Last night, I started writing and it was tough going, at first. I played solitaire, listened to music, and browsed through blogs about 18th century fashion. Then a line of dialogue occurred, taking me in a direction I hadn't anticipated. The next thing I knew, I had a good couple of paragraphs of dialogue that showed Julian's confusion and difficulty accepting the unreal new reality that's in his face. "What does she want?" he asked Anika about Malinde. "Blood," Anika said. "Is that all?" he demanded. "What is there to gain by killing me?" He can't fathom violence for any other goal but power. His question foreshadows the end of the third novel. So -- yay, brain! Thanks for throwing me a curve ball from out of the dark reaches. Also, last night I started this scene from Julian's bedroom, rewriting it from its earlier setting of the drawing room. Now, Julian is in bed, in total disarray, when Anika comes in. As the scene unfolds, Julian is being groomed and dressed. Gilbert comes in half way through this and has a wild, scared conversation with Julian, which Julian handles with aplomb, having been revived by medical attention and grooming. By the time the mayor arrives, Julian is completely dressed and sitting in the drawing room, impeccable and perfectly in control. Remember, yesterday I didn't know how I would pull Julian out of his vulnerability. I'm going to do it by dressing him. It'll happen physically as it's happening mentally. Cool, huh? Also, I can bring in the food shortages brought on by the apparently dead epidemic. Anika will have very little garlic for Julian and when he asks why she'll tell him there's very little of anything to buy in town because healthy farmers aren't coming to Charleston and Charleston has quarantined the low country plantations, which means food isn't coming in. She can't hang garlic around the windows and doors. They have to eat it.
So, I wouldn't say I'm over the hump, but I have one foot up.