Killian: Please tell me you didn’t do what I heard you did
Sorry, it’s true. Three days ago, I had an epiphany. Unfortunately it wasn’t one of those happy, the-world-makes-sense-now, I-feel-like-I-just-stroked-a-bunny-for-an-hour moments. Rather, it was one of those the-only-way-for-the-quill-to-come-out-is-surgery, I’m-sick-because-I’m-pregnant, oh-shit-oh-no-oh-shit moments. (Note: I am not pregnant, but I do feel equally suckered in the gut.)
I started working on the sequel to my first book, The Vessel, back in October. Yes, that October, the one that happened when the Earth was on its previous trip around the sun. I did take a break from November to early February to write, edit, and publish Snapped, and I’ve been starting to write a few outlines and some scenes for the upcoming Jerry-Riona Christmas novella, but more or less, I’ve spent most of the last year working on The Guardian. To the naked eye, it looked like I was making a lot of progress. As of last week, I almost had 60,000 words of a rough draft down. However, only about 7,000 of that is from the last few months. I wouldn’t quite say I had writer’s block, but there was something wrong. The words just wouldn’t flow. And that’s when my epiphany struck: I’ve been writing in circles on the book most of the summer. I deviated from my original outline, and it didn’t pan out. Even the bit I wrote didn’t really do much to advance the plot.
Some plots are like rose bushes: a few beautiful buds can blind you of the fact that they’re covered in thorns and have grown wild. The Guardian manuscript was like a wild rose bush that was choking itself, not allowing anymore buds to open. So, three nights ago, I did the only thing I could think of to save it: I deleted it.
I know, you’ll say how can you save something by killing it? Well, this is where the metaphor ends. I didn’t really kill it as much as trimmed it back to its roots. Already since then, despite the fact that the bones of my holiday weekend had their marrow sucked out by a two-day soccer tournament, I’ve already laid down 4000 fresh words and I feel a ton more motivated. So, all in all, good news. But, of course, there are consequences to an emergency manuscriptdectonmy: it’s unlikely I’m going to get the book out late this summer as hoped. In fact, if I get it out in 2015, it will be a miracle. (Mid-month I’ll hit my hard limit to finish Jerry and Riona’s prequel novella, which will divert my attentions again.)