Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Here's What's Next

     I’m very excited to announce that I have written three novels.
     I have no idea how that happened.
     Okay, so in actuality I know what happened. I sat down and wrote three novels. But that fact somehow seems unbelievable. Did I really do that? And how did I do that? I always feared that my first novel was a fluke, that I would never have any other ideas. I guess I was wrong. I cannot express my relief.
     The bad news is that not one of my three novels is ready for publication, although all of them have a beginning, a middle, and an end. That’s what matters most. If your novel has those three things, then you have done something remarkable, and the rest will fall into place.
     Because it just will.
     First I have New Year’s Revolution, my vampire novel. I have lost count of the number of drafts this story has gone through. I have killed some beautiful darlings in the process. In a very early draft there was an awesome battle scene in the middle of the book where the humans drop PCP in an attempt to match the psycho-strength of vampires.  They also (in the old version) lived on an abandoned college campus and therefore had access to a boatload of fun chemicals which they used to create an array of rainbow colored Molotov cocktail. So they’re tossing these beauties at vampires while mad tripping and the MC pretty much goes on a mad crazy killing rampage. It was seriously fun to write, but unfortunately didn’t work in the story as a whole. I’m hoping I can find a way to work that scene into the final book in the series, but I won’t know until I get there.
     The reason New Year’s Revolution has had so many drafts is that it’s my first novel. I’m learning as I go. Looking at the most recent version, which I once thought was close to perfect, I now see what I’ve learned since writing it and hope I can improve it and finally one day say it’s finished. And publish it. That is the goal.  
     My second book is Caribou Canyon, a YA dark fantasy. I have a polished first draft that is 250k words long. I have quite the task ahead of me as far as trimming goes, but I’m hopeful that it’s possible.
     My third novel is Never Look Away (New working title. The old working title was Demons in the Daylight.) This is the one I wrote for NaNoWriMo, so it is a very sloppy rough draft. It’s my first mystery and I think it has really good potential. Something clicked as I was writing it. I don’t really know how to describe it, but the inner workings of my writerness came together or something. I grew. Not literally, but figuratively. The writer part of me grew. I did zero research before starting this novel, so I have tons of prep to do before draft two.
     So here’s the burning question: which novel do I work on next?
     At first I was dead set on completely finishing Never Look Away before going back to the others, but now the vampires are calling me again. They have a way of doing that. So as it stands now, I’m thinking: New Year’s Revolution, Never Look Away, Caribou Canyon. I’m sure I will change my mind several times about the order, but that’s what it is for now. All three of these stories are very close to me, so they will definitely get love.
     I admit that I’m a little nervous about the vampire novel. I’ve heard many people say that sometimes their first novel just isn’t workable, and I hate to think that that might be the case here. I don’t want to think that something is impossible, but I’m really not sure what to do with this story. I want it to be the best it can be, but I’ve already spent roughly 3-4 years working on it. How much time can I spend on it? I guess I don’t know the answer to that question. But I’m going to try to figure it out.
     Wish me luck.
     And vampires. Wish me plenty of vampires.