After a few false starts since arriving home (during which I stared at the computer screen and panicked), I've spent the past two days getting back into the novel.
Why the panic? Because I am so near the end I can taste it, but all I could see were all the loose ends that somehow need to be resolved. Worse, I wasn't even sure I could remember what they all were. This is one of the problems that arises from not writing consistently. I forget stuff: emotional levels, what has been foreshadowed and when, what the hell I was planning sometimes.
I need to write more consistently. I know this, and that's one of my focuses for this year. But I also need to remember that nothing is final. The words are put down. The words can be edited . . . or deleted if I choose. I can even add words (gasp). I have to tell myself these things, or I allow thoughts of imperfect previous chapters to clog my creative energy.
So, once I repeated this mantra a few times, and promised myself an editing pass before anyone gets to read it, I decided not to read back over the entire manuscript to gather all the threads, and instead head straight for the finish line.
I've been pleased with my focus, now that I'm "in". I'm not worrying too much about volume at this stage, so long as progress is being made and I'm maintaining "bum on seat". So far, so good.