So I did one of the boring things I have to do when I get close to the end of a finished first draft: the outline. This outline is not one I follow, it’s the one that follows me. It lists all the scenes I’ve already written so I can see the plot lurches, the subplots I’ve dropped, the characters who have disappeared, the scenes I need to write yet. It’s the well-let’s-see-what-we’ve-got-here part of the process, done in Word in a table with three columns: Date and Time, Nita’s scenes, Nick’s scenes. Nick and Nita’s names are done in boldface, and then the characters I need to keep track of (Button, Max, Belia, etc.) are highlighted in different colors. It’s a nightmare, and it’s boring as all Hell (which is not that boring, I’m hoping), but it does help me see the holes in the book.
This book is the swiss cheese of narrative excessiveness.