Writing is hard.
The novel hasn’t quite ground to a halt, but the gears are definitely giving a horrible screeching as it lurches it ahead. The second half of the second act is usually the hardest part for me to write, or at least takes the longest as I try to piece everything together. But I’m running into that problem in the first half of the second act with this novel.
The reason is pretty clear, from a series perspective, this novel is where everything in the previous four books needs to come together, so it’s equivalent to the second part of the second in a novel. There are a lot of threads to tie together that need to be self-consistent with the previous novels. Even though I reread those novels before starting, I finished writing book 4 almost four years ago (and I wrote all four in row) and it’s been difficult to keep all the threads in my head all this time later.
This has resulted in at least one continuity error that needed to be clipped out and smoothed over, and a sputtering pace where I figure out a sequence for a couple chapters and then have to switch to brainstorming to figure out where to go next.
And now I’m currently at the point right before the midpoint, which is an important part of the novel. It’s the part where a big event launches the characters into the second half of the novel, where they switch from trying to figure out what’s going on, to actively solving the problem. So, to write the midpoint properly, I need to know where to launch them to.
I actually have a strong idea of the midpoint, but I need to have a better handle on the bigger picture to layer things properly. So, I’ve stepped back and started outlining from the thousand-foot view. I don’t know how long this detour will take, but I am determined to stay in this phase as long as it takes. The novel is currently sitting at 30k, which I estimate is about 40% of the way through. I’m hoping once I have the thousand-foot view outline, the pace will pick back up and be done by end of the year or shortly after.