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Website: The Cave of Dragonflies
Posted August 25 2015
Incidentally, if you're interested in a conflicting data point, I never started any of my rewrites when I was having trouble continuing the story, as far as I can remember. The most dramatic one, when I hard-rebooted TQftL after chapter 36 of the UMR, happened right before a chapter I'd been planning and looking forward to for aaaaages by that point (the introduction of Spirit and the whole Chosen thing). I've definitely seen a lot of people do what you're describing, where they start a rewrite after having been stuck for a while, but for me it really was a snap decision that oh I really want to write the next chapter but let me just rewrite the whole thing real quick first because I just got a review reminding me how awful the early chapters are. (And to be fair, the previous time I rewrote I'd managed to rewrite all 32 chapters of the fic up to that point in the space of less than three months, so I really didn't expect it to take me that long to catch up again - of course, I gravely underestimated how much longer the way more extensive revisions I was making would take.)
In retrospect I'm very glad I rewrote up to the ILCOE, but also that I then pressed on from there rather than putting it on hold for the IALCOTN. Which, okay, probably involves some bias from the fact that I happen to know how things turned out in this particular possible world and can only imagine the others. But all in all I feel that without starting over for the ILCOE, I would probably have completed the story at a stage where there was nothing really worthwhile about it (this being long before I figured out the plot, of course), where it would just have ended up as a silly old shame good for nostalgic laughs but not much else. The ILCOE was that magical point where it managed to be, on some basic level, "good enough": still pretty childish and ridiculous, but something I wrote with enough care to be able to grow with it and build something I actually like out of it, that all in all doesn't feel like it was a waste of time, and that lots of other people manage to genuinely enjoy despite all the massive problems with it.
Meanwhile, I'm definitely glad I didn't throw it out for the IALCOTN, because yeah, then I probably would have just been stuck rewriting the same bits over and over forever and never actually completing the thing. You need to get to that good-enough zone, assuming you didn't start in it, and then stop. And that's the hard part: the good-enough zone doesn't feel good enough, it's just a tipping point where the diminishing returns of starting over stop being worth it.
(By the way, you should totally make it so that you can comment on individual pages, not just updates. That's probably actually possible on this presumably sensibly set up site, unlike mine.)