I’m mailing off tomorrow to my most trusted proofreader (Thank you, B.S.), a copy of the first two parts of what I’ve projected to be (at minimum) a six-part heroic fantasy, entitled The Chains of Time.
I started working on that story at least ten years ago, working in spurts on and off until about 8 or 9 months ago when right after publishing Making the Grade (2011), I sent the first 5,000 words to a oft-published novelist for an evaluation. She saw some flaws, but could see the merit. As a result, I’ve put in the effort and have completed the first draft of 3 parts — a total of around 130,000 words or 480 double-spaced pages.
(Also, thank you to my friends at the Baltimore Science Fiction Society critique group for your valuable feedback and suggestions.)
When an author reaches this stage of the process, nervousness is only one of the emotions that course through our consciousness. One minute you think it’s a masterpiece and the next minute a failure. Of course, the reality is that it’s in the middle, but where could keep me awake at 3 A.M. on many a night.
Heroic fantasy is one of many attempts critics have made to classify genre fiction. To me, it applies when present day issues are played out in an alternative world. One way to look at Lord of the Rings for example, is that it is about the need for the little person to take up the fight against fascism and totalitarianism. Those battles, however, must never interfere with the story and in Chains of Time, I want my readers to care about the characters and their struggles based on who they are rather than who they represent.
I have a goal and a plan for this book, details of which I’ll reveal in good time. Meanwhile, I’m enjoying having finished the first draft (of half of the projected six parts) by catching up on some reading and taped TV shows. (Grimm, anyone?)