Friday, July 23, 2010

Ending Battle-Scenes

I apologize for being away for such a long time. :-( The truth is that I just couldn't get going again with the battle scene because I had written myself into a problem - my main character needed an object that was in the possession of a character that had just had his face viciously clawed by something, and I hit a point where I had no idea how to carry on.

You see, I had the whole battle planned out; I knew how big both armies were, how they would move, where they would attack, how long the battle would be, etc. But then I allowed one of the characters to get clawed... I was thinking in terms of conflict and putting characters in difficult situations, you see. Well, spanner in the works and all that.

Anyway, a week later I had an idea that explained just why he had been clawed - 'why' meaning what it would mean for the plot and for him going forward (and it's pretty damn cool, though only time will tell if everyone agrees), but I still didn't know how I was going to let the battle progress, and end.

Until tonight. I cut out the 800-odd words I'd written (and was very unhappy with), saved them in a different document, and read through what I'd already written before attacking the scene again.

I ended up writing a measly 645 words (and yet, that's 645 words more than I had) and I think, I think, I developed a cool new strategy for my heroes - they're surrounded and outnumbered, hunkered down in an ancient fort, and I just got them a way out and have also maximised enemy casualties. :-) I quite dig it, though it does need plenty of more work before it's jaw-droppingly awesome. I'll fix and edit later, after I've completed the novel.

Anyway, now the end is in sight, and new paths beckon for my heroes. I'm also reaching the point where some will split up and some will come together, and this is the part I've been really excited to write - the succulent meat of my novel. :-) It just sucks that I'm also buggered after a full-day's work and am stopping for tonight because I can't even type coherently any more.

Anyway, haven't hit 40K yet:

Words written tonight: 645
Total word count: 39375


  1. As for the word count, in my humble opinion, quality is more important than quantity. As for the battle, I find it really interesting to read the problems you are facing and how you are getting all your ends to come together. I honestly wish more authors would do this kind of thing!

  2. Me too! :-) The cool thing is that everyone's process is different - one of my friends concentrated on developing his world and all the details in it before starting to write, so you could say that he has more detail and knows his world better than I do but hasn't yet reached the kind of wordcount I'm sitting at, but that's awesome because his way is working for him and my way is working for me. :-) I think I'll probably experiment quite a bit before I find the approach that works the best for me. :-)