After hitting a bit of a brick wall, writing-wise, I decided to sit my main character down and ask her some questions. Like a therapist, or an interviewer from The Times, or The Independent. Not one from Heat magazine. They'd probably ask her who she'd grope if she was invisible for a day, or whether she'd ever had a threesome - although I suppose the answers could have been equally revealing!
No, I wanted a proper, in-depth Q&A session, along the lines of:
"So, Harriet. How did it all start?
"What did you do?"
"How did you feel, when you found out?"
"Why did you react that way, instead of simply confronting them?"
"Then what happened?"
And you know what. It actually worked, really well. I typed about 20 sheets altogether - there's literally no end to my procrastination tactics - and as Harriet's answers unfurled I began to see meaning where I hadn't before, and also to understand properly what everybody else's motives were, which has, in turn, created more depth. Depth which had been sadly lacking - hence the Q&A session in the first place. It was as if I'd worked out the plot and stuck to it as closely as possible, but had started to lose the bit of thread that made sense of, or clarified, everything. I'd gone off at a tangent here and there, which is fine - in fact, by the end of the exercise, I'd realised my story is as much about friendship as anything else, which I hadn't picked up at all before (!) - but certain things had ceased to make sense. (I know. What am I like? Call myself a writer?) It's like when you know you've got to confront someone about something, and you work out in your head all the clever, insightful, completely brilliant things you're going to say, but you haven't factored in their responses and feelings properly, so when you finally come face to face, they say something unexpected and you burst into tears. No? Just me?
Like posting my chapters as a blog, it's helped me to move things along nicely (a sort of mental laxative, as it were.) It's made me see what I've written so far with a fresh eye - I keep a supply of them under my desk for such occasions - and I thought it might be worth a mention, just in case anyone else out there is having a similar wobble and might find it useful.
Which I'm sure you won't as most of you lovely writers seem to be a lot cleverer than me, and possibly on the verge of being published any minute as it is (not that I'm bitter or anything...)