This week I brought in the very last chapter of Essence of Female, titled "Eye of the Storm." We didn't have time to go over it, but we read it aloud and everyone took home a copy, so we'll get to it next week. The reason I brought in my last chapter, instead of chapter two, is that I happen to be super lame: I have a promising beginning and a resolved ending, but I'm completely lacking a middle. Oh, sure, I have 32,000 words of middleness - but they're mostly just little glorified diary entries... Katelyn Rose and her little adventures; tiny battles, but no war. After the meeting, Tabbitha helped me see the big picture. We decided that I really do need to interrogate Katelyn Rose, discover her, and also take a backpacking trip through Thoughtland for a time. I need to figure out the ins and outs of the place, the nooks and crannies that only the locals know about. I need to decide what laws rule that land (e.g. natural, political, societal) and meet both the people in power, and the struggling lower class. I need to wear a virtue-gown for awhile, see how it behaves, try it out for size. Only once I've done all these things will I truly be able to craft a rich middle for my story. It is severely lacking in quirky, multi-dimensional characters, and a timeframe and setting; most of all, though, it's lacking a plot. I want Katelyn Rose to struggle just as much as I have. I want her to reach out through the pages that bind her, so that she can carry her readers with her for company on the treacherous path I have carved for her. And in the end, when she brings herself and the world (because the world WILL read her story) to the final resting place, the safe place, I want readers to sleep soundly, knowing everything will be truly be okay.
but... I don't want the ending to be completely happy. I like strange, tragic, piquant endings. I don't like endings that fade into nothing but a mere happy memory. I want Katelyn Rose to lose everything, and suffer, and still stand up again, but not as straight as before. Even if her crippled body takes flight in the end, and soars higher than ever before, she must still be crippled. I want her ending to leave something to be desired, so that her readers pity her and take her out of those prison-bar pages. I want them to take their turn carrying her on their paths, instead of the other way around. More than anything, I don't want her story to be forgotten. She deserves better than that. My sweet Katelyn Rose.