June 21st, 2008

A Pocket Full of Murder

So I said to her and she said to me and then we said to him and her...

So I'm having this thing happen in Book Two of Faery Rebels that was never a problem with Book One, and it's driving me crazy.

See, in Knife there's a fairly complex plot involving Shocking Discoveries and Revelations, but it's not too hard to keep track of because Knife does most of the sleuthing on her own, and the whole book is from her POV.

In Wayfarer, though, I've got two POV characters plus some secondary characters finding out Important Stuff in a variety of ways (experience, conversation, research), and they all have to relay that information to each other and then make joint decisions based on what they've learned.

But it's proving really, really difficult to have all these people react naturally to surprising news and events and then have plausible-sounding conversations about them without repeating the same details ad infinitum and slowing down the forward motion of the plot.

Has anyone else struggled with this? Any suggestions for taming the narrative tangle, or examples of books in which you think this kind of joint investigation and decision-making was handled particularly well?