The painful process of moving backward...

Occasionally I get to the point in a book where all the action is coming together and the end is growing close. It’s always the fastest piece to write… and the most exciting. Months of staring at the blank screen of the drudgery of word by word becomes a rush of adrenaline as I near the finish line.


Unless I realize along that fast and furious run that I’m heading in the wrong direction.

Or worse, that I made a wrong turn at some point earlier in the book.

And then I have to go back and cut.

And that is possibly the most painful part of writing a novel—the times when you realize it’s wrong. And you’re alone, no editor (yet) telling you how it’s wrong and suggesting ways to fix it. It’s just wrong in your head and you know in your gut that you have to go back.

This was one of those weeks. It’s done. The pages (40+ of them) are gone, filed under “Out",” and I’m back to the forward motion again. I’m a week (or three) behind where I was but headed for a better book.

The worst is behind me now. The book will be better because of it.