Progress Report

I hit a patch I didn’t want to write. It ended up being only a couple hundred words of transition between connected scenes, but they had a repelling forcefield around them (probably because they’d be better as a scene break, but I’ll figure that out in revisions). While I avoided that for two days, I worked instead on the final two scenes.

The End is a long way away, but since the outline stage, the actual writing has provided some details I can carry all the way through the finale. I’m 12% (at most) into writing this monster, so more details will obviously come to light as I go, and I’ll rewrite the ending as many times as it takes to accommodate new information. It’s the same core HEA conversation from the outline, but it hadn’t occurred to me at the outline stage to have that talk occur during a robbery, for instance. Like last week’s “brunch” rant, it’s not about the robbery—the robbery just provides more interesting props and context than standing around talking on a balcony for no particular reason. (ETA: Of course there’s a plot-relevant reason for the robbery. I didn’t pick it out of a hat. The whole point of the exercise is to make the ending resonate more with the rest of the story.)

Last night, I did finally manage to drag myself through those transitional words at around 9 p.m., which cleared the way to progress through most of Fight Scene II today. It’s not pretty (what are complete sentences?) and there’s a timing problem (heroine has way too much to say to an accomplice after an enemy puts them on notice that he’s going to take unpleasant action), but again, that’s is all fixable in revisions. Get the content down, make sure the structure holds up, and then it will be time to worry about cosmetic elements.

I signed my first contract in 1996. I know writing always starts ugly and gets progressively less ugly until someone deems it presentable enough for human consumption, but it’s still mandatory to pep-talk myself through early drafts, when it’s hard to see how anyone could ever learn to love a beast.

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