My plan is not going smoothly.


I’ve discovered that most of my half-finished novels are not as ready as I thought they were.


Once again my plans have gone awry.  I’ve had to stop and take stock of my next project.

The idea was simple, finish all my outstanding works this year. It all comes down to the practicalities of execution.

As I said last time, I had to swap projects because inspiration deserted me with the novel I was working on.

I shrugged my metaphorical shoulders and moved to the next part-finished story (it’s actually a sequel that people have been requesting). I gave it a quick read through to see where I could start to work on it next, only to find that it was in a bit of a mess.

I hadn’t worked on it for quite a while, six months at least, in place of the logical story that I remembered, everything was confused and out of place. The chapters didn’t line up and various parts of the action are repeated; often two or three times in different ways. It must have been where I was experimenting with various ways of telling crucial scenes and hadn’t settled on one I was happy with.


All this means that before I can actually write any more I have to sort it all out, decide which is the best version of what I’ve actually written, edit it all and put it together in a form that I can work with.

Instead of 25,000 words, I probably have less than 20,000, once I’ve tidied it all up.

It needs doing though, the longer I put it off the worse it will be when I finally bite the bullet. Once I’ve done that, perhaps I can start again and actually write some new material to add to it.

It all takes time, time that I wanted to spend writing. While I’m doing that, I thought that I might as well look at something else, something that I can actually do with minimal effort.

But, when I went to the other half-finished works, they were all the same, all of them needed editing and tidying up before I can get to add to them.


Everything is conspiring to lead me away from the half-finished to the fresh and new. Because it’s always much less complicated to start something than it is to refine it.

And that, of course, was never the idea. In fact, it’s why I got into this mess in the first place.

I blame the voices in my head for this one, if they hadn’t lost interest and moved onto other ideas, I would have had the stories finished three years ago.


Why is life never simple?


Incidentally, I’ve managed to write just under 40,000 words so far this month.


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6 Responses

  1. Stephen Bungay

    Your quandary is trying to tell you something. I’m Sure there is a silver lining in the predicament…somewhere.

    • Richard Dee

      I need a kick-start, find one that I can get on with and take it from there.

  2. Jack Eason

    Don’t take this the wrong way my friend, but when pressed, any one of us can write 40,000 words, but unless they make sense, what’s the point? None, as you well know. 😉

    • Richard Dee

      Absolutely, it’s making sense of them that takes the time.

  3. Marjorie Mallon

    I have a tendency to move on to other things to. Sometimes it is good to take a break and move on to a fresh new project and come back when you are ready. Good luck Richard.

    • Richard Dee

      Sometimes, they feel like a weight around my neck. Especially when readers ask me when they’ll be finished.

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