The Author Speaks: on adding the polishing touches

So I didn’t reach my self-imposed deadline of getting this draft finished by the weekend, but I came close. I am now at the stage where I am going back through the draft to do a once over and fix up any spots in the narrative I missed or skipped previously.

To get to this stage was made harder by health issues but we soldier on. This edit has enabled me to really go back in and do a bit more work on refining the characterisation. It helps to have a more accurate sequence of events now because it helps me to understand cause and effect better. When you can see where events occurred in proximity to each other it really contextualises everything and suddenly the character journeys make more sense.

Aaron Sherritt is inarguably one of the most important characters in the Kelly story (except according to Shaun Grant and Justin Kurzel 😏)

I have found that Aaron Sherritt in particular gets a lot more exploration now than previous drafts allowed, which I think is good. Ned’s entire Glenrowan plot basically hinged on Aaron and his relationship with the police and the gang. After 140 years, Aaron is still something of an enigma, but you can’t help but want to find out more once you start asking questions. I find it pretty disheartening the way most Kelly buffs write Aaron off as a traitor and honour of their way to denigrate him. I also find it insufferable when the anti-Kelly mob try to use Aaron as a pawn in their attacks on Ned Kelly without taking any time to explore who Aaron really was. I hope that Glenrowan will provide some insight into why Aaron is not only a fascinating person in his own right, but also into why those who label him as merely a traitor or a victim are doing him a disservice.

In addition to the editing I have been experimenting with potential ideas for the cover art. None of the ideas I have mocked up so far have received particularly positive responses so I’m still spit-balling there. Down below you can see some of the ideas I have been experimenting with.

I’m aiming to have the finishing touches done by the end of this week but I’m not going to stress if it takes a bit longer. Sometimes things happen that get in the way — FACTS! Either way, you’ll be hearing it here when this edit is complete. Unless there is significant things I need to address based on feedback from by readers then with any luck this draft will be the one that goes to print.

Finally, I also threw together an illustration that could be the basis for a cover or a poster or something, I’m not really sure. It was the product of an overactive mind and inability to get to sleep.

© 2020 Aidan Phelan

At any rate, there’s still work to be done so stay tuned…

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