The thing I remember most about the writing of Uncharted was my attempt to make the ensemble cast perfect balanced. I’d read somewhere that you treated the ensemble as one character, so they all went through rising action and epiphany together. After I got my editor’s revision letter and talked to Donald Maass, I realized that a novel really isn’t effective that way. I had to learn this and brand it on my forehead: a novel is ONE PERSON’S STORY. The other characters may be important and play roles, but they are subordinate to the protagonist.
Which means you have to have one.
It was easy for me to figure out which of the six was the main-est character: Karyn, who left a daughter in New York while she went to the Marshall Islands. Karyn is a soap star, and though she’s proud of her mothering, she doesn’t realize how often she puts her career ahead of her daughter’s welfare.
Uncharted went through my usual system: four or five drafts before I handed it in to my editor.
After that–well, we’re into tomorrow’s topic.
Tomorrow: the editing
~~Angie, taking lots of pictures she will share when she’s back from Alaska!