Gray Haze Update #16 — Quality

I announced that I finished Part 1 on May 31st. I haven’t added to the manuscript since then, so it still stands at 61,534 words. I plan to write 6 parts total in Gray Haze.

BIG things are in the works, as I discussed a few things with my editor-in-chief and realized there is an entire POV missing in Part 1. That means I’m going to add up to seven chapters, which will make Part 1 much longer than it already is. That’s not a problem, as it will add more depth to a certain character and set up a minor plot twist that I had already written at the end. It’s also a valuable POV I will include in Part 2.

I’ve realized that the mere “set-up” to the main story in Gray Haze is going to constitute a novel by itself, which is somewhat worrisome. My biggest concern is that I keep readers invested so they aren’t daunted by the length. I’m really working on my prose and pace, and I have so far only written scenes that I deem Essential to the main plot. Naturally, I am an under-writer, meaning I usually don’t write enough and have to go back and add more later (as exemplified by the missing POV). I also like writing action and dialogue, so I keep descriptions short. When I’m done, I’ll have my editors read through it to determine if it is too action/dialogue-heavy or fast-paced. I don’t want readers to pass out halfway through a 1,000 page novel.

This is a story that is going to take time to get right. I’m going to give it the time it deserves. The dream is to create something of true quality — maybe not a classic or the best of its genre, but MY personal best. I want to publish something I can be genuinely proud of, something I’m not reluctant to talk about with acquaintances.

Gray Haze will be an adult sci-fi/fantasy/horror novel with deep, existential themes, including love and loss, power and oppression, doubt and faith, and, of course, good and evil. I’m guessing I’ll be able to finish it in a year (by April 2020) and publish it in two years (by April 2021).

Revised synopsis:

APRIL 2041: THE BEGINNING OF THE END – Forced to raise her four younger siblings alone after a tragic accident, AMORA, a 21-year-old waitress in a small-town diner, wants to get out of Fog Creek and move to a big city with public transportation, where nobody knows her name…

MALIK, a senior at Fog Creek High School, has all the talent in the world. He excels in every sport and subject in school, and his peers either love or hate him for it. Despite his agreeable, lovable personality, he has racked up many enemies – far more than he realizes.

OSRIC, a software engineer with an unparalleled intellect, is burdened with the impossible task of fighting a mysterious virus that threatens to infect the world’s power grid, dooming the planet to eternal darkness.

And VALERIE, the only child of the wealthiest man in town, faces a crucial decision that could change her life, and the lives of billions of people, forever. The question is, for the better or worse?

Amora, Malik, and Osric will soon be forced to unite, as Valerie and two rival gangs rise against them to achieve their shared goal: summoning their Master and usurping authority over all living creatures. But their Master isn’t the only powerful player in town. Other Masters are returning after millennia to prepare for the Great War.

Whom will you serve?

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