A few days back I was saying how I don’t think Last Dance at the Kitten Club is a very good book and might need to be scrapped or locked away for a long, long time.
Now I’m fairly certain a chunk of that was a writer’s funk. After having a chance to talk to another writer about it, I attacked the first three chapters again with a fresh resolve. Although I was making almost a many changes this time around as the last, I realized to my surprise that I no longer hated it.
Part of this came from my friend reminding me of one of the major changes to the story that needed to be done – dropping some of the subplots.
Last Dance at the Kitten Club originally took place in three time eras – the far past with the protag as a girl, the present in which she’s lost her job at a newspaper and is working at a bookstore, and the recent past in which we find out what lead up to her getting fired.
I feel getting rid of the recent past and the two subplots it encompassed has gone a long way to improving my outlook on the book. And there is another subplot that will probably be reduced in scope as well, so that the present is focused on only two key elements, one of which is tied to the past. As it stands the manuscript is about 100,000 words long. I’m guessing by the time I’m done that will be down to 70,000 – 80,000.
But what surprised me is that feeling of “this isn’t that bad, actually it’s pretty good.” Almost as much as my initial depressing revelation that the book might be not only bad, but unsalvageable. It’s strange to realize that my blah feelings had clouded my judgement so much.
This also goes a long way to pointing out the importance of having some kind of support structure. I’m not one for writing circles per se, but having writing friends is invaluable. Thanks Shell. 🙂