It wasn’t exactly a decision to back away somewhat from A Well-Educated Boy for the last few days of October. Not that details aren’t still working themselves out, mostly without much help from me. But it’s quite possible to burn out before I even get to NaNoWriMo, so I guess it’s a good thing that my unconscious mind is able to divert me to something else for a while.
That “something else” is Gift of the Ancien, which I wrote for NaNo several years ago. It’s a huge, wandering mess of a novel, unsure what its major point is, or who is the real protagonist. My lovely beta reader pointed out the problems (some of them) way back when I had every intention of revising and publishing it. I keep going back to it, and giving up in despair. I’ve thought seriously about trashing it rather than trying to rescue it, but this is one darling that I just can’t kill. I love the story and I think it’s one that might attract attention. There’s a hint of vampires, a touch of romance, and a tragic hero. But it needs way more than mere revision; large parts will have to be scratched out or rewritten.
This wouldn’t seem like the best time for Ancien to sit up and wave at me, but maybe the mindset that’s been working away at Boy is slopping over onto Ancien, to the advantage of both. Suddenly, light is shining in dark places, and I can see my way to approaching the job intelligently. It’s still going to be extremely difficult, but for the first time in several years, it seems doable. So the plan is to concentrate until November on exactly how to do it, and then dive in once NaNo is over. That’s the plan, if the gods are willing and the creeks stay within their banks.