Early in the writing of my novel, The Burma Road, I created an outline of the chapters I wanted to include. I have not written this book in sequential order, I’ve used my chapter outline and selected the sections I wanted to work on as they called to me. The first section written was Chapter 30, “Three O’clock Charlie”, which tells my dad’s experience of a Japanese bomber who flew over camp every day at three o’clock sharp. This story stood out in my memory and was the first of Dad’s tales I wanted to tell.
My outline has close to fifty chapters, with ten left to do. These remaining chapters cover the battle at Namhpakka, one more at Camp Carson, and a chapter about what was going on stateside with Jack’s family—a handful of chapters are written from Flora Holloway’s experience as a mother whose son’s serving overseas. I also want to write a chapter where Jack is reunited with his mule, Lucky, in Kunming, China, and the closing chapters addressing Jack’s homecoming.
I am currently working on one of Flora Holloway’s chapters, “The Hostess with the Mostest”. I hope to start working on the chapters dealing with the battle near Namhpakka soon. To do this, I’ll go over the history I’ve read. Interesting details can be found in John Randolph’s Marsmen In Burma, Ken Laabs’ memoir, and also in my audio recordings form the Mars Task Force reunions–the veterans told fabulous stories at the 2016 and 2017 gatherings.
When all the chapters are written, I still need to rewrite many of the earlier chapters. I have grown as an author since May of 2016, when I began writing this novel. I can tighten up the language in some places, and make the chapters more succinct. Additionally, the work needs to be fully edited.
I’ll keep you up to date on my progress. My goal is to have The Burma Road ready to publish by the end of 2020.
© 2019 Jeanne M. Halloran, all rights reserved
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