Finished the first draft of scene four over lunch. This scene was great fun to work out — the situation contains both a lot of tension and a lot of humor. The first act as a whole (which will be eight scenes in all) ought to feel like a roller coaster ride for the central character, or like a tale out of the Thousand Nights and a Night, with unexpected developments and reversals at every turn. I think that’s how it’s coming out.
There’s a small incident I wanted to work into this scene, though, that I couldn’t — the main character, who can’t read or write, asks somebody to write down a few lines he’d heard and which have some emotional significance for him, so that he won’t forget them and lose them forever. I had worked out in outline how it would fit in with the other events in this scene, but when I got into the actual writing, I found that it didn’t work; from the beginning of the scene the main character is in too much of a life-or-death situation for it to make good sense for him to stop for this matter.
It’s a small moment but it ties into two other moments in other scenes, and if I can’t shoehorn it somehow into scene five, it’ll be too late for it to happen and I’ll have to cut the other two moments as well.