Sunday, July 5, 2009

Avoidance, or I'll get right on that...tomorrow

My summer break is half over. I've rewritten the first three chapters of Sapphire Sins and given it yet another thorough edit. I've rewritten my query letter, synthesizing the massive amount of info out here in blog-land. I'm now in waiting mode.

It's definitely time to move on to my WIP (tentatively titled Crimson Crimes). My second summer goal was to finish the first draft. Unless the muse sits down in this chair with me and starts whispering in my ear, I'm beginning to have doubts about goal #2. Every time I start to open the file, I find something else to do. I was so blocked when I stopped working on it back in the spring that I'm dreading going back. And if there is one thing in this world in which I'm VERY proficient, it's avoidance.

I know I have a good working premise. I read widely in my genre, and I haven't seen anything similar. So points to me for originality. The problem, of course, is I can't figure out how to get from where I am to where I want to go. I despise convenient plot twists that aren't plausible, the ole deus ex machina, and all my attempts at transitioning so far have fallen into that category. I need a bridge that makes sense. I suspect I'm going to have to backtrack and do a lot of deleting and rewriting.

I'm approximately 60,000 words in which translates to just under 2/3 complete. My plan is to start by rereading what I've written and resist the urge to edit as I go. Editing at this stage of the game is just another form of avoidance. Trust me. When a writer chooses editing over first draft writing, there is some serious avoidance going on. I haven't read my draft in six weeks. (I know...six weeks???!!?? Tell me that's not some serious avoidance.) I'm hoping enough time has passed that I'll have some perspective and I'll be able to see where I went wrong and how I can move forward.

I'm finishing this blog entry so that I can start that reread...right after I go get something to eat.


  1. Write the best scenes first, just to get you going. Sometimes you have to play with the ideas and write a few test chapters before you can get a good grip on what the first draft should be.

    Half the rough drafts I've started I actually started in the middle. And realized 50k words later I needed to put a start on the story. It's not the most efficient way to do things perhaps, but it works.

  2. I think you may have done yourself a favor by letting it simmer for a while. I've done that and when I go back to reread it, lots of ideas come jumping out. I hope the same happens for you.