One thing that's become quite clear is that ten years on the MUCKs have done a number on my writing style. I managed to beat the habit of writing everything in the present tense, but that's just the first problem. The next one is that everything is either dialog or more-or-less externally-visible action, and I'm having terrible trouble skipping over uninteresting bits. If a character goes to the other side of the clearing and comes back, I'm compelled to write that rather than saying, "He got the whatsit." Also, there's no internal dialog, the closest that I come are things like "he was concerned". In fact, I'm really not sure how to write inside a character unless the story is told in first person, which is weird because I read books which do that trick all the time. Maybe the thing that's throwing me is that the viewpoint character tends to drift inside of a scene, which probably needs to be fixed too.
Basically, I seem to have lost an awful lot of what I used to know about writing. I suppose it's good to figure that out so that I can start working on getting it back, but it still annoys me. I didn't expect to produce a produce a perfect novel on the first draft, but I didn't expect it to be this bad either. I think that the story is coming out adequately (although I feel like the characters aren't nearly angst-ridden enough under the circumstances) and probably some of the dialog can be saved, but in general it needs to be stripped down to the frame and redone completely. As I think about it, I'm kind of embarrassed to be letting people read it in its current condition, but since I started posting it, I guess I really should continue rather than leaving everybody hanging.