I think I think too much. Comes with the territory, I guess – college professors are like that. I keep looking for the “right” way to do things, and then tweaking things a little, and a little more, and still more, to try to get everything to fit.
Case in point – I read a post by K. M. Weiland recently on one of my favorite blogs about the importance of a character’s breaking point. It is when the character, who has been struggling throughout Act II, finally makes the irrevocable commitment to the new view of the world, and in the process must sacrifice something he/she thought, at the beginning, of the story, was of ultimate importance. It will allow him/her to face the crucial trials of Act III and be successful. It proves that the character has really made the change that the book is all about, and pivots the story from Act II to Act III, which means it should come about 75% of the way through the book.
Problem: in my Work in Progress, I don’t know that I can pinpoint such a moment. There’s one that I think will qualify – Kay, my protagonist, starts out all about running from her problems, but at a crucial point decides to stay and fight, and this is what saves the day in the end. Well and good. But (a) I’m not sure what she sacrifices to do this, and (b) it’s closer to 90% into the book than it is to 75%.
So is this something I need to fix? Will it push my story out of shape? These are the kinds of things I struggle with. My solution for now: keep thinking about it. I have a (distressingly) long way to go before I get to that point in the story (I’m maybe 10-15% through my first draft). Maybe a solution will bubble up. If not – I’ll write it the way I’m seeing it now, and fix it (if it needs fixing) in the revision.
Put things off to the revision – a good plan. JUST KEEP WRITING!