I'm pleased to report that I've finally caught a glimpse of a possible new opening. It definitely means the pages I wrote early on will go the way of fodder, but they've served a purpose if only in that they've gotten me to this point.
I've had to revisit the story and take a good look at how it's changed and redefined its core. It's the same story but it's not. So now I need open the action earlier and allow the reader a chance to get to know the characters more. That sympathetic link needs to be forged between the reader and the protagonist.
This feels good. I'm back on track now.
Although I doubt I'll finish the required wordcount for the NaNoWriMo, I've definitely done the right thing in rethinking the process and going the way of writing out-of-sequence scenes and details for they've helped sharpen my image of the story. I'll press on.
Drop by my blog on writing and publishing at Down the Writer's Path.