With the majority of pre-publication book work done (at least what I'm involved in), my thoughts turn once more to my WIP, the re-named Price of Justice, which might also be called a sequel to Star of Justice. I tend to think of it not as a sequel but as the next season of their lives.
TT: It didn't hurt to have Vaulter start yapping at me to hurry up and give her something else to read about Caissa and the crew.
A few months away make a difference in viewing a story. For the most part, the first draft isn't as awful as I remembered. It is a little scattered, but that's no surprise when I had no target goal.
I've removed Pip as a viewpoint character. I put her in mostly to get the creative juices flowing. While I adore the little sociopath, this isn't her story. She can be a cameo in this book and gain major character status in another book or short story. She won't mind as long as I give her a blueberry pie to eat.
That leaves five viewpoint characters. I can't figure a way to remove the least important one (Kirk) without leaving chunks of story untold. He's the only head I'm willing to occupy in some of those scenes.
Anyway, the consequence for this extraction is a reduced word count, but that's OK. Since I'm learning I should not write by word count anyway, I'm not broken up about it. I write a story until I'm happy with the result. I have no idea how many words that will take until I take them.
Star of Justice at its biggest was 166K. I removed only 4K words in final edits so I don't think being overly-wordy is my issue.
Some might argue I have stuff in there that isn't necessary. I would answer, "try watching The Biggest Loser or American Idol and tell me what's necessary to engage people's interest." At least my book isn't padded with 20 minutes of commercials.
So, I'm not focused on word count anymore but I will keep that little scoreboard up at the top of the blog just to remind me to do something.