Then I discovered something so many quilters have already discovered. Graph paper. Wow. How did I not use graph paper when planning my quilts before now? Not only is it efficient, it's fun! I enjoyed sketching out all the possibilities. By the way, this site has great, free printable graph paper. (Now you can't use the excuse that you have to wait for your Amazon order to arrive before you start planning that quilt.)
I abandoned my diamond layout for a carpenter star arrangement instead. I envision a big, scrappy, swoon-like block. Yes, I think this may just work out fabulous afterall.