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20,196 end of Chapter 6

An important piece of evidence is discovered at the end of Chapter 6. I can't believe I'm writing all these sympathetic FBI agents getting along with each other on the case, all concerned about protecting their one survivor and nailing the bad guy legally. But they are rising to the occasion... and I'm trying to keep the book down to 45,000 or so, not expand to an 80,000 word thriller that a Canadian small press may not be geared for.

Instead a lot of my efforts are going into continuous editing. I look at it and instead of going forward, tuck in relevant scenelets that make everything a little more clear to the readers. I have been creeping up on the horror aspects. Been stepping up the nastiness one stage at a time. It gets ugly here on out.

I'm raising the stakes gradually, building suspense both ways. It's a thriller and it's running good. It's also, eerily, coming out exactly to length in terms of where I am in the plot in relation to planned length of book. I finally got it about writing to length. Whole areas of plot that would work well in a bigger book are getting reduced to short incidents. A paragraph would've been worth a chapter or two in a longer version -- but that's okay. It just makes this -- concentrated.

I think it'll work well. I'm confident about it now. My villain's a creep and my good guys are sometimes a little too late, often a little too late. It's fun.

I'm now at the top of the second day, rested and ready to throw in another couple of chapters before I sleep again. I had a three hour nap at 8pm till elevenish, woke up, got sorted out and went back to writing. I didn't make 20k before midnight but that was just when the nap fell -- it doesn't matter since this one really is going to come out the planned size and I know I can do the rest today... and spend most of Monday editing the bejeezus out of it, making sure that I have no typos, no non-mentioned important clues and facts, adding descriptions, making sure they're consistent, tightening where anything's extraneous.

Though I don't think anything is extraneous. It helps that I'm not bothering to explain the magic. It just is. People who have degrees in it are experts and act on their expertise without stopping to say what the Laws of Magic are, only that they're as solid as the laws of physics. They know them and the readers pick them up by observation. I know them and that's what's making it work tight and consistent.

Laws of Magic are unique to any book with magic in it, but as long as they're consistent, it rings true. This book they're actually pretty common and most people who ever fooled around with the occult will recognize it looks pretty much like what they know, just more dramatic and literal and treated like science. Which is to say that a lot of churches hate it and those that don't are more likely to have other liberal humanist ideas.
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