I’m posting early for a couple of reasons. One, I’ve been looking forward to getting this section of the story to you guys for ages. I had to do a lot of things to get all the pieces in the row to make these final ten chapters or so gel together. When I was first playing around with the idea of rewriting 2002, I only knew that I wanted to do more with Gia and Courtney, give Liz more of a character rebuild than she got post wedding, and that Carly’s faked death would be drawn out more and rolled into the larger umbrella story.
And then, as I plotted, I started to think about what Carly’s return would look like. I can still remember subbing at a horrible school, scribbling in my notebook over the break, trying to figure out what Zander’s story would be and how Carly would fit into Alcazar’s story. How to take the beats of 2002 and rework them into something was ultimately more satisfying with long-term effects and more in character.
So I’m posting tonight because I really want to see if you guys can see where we’re going from here, and I want to know what you guys think.
Two, I’m posting early because we’re getting a storm, and my school district hasn’t closed — they’ve just shortened the day so we’re still dragging our asses into class for half hour periods and I’ll be cleaning my car off twice, and with my luck, my second job won’t cancel so my day will be a complete pain. I didn’t want to forget.
And finally, in late December, I posted kind of cryptically about having gotten to Chapter 26 and just…feeling stalled about a story decision. The only way to fix it was to go back and massively rework 20-25. I did it, and I feel really good about it because I think I got to some really interesting things with all the relationships. This is the first chapter with that change. The final scene is completely different. Once we get to the end of the story, I’ll go back and post the cut material. Like the custody stuff, none of it is bad, but it felt out of character. It just meant that I didn’t get to finish the final chapters before I started student teaching and that has definitely killed the momentum.
Still, it’s not how fast I post, it’s how good the story is. If it’s good, you guys have proven to me you’ll stick around, and I think my best is what I’ve promised you.
So, here’s Chapter Twenty of Bittersweet.
Oh….and as a treat for you guys being so massively supportive — I’m posting stuff from Mad World. I’ve got three full chapters done of the rewrite and I…love it. I can’t wait to get back to it. So I’m posting a few cut scenes from it.
Mad World Excerpts