How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop?
Well, who cares? What I want to know is how many false starts does it take to get the center of a plot? I want to know because I'm on, like, my 200th false start and I'd like to know how many more I have to go.
I'm not a novice after all. I've plotted every novel I've written (13 now), and I've always settled on a story idea pretty easily. Yeah, it takes work to flesh it out, add those layers, and put a pretty shine on the idea. My critique partners make the work easy.
But this time, for some reason, I can't seem to settle on an idea. Just when I think I've got the Right One I go to bed and wake up and have second thoughts. I've never been so wishy-washy. My partners have put in so much time on this story (which I have yet to start writing) that their names are going to have to be on the cover. And just when they think I've settled on a plot, out goes an email. "Uh, girls, we're back to scratch."
I've never pushed them to the limits like this, but they're not blocking my emails and calls yet, so I figure we're good. And I THINK I've settled on a plot idea. It was idea 192 out of the 200. Still needs fleshing out and all those layers, but I think it's going to work. Although idea 178 was pretty good too . . . .