It’s a new year. It’s a new run at my novel. It’s a new habit I’m trying to stick. Ten minutes where my fingers don’t stop moving. Instead of a word count, instead of a prompt, it’s just ten minutes of writing about whatever the hell comes out. Usually when I do this, what comes out is writing about writing. It’s my fallback. When I have nothing else to say, I always have something to say about how much writing sucks.

It’s been too long since I worked on my novel. Since before Christmas. That was the excuse: Christmas, and being home, and being off any kind of schedule. Like I had a writing schedule before. I still tried to write a few hundred words a day. During the holidays, I let it go completely. I feel a little guilty about that, which I suppose is a good thing. It proves how much of a writer I am.

I’m a little stuck. At that point in the story where I’ve set up the setting and the characters and the conflict, and now something real has to happen. Enough surface, it’s time to dig deeper. It’s time to cut open the vein and bleed all over the page. I’m more than halfway there, which feels good. I know I have something. I know I can turn it into something. Word count doesn’t scare me like it used to. I can write long. But I don’t yet know if I can write plot.

I have a lot of ephemeral bits right now, floating together, but not quite gelled. You can’t call it a book. You can’t call it a novel. Maybe it’s a long poem. Maybe it’s just words. But there’s a boy and a girl, and they think they might like to have a go at it, but work gets in the way. Then you set that against the backdrop of America, and it becomes myth. This is my idea of fantasy. I’m not a fan of dragons and aliens and magic, but I do love the myth of Americana. To those of us on the outside, that’s what America looks like. To me, that’s what love feels like.