W&W 4 (Mistborn #7) is 2/3 Done!
Hey, everybody! It is time for another Weekly Update, and I’m going to talk to you about Wax and Wayne 4.
Now, I was reading the comment section to one of my previous updates, and someone had been a little confused about how I was writing this book. They’re like, “Wait. So the entire last third of the book is all Sanderlanche?” Not quite. In order to explain it to you, how Wax and Wayne is progressing, this is a spoiler-free, at least mostly spoiler-free, visual aid that I have created for you. I feel very accomplished having a visual aid for you. I’m going to explain how I’ve been writing this book. This is not how it will actually be published. This is how I have been writing it.
We’re going to start at the bottom here, where I zoom in. Part one of the book, which was roughly—the whole book is going to be 150,000 words. Part one was roughly 30,000 words of that. I wrote two separate narratives. There we are. Two separate narratives with two characters each. And I wrote those together. I just alternated chapters between the four characters, the four characters for this book being Wax, Wayne, Marasi, and Steris. And some of those characters get more viewpoints than others. Steris gets fewer viewpoints generally than the others. But the idea is that I kind of just wrote them all together, but they were in two separate sort of storylines that then, as we hit part two, I brought everybody together and did it as one big narrative of four different characters, and I was alternating between them.
And then as I eventually, I wrote this through, and I did that for a while. And then I hit a point in the middle of the book, right about at the central point, I would say, right around 75,000 words, where I realized I was splitting the characters up again, and I wanted to go and write each narrative on its own for a while. What this gets me is, writing-wise, this is where we are right here. This is where I’ve taken the characters. One character is off by themselves. Two characters are together. And one’s got a short little bit of viewpoint. That’s Steris whose got a few viewpoints off in a third location.
What’s going on here is it’s much easier for me to take the book and to write, for instance, all of this straight through because this character is split off from the others, and just really drill in to this character’s character arc and narrative arc. And then it gets to the end, and I get to have a climax section that will be at the end of the book. Then in the middle, I’ll actually go write Steris next, which has a little mini climactic chapter of her arc. And then I’ll write these characters right here, which is where I’ll end. And I will write that all the way through to the climax of their character arcs and narrative arc. And then I will weave these all together.
This, like I said, gets me some advantages. One is that I get to write the ending essentially from three different perspectives, three different times, and I really like writing endings. This just makes it more engaging to me as an author. It is less oppressive for me to keep all of this stuff. Like, if I were just narratively, if I was writing, not narratively, but as I was writing I was jumping between these three different narratives, it would be much more difficult to keep a tight focus on what’s happening with them. This is how I write Stormlight books. This is how I write Skyward books and things like that, that have fewer narratives. So this book is half like one of those and half like a Stormlight book in the way I’m approaching just structurally creating the thing.
What the disadvantage of this is, is that the pacing needs to really be looked at in that part when I then interweave all these viewpoints. Because you’ll read them. They won’t be split up in chunks. You’ll read them interwoven where it’s jumping between the different narrative plot lines. The issue there is I will naturally create a narrative, for instance, for this character that has its own stops and starts and slowdowns and scenes and sequels, as we sometimes talk about in writing terms. And I’ll do the same thing for this one. And then I have to weave these together in a way that the pacing feels right. And this is what a lot of the 2.0 revision of a book like this is about, is making sure that it just feels right as you’re going through these different jumping between viewpoints and whatnot.
And so that is what I’m doing. I am at, bing, 66%. I am two-thirds of the way through the book. I have just actually finished this part right here. I wrote the climactic moments of this sequence this week, so that I finished them on Wednesday, and you’ll be getting this on Monday. And I’m actually going to write Steris next. And so that will be 10K. That’ll be like one week’s worth of work probably. All next week I’ll be writing Steris viewpoints. And then I will do the last portion for the last month that I’ll be working on this.
That 40K is about four weeks’ worth of work, and we’ll see if it goes long or if it goes short or whatnot. This is just kind of my guesstimate. But the first viewpoint group ended up being just right smack where I expected it to be, so I am pretty good these days at guessing how many words a given plot arc that I’m planning will take. Like, for instance, Steris’ might take a little less than 10K.
This is just how I’m approaching writing this book. I hope that’s interesting to you. Because it’s just the main update is, hey, I’m two-thirds of the way through the book and I’m about five weeks out from hopefully finishing it. But this gives you a little bit more of an interesting look at it.
As always, thank you, guys, for watching. And if you haven’t been watching them, please do check out the podcast I’m doing with Dan, Intentionally Blank. We’ve had some very fun episodes recently, and those you can find here on YouTube or on your favorite places to find podcasts. And I will be back next week with another update for you. Thanks for reading.