Next stage in a day or so - organize it ruthlessly and do the scene by scene synopsis to see how it hangs together at that level and mark up any problem areas. I've got a good feeling about the overall structure, it's paced well. But some scenes might be able to be punched up while others may shift in emphasis, and now the ending's in a lot of little things need to be blended in back at the beginning.
Cast list made and finalized. Series bible *that* series.
With that organizational level done, take Sheila's suggestion from the Friday Night Think Tank and just start making all the changes thoroughly, chapter by chapter, beginning to end without stopping. This should not take as long as writing it did - because it's staying the same size. I start with 120,000 words, I wind up in the ballpark range of 120,000 words give or take, say, 10,000. I won't know till it's marked up if I'm a little fat on descriptions or if there are too many talking heads dialogues that'll expand when action and gesture and description come in.
Because this is a series pilot (set in my big vast setting that's expandable) I'll want to have character sheets set up even for minor characters that get no more than one or two cameos, make their cameos interesting enough to keep them and have them handy to shuffle which minors gain prominence in sequels when POV may change and plot demands a different focus.
If I'm very lucky I won't really have to eliminate any major scenes, just shift their balance and punch them up a bit. I've been applying Breakout Novel while writing - and I prefer not to make that level of changes, there's a side of me that wants to get it right the first time. Especially at the major level. I need to be prepared to do it if necessary (and possibly shrink the cast by character recombination - a Maass trick for more complex characters is to combine two minors and keep all of their quirks and details). Someone in chat also suggested letting the minors come and go out of the series if I'm doing series. I realized the whole thing might be punched up if I kill some of them. Trouble with that is the lengths to which they go to retrieve any downed character, they sort of did in this one. So much of what I do to them when there's good medical care that much better than present is To The Pain and mutilation ... the nastier side of said really sophisticated medical technique is equally sophisticated torture.
It's also an experiment in 'stand alone, can it really stand alone?' It's floating on so much backstory. I only used what was needed in the book - and might be able to tighten what I've got significantly while giving more detail on the new location, Niljeira.
I can see the changes I want to make and most of them are in the little details. They will flow easily in the rewrite now that I know what happened and how it ended.
It's an easier rewrite than ReRites and might curiously prepare me for that. And for the big day splash of Something Completely Different: triaging and rewriting short stories to throw a batch at the markets and get more hooks in the water, I want a batch of print submissions in the mail next Thursday.
And somewhere in there, a day or two of organizing my stuff, getting rid of stuff, booting the sewing machine and rewarding myself with something that's pure hobby silliness! I need a new costume. I even did a character in this that I could costume. Ilyaran of House Dzur - all right, so I'd need a blond wig to dress up as the small feisty human member of the House of Heroes, but, I could have fun swaggering a bit at a con in that outfit and if my hair's short I've been known to do Clairol for the sake of a costume. I don't look that bad blond actually! Did it when my hair was about an inch short and just shaved my head when I got tired of it. Advantage of short hair is it's mutable for costuming.
And he had unlikely dark eyes with his blond hair, so I do not have to overcome my phobia of contact lenses for the costume! Check that in continuity though, I think they were typical blue at the end and that's not good, it was an odd thing about him that they were dark.
I'm not modest! I love a good gloat! This is a great feeling!
Robert and Ari >^..^< (The cat who personally inspected every page as it came off the printer, crumpling the ones he liked best and chewing on the paper to sign it)