Breaking the writer’s blockade

Today I’m working on the sequel to Peak Season and I’m stuck. The sequel’s called Tourist in Paradise. Someone is hunting visitors in the idyllic beach town of Spanish Point and CW McCoy will either solve the murders or wind up a victim of one.

The first 11 chapters went fairly well, with a bit of a rough patch during an open house at her new real estate office. I struggled with that scene for weeks until I hit upon the solution: cut the chapter. And like an ice-breaker in the arctic, that cleared the path.

Synopsis and scribbling

Until I got to Chapter 12, the bar scene where two of the Three Stooges (you remember them from the first novel) reappear to menace our heroine. Well, maybe I hadn’t paid attention to motive or maybe I hadn’t laid the groundwork for the scene, but it just didn’t work. And it went on forever. So, where is the ice-breaker when you need it?

When in doubt, think it through. Why is CW at the bar in the first place? What does she want to know? What would she logically do in the preceding scenes that would place her there?

I need a scene before this one. I actually have a scene I can use, one I’d placed further on in the book, one that addresses the logistical issues. What if I move that one? Chapter 12 becomes lucky Chapter 13, and now things makes sense.

Or will, whenever I get around to rewriting the new scene. Right now I need a break. My drink is warm.

I need some ice.