Slow going today. Between staying up late (or should I say early) playing Rock Band last night and getting up early to walk our dog and go to Mass, I felt tired practically all day. I didn’t get my writing in this morning, but I did get some in this evening. It’s not as much as I would have liked for my unofficial participation of NaNoWriMo, but it’s something.
The best writing I did today was actually in the car when I was driving home from church. The fact that I hadn’t written yet was weighing on my mind, and I started to think about the two projects I’m working on, the new story and the revision of my novel. The new story has been moving along swimmingly, but I feel a little guilty about putting the novel revision on the back-burner. So, I started to think about the scene I’ve been having problems with, trying to dissect it to find a solution. Sometimes the best solutions come when I’m driving.
I started with the question: What needs to happen in this chapter for the story? Answer: the introduction of a new character who will take on more importance later. That already happens in the chapter in its current form. So the next question was: How can I make this introduction more interesting and exciting? Well, that’s the question I haven’t been able to answer, or I’d have already found the solution.
So, it made me think of another question: Based on the role the character will play later in the book, is there something in this introductory chapter that can hint at what’s to come? That’s when my creativity started to turn and ideas started to form. I could hear my protagonist talking again, describing what was happening and what he was thinking and feeling. I think I might have found my solution.
Later, when I did write, I didn’t jump on that chapter. I wanted to, but I knew it would still be a lot of work, even if I now have a direction, so my tiredness won and I chose the easier project right now, the new story, which flowed fine.
It feels good when the words are flowing and it’s easy to be seduced by the new story because it’s going well. But we mustn’t give up on the older stories that have hit a snag. We have to continue to work through the problem, and a solution will come.
Right now, I’m torn between the new story and the novel. The new story has now hit the point up to which I had planned, so the rest is a mystery. It’ll be fun to explore, but I also need to continue to revise the novel. The end is closer than I think.
Tomorrow, I will try to go back to the novel to fix this one chapter so I can start moving faster through the rest of the revision. But I will still be thinking of the new story, and if the creativity isn’t jumping on the novel, maybe I’ll bring the new story back to the front burner for a little longer. We’ll see. Either way, I’ll be writing.