I wrote the first chapter and now I am obediently following the Internet instructions on How To Write a Novel, and they tell me that I am to write the resolution early on. You need to know how your character ends up, and that way you know to start at the opposite end of the spectrum in the beginning, and then you have a spot to aim for and you can pace things correctly.
And damn, it got hard. The resolution has her making a hard and selfish choice, and I don’t like it. First of all, there’s a lot of emotion, and it sounds like a telenovela. Ugh. And I don’t love that she gets to this point, and that’s sad. I know Jane Eyre got there, too, deciding for self-interest against convention. (It’s not “Jane, guess what, Bertha’s dead,” three times on the wind.)
Worse, it’s transparently the same choice I would make if I were given the chance to be a fictional person. All the things she says and reasons she gives have been hidden in my mind at some time. Then again, if anyone asks, I can say it was the same decision my mother had to make. That’ll work. Throw my dead mother under the bus.
Well, it’s a first draft, and because she makes a hard decision I can always change it. But it’s not fun. Up until now it’s been a fun challenge, fitting the exposition together with minimal words like a cunning Haiku. Now I have to drag my Mom character through hell.
This is therapeutic , I remind myself.