It’s quite incredible, just how much was missing from my first draft. I’ve always heard that the first draft ought be just you getting down the bulk of the content, which I did to great effect, I think. Certainly in retrospect, it was purely bulky content. The amount of new writing I’ve done so far has pushed Chapter Eight up to Chapter Sixteen, I’ve added almost 30k words and god knows how many pages. It’s starting to fill out though, that’s for sure. I’ve already done more work for this novel than I could ever have imagined doing two years ago.
It goes to show it doesn’t matter how many stories you struggle to complete, how many ideas you get through, how many times you can’t get past page 30 or page 60; all it takes is one idea, one day, one moment even, for something to click and then the world takes on a life of its own. I started with ideas for cities and histories, which led onto characters, but instead of using those men and women, I gave them children and grand-children and great-grand children until I found the present day King of Agia. Since then, I’ve built in civil wars, world wars, martyrs and heroes, I’ve planted trees and flowers and set up campsites for wearied travelers. I’ve written books for the Magisters to study and created a pantheon for the church, I’ve lined roads with hedges, trees and flowers, I’ve put in birds, hedgehogs, spiders, I have seen farmers on the hillside that I might never meet and put men in prison for unspeakable crimes, all because I once named a city Cadan Danwr.