Sunday November 29th – Day 25
Today was one of those unavoidably messy days. Carol read the second draft yesterday evening and, in consequence, I had some corrections and alterations to complete before I could start reappraising the novel as a whole. A second pair of eyes and a second opinion is invaluable but, as I have said, not after the first draft, only after the second or subsequent drafts. So, there was a good deal of yellow highlighter present by the time I got back to the manuscript this morning.
I woke late, relatively, and set to it. Finished around midday and went for a stroll; the weather was not conducive to staying out long, so I returned and got on with the epilogue, or the epilog as Hollywood spells it. The only reason I know this disparity in spelling exists is because I have been watching old episodes of the television production of The Fugitive. Running for four years in the mid-sixties, the series tells the story of Dr Richard Kimble’s search for the one-armed man who murdered his wife; some may remember the later movie starring Harrison Ford. However, the black and white TV series heralded my introduction to television and the good-looking, sensitive and surprisingly versatile David Janssen was one of my favourite actors. His filmography was extensive, running from 1945 and through to 1979, just prior to his death from a sudden heart attack; Janssen was rarely unemployed and was equally at home on small screen as large.
An epilogue is not always necessary, yet it serves two masters. The first is to explain or justify the actions of incidental characters the action had neither the time nor room to explain. And the second is to tie up all other loose ends, as in what happened to those characters after the denouement. Some readers don’t bother to read an epilogue and some, who may have associated with the incidental characters, do. Each and every episode of The Fugitive has an epilogue; so-and-so went to prison, so-and-so went home and the so-and-sos lived happily ever after, had three children and... I am more comfortable with an epilogue than without.
In The Wind Between Two Worlds, the epilogue pretty much began on the first page and continued all the way through to the last. In the final chapter, we get to find out who survives and who doesn’t. One reader made the point in their Amazon review that I had omitted one particular incidental character, for which I can only apologise. Yet I was rewarded by the reader’s observation, as her character must have been well written to have left such a marked impression. Some days, measure for measure, you get it both right and wrong.
Ciao. Until tomorrow.