Tuesday, November 10, 2009
The inimitable Mighty Proctor, She of the Many Names (CS Harris, Candice Proctor, CS Graham, and many, many other aliases) was right: The godawful slowdown I've been suffering was in fact my subconscious trying to clue me in to certain, um, *problems* in my story.
Of course, the subconscious mind being the Creepy Wee Beastie that it is, the poor thing has trouble communicating with this thin skim of gray matter that walks in the light and believes it is all that exists. In short, I got bad sleep and bad dreams, bad writing and no writing, all of it getting worse and worse until finally I was at my wits' end and the Creepy Wee Beastie was able to speak clearly.
My problems were three. And they were important.
One. My protagonist was not outsider enough. Not by half.
Two. One of my subplots stank. Really, really stank. That is to say, it contributed nothing to the central thrust of the book, and if anything muddied the waters of the themes as I see them.
and Three. My Act I climax *needed* to hit A LOT sooner. Which meant collapsing some of the early 'action' (which, frankly, could afford to be collapsed), which led to old characters saying and doing different things, and to new characters coming in to make things happen.
Of course, fixing Problem #1 meant amplifying and creating problems, and fixing #2 meant writing out a character I was rather fond of anyway.
Needless to say, the result is a complete, from-page-one reboot of my manuscript.
I think I may be able to save a few paragraphs here and there.
So it goes.