There comes a point in every novel when you have to acknowledge that you're stuck and can't get unstuck. It's the point where you have to decide to either continue to struggle or put the work aside.
Regarding BEFORE THE DAWN, have I reached that point?
I've been sitting at the same place, in Chapter Twenty, for quite a while now. I know what comes next but I can't get it down on paper. I've gone back and rewritten the chapter multiple times trying to get through it. So far, it hasn't worked.
I could put it aside easily enough. God knows I've done that enough times. Sometimes, leaving a project to sit and simmer for a while has been beneficial. "A Voice in the Darkness", "The Fault Lies Not", "Rae" and A Bright Symmetry were all completed after sitting for variable amounts of time.
I just don't think I'm there yet.
I'm going to give it one last shot, go back to the beginning and pullout plot points that have been nagging at me and adding something that's been missing.
I'm also going to change the title. I was never happy with the novel sharing a title with an Evanescence song. So I've changed the title to BY THE DARK OF THE MOON, which I like better.
I made notes of every chapter and what has to be changed (if anything), removing a plot point I never was able to resolve. (Brynna was exposed to some mysterious compound that evoked a terribly bad reaction. I never figured out what that compound was. So I'm going to limit its appearance in the story, leave it as a bigger mystery for the characters.)
There's also going to be a new first chapter, showing a day in the life of Brynna and Georges. This was something else that nagged; I kept referring to Brynna as a published author...yet I never showed her writing. So the first chapter will show a bit of their domestic life, Brynna writing...before everything goes to hell.
While I'm doing that, I'm going to continue typing up what I've already written and continue plotting the last third of the novel. With luck, I'll be able to complete the work this time. Of course, I'm still working on "Raven", "Stranger" and "My Soul To Keep".
Just keep moving forward.