Friday, August 3, 2007

Jump-Sludge

Status on the WiP:

Wordcount: 63,000 (3k of that out of sequence)
Plot threads existing: roughly 3...ish...maybe closer to 4-ish.
Plot threads tied up: None
Plot threads existing that I know how to tie up: 1...maybe...

In short: not doing so well.

I still love the idea for this story. The themes I decided to work with. The first chapter. Unfortunately, those things have become totally unconnected with the story as it stands in my mind and, I'm beginning to suspect, as it stands on paper. On the screen. Whatever.

Is it unusual to start losing faith in myself as a writer at this stage of the game? Because I feel like I've somehow abandoned the story I wanted to tell, and I really have no clue how to go back to it; I set up several incredibly ambitious situations, and when it comes time for the great reveal, I have no idea how I'll pull it off. I'm beginning to think, maybe, that I might be able to write the story I want to tell here in a few more years, after a little more experience--but right now, it's looking rather slim.

I'm going to finish this draft and see what I can do, for a number of reasons: maybe it'll look better as a whole on paper, maybe I'll be able to see more clearly what needs to be done...that, and (I say this with total confidence) if I don't, after abandoning another project (which, in all fairness, already hadn't worked once) to write this one, my mother will kill me.

Have any of you been there? How did you deal with it?

2 comments:

MerylF said...

I've been there. I pushed through it and pushed through it...and still ended up abandoning the project. However, it turned out in the end, that I was telling the wrong person's story.

It's tough to know what to do; I guess just try and keep slogging, until you get to the point wher eyou know it's over, or it's on.

Carrie said...

I've definitely been there too! I usually hit those feelings around 20k (i have enough to like the idea, am afraid of screwing it up), 40k (don't know where I'm going), and 60k (don't know how to end it).

For me, I'm such a figure it out as I go writer, that I HAVE to push through those stages. It would be really easy for me to give up, but instead I have to just think "what is the worst that can happen to these characters at this moment." Then I write. Sometimes I keep what I write, sometimes I get to the end and realize that while I needed that scene/plot thread to get to the next part of the book, it's no longer necessary and I have to cut it. But I always do this at the end, when I really really know what is important to the story and what isn't.

I've actually been very surprised at how many of those "what's the worst that can happen" moments ended up being cut.

Sometimes, though, you do have to put a story aside. But generally I think you hit that point before 60k. *shrug*