Writing the first episode of season three as a denouement for the Pifechan invasion made a lot of sense. Unfortunately, it left me with a small problem: plot. More specifically, it left me with a profound lack of plot.
For the most part, revisions to season two episodes are going to consist (I hope) almost exclusively of editing functions, rather than substantial revisions, and as such I doubt that I will have many original and interesting observations to include in these re-release posts.
down now, because the second part of Pifecha, season two’s finale, ended up almost twice the length of a typical episode. Putting the two parts together, we have a very respectable novella-length story. I mention this, because the increasing length was among my biggest concerns as I was writing the final episode. That might seem silly when I publish these on my own website and am beholden to no one as far as word counts go, but the fact is that word count is an important indicator of pacing and plotting considerations.
I’d like to consider it a testament to my improved revision abilities that I was going through and making minor changes to Old Blood, Part Two I identified an entire scene that should probably get cut. I identified it, I wrestled with it, I came to terms with cutting one of the scenes that was the most fun for me to write, and ultimately I decided to leave it intact.
Unlike the first season’s finale, this one does not include as many answers to long-running mysteries, or revelations about Blood Magic, although I am hoping to work some answers to world history questions into the second part. It is what it is: a dynamic story with a little more plot than character. Not that there isn’t plenty of emotion and character development contained in this episode, especially with how this first part ends. Since I do have two parts to work with, I also took the time to do a little more development of side characters and plots than I otherwise would. Oh, and I apparently have a bad habit of leaving characters stuck on islands in dire straits at the end of books. Sorry about that.
Last year around this time, I was having doubts about whether I should do a second season of Blood Magic, much less a third. The response to the first season had been lackluster to say the least, many of the episodes had been a struggle to write, and there was a significant opportunity cost to continuing to work on something that seemed to be a dud, instead of turning my focus to something that might be better received, like Fo’Fonas. This year, I am pleased to say that I did not have any hesitations or reservations about continuing with the third (and final) season of Blood Magic.
s I’ve gotten deeper into the season one revisions, I’ve found myself less and less excited to do them, mostly because there was less and less to do. Many of the early episodes featured significant problems that I was eager to address through the revision process, but the later episodes are stronger, and more importantly, they are more complex in their continuity. While I know that there are ways in which I could improve them, doing so would require me to make more significant changes that would alter the series in more fundamental ways than I promised to make when I started these revisions.
I’d been looking forward to writing this episode for a long time. I’d dropped hints about the dragons in Lufilna before, most significantly in All Cooped Up and No Place to Go, and Rest for the Weary, but I had never come out and said “yes, there are dragons in this world, and here is what they’re like.” This episode was my opportunity to show off my dragons, and introduce them to the people of Merolate. It’s ironic, therefore, that as I was finishing the episode I found myself concerned that it was too boring.
nice story. Most of my revisions, aside from cleaning up typos, were just cleaning up phrasing and dialogue, and tightening up a description here or there to make the plotting a bit more airtight. It’s always dangerous to justify things that happen in your story after they happen, which I found I was doing too much of in the original; there should be less of that in the new version.
knew, beyond a doubt, that it was going to be one of the most exciting and interesting episodes to write, because Vere is such a fascinating character, and we would finally get to spend a significant amount of time in his viewpoint. We've had brief snippets in his viewpoint, like in All Cooped Up and No Place to Go, and Fallen Angel, but we've never had an episode where the main events of the story revolved around the Guardcaptain. Bread and Steel was going to change that, with a story leveraging his particular talents and traits in service to the peculiar setup of Merolate's military.