I've decided to spend the last day (its October 31 here) teasing out some of the story ideas. More importantly, I think, I need to start thinking about the conflict. I've got the overarching theme covered, and the essential problem that drives the story, but what I learnt from my first novel attempt is that each scene needs to have the point-of-view character in conflict against something or someone. I need to start finding the answers to the questions:
What are they trying to get?
What is stopping them from getting it?
The answers to these questions propels the protagonist toward the climax.
My characters have to spend a lot of time in chose proximity to each other and rely on each other for companionship and getting through the day in camping situation over an extended period of time. This tends to magnify any problems in the relationship that can normally be swept away by getting busy somewhere else in their lives while at home.
Over the course of the trip, the main character implodes and all the frustrations and bitterness pushed down over the past 45 years propel her to the climax of the story. And it ain't pretty.
So, today I need to start thinking about what each of those events is and exactly what happens at the end of them that unfolds the conclusion.
Looks like a big day.