Thanks to an unexpected afternoon off of work (hooray for book publishers and the boondoggles they offer), Sixteen and Seventeen are both basically drafted.
Now I'm going to let them rest for a bit. Not only because I don't want to race them out before their time, but because my weekend suddenly booked itself -- it looks like a friend is coming into town at the last minute, and she will be whisking me away. (Oddly enough, this is the same friend whose visit caused my last mini-sabbatical from writing.) That's probably a good thing; the chapters can marinate in my mind, but I won't be able to get at them for tweaking. Should make for fresher editing, I hope.
It continually amazes me how we, the Confessional authors, pick up on threads and mutate them.
In Twelve, Ikon casually makes mention of the sole survivor of group Four, the recorder, "the one who can't stop crying." Ry picks up on that and expands on it, just a little, using him to illustrate the horrors of the broken survivors. Since the character is a recorder, and I had done nothing up to this point with the fact, mentioned way back in my Part One, that half a dozen people had come together from Luca, I make him a former co-worker of Paine's, give him a name and just a smidge of backstory, and expand on his suffering a bit more. Then Lee takes this and runs with it, dedicating almost a whole chapter to Baralai looking for a way to help him out of his stupor. An entire subplot sprang from what was essentially a throw-away the first time it was mentioned.
I'm sure there are other examples that show what an incredible thing we are doing here, but this is the one that really strikes me.