Have you ever done a ‘blank page’ rewrite? I used to find the idea too confronting… throw out what I’ve written? have nothing to show for all that time?
It took pure desperation for me to finally try it, and the lessons of that experience have held true many times since. So here are some points to consider if you just can’t come at the idea:
You aren’t starting from zero. The story, the characters and the setting have all been nutted out in that other version and so you don’t re-do that work. In many cases you’ll find you transpose bits of the original version into the new one, from fragments to whole slabs.
You aren’t wasting time. Because you generally only go to the blank page rewrite as a last resort, it must be to solve a serious problem. The rewrite will take a lot less time and be a lot less stressful than picking at a very difficult problem.
It’s not as depressing as you think. I know how deep the sigh of resignation can be when you decide you need it, but I’ve found time and time again that I am refreshed and re-energised by a blank page rewrite. Why? Because you can throw out the old form of a scene / chapter / short story and free yourself to tell the story another way.
I’m not saying it works every time, and I don’t think it’s ever an easy decision to make, but I recommend giving it a go!