I have decided to use the book The 90 Day Rewrite by Alan Watt that I won last year at my region's TGIO NaNo party to edit Om Nom Nombies. Today's post is not a review of the book, I trust if you're interested in one of those that you know how to use a search engine. And I'll be able to give a much better review of the book once I've used it. No, today I'm covering the "pre-week" that I did this week.
Dilemmas are problems inherent to the story. (The ones that are supposed to be there that your characters have to overcome.) They're really important for traditional three-act stories because they're kind of the whole point. The dilemma is a two-pronged problem composed of a strong desire combined with a false belief. The protagonists undergo their transformation when they reject their false beliefs and re-evaluate their approaches to their desires. When reading this section I kept thinking of Spitfire instead of Nombies, which I guess means I already know some things to work on when I get around to editing Spitfire. Also, Nombies is an ensemble cast story with a few protagonists doing a stand-in for the traditional one, so some of the dilemma issues aren't quite as overt for them.
Story structure for this book follows the basic three-act structure. (For other story structure options, check out this post.) Here, I could think about the beats of Nombies as I read through the basic outline of the three-act structure, which was encouraging. I may not have as much work to do on the structure as I thought, only tightening up the narrative and filling in the hole in the middle, getting my characters from point C to point D.
The technical matters discussed are just that. Show vs. tell, adverbs, redundant characters, making randomly included information (like why running a mile is not - or is - a big deal to your character), etc. I know I need to look out for adverbs and POV slips when editing, but I'm mostly worried about getting my story to hang together cohesively before I go picking out surface flaws like those.
Next week, I get to re-read the story and make an outline for the version-to-be. Wish me luck!