I’ve run out of steam again. Seriously, this happens every three weeks. You could set your clock by it.
This time around, I don’t like my characters, the tone is too serious, and I think the story is ultimately predictable and unoriginal. So, do I keep going, or do I start something new? Because here’s my dilemma: I don’t know if I’m quitting too easily, or if I’ve simply not found my next good idea. Every novelist has unfinished projects; what if I’m simply going through a bad patch? It’s been two years now since I took an idea to completion. In the big scheme of things, that’s not so bad, is it? Or is it terrible? I don’t know.
The only possible solution I can think of is to start something new and write it completely into the dark – i.e. with no bloody clue where I’m headed. If I don’t know what the whole story looks like, I won’t be able to say the whole thing’s crap. Right? Of course, there’s a whole host of other problems that come from pantsing a novel, but at least I can identify them. I know what ‘I don’t know what comes next’ looks like. Also, with cycling as I go, I can correct a wrong turn quicker than if I write madly through the first draft. If I properly cyclepants a novel (yeah I’m owning that term) and I quit at the three week mark, I’ll know FOR SURE that the problem is with me, and not the idea.
K. I’m doing it. All I need is an opening line.
Game face on.
Here we go again.