Stuck in the Middle: Or, singing the rewrite blues

Once upon a time, my rewrites were going GREAT! I mean, things were just ticking along as quickly as they could, and some of the scenes I discovered – even I liked them! I raced towards the midpoint and then …

And then I hit the big ol’ midpoint wall.

I’m not sure what I did wrong (although that is one of my “hunches”), or if I’m just tired, but suddenly, I have no idea what I need to write. I can see the midpoint, I can see the crisis points and the climax … and I can’t quite connect the midpoint to the crisis points. Chapters and … “something wonderful I haven’t figured out” is missing in that section, and it’s driving me insane.

Sigh. Maybe that means it’s time for a break. Pushing really hard as I have been, maybe what’s broken isn’t the WIP exactly, but me.

What do you think? Have you ever hit the rewrite wall when you’re about half-way done? You can see the end … but no possible way to get there? Let me know – I’d love the help!

Take care, and have a great week. Hope your writing is going fabulous!

Crisis and Catharsis: Or, Just Keep Writing, You’re On Your Way

It’s been a heck of a wonky-week. I’ve been reading new craft books, and testing out a new potential CP. CP looks terrific, but both the books and the CP delievered the news (unintentionally, both of them) that what I was taking for subtly is just lack of clarity. Oh, and the plotting isn’t working either because apparently I’ve been doing it all wrong (that I figured out myself after the craft book).

In the end, what this means is that I’ll be able to improve my writing on both a micro and macro level. What it means right now is that I feel pretty down on myself. I mean, really, how didn’t I see this before? What was I thinking? How could I have been so stupid? I must be the worst writer, ever.

Those questions, though, are useless. As they are whenever the evil-voice inside our heads starts beating us up. Because this is just a test, just another step on our journey. And the kind of things we say to ourselves – we would never say such terrible things to another loving being, so why the heck do we put up with saying them to ourselves?

Since it was the crisis portion of plotting I finally realized I was mishandling, it also occurred to me that it was what I was facing in my writing-life, too. But the crisis isn’t the end of everything; just the end of one thing. A mini-apocalypse, if you will, out of which you emerge stronger and changed, headed towards the climax. Because my life (and yours) is not a novel, it means there will be more than one crisis that we’ll face throughout our lives. It will hit us, whack us down like a two-by-four to the face, and it’s our job to shake it off, stand up, and keep on going. Because there’s something better ahead. Because the crisis is just one signpost on a much longer road. The view is blurry ahead, but if we keep putting one foot in front of the other, we’ll get there.

And don’t worry – the bruises will heal.

Take care, happy writing, and hopefully you duck before the two-by-four gets you. Thanks for reading.