This week I am reflecting on Blueprint, the Jasmine Frame prequel I completed last week.
Keeping to a strict programme of writing an episode of around 1500 (+/- 200) words a week was instructional. While I hadn’t had any idea where the story would go at the start or often from one week to the next, I was never at a loss for what to write. The actual writing of the episode was sometimes rushed (it probably showed) but I would find myself thinking through the episode often during the preceding week. I was pleased that the story hung together (I think) over 28 weeks and 38,000 words even if it was a little contrived at the end. It was a very useful vehicle for further development of Jasmine Frame as a character and to fill in some of the gaps of how she became the transsexual detective of Painted Ladies and Bodies by Design. One of the biggest challenges of writing a prequel is to ensure that the facts and timings are kept straight. I hope I succeeded. As a result I do now have a fixed chronology which is summarised below
Jasmine Frame born 1983; Blueprint, Nov 2009; Painted Ladies and Bodies by Design, May & August 2012. For more details about Jasmine’s significant dates you’ll have to read the stories.
I would welcome criticism of Blueprint. I feel it lacks a bit of movement towards the end although I did inject a bit of action to the questioning of Caroline. The biggest question is whether the solution to the case fits the set-up. There’s nothing worse than a plot with gaping holes in it. I have put together all the episodes into one manuscript although I have not edited thoroughly yet. Read it here.
Blueprint – A Jasmine Frame Story
Now I have to think about what to put on this blog. Bodies by Design is about to go out into the world to find an agent and publisher. If nothing happens then I may self-publish it as an e-book but I cannot afford another paperback like Painted Ladies, at least not unless sales pick up quickly. I am planning the third in the Jasmine Frame series but do not intend to start writing that for some time. I do want to write the third volume of my fantasy series (Evil Above the Stars) first. So, for here, I have decided on another Jasmine Frame prequel, filling in (some of) the gap between Blueprint and Painted Ladies and dealing with another important stage in her transition as well as a crime. The first episode will appear next weekend (I hope). It has the provisional title “The Switch.” This time I will write a short outline so I know where it is going and that it has a basic plot, but who knows where it will wander to.