A little while ago I decided to the perspective of my novel from the 3rd person omniscient to first person. I hadn’t yet finished writing it but I felt that before I could progress I wanted to redraft what I had as it might significantly change where I had ended up… Some entire scenes might be lost if the person from whose point of view I’m writing isn’t present.
This change of perspective is making the re-draft much longer… this is unusual for me as I often re-draft things to make them shorter. But now that I have a better idea of the overall structure and of which themes have become prominent I am able to write more revealing details in earlier on.
Take the example below, a couple of sentences about a mosquito have become expanded and the protagonist of the scene has changed from Shem to Ham.
Leaving Noah at his altar, they gathered the basic supplies needed to make camp and wandered down the mountain. They began to take note of the changes occurring in the landscape. They were still in a desert but there were growing plants and the smell of silt was nearly gone from the air. Shem swatted a mosquito on his arm, ‘strange’ he said to himself as he wiped away a bead of blood. But his wife Dodi was not concerned with the ecological progression happening before their eyes:
And here it is re-written…
Leaving father at his altar, we gathered the basic things we would to make camp and wandered down the mountain. We began to take note of the changes occurring in the landscape. We were still in a desert but there were growing plants and the smell of silt was nearly gone from the air. I swatted a mosquito on my arm, the sting of it felt strange; the thrust of its straw-like proboscis and the blood on my arm. I flicked away the small mess of crushed mosquito. The legs, thorax and abdomen were more or less indistinguishable when they fell to the ground. It was then that I realised the source of the strange feeling. It was not the bite, but the fact that I was bitten at all. We hadn’t been bitten during our whole trip in the ark. I’d often seen mosquitoes flying about the larger mammals but I’d never seen them bite, only gorging themselves on the sugars of rotting foods. Whether they bit other animals on the ark or not I can’t say, but we were certainly off the menu. They had no interest in us just as we were of no interest to the lions or hippopotami. Mother said that our safety was due to angelic hands holding closed the mouths of these hungry predators. Well those hands had released their grip.
I rubbed away the smudge of blood from my arm. But my wife Nisa was not concerned with the ecological progression happening before our eyes. Nor was Dodi or Abichail.