Artificial Intelligence, Axon, Inc., Writing Process

Axon, Inc. Revisions: NaNoWriMo 2021

At this point it’s getting a bit embarrassing to admit that I’ve been working on this book since 2013. It still remains my pet project and the one I’m most anxious to have see the light of day, since it reflects many of my own experiences and hopes and fears — about my profession (artificial intelligence) and about our collective future. After doing a serious round of beta reading and revision a few years ago, I sent it to many agents in the spring of 2017, but there was no serious interest. I’m doing another major round of revision now, with these goals:

  • Changing it to first person (with Walden’s point of view). It was already almost all told from Walden’s limited 3rd person POV, but I think putting it in Walden’s own words will give it an additional intimacy. It will also bring the focus more onto the conversations in the book, which I think is its real focus and strength.
  • Similarly, I’m moving the opening scene (which is a flashback to Walden’s time in the military) to the middle of the book. I think having it at the beginning was a bit of a turn-off, since it signaled to the reader that it was some kind of action hero book instead of a book about ideas, characters, and society.
  • I’ve made the characters younger, fresh out of college, and I’ve made Walden and Logan brothers. I think this will increase the emotional jeopardy and intimacy of the book.

There will be tons of other small changes as well. If any of them turn out to be extra good, I may share them below. In the meantime you can follow my progress (I’m trying to rewrite over 100K words this month) on NaNoWriMo here!

1 thought on “Axon, Inc. Revisions: NaNoWriMo 2021”

  1. Update Nov 29 2021. I’ve finished the lion’s share of the revisions, but of course while doing so I noticed a lot of things I wanted to update. Another go-through is warranted, and I think it will be another three weeks or so of work. Maybe it’ll be done by Solstice? That would be a great present to give myself. Most of the final revisions will be things to make clearer some of the arcs for minor characters and the background changes in society.

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