It hasn't been easy writing lately, which is a shame. It's been a combination of things. The incessant heat draining whatever energy I might have has by far been the largest problem I've had to overcome. And it hasn't been easy. When you're tired and worn down all the time, it's very difficult to find any motivation at all to sit in front of a computer and actually get anything done.
Which is a shame because it's not like I haven't had this newest novel on my mind the whole time. I have, it's been its usual constant gnawing at the back of my mind this whole time. I've gone through scenes in my head, plotted out conversations and interactions between characters, but unfortunately that hasn't really translated into getting much if anything done.
Hopefully though, with the heat gradually slowing down and everything else in my life dulling down to a slow roar, I might be able to get back to some sense of normality when it comes to my writing.
The good thing is, I've actually managed to get quite a bit done the last few days. Got a small bit of writing done on Friday night, and a great big chunk done tonight (so far), so the whole thing is trending upward now. Which is a good thing.
I did have to go back and re-familiarize myself with all the trouble Heaven has been getting herself into and figure out what I was doing. That's the hard part about taking any sort of break at all. Is getting back and figuring out what's already been done, figuring out what the plan was, and then realizing how much the plan and plot has changed just because of that break.
Like I said, I haven't exactly put the whole thing out of my mind this whole time while I've focused on other things, but I haven't exactly gotten anything down on paper either. In my head, and in the notes I've jotted down here and there I've actually worked quite a bit on the story and the characters. So things necessarily have to be altered from what I've already written just a bit. It just hasn't translated into getting put down into words on paper which, sadly is how novels are actually written. You can have a whole novel written up in your head, but until its on paper it doesn't mean anything.
On the bright side, it has allowed me time to think about the characters themselves, how I see them, and where I want them to go. Heaven especially. She's a hard one though, because her growth has to be both logical and earned. She's been through a lot in her life and can't just get over all of that and turn into this shapeshifting badass without her having gone through all the work to get there. Well, you can, but it would come off wrong and it wouldn't make any sense whatsoever.
Her personality and the relationships she's in also have to dictate how things progress. I can push her a little with Flavius, give her good examples to look up to with Sasha and Kendra. I can show her bad sides with say Kore and Tara, especially Tara, but ultimately she has to be the one who has to take the steps. And taking those steps in a realistic way so they're natural is the hard part.
She's generally a bit skittish, but she does have a little bit of a temper to her and she'll throw herself unthinkingly into a fight if someone she cares about is in danger. Problem with that is, I can't keep relying on that to move her forward. Can't keep having her fling herself at people because she's trying to save other people, because she's not going to actually learn from that. All that is just instinct. I want her to actually figure things out on her own and grow from what she's learned. That's the hard part.
Thankfully, I've managed to roll a lot of scenarios around in my head, that is hopefully going to get her moving in the right direction. I don't think she'll ever be in the same category as say Sasha or JD is with their confidence and their strength. But she can get to a place where she's comfortable and finds her own place in things. Where she can do things on her won without relying on others for her safety and protection. Though, it is a dangerous world so that sorta thing is always gonna be there in some capacity or another. Thats just the nature of how the supernatural world works.
Besides, she doesn't have to be the strongest most fearless person out there to be a good character and to be who she needs to be. Having people stronger than her around doesn't make her weak, and running off on her own doesn't make her strong.