Well, this blog has already paid for itself. By forcing my brain to think of other things, I actually got a bit of distance on my novel. And then I realised why the pacing was skewiff.
Most importantly, I’ve given Lyn allies too early in the story. I hate conflict in real life, and tend to be too nice to the characters I create. But Lyn is pathologically independent. No way would she be relying on someone in the first third of the book.
And as I lay awake last night unravelling where my story wandered off track into allydom, I realised it was a fundamental error. I’d made Lyn a lawyer (she has hang-ups about justice), but the problem with that is she can’t drop her current life to deal with new issues, and the story can’t wait for her to hand over cases, and she is too conscientious to neglect her clients. Oh hell, I’d fallen into the trap of giving her an obvious profession.
So last night I really considered her choices and really, she wouldn’t have chosen to be a lawyer. She’d have gone with her talents to make herself independent. Her talent is numbers and patterns. Obviously she’d put that to use in finance, work from home, stand or fall alone.
Ha. I’m really pleased to have put my finger on the problem, but not so happy that 30,000 words have to be pushed aside. Draft 2, here I come.