Saturday, November 20, 2010

Editing and Deleting 3

As I've already mentioned, sometimes a writer has to delete a section either because of a need to reduce word count or because it slowed the story/plot.  In some ways, the sections I'm going to post did a little of both.  My novel takes place several centuries in the future.  The main character is human, but one if his parents is from another world - a descendant of human colonists who left Earth centuries earlier, but ended up lost.  They eventually found a habitable world to colonize and called it Ganesha after the Hindu God of Success/Overcoming Obstacles.

I thought some readers might like a little on how their journey went, so I tested some early chapters with log entries from the colony ship.  The first entries were from the commanding officer, but I planned to add more from other colonists.  While my beta readers liked the idea, they said that it was a little distracting, so I removed the log entries.  Here are a couple of examples. 

Chapter 1 Log Entry:

Prometheus log, September 19, 2104.  As of 0717 hours ship time, we crossed the event horizon and into the FTL conduit, becoming the first Earth colony ship to travel faster than light.  The transition was rougher than expected.  For a few seconds, it felt like every inch of my body was being pulled apart.  I spent the last hour listening to several colonists’ theories of how and why.  That’s what happens with a ship full of geniuses.”
“There were some injuries reported by colonists, mostly bloody noses, headaches, and nausea.  Nothing the medical team couldn’t handle.  Despite that, everyone seems upbeat.  Initial projections show we should pass Pluto’s orbit and officially leave our solar system within two hours.  Captain Matthew Morris, commanding officer.”

Chapter 2 Log Entry:

Prometheus log, December 24, 2104.  After almost fourteen consecutive weeks in the FTL corridor, we finally emerged, but not where we expected.  Our navigator confirmed that somehow we ended up several thousand light years off course.  One of the physicists on board believes there may be an serious flaw in the design of the navigation system.  I have asked him to keep his theories to himself until we can run some diagnostics.  We are going to run a series of diagnostics on the system before we re-enter FTL. 
“This system has no planets capable of sustaining life, so we can’t even try to replenish any supplies.  We discussed stricter rationing of food and water as a precaution, but tomorrow is Christmas and I still plan to allow holiday parties for those who wish to participate.  Captain Matthew Morris, commanding officer.”

Chapter 3 Log Entry:

Prometheus log, December 31, 2104.  We re-entered the FTL corridor at 0900 hours, ship time.  I don’t know if I’ll ever get used to that transition.  With all the bickering going on between the crew and colony scientists about what went wrong, it’s a miracle I didn’t have to call security to separate them.  As much as I respect and appreciate the colonists’ input, their expertise is still theoretical.  This ship is a working machine even if it is a prototype.  Hopefully the worst is behind us though.  Best estimates place our new arrival time at three months from now.  Hopefully it will be springtime at our new home.”
“Captain Matthew Morris, Commanding Officer.”

Feel free to express your opinions and

Write On

No comments:

Post a Comment