And so it goes. Novel draft the third, that is. I have made at least provisionally through the first of three sections, the shortest but possibly the most difficult, although we’ll see about that. I’m plugging away at it for an hour each day (no more, no less — when that timer goes off, you know I stop writing). That in itself feels miraculous: since I pledged to commit an hour to the manuscript each workday, I actually have, with the exception of the day that was derailed by Angelina Jolie.
And although I’m not anxious to write beyond my hour, I don’t dread it, either. Kind of a new sensation.
What also feels miraculous is that it’s easier than I thought. At this point, it’s less as though I’m tunnelling through a mountain with a plastic spoon and a bit more as though I’m doing a very thorough reorganization of my closet: trying new combinations of old pieces; pulling out and discarding the old, tattered stuff that no longer fits; figuring out that I really do need a couple of good, solid basics to pull the whole thing together; moving a summer sundress out from amongst to the winter wools. I’ll realize that I have the equivalent of, say, six green cardigans — and even though I really and truly do love green cardigans, I probably need to consign at least four (all right, five) of them to the Goodwill box, along with that dress I bought in a fit of optimism 15 years ago but that never really did anything for me. In some cases, I need to accessorize; more often, I need to strip away some of the belts and scarves and jewelry that clutter up the clean lines of an otherwise just fine ensemble. And so on.
Of course, what I’m hoping for is an entire wardrobe that works really well together, something that looks as though it was pulled together by a stylist to the literary stars. But that part — whether I’ll end up with something as finally tailored as a Chanel blazer or something made of 100% Orlon — is not, currently, my problem. My problem is to finish the draft in an hour a day till it's done.