Well, it's happened again. I finished chapter 25 on Tuesday, but on Wednesday I discovered that the moths had gotten to it, and contrary to Neil Gaiman's experience (see previous post On Writing Badly)... it was not better than I thought, but worse. I spent five hours of near constant focus doing a paragraph by paragraph outline, analyzing it, coming up with what needed to be done and then pressing through a rewrite of about seven pages before I knocked off for my regular Wednesday lunch with my Royal Family friends.
Yesterday (Thursday) I continued to plug away on it, working all day under a most annoying state of distractibility. But that's not what "happened again." What happened again was that I had a character who wasn't even supposed to be there barge into the middle of things. He just showed up sitting on a wall. And then he started talking. What is this? I thought. You shouldn't be here, you have nothing to do with anything. I want to focus on the events at the end of this chapter. I can't have you here nattering away wasting words and time at the beginning... begone. But he refused to go. At last, I let him have his way, and just wrote the lengthy conversations he insisted upon having with my pov, figuring I would shorten them all to a narrative summary when it was over. Which is exactly what I did. And then he began NEW conversations... Ack! After that happened enough times, I got the notion that maybe he really did need to be there. And so I've left him. For now... I'm not convinced, yet.
Anyway, I finished the chapter at 21 pages and I'm calling the first draft done.