timeline as I write the new version, so having something handy to tell me July 20th will be a Friday in 2317 is useful from time to time.

Actually this was all prompted by a conversation I had with my father yesterday. We were talking about the future and I mentioned (as I usually do) that writing would be my dream job. I got to thinking about that later and decided that if I really mean that – and I do – I should start taking a more professional approach to writing again.

That means setting targets to meet, and doing the things I don’t like; I tend to get distracted from editing because I like writing new material better. So I’m hoping that posting this, and adding the new Gordian Knot Category to the blog, will help keep me honest. Expect to see more progress reports on this in the near future.
1 Moaning about being too inactive today here
2 The preferred route is getting a good agent who will then take care of getting the actual publisher.