2/13/07

And Now, Back to the Beginning

I am waiting for you, Vizzini. You told me to go back to the beginning. So I have. This is where I am....

My edits for Serenade have been a pleasantly harrowing task because an even more dreadful enterprise awaits me: redeeming my Will Scarlet MS. I am totally and utterly stuck. Even though I managed a lovely 15,000 words over the Christmas holiday, I cannot use them... right now. I have plenty of ideas for RWS. In fact, it is almost entirely plotted in my brain (I must rectify that and put it to paper so I can just call it "entirely plotted," no caveats). I just cannot get there from here. To keep all of the words I've written, it would be a 100-page novella with no conclusion.

Twice I got to this point in Serenade. It is not writer's block in a "lack of imagination" or "lack of inspiration" sense. At one point, nearing the end of the first draft, I actually lost 3,000 words of new work. Computer. Save. Fizz. Poof. Gone. WAIL. I was wrecked. But... in an oddly serendipitous way, it saved the trouble of coming to the realization myself -- the passage I lost had taken a wrong turn. By losing that material, I went back a step and found my way.

So... I went back to the beginning. I think the first three chapters are what I want this project to be -- tone, pacing, action, dialogue. Everything after that slugs along. I cut those offending (OUCH) 15,000 words and saved them for later. I know most of them will come into play eventually, but for now they must go or else I'll spend weeks trying to make them fit.

Today, my self-appointed task (what other kind do I have??) is to pull from those 15,000 words the stuff I can use right now and outline the project's future. I cannot write my daily word count if I sit in front of the computer at the end of the day and have this junk to sort out. Last night, I tried. I wound up playing Tetris and messing with my website. To do what I must as a writer, I have to become a plotter. Even just a few notes about the next scene will help me jump into it come nightwrite time.

"Follow the signs marked back to the beginning. No more compromise."
--Sarah McLachlan, "Into the Fire"

About my website: something has gone screwy with the template I use through GoDaddy. As a result, my name (in the header) and my cutesy little slogan got smooshed together. I cannot fix it. Tech support couldn't explain why the template used to look a certain way and suddenly messed up. So I had to change the format, put my name in the header jpeg, and generally waste three hours trying to fix the thing. I liked it better the old way, but this will do for now. I will have to make website changes later this spring to accomodate Will Scarlet, but the process is a lengthy one. I am looking forward to it, only because when the time comes to make those updates, that will mean a second completed MS. Yay!

Otherwise, my house rejuvenation project continues. I must mop, do laundry, cut the kids' hair, and sandblast the microwave. How's your day? Wanna trade?

1 comment:

Tess said...

I feel your pain. It's so frustrating when we KNOW the story is there, hovering just beyond where we can reach it.

I'm still plugging along with my first person stuff and seeing if that will help pull everything together.

Good luck!!