did a rough 2nd pass on “the queen of lakes” this weekend and now am stuck again, pondering the wisdom of a scene in the middle: keep it or go back to having it happen offstage? difficult to say . . .
so instead, back to this:
rewriting the first chapter at last. i’ve put it off for too long. and then digging into the rest, which i think is pretty solid structurally but needs fine-tuning in terms of prose, details, nuance, foreshadowing . . . y’know, just a few things.
it’s both exciting and worrying to be at this point, because on the one hand hurrah! progress! and on the other: i still don’t know if it’s really any good, and how i feel about it becomes more see-saw-y with every pass. i still love my story, i still love my characters, but this iteration of their tale? it’s come so far from my original conception; it’s been a loooong time since i’ve been able to see the forest for the trees.
and then there’s the fact that at this point i have to start letting go of things, for good, and that will only continue from here on out. letting go of the imagined perfection, letting go of scenes, phrases, moments that i cherished . . . last night i thought to myself, what if i cut half that chapter? and i was so shocked at my own cold thought that i had to put it away and think about other things for a while.
i am not who i was three years ago. i am not the writer i was three years ago. but i am old enough to know three years is a short time to change so drastically. it’s both encouraging and frightening. as i suspect the remaining steps of this project will be.