Now that classes have come to a close and I have time to breathe again, it’s high time to spend some time with my current WIP: the steampunk/fantasy/sci-fi novel (that currently still needs a title).
When I opened it earlier to start rereading the 20,983 words that have already been written, I realized something terribly sad. It’s the first time I’ve opened the document since January 2nd. Not just edited. Flat out opened it. I knew the second semester was hard, but I didn’t realize that it had been neglected for so long.
One of the hardest things about spending five months away from a partly complete novel is reacclimating to the world, the characters, and the outline of a plot. The only completed draft is a rushed NaNoWriMo version that needs serious work. It’s hardly a first draft. Just a smattering of words thrown on the page to see what can happen.
After some consideration, I suppose there are only a few ways to reacquaint myself with this project: reread everything that I’ve written so far. Not only does that include the 51 page draft (which I remember being fairly happy with back in January) but also reviewing all of the notes in the novel’s notebook.
I know some of them have been scrapped, but one of the most important reasons to keep the notebook is to remember ideas, and it seems remember where I was planning to go after an all-too-long absence.
What do you do when you’re returning to an unfinished product after a long hiatus? How do you reacclimate to stories that you haven’t touched in a while?