Yesterday I did a re-work of chapter one. I went over it very critically and added to it in a way that involves the reader more. There is now more sensory involvement. For example, here is a snippet which has Liz making coffee in her lab after she has dealt with an emergency call in the wee hours of the morning.
Liz looked at her watch: just past 5 am, still dark outside. It would turn light in an hour or so. She was yawning heavily but there was no point in going home. Sleep wasn’t in the cards anyway, so she might as well stay here and use the time productively. To do that, however, she needed to spike her bloodstream with some caffeine. There was a fancy coffee vending machine one floor up, capable to serve a totally tricked out cup of latte but she didn’t feel like making the trip and wasn’t sure she even had change for it. The old fashioned drip style with creamer for milk, no foam and heavy on the sugar would have to suffice. She turned on the ancient coffee maker next to the sink and cleaned the jar of the vile residue left from the previous day. Some fresh water and several scoops of the black magic powder later and the machine started to gurgle along merrily, spewing coffee into the jar. Its smell began to fill the room.
This paragraph I added to give the reader some sense of connection with the scene through the familiar routine of coffee making. It also functions as a lead-in to some background information on Liz, while her mind drifts, waiting for the coffee to be ready.
I am not yet done with chapter one primarily because I keep expanding its scope. In a talk with Dexter, the security guard, she explains some of the technology background essential for the story to him. But I will be finishing this chapter by the end of today! Promise!
3:14 pm and I just finished all 3,656 words of the first chapter (after the prologue, which almost counts as a chapter, too)! I think it reads quite well, actually. It accomplishes what I set out to do and it does so in style. But I am not entirely without bias 😉
I will set up an area on the blog where I can upload excerpts and snippets of the book for you to read. I hope I’ll get around to this later.
3:51 pm. I just managed to give myself a good scare. I am syncing my files to a cloud service for backup and suddenly I could only find an old version of Chapter 1, at about the 50% mark. Nothing on my PC and nothing in the cloud. The latest version had disappeared!!! I was looking at rewriting half of the chapter which felt about as appealing as lapping up regurgitated food. I searched online for a solution to this problem and actually found one that brought the last version back.