When the chapter just doesn’t work

I have been working on the next chapter for Tempting The Dragon (among other things, why does the list of things I’m writing get longer every day?) and I read through the 3000 words I wrote and I have to admit: this just doesn’t work.

As always, I already knew something was wrong while I wrote it, neither the emotions nor the urgency of the events came over in a convincing way. Isn’t it weird how our writer brain keeps yelling at us “this is all wrong!” and we just ignore it? Or is it just me?

Now, after awareness comes the analysis and then the consequences.

Analysis — what is wrong with this chapter?

  • Theme failure: for a fun little action romance, the subject turned way too grim.
  • personal uneasiness: turns out, I really don’t want to think and write about children getting kidnapped, at least not on a close and personal level.
  • insecurities about the characters: Since I’m mostly pantsing, as I always do, I’m only just now getting to know the characters. They are both a bit reluctant to take action at the moment. I wonder how a story can be interesting when both main characters would rather stay home and read instead of going on life-threatening adventures.

The consequences:

  • Unfortunately, this chapter needs a new start. It’s not enough to edit it a bit, it needs to be rebuilt from the ground up.
  • I’m going over my rough plot list and see what I need to change to make the action believable and the characters more active.
  • Read and write. I have lots of things in the works and I keep adding books to my pile that I want to read “for inspiration” and haven’t made it past the first ten pages on any of those.

What does that mean for the story? No worries, it’s not going on hiatus, I just need two more weeks to write a new chapter. I think. I may be a teeny bit too optimistic there. Probably two weeks.

Oh what the hell, lets nail this down. Deadlines are supposed to be good for writers, right? The new chapter will be published… drumroll please… 27th of August my time (Central European Whatsit). That’s a Saturday, that should work.

See you then!

Be safe friends and write a lot!

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