I am trapped. Somewhere between the Bog of Eternal Stench and the Dark Black Forest.
It was a painful ordeal of an exercise, but the Trunk Novel now has something that resembles an outline, and a full plot arc. The major one, anyways. Still all the minor ones to consider and flesh out, but the guide rails are in place. And like a sluice gate being cranked open, the scenes are forming in my mind, battering to get out. I want to write. Finally. It's been rough, slow going, hammering out something like roughly 5k total this month.
Outlining is not something I do without great effort. There was a lot of sitting here staring at a blank screen and a blinking cursor. A good bit of fighting off the urge to edit--which is something I do as a writing procrastination device. I can recognize that, now. Oh, why bother making new words, when I can sit here and endlessly rearrange and rewrite the ones I already have. Mind you, the temptation is strong, and still there. And I will not permit it, not until this plot arc is fleshed out and complete. Even if it means cranking out 50k of this for NanoWrimo, instead of working on the story I'd intended to in November.
I can only focus on one story at a time. Perhaps it's because I submerse myself so completely in the world and the characters, the voice and the telling--the unfolding, the momentum of events, of thoughts and actions and circumstances. For now, all my creative juices are going into this one. The others will have to sit on the back burner for a while longer.
There were times (more than once, I admit) while revising "Blacker Than Black" when I sat here and stared at the recycling bin on my desktop. And the folder labeled Black. I gave serious consideration to sliding the one folder into the other, and destroying years of effort with a single act.
Obviously, I couldn't bring myself to do it. I have writing from twenty years ago, or near enough. I am a hoarder of words. Anything and everything I've ever written, however trite or stupid or inapplicable, I have kept.
I didn't give up on Black, and I'm not about to give up on this one, either. But there are times when the obstacles seem daunting, and the miles to go insurmountable.
Bird by bird. Once scene at a time, one sentence at a time. Never mind the edits. Those come later. (Which means I should probably stop sending updates to my beta, because if I don't she's likely to throttle me and geographic impossibility be damned.)