How do I stop the compulsion to start a new story before finishing the last?
I know this well.
The number of stories I’ve started then placed to one side to do another idea… well countless. Once I stop, finding the protagonist’s voice again is the largest stumbling block and then there is always the temptation of the next idea. This has resulted in my own writing graveyard tucked away on my computer.
I still have these compulsions and still, on occasion, succumb.
To combat the compulsion I keep a pad beside me while I write (pen and paper doesn’t interrupt my typing flow) and I’ll note down everything any new idea prompts – character traits, locations and the general feel. Once this is done I go straight back to the story I’m working on.
Once I’ve completed the current story I have all the ideas I’ve noted down to start the next.