on the anvil

on the anvil

In a formative but immature or unready state; being prepared, discussed, planned, etc., but not yet ready. The details of the proposed merger are still on the anvil, but we should see something ready before the end of the summer. I've had a couple of projects on the anvil recently, but nothing has taken any definite shape yet.
See also: anvil, on
References in classic literature ?
As, then, with regular, gasping hems, he hammered on the anvil, Perth passing to him the glowing rods, one after the other, and the hard pressed forge shooting up its intense straight flame, the Parsee passed silently, and bowing over his head towards the fire, seemed invoking some curse or some blessing on the toil.
While I am hammering on the anvil, you sleep on the mat; and when I begin to eat after my toil, you wake up and wag your tail for food.
It becomes our disagreeable duty to record here, that the acts of Benjamin now became violent; for he darted his sledge-hammer violently on the anvil of Mr.