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Lurking shadows and desperate prayers

Last updated on 14 May 2017

One of the hardest aspects of crafting a novel, for me, is the motivation to plow through the middle. I write what I see in my head. In that, I’ll see scenes that drive a story to the conclusion I know is coming. There is, however, and equally essential need for the connective tissue that weaves or bonds all the parts, the foreshadowing, the red herrings, and the ‘oh shit I didn’t see that coming’ moments that make turning the page not only compelling but emotionally mandatory.

I have, among the folders and odd scraps within my drives, five novels in various states of disrepair. Various states of construct, including full scenes, complete story lines, or quick notes on connecting A to J and the shadows that make it happen. But life intrudes, or the mental squirrel darts across your path and you brain-dump another idea to return to.

All along you fight the demons lurking with imposters syndrome. This is where the little bit of success, with the opening chapters of Tunguska being published, becomes a double-edged sword. An editor you respect liked something you wrote enough to publish a ‘bit’, and now you’re bending under the self-imposed pressures of mandatory completion.

Suddenly, you have an audience! You’re hearing — “Where’s the rest!” — “Holy shit, I didn’t know you write…” — “Great start, I’m completely in…” — and all you can think is you better not fuck this up.

And this little bit of rambling becomes a desperate prayer for the impetus to put words to page, and finish the DAMN’d Book!