Monday, January 31, 2005

A Mess

I think I'm in big trouble. This novel is a mess. I'm on page 142 and not only don't I know what's going on, I can't imagine writing at least another 250 pages of this.

Nothing makes sense. I've written myself into so many corners I can't see how to ever write out of them.

If it wasn't so depressing, and if I didn't have a deadline, I think I'd junk this novel and start again. I honestly don't know what I'm going to do. I should be working right now but instead I'm doing this.

I feel I've been fooling myself, thinking it would work itself out. I don't see how it can. I've never been in quite this position so early in a book.

I remember the writing of another book and running around the house yelling "I don't know how to catch him" meaning the killer. But that was a very different matter. And I did catch him.

Now the problem is I don't know how to go on. I knew I shouldn't have started a series. I hate writing a series. But that's what publishers want and This Dame For Hire screamed series.

In this made up world it's the summer of 1943 in New York City and I need to make you believe it. That's another problem I'm having. Still, I know I can deal with that part of the novel in my first rewrite. What rewrite? You can't rewrite a novel if you don't have a first draft.

My advice to another writer in this predicament would be to press on. Do the best you can. And when you come to The End worry about all this then.

All right. I'll try.


Lee Goldberg said...

Do you write with an outline?

I find the security blanket of an outline, even if I deviate from it, always helps me. At least I can look at it and say, "Okay, I *had* an idea of where I should be going, why am I not heading in that direction? What changed? And did it change for the better?" My outlines tend to evolve as my novels do...I call them "living outlines," because I am constantly rewriting them and usually don't finish them until a week or so before I finish my book.

Anonymous said...

Good to know of the best struggle with the same things we novices do. I think I always knew that, but it still so refereshing to hear. Keep going, we're with you.