It really is quite disturbing to go back over stuff that’s anywhere from ten to fifteen years old. I’m not the person I was then, and it shows. Boy, does it ever show. And yet, for all that, nobody seems to have ever called me on just how horrifying some of my lapses in judgement were. Which means…well. I’m not quite sure what it means. Was I given a pass because I was English? Was my writing so good that I dazzled people to the point they didn’t spot the problems? Or was everyone just too polite to mention it?
I’d probably go with the last one as the explanation – except that people are still reading my older stuff, even now, and still no-one’s mentioned the casual (albeit thoroughly unintentional) racism that’s right there in the very first chapter!
Or maybe it’s not so obvious or problematic to everyone else and it’s just me being the one who’s sensitive to it.
Enough to say, there’s now a honking great big reminder (not that I really need it because this is absolutely seared into my brain) in the middle of my notes that, if nothing else, that one sentence (and any others like it) will be rewritten.
I hate to think what else is lurking.
In less horrifying news, I’ve realised that there are actually three prequel stories, not the two I thought there were. The one I’d forgotten about is actually in pretty good shape, so that’ll be the first one to go up – possibly as soon as this weekend, if I can run to earth my original word document. (Let’s just say, my filing system could use a little work!)
I’m tentatively thinking that all three stories will go up as a sub-series called Time Force Academy – two of them actually are set in the academy; the third isn’t (being set in an entirely different time period altogether!), but it does have a school setting for a backdrop, so it kinda fits. Doing that just helps to break the universe up a bit more and gives some idea of chronological sequence which, let’s face it, is something the ID’verse struggles with at times!
I’m also thinking that, at least possibly, there might be a fourth story in the series – but that definitely won’t be written until after Images of Elsewhere’s finished and it will depend quite heavily on how Images… finally pans out. (I have a plan – but anyone who’s followed me for a while knows that my plans routinely go the way of the Dodo…)
So, progress then. It’s not much, but I’m okay with that. After all, the first rule of great drama is to start small and build…