I have continued making progress on Teshovar Book 2 this week and have finished the initial breakdown of the story and its characters. With so many moving pieces, these books have a lot to keep track of. As such, I’ve used spreadsheets to do the initial layouts of the character arcs and big plot moments for Book 2.
Here’s a redacted look at what the main story spreadsheet looks like. The important characters are charted across the top row, with POV characters highlighted in yellow. Below each character is a chronology of the big events and developments that involve them throughout the book.
The next step after completing that central spreadsheet was to pull all the text out of it and merge all the characters’ stories into one big and rudimentary outline, separated into the five “Parts” of the book. From there, I decided which characters needed to have the point of view in each cluster of events, and I rearranged the sequences to make the most narrative sense and the most dramatic impact. Doing that does cause some chapters and scenes to fall out of linear order in the book, but it all makes sense when it comes together. You’ll already be used to that kind of occasional nonlinearity in my writing if you’ve read Akithar’s Greatest Trick.
In the coming week, I’ll be further breaking these sequences down into individual chapters and then into scenes. Book 1 had 121 scenes and 39 chapters. Right now, it’s feeling like Book 2 could have a bit more than that, but I’ll have a better feel for the length after getting this breakdown process completed. At that point, I also should have a good feel for how many words I’m going to need to put into this thing!