Before we begin, a slight tangent for you: When I sit down to make these updates posts, I end up spending far more time planning them out than I anticipate. “Just sit down and give a quick update on the progress of the series, that’s all this is!” I try to convince myself every time, fully aware of the knowledge that it doesn’t work like that. I’m not sure why I feel like these posts have to be so prose-y and narrative, but it was a precedent I accidentally set for myself back in the day, and I’d like to keep it up if possible. It’s not like I consider these blog posts high art; they ARE just update posts on the progress of the novel, but it’s also the main form of communication between myself and all of you, and I’d like that to be at least partially professional.
With all of that said, I sat down today to write an update post and found myself completely at a loss for words. I have the numbers, of course, as well as a more top-down overview of what to expect moving forward, but I was just stuck at a blank page without a title. That being the case, I hopped back into a few of my previous blog posts just to see what I was going on about, and I just so happened to open a post from last October when Volume 5 was still (relatively) in its infancy. I present to you now a quote from said blog post, which may give you some context for todays’ title:
“I don’t think I’ll ever make 100% assured promises on book lengths after Volume 4’s explosion, but judging by the progress of the novel so far, I am confident (in this moment) that it will NOT be crossing the 200,000 word mark.”
So, about that. As of today, the draft for Volume 5 has crossed 171,000 words. As it has in every volume, the average word count of a chapter in the Restart Again series has increased, and I believe it currently sits somewhere around 8,500-9000 words. This is usually where the chapters lands, but it’s balanced out on both sides by a couple 4500 word chapters and a staggering 17,000 word chapter (I guess I shouldn’t be surprised these books are so dang long, huh?). If my current outline is to be believed, I have four chapters left to write. Considering that average…..Volume 5 will definitely be longer than 200,000 words, and most likely longer than Volume 4.
I REALLY didn’t intend for this to happen. I was being honest when I said I believed this one wouldn’t be so long, but the way the ideas expand from my outline to the page seems to continually catch me off guard. It’s not that I’m particularly upset about it—I’m actually quite happy with how the story of Volume 5 is turning out so far—but when I look at the release date for the project, it keeps moving further and further down the line. That’s certainly unfortunate, but there’s not much to be done about it; the book will be finished when it’s finished, and rushing it would be a disservice to everyone invested in the series.
To those precious few who ARE invested, the entirety of my draft is currently posted on my Royal Road account. I ran out of scheduled posts at the end of last month, so there’s no longer a consistent timetable for releases. Instead, I’ll be dropping the rest of the chapters as soon as they’re finished. Chapter 18 is hot off the presses and ready to be read as of this very afternoon! You can find all of those chapters right HERE!
So, all in all, progress is certainly happening. I know I didn’t TECHNICALLY promise that this would be a shorter novel, but it’s a not-promise I’ve definitely broken at this point. By this point next month, I’ll hopefully be another chapter-and-a-half deeper in Volume 5’s journey and have a better view of the end. I suppose next month’s me can look back at this and make another self-deprecating post about how little I knew! Until then, though, stay safe out there, and as always, thanks for reading!