Somehow, I seem to have found my groove. I'm back to writing and it's going the way it should have gone over these past three years of trying. And how have I accomplished this? Damned if I know. I do have a few clues, though.
First, I put a lot more economic angst onto one of my two protagonists (Maggie), the one who's a direct outgrowth of me. Let's just say that 2010 was hideous from an economic standpoint and, yeah, those words flowed!
Second, I finally pulled enough away from the original story line. That was just not working, despite the fact that I was really interested in the subject (violence against women). I've never been a victim - thank the holy heavens - and I couldn't for the life of me put myself into that frame of mind.
Third, and finally, I brought the story back to the original protagonist - Maggie. I tried to get into the other protagonist's head - Della - and it just wasn't working. These are first-person narratives. Words flowed like water as soon as I did that. Maggie has to figure out what's going on with Della. It doesn't work when Della tries to tell her own story. Maybe that requires something totally separate, and in the third person.