Wrestling with the pace of the beast - how do you balance thought versus action?

I finished my latest mystery and felt good that I'd been able to keep it at 90,000 words (my first novel was (until revised) 110,000 words.  When I went back to revise my draft I realized I'd started Chapter 1 with my murder vic thinking about a wrong he'd committed against his best friend and, in fact, being alone in a fire tower (where he is murdered by being burned alive), trying to figure out how to make things right. 


I like the beginning (it's only one section - about four paragraphs), but I became worried .  I'd set up my novel's main conflict in this section, but in this section everything was happening inside my vic's head.  No matter how I tried, and oh did I ever try, the story had to shake down with this beginning.  



  1. Is beginning the first chapter this way, inside the character's head instead of having my character engaged in action, less exciting for readers?  
  2. Specifically, does beginning a novel this way slow pacing?
  3. Do you have/have you had a similar (and quite frustrating) experience?    

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Bring some good stuff back from Donald Maas.  I love his books even though they rejected my book.  

In a way, I'm glad they did.  It helped me make the right decision for me - Ebook.

Brian, I just read that I.J. Parker got her first buck from an epub of her Akitada novels. Super cool, eh?  I'm writing a series for epubbing, and of course sticking to my larger goal of finding a conventional publisher for other series I'm creating.  This is sooooo exciting.  I do love what Maass has done for me as a writer - pushed me past some boring and static stuff in my style.  But (gulp!) like you, I'm getting ready to submit to the Maass Man!  So . . . let's see what happens. 


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