Saturday, September 11, 2010

Feeling stymied

My novel is in a transitional place. I've come to a big break in one of the main stories and am in the bridge to the second. This wasn't quite how I imagined the novel occurring but it has taken its own direction and I'm going along. I need to sort out some of what happens next but my current struggle with a viral condition called shingles is making that hard.

Usually, when I'm stymied, I'll spend an hour with my notebook creating possible scenarios and twists and turns for the characters. Since they're at X, what's one of 20 logical Ys? Then I'll contemplate those for a while and the right one will make itself known.

But shingles involves a lot of pain, both the nagging, aching kind that sits in the background but is never very far away and the sudden truly miserable kind that shouts PAY ATTENTION TO ME! Last night when I was awake every hour or so, I tried to shift to Ellie's dilemma and what might happen next and I just didn't have the presence of mind to focus. That's frustrating to me for it's been more than a week since I wrote anything and that makes me nearly as restless as the pain.

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