About a month ago, I did something.
After working on my current WIP for a very long time, I decided to delete the whole thing. I took the entire Scrivener file, threw it in the trash can, and immediately clicked EMPTY TRASH! I wanted it off my computer. Gone.
This was not an easy thing to do, let me tell you!
The WIP wasn’t awful. It wasn’t. I had just gotten off to a not-quite-right start, but it took me a looong time to realize it. So I kept writing and writing, waiting for it all to magically “come together.” It didn’t. I was spinning, adding more and more, not really sure where anything was going or what it was all about anymore.
There’s something about working on a novel for a long time that makes it more difficult to let go. I held on and on, ignoring that inner knowledge that was telling me this wasn’t it. I guess I didn’t want all that time I spent on it to be for nothing.
But sometimes you have to let go.
Deleting that document allowed me to stop, to wipe the slate clean, and then start again. It gave me the chance to remember the original idea, which had gotten lost somewhere along the line. And I can’t tell you how happy I am that I made this decision!
So, if you’re in a similar position, writing something you’re not sure is going anywhere, try deleting the whole thing and starting again. It’s only words, right? Right??? And really, there’s nothing as inspiring as a fresh, clean document with a blinking cursor just waiting for you to start… again.