Yep, another first draft done. For those of you who have been following this blog for a while, the book's working title used to be The Case of the Old Acquaintances. I changed the title for three reasons.
1. It was boring
2. It didn't say much about the book, though technically, it is true. Several old acquaintances of Paul do show up in the book.
3. I can't spell "acquaintances." It took me four tries to get it right above. No good for a book title I'll be typing a lot.
Anyway, it's renamed (much cooler title), and it's finished. Now I'm going to let it sit for a few weeks before I start editing. I know it needs work. I don't quite have the Paul/Dafydd dynamic right. I struggled with their relationship through most of the book before it finally clicked, near the end. I need to go back and smooth all that out. It's an important book for both of them, and I want to do it right.
I already know three scenes I need to add, and the final fight scene still needs some work. At almost 8K words, it's the longest fight I've ever written, and I'm sure it needs lots of editing, though I'm fairly happy with it. The darned villain refused to die, but that's okay. He was supposed to be tough.
The ending completely changed. I actually wrote the last scene a couple of months ago, and I'd been planning the end since I started this book. Once I got there, though, I realized what I'd been planning didn't take into account the growing Dafydd had done through the book. While Reincarnated Lover is an important book for Paul (we finally find out who he is), Dafydd really comes into his own, especially as a warlock. I started to get a handle on how to use him in battle, and I think you'll like what I came up with. He's still not a "battle mage," but he handles himself well.
As I was writing the ending, I realized I'd set it up in the previous book. Kind of funny how that works. There's a scene in Werewolf Puppy that I hadn't planned on, but Paul kind of drove it. I introduced the vampire subculture a book early, and that scene is still my favorite in the series, so far. I also inadvertently set up the ending of this one. You'll have to tell me how I did.
It's an odd feeling ending this book. I'm excited to be finished, but it's also left me a bit empty. This book was the one I've been wanting to write for more than a decade (more on that in a future blog post), and I'm kind of sad it's over. Glad, but also sad.
I do know what the next book will be about, so no worries about leaving these characters any time soon. But for now I have two short stories to write for a couple of anthologies. One will be a Paul and Dafydd story. The other will be something completely different, which might turn into a longer work. Stay tuned. Of course I'll talk about it here first.