Shock horror: I didn’t write a SINGLE WORD of my novel for two months. Terrible, I know.
But it was strangely freeing, and immensely helpful. After gaining some distance from the text, getting feedback from friends and hemming and hawing over a few points, I’ve come back to it with some new direction, and I think ultimately will have a better book.
First off, I’m ditching dual POV. Whoosh — it’s gone! My male MC was, well, kind of boring and passive, and didn’t have much to do. I found myself dragging my feet on his chapters, which lead to the slow, eventual death of my daily writing. I thought long and hard: do I *need* dual POV? Nope. So it’s gone.
I also changed his name. There’s amazing power in a name, not only for characterization and personality, but for scene setting and crafting plot. I ended up creating two axillary characters — Thrace and Raif — and found myself wanting to give them more and more to do. And my male MC less and less. So he gets a makeover. And doesn’t get to talk as much (sorry, buddy). Skander is dead. He’s Helo now. Much cooler, kind of hotter, and way more interesting.
These two changes alone unstuck the dam of plot creativity in my brain. I have a *much* better middle, and banged out the start of my ending scene. I ditched some other little details I thought were immensely cool but weren’t that important, and might have compromised the YA-ness of the book (don’t worry, they still curse XD).
But this brings me to the last big question: tense. I have 20,000 words in first person. And now I have 1,000 in past tense. I’m not sure which one to go with — both have their advantages, but I also know that first person a) is wicked trendy right now (almost to the point of OMG TOO MUCH) and b) some people really hate it.
Regardless, either way I think I actually have something I can actually write in 3-4 months. And it may not suck! Yay. Progress.