The blog of author Harper Alexander

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Born at 7:29pm, Weighing in at 90,000 Words, 350 Pages

IT IS FINISHED. The Tournament of Eden has come to an end. It was officially born this evening at 7:29pm, weighing in at 90,000 words, 350 pages (ish). Both of those numbers are actually estimates, because while I’ve been typing the  book straight onto the computer for a good while, there is still a fair amount early on that’s hand-written and needs to be transposed. So I’m actually guessing there will be over 90,000 words, and the actual amount of pages remains to be seen based on the formatting of the book.

But it’s done! I’m so excited! Now I’ll put it aside for a few days before going at it with edits, which will probably be harder edits than I’ve had to do with a book in awhile, but I can’t wait to get it all polished and ready to introduce to the world.

Stay tuned for the exciting updates that always come with ACTUALLY RELEASING A BOOK!

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Awkward Author Moment Number 102

That awkward author moment when you triumphantly reach the end of your book and realize that reaching the end of the book is far more triumphant than anything your hero/heroine actually did in the book.

On the bright side, that means I have finally managed to write a ‘rough draft’, rather than my usual tendency of needing to get everything in there and just right up front. Again, more of a victory for me than my heroine, but I’VE BEEN TRYING TO WRITE A GOOD (BAD) ROUGH DRAFT FOREVER.

Also, I numbered this ‘awkward moment #102’ not because I’ve counted one hundred and two of them up until now, but in fact because its only the second one that I’ve notated and I know I’ve had way more than that. And besides, ‘awkward author moment #2’ just has a bit of a pathetic ring to it.

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Where Did That Character Go?

I don’t know if this happens to any of the rest of you writers, but one of the problems I’ve run into with finishing up The Tournament of Eden is that, somehow, one of the main-ish characters has managed to work his way out of the story. He’s all but disappeared. Where did he go? I’m not really sure.

Obviously, this won’t do. And it’s never happened to me on this scale before. Occasionally I don’t give a character as much attention as I ought to, but it can usually be fixed by going back and giving him a few extra lines, or an extra scene. In this case, that’s not going to work. This character has completely extracted himself from the story, to the point that he might as well have not been in it to begin with.

Which begs the question – does he indeed need to be in it at all? I have never, ever cut a character before. That’s always something I’ve heard writers talk about as a necessary evil, but the idea has always horrified me. Once I create a character, he lives and breathes. I can’t just CUT HIM. It’s sort of a policy of mine.

But I really don’t know how to fit this character into the last half of the book. I feel like he IS relevant to the first half, and therefore has to stay in the book, but there’s just no good place to stick him in for the last half. But he CANNOT JUST DISAPPEAR AND NOT BE HEARD FROM AGAIN.

Has anyone else ever lost a character before?


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Two and a Half Chapters

And the results of yesterday’s writing session: I made progress! Two and a half chapters left to go now. It is just so difficult making sure you tie up every last thing that needs to be tied up, in the span of a few chapters. In the middle of the book, you can kind of let chapters go where they may, sometimes with one main point or what-not that needs to get worked in there somehow. But now, every detail is important, so the going is a little slow. But steady! At least as far as working on it a bit every weekend goes.

Clearly, I have failed to get it done and released by summer, but I’m not too far off the mark, and I figure that’s pretty good for having my writing time cut down to only weekends in recent months.

Hopefully I can find a way to make a little bit more time during the week to write, but either way – only a couple weeks to go now, for sure!