I am almost there. Chapter 32 is finished and has been sent off to SYoshiko for a quick read. Then it will be submitted to my writers’ groups for their coldly objective review.
I have just one more chapter and possibly an epilogue to write. They should be done by the end of the June. I think I should write more quickly, but I have come to terms with the fact that some people are able to pump out a lot of words in a day and some cannot. I cannot. The story takes as long to write as it takes. If you are slow (like me), comparing your production rate to others will do nothing except depress and de-motivate you.
This close to the finish line and already I have an extensive list of things to be fixed. There are, for example, two minor sub-plots that go nowhere. These will be ruthless excised from the second draft. There is a moderately sized sub-plot and character which may be cut, though I’d really rather not. They will make a nice jumping off point for the second book.
I have decided there will be a second book, to resolve a couple of lingering questions and tie up a character’s story arc. Western Watch will be a stand-alone story, but it will be clear that a sequel is coming, I had mixed feeling about this, because such a structure could leave me open to the criticism of merely tying up most of the loose ends, instead of ALL of them.
We’ll see. I might get ruthless enough to carve out all of the remaining sub plots. Still — it’s a moot point until the first draft is finished.