I'm a little unsettled this morning.  I woke up in the middle of the night from a dream in which one of my best friends and I had had an argument.  It was a combo "Actor's Nightmare" and "fight with your friend so I am irrationally angry at them when I wake up" dream.  I know dreams are dreams, but I also wonder if there's a legitimate issue buried under there somewhere.  At some point I'll have to wade into it all and try to come up with something.

That and a strange sense of "the walls closing in" coupled with some issues in a project I'm writing are coming together to make it a disquieting morning.

I'm currently at my coffee shop, and it's been making some changes.  This bitch don't like changes in things that I think are already working.  Gossip Coffee shop had a great brand, modern and cozy decor, delicious donuts with off-beat flavors like Prosciutto Guinness and these amazing rice puddings.  They offered something that most places do not, and were a really unique and friendly spot.  But things don't feel the same lately.  It feels like they are futzing around with success trying to make more success and in the process they may damage the brand they've created.

The rice puddings and sandwiches?  Gone.  In their place as of yesterday?  Gelato.  Gross.  Now don't get me wrong.  I like gelato.  I'm sure they'll get a lot of people who want to sample the flavors, but I don't go to a coffee shop for gelato, ad it feels like a sell-out.  Plus, I'd developed a fun rapport with one of the servers, and I haven't seen her in a while now.  I fear she's gone off to greener pastures.

As for the writing issues?  I've been working on a project for about eight months now, am about 40,000 words in, and realize I've strayed a bit from some of the elements that drew me into the story in the first place.  It's an idea I've had for years, and then it got influenced and altered a bit by fresher experiences.  These experiences feel more authentic, and are easier to pull from and play with, but that lack the sense of 'fun' that the world had before that I wanted to luxuriate in.    I've already stopped my progress once to go back and revise the first draft, and it felt like a mistake.  I promised I wouldn't do it again.  And yet, major setting changes and character character changes are necessary to go back to the original feeling.  Should I continue down this rabbit hole that I've decided may not work, and then change it later once I've finished the rough draft?  Or should I go back and make those alterations?  The risk in doing that is that I may forever be making changes and never get the end of the story.  A feeling of a Sissyphean struggle could be daunting and cause me to scrap the whole thing.

I think the answer for now is to make notes on the struggles, the issues, possible resolutions, and how they may be resolved, ways to inject more of the original essence in what I have, and then continue on wth the draft.  These elements aren't integral to the plot, and may not be the most difficult to change.  And who knows what I will discover if I continue the way I've been going?
Joe Hartman