Time for a monthly update on how I’m doing with my WIP, Against All Odds, Book 3 of the Crossroads trilogy. After a lot of input from you-all, I decided on a variation of the first tagline suggested last month:
A friend must be killed. An enemy must be saved. Even if Xhosa does both, her people may not survive
Close… but I still have lots of time to tweak.
If you’ve ever played Vulcan Kal-toh, this month felt like that. Harry Kim (a primary character in Star Trek) describes Kal-toh this way:
“The object of the game is to turn this jumble of rods into a perfect sphere.”
In Kal-toh, you get nowhere until a seminal rod finds its spot and then everything snaps into place. Tuvok (another Star Trek character) says this about the strategy behind this quintessential Vulcan game:
“”Kal-toh is to chess as chess is to tic-tac-toe. [It is]…not about striving for balance but about finding the seeds of order even in the midst of profound chaos. [It is] as much a game of patience as it is of logic.”
Raise your hand if that’s what writing feels like–that if you can find the right placement of emotions, characters, and story, the balance between dialogue and narrative, the world will recognize the genius of your novel. Or maybe just you will–that’s not important. What matters is that you’ll know you’ve finished and done your best. Star Trek aficionados like me know this game doesn’t exist but I seem to channel it as I seek the perfect words and phrases. This month, so far, no seminal rods.
Here’s my rewrite of the summary for Against All Odds:
What should have been a long-awaited new home becomes a battle to survive. Despite Xhosa’s resolute refusal to quit, she may lose.
OK. I now realize that’s not really a summary. Back to work…
Here’s what I have done the past month:
- Wordsmithing as I channel Kal-toh strategy… Move words around, replace some, unreplace others. Umm, that’s it.
- The cover on this page is a placesaver. I’ll probably contact my cover folks in a month-ish.
- Still planning to do Diana Peach’s PowerPoint book trailer idea. I’ve also seen this done using the free Canva.
- Ideas for Book 2 in Dawn of Humanity keep bouncing around in my brain, as do ideas for the sequel to Crossroads. Hmm…
How are you doing on your latest? I’d love to hear!
More on Against All Odds
Jacqui Murray is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy, the Rowe-Delamagente thrillers, and the Man vs. Nature saga. She is also the author/editor of over a hundred books on integrating tech into education, adjunct professor of technology in education, blog webmaster, an Amazon Vine Voice, a columnist for NEA Today, and a freelance journalist on tech ed topics. Look for her next prehistoric fiction, Against All Odds, Fall 2020. You can find her tech ed books at her publisher’s website, Structured Learning
#StarTrek #Kal-toh #amwriting