Sadly, this is not a post about how writing can change the world. I mean, we all know it can do that, but it's not something I've personally experienced. My stuff would have to be read by more people than I can count on two hands for it to even start changing anything.
Yes, I'm opening with self-deprecation. It's what I do. :P
One of my current plots-in-progress has always felt like it was missing something. As per usual, I was having trouble with the antagonists, and last week, I finally figured out what might work to solve the problem. Making this replacement led to me getting a new perspective on what the world's magic should be, and that led to some significant rearrangement of both the plot and the cast.
I'm still working on a lot of this, but it's going fairly well so far; I've mostly been figuring out how the difference in the world is going to affect everyone's backgrounds, particularly when it comes to manifestation of personal magic, which is kind of a taboo thing. Delving into the changes to the world that the new magic system makes necessary will be an entirely different thing, and it leads me to a troubling thought:
I'm not sure if this new world is the right one for this story.
Part of why I've been having so much trouble with this plot is that it's largely based around a single image that inspired both the main character and the third act. Most of my work on it has been about building toward that moment. And the changes in the world have me wondering if that moment would actually happen.
This is the part where I'm glad no one has ever asked me "Aren't you the writer? Can't you just make the story do whatever you want?", because I don't need that kind of frustration. >_<
I understand that the only way to figure this out is to keep working on the plot. I have a rough outline of the actual story, and I've made room for all kinds of trouble for the cast, which is something I still struggle with. But the problem is that I won't know if these changes work until I've put everything down. And the doubt that's already riding my back on this makes it very hard to sit down and get to work.
As I've talked about over and over this year, I've had so many things not work out. It is very, very hard not to think about that. I'm trying not to let that keep me from trying something new. But every time something falls apart, it gets harder to try to put anything together again.
I will keep trying, of course; I keep telling myself that this is what I do even when I have trouble believing myself. And maybe this one will finally work out. We shall see.
One thing I have been thinking about is taking the time to just create a world, and worry about the stories that happen there later. Maybe I wouldn't have so much trouble with things if I knew more about where they take place. And blogging about that process would be more interesting than another entry about my troubles.