Today, eight months since I began writing it, I have an “almost” first draft of Titan’s Brood. Three hundred twenty manuscript pages (73, 812 words), it is now ready to be put on the shelf for a month or two. I know I’ve reached that stage when I begin haggling with myself over a few words I’ve changed five or six times already, only to return to the original. Sometime in October, I’ll print it out and go over it one more time (50 pages a day), then forward it to the fellow in New York who will tell me what’s wrong with it. Work on the final draft will probably start around the first of next year.
As I mentioned in an earlier post, this isn’t the novel I started out to write. The main characters and the principal setting are the same, as is the overarching theme, but the story lines–and the plot they weave–have changed considerably. I have also injected an alternative setting, a small town situated at the confluence of the Neuse and Trent Rivers I call Twin Rivers, that I believe readers will find compelling.
The most interesting thing that’s happened is the change in my personal point of view. I began with an optimistic view of the science that is central to the book but, as time passed and I delved deeper into the issues raised, I became more skeptical. As a result, I’ve changed the epigrams at the beginning of Books One and Two, and am considering another title change, but there’s more than enough in Titan’s Brood to allow the reader to make up her own mind.
Regarding the title, I’m thinking about changing it to Lucifer’s Promise. It’ll take some perseverance because my editor will probably object to it as “lurid.” I have a pretty good argument, though, because “Lucifer” appears in the novel, at least metaphorically. If you have an opinion, let me know.
The New Hope Tour (cont’d)
The “courthouse,” scene of much action in Gods and Lesser Men and Titan’s Brood, was once actually Chapel Hill’s Town Hall. I don’t know what it is now.