Discover more from The Next Novel
It’s beginning: the itch to return to the glass house novel.
I felt so stuck last summer when I stepped away from it, but now ideas are starting to percolate again. I find myself perusing my own mood board, saving notes on my phone, looking forward to the day when I can return to that world.
I trusted that this would happen — that if I moved on to something else for awhile, my brain would keep working in the background to pick this stubborn lock — but I didn’t expect it to take so long.
I think the reason it’s happening now is that I’m in the same place in the pond novel that I was in the glass house novel — the middle, when all the loosely connected pieces will either hang together or fall apart — and I’m pushing through.
I’m pushing through for nothing other than the systems of accountability I’ve set up for myself: my collaborator, my 10 pages a week, this newsletter. (I wonder if 10 pages would have saved me from getting stuck before, but things happen as they happen.)
And the act of pushing through the uncomfortable part is teaching me that there can be something on the other side. When it’s time to go back to the glass house novel, I will know I can do it because I’ve done it before. And it can be fun and it can be light, there doesn’t have to be despair, or if there is despair there can also be hope. I’m talking about writing and I’m talking about life.
What books have you loved lately? I just finished Mitz: The Marmoset of Bloomsbury and found it charming and sad and perfectly executed, everything you would expect upon hearing that Sigrid Nunez wrote a biography of Virginia Woolf’s pet monkey.