It's funny how you can get stuck on a project - I don't mean writer's block - which I don't believe in - but stuck as in uninspired and unmotivated and then a dream provides the answer.
I've been working on a particular project for a while - I can't provide details yet but it involves yes, zombies and a historical person - and was moving along pretty well on it. Then I hit a snag, meaning a badly written chapter which actually turned out to be unintentionally pretty funny at the same time.
It stopped me cold while I figured out subconsciously how to fix it. And I got bored and lost motivation. So I let it go for a week or so.
Maybe sometimes you really have to let things sit and stew a while so you can be sure you are moving in the right direction. I'm an outliner and have only done a light outline on this as I know more or less where it has to go. But vague spots tripped me up.
Most things work themselves out as you write. For me, something comes to mind or your words take you in an unexpected or unplanned for direction. I do, however, like to know where I'm going with something.
Then this dream came. Or let's say a dream outline really, which provided the coolest ending I really hadn't thought of yet. Because I am writing about a long-dead but real person and some specific events, I've tried to stick to much of the truth - except that because of the kind of story it is, obviously I have to bend and recreate certain things to fit my story.
The hard part is having to include two plot lines - the real and the imagined - as it's easy to get lost or feel like you have to stick too much to the truth. And maybe that was holding me back.
This dream idea opened up a totally new line I hadn't thought of and enables me to put an unexpected twist into a real life event. It allows me to take another unexplained event in this person's life and give it a plausible explanation as to what could've happened, based on my own framework, of course.
The best part - the idea is one I can't wait to write! It's creepy and so unexpected and so neat that I hope my readers will feel the same once I get to that point. I love it and jotted it down to make sure I don't forget it (you know how dreams can be), though I know I won't. This has stuck with me.
I had hoped to finish this project in November and December, but now that I can get back on track, I am about halfway through. So I will get back to it with a vengeance and continue completing chapters. Some people are fast writers, (not me), but it's not about speed. It's getting to the finish line.
So look for more updates soon.
** Got a project you've been working on and got sidelined on? Share your solution or how you worked past it.