I've been doing a lot of writing these last few days, just not of the blogging variety. Instead, it's been all about the book, including having chapters reviewed (read as shredded) by some pretty tough hombres. Even as they're being picked over, I'm making changes to them because sometimes you don't know if your writing can be better, until you provide an alternative example. I was struggling with this in relation to the opening chapters for about two months, until just this Monday. Something about them, just never felt...right. Dig what I'm saying?
It's not that I thought the opening chapter and chapters were bad, it's just that they always seemed like they could be better. So as I was reading over the beginning, I really tried to answer the question, of what it was that was actually bugging me about the opening. I can now answer that question with one word "bloat".
In this case, bloat refers to information that may not be progressing the actual plot of the story. As an experiment, I'm replacing this information with a tighter, more concise picture of the main characters who make up the book. This means taking this story apart for the first 6-9 chapters, which is where the setup for the plot is. When I make those changes to character background, it will also affect the plot. I feel it will be a positive outcome. I'll try it, send it off to my reviewers and see what they think.