Days 22-23 (March 14 – 15)
March 15: Started out as yesterday on Part One, and met the same concentration block around lunchtime. After food, a short walk, and spending an hour trying to develop outlines for two new short stories, I moved forward to work on Chapter 20. Here, Freya is just home after an exhausting shift at the Royal Infirmary, and exasperated at still being in Scotland when she aches to be in Australia with Alexander. Her mother and sister are visiting. A visit to the Art Gallery which has an important place in the family history is on the cards.
Made lots of changes. Was a bit taken aback at how many changes because I’ve reworked that section more than a few times already. Just confirms the value of being distanced and therefore more objective.
March 14: Continued with changes to Part One early chapters, noting areas for change without working on them. To retrieve concentration I changed tack and worked on critiqueing three chapters for a Writer’s Group member. Excited about how well my colleague’s work has developed. Always surprised how a change of focus energises.
Made for home early, and did a big cook to stock the freezer with meals. Watched The Good Wife on TV, one of the few programs I follow. Am disgusted with what’s on offer in our State election campaign.
Comment: Hoping very much to get past the early chapters of Part One and to move a bit more quickly through later chapters. Very keen to start working on Part Two. The initial goal date has been moved many times. Reworking existing material seems to take much longer than the initial writing which I hadn’t anticipated, and probably should have, as I’ve experienced the phenomenon many times before, when working with large work-based documents (some more than novella length). Don’t know why, but I had this idea that changes to fiction would be easier to manage (no annoying unchangeable facts or legislative clauses to account for). Not so. The implications of change are the same because of the length and complexity of this family saga. Am better prepared now for the rest of the task. Hopefully there will be fewer massive structural changes ahead.