A story that had died in the writing is making noises like a story that wants me to start writing it again. It's even given me a clear notion what went wrong.
Because the notion is that I've got to put some more stuff earlier, and lengthen the story sufficient for it. Give the two main characters time to get to know each other, and time to foreshadow their later magic use sufficiently -- chiefly by researching it -- and give the situation about them time to show off its pure nastiness, and to introduce all the characters significant in the climax and characterize them more.
You notice how nice and vague that is. What will they research, how will they get to know each other, etc.
I get that sometimes in outlining, too. If I am stymied about what happens next, I sometimes look at my notes for possible things to happen, ponder whether this event or that could not happen immediately, and grab it by the ears to plop in the outline if it can. But sometimes it can't. Sometimes, the characters have just met and are wary, and what I need is some events where they learn to trust each other.