I’m excited to announce that I finished the first draft of my novel, The Riddlebane Chronicles, last week!  It’s been a long time coming.  It’s hard to pinpoint exactly when I began this novel writing journey.  I suppose you could say that it started back in November of 2009 when I began writing it in earnest for National Novel Writing Month under the title The Alone Elevator.  I wrote about 30k words of it that first month, and then it took me nearly another year and a half to finish the remaining 46k words.

My First Draft

So this is what a 348 page first draft looks like.

But I you could also say I started working on it several years prior when I first realized that I had a novel in me.  I was listening to an episode of PotterCast with editor Cheryl Klein who was speaking about what she looks for in a novel.  And for the first time I wondered if I had a novel in me.  I’ve always loved to write.  In fact, I’ve been engaged in creative writing since I learned how to write, turning my spelling words into short stories and poems.  But I had never even considered myself capable of writing a novel up until that evening.  It had always seemed so daunting.  At that point writing a twenty page short story seemed daunting.  But for some reason her words stirred up something inside me and I thought, “if I were to write a novel, what would it be about?”  Then I remembered this one page hand scribbled “thing” I had written back when I was 14 years old in high school creative writing class.  At the time I had no idea what it would turn into.  I had written it out one day and forgotten about it.  But that night I suddenly knew what happened next.  I stayed up until 4am writing.

A few days later, the whole plot of the first novel came to me in a rush while I was driving back from a doctor’s appointment in the city.  It wasn’t long after that I realized that the book was not just one book but a trilogy.  So I suppose you could say that I really began writing this novel at age 14, though I hardly knew it at the time.   This novel has been nearly 13 years in the making so far.  And it’s not done yet!

Now the real fun begins as I start to write the second draft!


Here’s a short summary of The Riddlebane Chronicles:

Kylie Lockmoore cannot believe her good fortune when she is chosen to attend Riddlebane Academy, society’s most prestigious school for training the next generation of leaders.  When the most popular girls in school accept her into their clique she is sure her time there will be absolutely perfect – that is if odd but brilliant Art will just leave her alone.

But at Riddlebane, she learns secrets that turn her world upside-down, and Art quickly becomes the only one she can trust.  She finds out her now deceased Grandmother was the genius behind a chemical supplement that everyone is required to consume.  Though the population is told the supplement protects them from the dangerous levels of pollution in the environment, Kylie discovers that it actually is being used to keep the population subdued.

Even more mysterious is the ancient elevator in her family’s home.  The room at the top is Kylie’s special refuge.  One day she accidentally discovers a hidden basement level that contains the belongings of a sister she didn’t even know existed.  In her sister’s belongings is a brilliantly encrypted electronic diary.

With Art’s help she is able to unlock the diary and discover the story of her sister’s disappearance, the misdeeds of her school and society, and the plans of a rebel group who wants to change everything.  And once she knows the truth she must decide where she stands – with the school and government who would use her to control the population, or the rebels who would use her to destroy the supplement and only society she’s ever known.

The Riddlebane Chronicles is a Young Adult coming of age story set in dystopian future.

And here’s a excerpt from the novel itself: More >