By no means can it be said that I have a book (yet). There are gaping holes where I wrote put some description here, or Maybe this should go somewhere else? or I broke off mid-sentence and began a different scene when I realized during the first draft that I didn't know what I wanted to say next, or I wrote in three different and entirely contradictory plot summaries without at any time actually writing something useful. Despite which, this first draft feels more complete than the ones I did for the first two books.
The act of rebalancing sentences as I revise caused me to think of something I've never seen blogged about, this interesting rule of writing: Time Manner Place.
Time Manner Place is a rule in linguistics which says that in a sentence, you should write when the action happened, followed by how it happened, followed by where it happened.
"Thirty years ago, on the Ides of Octember it was, on a dark and stormy night, with the wind howling and the shutters banging, in a small cottage in the hamlet of Pevensey, a child was slain."
The interesting thing about Time Manner Place is that this is German syntax. TMP is most common in German, which is why I know about it, and any other language which puts its verbs to the end of the clause.
The more common structure in English is Place Manner Time.
"A child was slain in a small cottage in the hamlet of Pevensey, on a dark and stormy night, with the wind howling and the shutters banging, thirty years ago on the Ides of Octember."
When I have trouble making a sentence sound right, more often than not I head for Time Manner Place. TMP is noticeable in two distinct genres of English fiction: fantasy (epic or otherwise), and mediaeval and ancient historicals. Because English belongs to the Germanic family, Old English and Middle English books are more likely to use TMP, so anything which apes Germanic syntax is likely to sound old even if the words are modern.