I had a moment of understanding about the short story I’ve been writing….These kind of moments are, for me, mixed blessings, because there comes both excitement at a wonderful breakthrough and also a certain something that I don’t want to face up to.
The short story I’ve been writing, though I see the end result clearly in my head (unusual for me), is stuck. There’s no dialogue, which is more than a minor problem. I hear the characters talking, but when I sit down to write, what comes out is more description, more narrative…no speech. There are stories in which a lack of dialogue works, but this story is not going to be one of them.
I’ve been pondering how to go forward and I realized quite suddenly that I was telling the story from the wrong point of view. (Don’t ask me how changing POV will lead to a burst of dialogue writing, but I feel certain that it will.) When I saw what was tripping me up, i felt a soaring excitement…for about two seconds, after which my enthusiasm was tempered by the realization that changing the point of view will mean rewriting everything I have written so far.
These are the kind of moments that make me want to turn away from projects, maybe start something new. My hard drive is a graveyard of unfinished pieces that have hit snags such as this and needed to be reworked from the beginning. I hate reworking. I used to not admit to myself that I needed to start over on a piece of writing and instead would either flounder in a piece that obviously wasn’t working (so stubborn!) or just put it away and never look at it again. Now I’ll admit it, but I still have trouble staying motivated while the rewriting happens. Some false starts I cling to more than others.
Honestly, I don’t know how quickly I’ll be able to return to this story to begin its new form. For now, I’m jotting notes about the changes I want to make, so when I decide I am able to let go of the old version, that little bit of excitement I had in my moment of insight won’t be lost.