I’m happy to say that after a couple of weeks of writer’s block because of anxiety at world events, I have been back to chipping away at both novel drafts #5 and #6. Both are supernatural manuscripts; as you may know, book 1 in the series (Title and cover reveal later in the summer this year) is forthcoming in October 2022. My two current projects are at 18,386 words for novel WIP#5 and 5691 words for novel WIP#6. Novel WIP#6 would have been more than 6k, except I decided I didn’t like the first chapter and cut it completely. I felt it was irrelevant to the plot and character development of my protagonist, so I scrapped the whole thing. I have no qualms about cutting out huge sections of a draft if they serve no purpose and I never write filler chapters just to get my word count up – every chapter should serve the story arc.

Novel WIP#5 is going well. I also cut a section, though not an entire chapter, as I felt it wasn’t motivated; the character acted in a way that simply didn’t fit the direction the plot was going. A bit of tweaking after the cut sorted that issue and the story is back on track. I’ve been powering ahead with this one mainly because the story is more straightforward than WIP#6, which requires research into medieval Ireland (spoiler alert – apologies).

Writing a novel is hard work. I rely on my chapter outlines heavily to remind myself of where I’m up to in the story. The further into a book I go, the more I tend to forget what happened earlier and need my notes to make sure there are no continuity errors. My chapter plan notebook is always open with a red pen handy as I type. If I lost it, well, that doesn’t bear thinking about…

I will keep you posted on how it’s all going as one – or both – novel drafts progress. Though at this stage, it’s looking like it would be a better use of my time to keep going with WIP#5. One way or another, rest assured I’ll be writing many more updates on this.

About Leilanie Stewart

Leilanie Stewart is an author and poet from Belfast, Northern Ireland. She has written four novels, including award-winning ghost horror, The Blue Man, as well as three poetry collections. Her writing confronts the nature of self; her novels feature main characters on a dark psychological journey who have a crisis of identity and create a new sense of being. She began writing for publication while working as an English teacher in Japan, a career pathway that has influenced themes in her writing. Her former career as an Archaeologist has also inspired her writing and she has incorporated elements of archaeology and mythology into both her fiction and poetry. In addition to promoting her own work, Leilanie runs Bindweed Magazine, a creative writing literary journal with her writer husband, Joseph Robert. Aside from publishing pursuits, Leilanie enjoys spending time with her husband and their lively literary lad, a voracious reader of sea monster books. CONNECT WITH ME ON SOCIAL MEDIA: https://mailchi.mp/75c5a1ad6956/leilanie-stewart-author-info

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