But I have finished the first 1,700-odd words and I can say the the excitement is starting to bubble up (finally). After some introspection, I think I know where this feeling comes from:
When I write, I am primarily motivated by curiosity.
What strange events will my characters experience? Will everyone live? Who will change? What wonderful things will they say? I need to know, and the only way to find out is to write. Write quickly, write slowly, write with a smile, write in tears - only write, and the great mystery will begin to reveal itself.
And so I keep writing.