I’ve taken my 2013 NaNo novel out of mothballs recently, deciding the time was pipe to revisit the unfinished work. After reaching the 50K word goal, I had nowhere to go with the story, no idea as to the next logical progression. I was in a rut, so I set it aside, convinced it would never see the light of day. Now I’m not so sure.
I had to delete nearly 10K words, and I see a ton of discrepancies from where I started writing and where the story ended up. I have a lot of work in store for me to make this a cohesive narrative, but here it is, in all it’s 62K word glory! Okay, you can’t see it yet, but believe me, it’s there.
What took me by surprise is the direction and change of tone it took, particularly in the past couple of days. What started off as a novel about a forty-two year old woman facing a divorce, morphed into a story about neglect, love and sex, abuse, including sexual abuse and rape, and even death. It isn’t simply about coping and moving on from a cheating spouse anymore. It evolved and became messier.
However, that’s what I like most about writing, the adventure. I have a general idea of what I want, but sometimes the way between two points can’t be a straight line. Sure it’s the quickest, but when in life do we take the quick way. Human nature is way too complicated for so simple a route. I may be the writer, but sometimes I feel as though I’m only along for the ride, just like everyone else.
It took me nine months for a solution to present itself. It took many nights for me to figure out my main character’s motivation for doing certain things, actions that ultimately imperils my main character and possibly her daughter. I tried my best to tie up all loose ends, but the husband isn’t one of those characters. He didn’t deserve that kind of send off, though he’s never the antagonist, just the catalyst that launches the story forward.
I plan to read and make as many corrections to the story before shelving it for a month or so. I’ll have to print it out and begin making wholesale revisions next, trying to get everything in line, but I need a little time and prospective first. I may pull out another unfinished word and play around with it next. I don’t know. I’ll play it by ear.