Situation Report: Lightrunners, Chapter Three


I will finish this entry if it kills me. No, really, I’ve been attempting to write this for weeks, this is at least my third draft. But … [insert long-winded drumroll here] … I have news about The Lightrunners Series! Most of it’s great news, though there will be a bit of “not as great” news toward the end. Let’s get right into the good stuff, shall we?

And it only took eight months!

I’m making great progress on the third chapter – currently titled Before the Night Fell – it’s the longest chapter I’ve written yet. At the moment the draft is on the verge of tipping into 4000 words, and there’s still two scenes to complete. Plus much editing to do, but – even with heavy editing – this will be a very meaty chapter once it’s done.

I hope it’s worth the wait!

When I started the chapter all the way back in August 2015 – lords, that’s sad to think about – I’d planned to jump right into the mystery of The Darkness. Cutting to Hughie’s aunt Frankie and uncle Graham discovering that their nephew is missing, and heading out to find him. But it just wasn’t working. No matter how hard I tried to push the scene forward, I struggled again and again to keep the story flowing across the page. I was trying too hard, and it showed.

I had a similar issue with my sci-fi magnum opus Open Season, thinking that I needed to get down to the nitty-gritty military stuff to “hook” the readers* before I truly knew the characters. When what I wanted to focus on, was how this group of misfits had become a family all their own. So, taking my experiences with OS to heart, I scrapped what I had of chapter three and decided to start fresh.

And I’m so glad I did. Because I’m getting to know the Jones-Davenport clan before all the tragedy befalls them, which makes the suffering they’ll soon endure all the more poignant for me. It’s very hard to connect and empathize with characters you know little about, and the same goes for trying to write them.

So it took eight months and several restarts to find my footing with this chapter, but I’m flying now and I couldn’t be happier with the progress. I’ve written more in May alone than I’ve written all year. And the greatest part? I’m loving what I’m doing! While there’s typically one day a week that i need a rest, I’ve been writing every day – six days a week, for the last two! – that I’m jazzed to write every day. I’m not getting burnt out or exhausted, but truly enjoying the process.

So When’s It Gonna Be Out?

Ah, the dreaded question. 😀 I can promise it’ll be out by the end of 2016. Okay, I’m kidding … mostly. My current goal is by the end of June. It was going to be the end of May, but then the chapter exploded on me and all the adults got really talkative – in a good way.

This coming month I’ve got a bunch on my plate: I’m visiting Lake Forest College and putting some markers in place for staring college in the Fall, I’m working on improving my physical strength and getting my driver’s license, continuing [my awesome] therapy [more on that later], juggling three other short stories – two of which I’d like to have finished by the end of summer, and possibly planning and organizing a family vacation to St. John’s, Newfoundland.

Plus – you know – sleeping, eating, self-care, family obligations and making sure my home doesn’t devolve into a cesspit of dirty coffee mugs, cat litter and “in progress” books I’m multi-tasking. Mind you, these are all great things and I offer none of them as an excuse for missing [even a self-imposed] deadline, but I want to keep you updated on where I’m at.

So! Keep an eye for Lightrunners: Before the Night Fell by the end of June. And if I miss the deadline, feel free to yell at me via email, Facebook or Twitter.

Until June or the next blog post, whichever comes first.

❤️ – Jessie

a most beautiful blessing in disguise

Categories: The Lightrunners Series, Writing

2 Responses so far.

  1. Thanks Mrs. Kelley! Workin’ hard and makin’ progress. 🙂 Please give Mr. Kelley a big hug for me.

  2. Lark Kelley says:

    Hey girl, sounds like the Lord is blessing you in different ways. Glad to know all you’ve been up to. So very positive and happy are you. Love Lark and Mike