In the last year, since I published Wings of the Sathakos, I’ve written an additional 140k words.
That’s not counting the chapters I deleted, which would probably push that total up close to 200k.
My style has changed from the first novel to the third. I’ve studied the craft and found my voice, I think.
Here’s a couple things I’ve learned and adopted into my writing to improve it.
- Get out of your own head. In Wings of the Sathakos, I sought to paint every scene exactly the way I saw it. Now, I want to give the reader just enough description to inspire her to build the scene in her own mind, to imagine things the way she wants to. This has made my writing tighter and stronger overall, and I like to think it has improved the reader’s experience.
- Get out of your characters’ heads. My early writing spent a lot of time inside the POV character’s head, showing his confusing and ambiguous thought process. I now believe that weakens the reader’s experience so I strive to put down on paper only things that are certain. Usually, people have little doubt that their opinions are correct so this method actually works better even when the POV character can’t know something for sure.