On the writing front things have been slow. They've been even slower on the muralist front, though, so I shouldn't complain.
I'm stuck--as in writers block up the ying-yang. Of course my characters won't stop shouting me down from chapter 12 and all I can do is shout back that I'm not quite there yet...nor will I ever be if they don't be quiet for a few minutes (or months) and let me catch up.
What can I say, my characters have a tendency to take over. It's like the overly ambitious child you've just taught to ride a bike. You point them in the right direction and they take off without regard to all the obstacles in their way, leaving you in the dust knowing full well they will crash and the result will be rewriting 50,000 extra words just to make up for where they've left you. I don't know how many times I've been typing along a premeditated plot line and one of my characters out of the blue will do something quite shocking and in no wise planned. Not only do my eyebrows take the elevator all the way up to my hairline, but these !@#$ characters leave me with an all new plot twist that I have to make work throughout the rest of the book. Hey even authors can be surprised by their work
So the writers block, though being a much slower-paced way of life, has at least allowed me plenty of time to think about the shouted chapter 12. If I had started writing it out of order (as I am known to do) I would most assuredly have to cast it out at a later date to make way for all the new (self-propelled as opposed to character-propelled) things crowding my brain right now in regards to major plot lines. I am already seeing big changes that need to take place in my first three precious chapters, but hallelujah, every day the plot picture is becoming clearer.
Someone once said that writers block is your friend. It allows you to reassess your plot and characters to determine why you don't care enough about them to get past the block. Well all I have to say about that is, poo-poo. My trouble right now is that I care too much to make a mistake. I have written a higher word count of mistakes into first drafts than I have of words I've kept. Mistakes allow you to see what your book could have been had you not edited, rewritten, edited, rewritten again, worried, cared, and thrashed in your sleep until your husband kicks you out to go finish that !@#$ chapter so everyone can finally sleep in peace.
Well hopefully my most darling and scathing writers group can help me past this stupid block. Sometimes these meetings leave me at the point of running to my characters for sympathy (something that almost never ends well as the Commander usually ends up shooting Rose out of the blue or Justet plots a kidnapping, thereby causing me stress and extra writing, rather than the relief I'd hoped by running into their arms). However, group meetings never fail to get my fingers back on the keyboard to start pounding away on that skeletal and usually drivel-like first draft again.
Progress. Forward. Moving on. Hopefully it won't be on the wobbly character-ridden bike. I think I'll put the training wheels back on until I get to chapter 12.