I’ve gone through and deleted most of my trunk novels. To be honest, several of them were dissected; meaning I took characters I enjoyed or a concept I thought was cool and then placed them inside a different book.
In fact, Nelek Dyngannon from the Sedition series came from a trunk novel. And the concept of the “tapped” came out of my alien abduction story.
But there is one trunk novel that I just can’t seem to let go of. I keep telling myself that I’m going to re-write it. It’s my World War II story and I started it at least ten years ago. I have close to ninety thousand words recorded from that story, but it’s all in bits and pieces. There are sections missing — important sections, too.
And there are at least three different endings I could choose from.
I could assign this book as a “little darling” or I could attribute my inability to let it go to the fact that I love WWII history. (Not that I love all the terrible things that happened, of course.) But for whatever reason, I just can’t seem to drop it.
So … I think I’m going to go ahead and start the rewrite this summer. I’m already on the last leg of Usurper (Hurray! The characters have reached the mainland and are headed to war!) and the second book in the Tapped series is already underway. (Meaning it’s been outlined and I’ve decided which POV characters I’ll have.)
Now, because this is a trunk novel and what I could consider a “little darling” I am going to do something different with it. I’ve been hunting for a project that I could post online for free via Wattpad and a story blog for some time now and this one seems to fit.
For one, I have no real hopes of it ever getting published. As much as I love history, particularly WWII history, the book is utterly fictional and I fear many people prefer to read WWII books that are at least loosely based on a true story. We’ve been spoiled by Band of Brothers and other such stories.
For another, there are elements in the story that stretch the boundary of belief. For example, the original story-line had our heroine (because yes, I have to write a female protagonist, we all should understand this by now) getting shot down in a plane over the Baltic, where she was picked up by the Nazi’s.
That story line was rejected during one of my gazillion edits ten years ago and changed to having her boat sink — the Elaine, by the way, which is a real boat that was really sunk — but even that story line makes my “suspension of disbelief” feel like it’s getting thrown into the atmosphere.
See what I said about a re-write?
I’m actually still struggling with the idea of keeping the book in this particular format (the boat sinking sequence) or going ahead with writing a new opening sequence. It’s sort of like having to stress the Fiction in Historical Fiction rather than stressing the History. The boat sinking makes for a great, exciting opening, and it seems to be my style to start things in the middle of the action.
But, while the Elaine was a real boat, the people I have written are entirely fictional and the idea of Nazi’s taking in a half-drowned American woman and not assuming her to be a spy is a stretch. Granted, the book starts prior to America entering the war, but still … Yeah …
Side note — I did read about how the Allies planted fake information on a body and let it float to the enemy, who took the bait and thought the information was real. Which, to me, was supremely clever. What’s more convincing than a dead body?
Starting in July (probably) I will set up the WWII story — titled Crossweathers, by the way — on Wattpad and give it a story blog. I’ll post a chapter a week after that.
I know some people manage to put two chapters up a week (LJ Cohen, for example) but I am still in school and have other deadlines to meet as well.