I got some amazing feedback on the first draft of my latest project: Axe one of the storylines!
It was unnecessary. I didn’t need the characters that went with it, and I could use the space to deepen the stories of the important characters. It made so much sense. Light bulb over my head! Joy in my heart! I was ready to second draft the shiznit out of this book!
I sat at my computer and opened the first relevant scene. The vital information was tangled in with the stuff that needed to go. I stared at the screen for an hour or so, changed a few words to other words. Got overwhelmed. Did some laundry.
Next day, same story. Vacuuming.
A week later, my house was very clean.
During my procrastination cleaning, I formed a vague idea of what might make the process easier. What if I made an outline of each scene, detailing the information necessary to the story, and listing what needed to be removed? What if I put the outline for each scene on an index card, so I could play around with the order of everything?
My gut told me this was what I needed to do, but it seemed like so much work! I knew the story really well, and I believed I should be able to cut that corner and avoid wasting my time on work that didn’t even really count as writing. I told myself organization was really a form of procrastination. Then I sorted all the washcloths in the linen closet in order of how much I like them.
Next day. Armed with false confidence, I sat at my computer. Got overwhelmed. Started a sewing project.
After Stella had a freshly patched dog bed, and the hole in that sweatshirt I’d been meaning to stitch up for two years was finally fixed, I realized I’d never get anywhere if I didn’t take the time to get organized.