This week deserves a picture of a sad kitten tangled up in yarn.
My muse & I have been unraveling plot tangles for days. This involves lots of staring at whiteboards, hitting my head against the wall, and playing with yarn. Yes, I knit. Yes, it’s useful for plotting, and not a bad metaphor either.
Near the end of the week (with the help of a friend) I finally figured out that the Frankenstein merging of two plots I had going on Book Four was absolutely, positively not going to work. As a result, two things happened: one, I sent an email to my editor (communication is a good thing), and two, I sat down with metaphorical scissors and started cutting one of the plots out.
With any luck, my deleted subplot will one day become a novella–I’m saving all the pieces in another file in this hope. But whether or not it lives later, killing this plot is the only thing that will save the book, so it must be done. We sang a sad song over the weekend as we did this, I and my muse. But we did it, ruthlessly and efficiently. That’s what being a pro writer is about, as sad as it is.
Fortunately, today I got to sit down and repair what I have, filling in the holes and tying up the loose ends. Even better, the Shiny Happiness is returning. I am making New Big Plans for Adam and his difficult troubles, adding another, more logical subplot, giving Cherabino her fair share of troubles and difficulties, and getting Fiske involved. Ah, Fiske, you are such a villain. For the first time, I feel like it’s really coming together.
Like always, however, the only way to tell if the pattern is going to work is by doing the work. Here’s hoping it doesn’t snarl again when the words start hitting the page tomorrow. Here’s hoping the Shiny Happiness continues.