Skip to main content

The Dam Bursts

As reported a few days ago, it's been a tough week, one where I couldn't seem to make any kind of forward motion on the work in progress. For every page I'd write, I'd rip out and dispose of two, and the decent dribs and drabs remained stubbornly disjointed, with gaps I couldn't figure how to close.

Finally, after days and days of this, I figured out I'd skipped a critical "bridge" scene in the preceding chapter. After going back and rewriting it, I've finally broken the log jam. (Cue "The Hallelujah Chorus.")

Sure enough, by bringing work to a complete halt, my subconscious was letting me know I'd forgotten something crucial and no amount of grinding was going to solve the problem. Finally, yesterday, I took the day off to go shopping, blab on the phone, play with the dog (the aptly-named Zippy's always up for a vigorous round of rough-housing), and have dinner out with my husband.

And lo and behold, this morning I knew what I needed. I wrote the bridge scene, came up with a better idea for the new chapter, and basically kicked butt and took names.

As Monty Python so perfectly put it, "And there was much rejoicing."

The next time you're really stuck, go ahead and try a day off. It'll make the spouse, the kids, the pooch happy, and by the time you're back to work, your hard-working subconscious may have solved the problem for you.


Christie Craig said…

You are so right. Sometimes a little time off does the heart good.

I'm on vacation now, and when I get back, I hope to find my muse waiting at my desk. Heck, I hope she went ahead and finished a few projects while I was away.

Hope you have a great vacation and come back feeling recharged!

Popular posts from this blog

"The Curious Case of Benjamin Button": Did you love it or hate it?

Earlier this week, Colleen and I went to see "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button", the extraordinary movie based on a short story by F. Scott Fitzgerald. I loved it. Colleen not s'much. (I was sitting there choked in tears at the end of the three hour film, so I only vaguely remember her saying something about "watching paint dry.") I want to see it again, so I'm trying to get the Gare Bear to go with me this weekend, but I won't be surprised if he reacts the same way Colleen did. The movie is long. And odd. It requires patience and a complete suspension of disbelief that modern audiences simply aren't trained for, so you've got to be in the right mood for it. The same is true of the short story, though the story and script have very little in common -- at least superficially. The story is very Fitzgerald (though it's not an example of his best writing, IMHO), and the setting -- Baltimore during the industrial revolution, Spanish Americ

APATHY AND OTHER SMALL VICTORIES by Paul Neilan is only good if you enjoy things like laughter

The only thing Shane cares about is leaving. Usually on a Greyhound bus, right before his life falls apart again. Just like he planned. But this time it's complicated: there's a sadistic corporate climber who thinks she's his girlfriend, a rent-subsidized affair with his landlord's wife, and the bizarrely appealing deaf assistant to Shane's cosmically unstable dentist. When one of the women is murdered, and Shane is the only suspect who doesn't care enough to act like he didn't do it, the question becomes just how he'll clear the good name he never had and doesn't particularly want: his own.