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Friday, July 21, 2017

A Summer of Expansions

Expansions...the new challenge! With all the box sets out there, many of us are either choosing or being asked to expand our stories for individual release. Sounds easy, sounds fun...but when I recently took hold of my story from Hero to Obey, the volume that hit USA Today and made my entire year last year, it was not as easy as I'd expected.

Sitting down with my trusty laptop and some great 1970s music to inspire my 1970 story, I found myself really puzzled on what direction to go. Should I take the story into the future of the characters' lives? Add more detail about the story as it happened? Add a 1945 dream sequence involving a whole new trip into research land?

So many options, all of which were interesting, challenging, and in the end puzzling. Instead of pounding out word count I had to consider each paragraph, each sentence for building opportunities. I can't lie...historicals, even those that occur during years since my birth, can be a challenge. I believe 1970 counts. But the difference between this and say Topaz's Trials which took place in the 1850s is that I have live sources to chat up.

It was a lot of fun to revisit Bound by Her Captain. I missed Anya and Captain Mark and was glad to get to spend more time with them. Friends from another time, written in another time. I'm looking forward to expanding some of my other box set stories in the future, for this reason. And also because rather than being the "easy peasy" project it sounded like when I took it on it was tough. But hopefully readers will enjoy spending more time on the decks of the US Coast Guard ice breaker, Northern Lights as the captain, crew, and one very smart Soviet scientist travel into the Arctic to find a mythic beast. Watch for Bound by her Captain in August. And as for future expansions, the sky's the limit.

Enjoy the rest of July and August. I hope everyone has a chance to enjoy some fun in the sun!
Kate Richards


Cara Marsi said...

Interesting, Kate. It can be a challenge to expand a novella written for a box set. I, too, wrote a story set in 1971 for a set. Ironic that time period is considered "historical" when I lived through it. I've wondered how I'd expand that story if needed. Congrats on making the USAT list. I believe I met you at EPIC Con in 2012.

Melissa Keir said...

I can imagine how challenging it is. You've always been someone who loves the challenges to keep you fresh and I admire it about you. Were you able to see any of the Northern Lights recently? Michigan didn't get a show here where I am but other places, it was beautiful.

At first I was worried the post was about expanding waistlines! That's another thing I tend to do with writing! Too much sitting and eating!

All the best!

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