I just figured out another thing that's wrong with the first third (quarter?) of my YA book. I take an intelligent, quirky, interesting protagonist -- and then I put her in a situation where she's forced to be really passive. And we get to watch her being passive for a long while, before she gets to do anything interesting again. No wonder the book got bogged down -- it's tedious, is what it is. But I don't know what to do about it either -- it's essential to the plot. She really has to be passive for a while. And while I can cut away more to her friend, who's being far more active, I'm not sure that really solves the problem -- just distracts the reader from it a bit. I don't want them to be irritated and resentful every time we come back to Swati; I want them to be engaged. But I don't know how to keep them engaged with her when she's in this situation, since she's demonstrating none of the traits that make her engaging. Argh!!!
In other bad news, I essentially haven't lost any weight in three weeks. Haven't gained any either. But since this lack of weight loss correlates exactly to the the amount of time I've spent not calorie-counting, it's pretty clear what I need to start doing again. So as of today, I'm counting calories again -- and I'm already up to 960 for the day, which is not good, given that I'm only allowed to go up to 1300 total and it's 4 o'clock and I'm *hungry*!