Dazed and Confused

All week I’ve struggled to revise the same couple chapters, making very little progress. The nasty voice in my head has had a good old time, telling me I’m not a good writer, that my novel is crap, that there’s no salvaging the mess I’ve made, that I’m delusional to think I can pull off the story I want to tell, etc.

I started to believe that.

Because of all my revising, moving back-and-forth within the first 100+ pages, I was confused and disoriented regarding plot lines and character motivations. I didn’t know which way was up. So. This afternoon, I resorted to The Running Start Technique. I went back to page 1 and read through to my sticking point on page 104, taking notes along the way to remind myself exactly certain key events happened.

Aha.

I hadn’t spun my wheels all this week because I’m a bad writer; rather, somewhere inside me I understood that I was headed in the wrong direction. The reason I didn’t make forward progress wasn’t because I suck, but because I wasn’t supposed to go that way. Stubborn tenacity isn’t always a good thing, yo. Whew. I feel so much better about my work-in-progress and me right now.

The sad/funny/pathetic/embarrassing thing is, I’ve already experienced that exact same stalled feeling followed by the Hey, Trace! You’re taking the wrong road! realization. Multiple times. I can only hope that the next time it happens (and it will), the nasty voice is banished much more quickly.

4 thoughts on “Dazed and Confused

  1. Sounds like you’re going through the same thing as me! I’ve recently made such HUGE changes to my manuscript that I have to go back to page 1 and just hope to God that I pick up all the mistakes & plot holes!

    Here’s to banishing that voice that tells us we’re not good enough 🙂 🙂

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    • I feel your pain and confusion! I keep telling myself to focus on doing what I can in this draft and that I can always fix those mistakes and plot holes the next time around. But it can feel very overwhelming at times!

      I’m sending good thoughts and clarity to you as you revise, and a big GET LOST to the nasty voice trying to whisper in your ear! Go, us!

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      • Thanks Tracy! I’m literally revising right now so your comment couldn’t have come at a better time ! I have so many scenes to tweak, plot holes to cover up and scenes to add from scratch that I don’t know if I can do it. I’m only up to page 19 of 260!

        Good thoughts and clarity right back at you! We can do this 😁

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      • Hey Millie! Glad my comment came at an opportune moment! I’ve been buried in my project today and am feeling better after starting an(other) outline to track what’s happened with revisions and what I’d like to change. I’m using the corkboard/index cards on Scrivener. Have you tried that program? If not, I think you can still try it for free for 30 days to see if you like it. It’s a bit overwhelming because there’s SO much you can do with it, but I really like the corkboard. Anyway, I’m still cheering you on and know you can find your way through your revision!!

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