My current work in progress is ready to venture out into the world. To walk out on its fledgling legs to see who will help it to the next stage – publication. But sending it out to every publisher out there would be a waste of time, for me and the publishers.
So, research is the next step. But not just research on similar titles and an interest in my genre. No. My search now has many more items.
My writing time is limited at the best of times. Lately, that time has been shattered into little bits as the small people who depend on me are not sleeping well. I’m still sticking to my schedule as much as I can, still trying to keep my muse happy while taking care of those around me. But chopping up my writing time has created two interesting byproducts.
The transition into the new year has left me strangely bereft of energy. My usual drive to get my massive To-Do List accomplished has vanished with the striking of the clock on New Year’s Day. I’ve never been one for making resolutions, but usually the start of the new year reinvigorates my drive to get things done. Not this year.
Cue writing schedule.
2019 witnessed one of the most incredible moments of my life as a writer to date, and one of the worst. At the start of the year I signed my first book contract. In the fall, a few weeks before my debut novel was set to be released, the publisher announced they were closing - effective immediately.
For me, the start of a story is a fickle, elusive element difficult to capture. Of all the parts of a story, it is where I spend the most time. The middle and end often write themselves, pouring out onto the page in a rush. But the beginning, the entry into the story, takes time and work to make it right. Over the years I have developed tactics to make the process easier.
I like puzzles. I always have. I have fond memories of sitting for hours with my grandma building huge, complicated jigsaws. Back then she had all the puzzles. I now own a small selection and my kids have a larger selection we build together (they aren’t quite ready for my thousand-plus piece puzzles).
I’m arguing with myself over food. Not my own food (though I do do that) but the food my characters are eating. One of the many, many items that go into world development is agriculture, and right now my character needs a different kind of food to eat.
It seems unreal the year is almost at an end. I completed #NaNoWriMo and actually made it to 50K words - much to my surprise. My final count was 51,275 so with ignoring my editor and everything else, I now have a very rough draft of the first three-quarters of a new novel. I’m very excited about that.
I love weather. Both in real life and literature. It is amazing, delightful, annoying, destructive, healing, and sometimes downright terrifying. But in literature it can be even more.
Cutting stone tile is not as hard as I thought it would be. Removing stone tile that’s been on the wall for years, however, is beyond challenging. I’ve also learned that some characters, like some people, are shockingly difficult to deal with.