I don’t know how to get from where I left off last night to the end of the story — so instead I’m seeing if I can get from the end of the story to where I left off last night.
That is to say, earlier tonight I sat down and wrote a chunk of the final scene, then came back after a break and started writing the scene that comes before it. I’ll see how far I can get with that, then probably write the next one forward, and at that point I’ll have pretty much everything I know about this story. Whereupon I will hopefully figure out how to splice the two together.
This is utterly backwards for me, both literally and figuratively. I don’t write this way. But the other way wasn’t working, and hey, it’s only a short story; if I end up chucking out everything I wrote tonight, and everything I write tomorrow, it’s no huge loss. This may, like “Chrysalis,” be a story I need to write wrong before I can figure out how to write it right.
(I’m hoping for a result less broken than “Chrysalis” is. Fortunately, I’m also not attempting anything a tenth as arty as that story.)
1,173 very tangled words tonight. I think tomorrow I need to re-read chunks of my reference materials and get this crap straight in my head.
ETA: another 400 or so more. I remembered, or reconstructed, the way I wanted to handle what’s probably the most crucial turning point of the story; again, it may need replacing later, but at least I have it nailed down for the moment.