Thursday, May 31, 2012

Castles: the ground rules

     Today I will post the first chapter of a novel I'm writing.  I've never serialized a story before, and I would guess you haven't read one.  Or maybe you have; I don't know.
    When I told Ron of my plans to "publish" my new story this way, he immediately cut to the heart of the experiment.  "You'll be posting a draft."  That's exactly right, so I think some ground rules are in order.
    The Heart of the Sea and Buying the Bangkok Girl both benefited from helpful criticisms from friends: Ron, Jen, Paula, Debbie H., Debbie S., and others I'm forgetting.  Karen most of all.  I am very grateful for people who like my stories enough to suggest improvements.  The proof of my gratitude is that I often accept their suggestions.  Therefore, I am explicitly asking readers to make comments, ask questions, and tell me what should be changed.  What you read here is a draft.  The final version of Castles will only emerge over time.
    Castles is a working title.  I expect something better will come along; maybe one of you will invent the eventual, final title.  That's how raw this experiment will be.  Everything is up for grabs.
    Well, not really.  I'm the author; I get to say what goes in or comes out, although my experience has been that stories take on a life of their own.  Once I get to know a character, I can't just do whatever I like with her.
    I intend to post a new chapter every week.  Since the chapters will all be stored here at Story and Meaning, you can always go back to read the earlier ones.  If and when I make an emendation, I'll post an announcement to that effect, especially if the change affects the plot significantly.
    One more ground rule: I am the author of Castles; by publishing it here I assert copywrite ownership, both to the draft version and the eventual final version.  I welcome, even solicit, reader input, but at the same time I expect readers to respect my rights as author.

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