Now that my debut novel is out in the world, I am fielding lots of questions about what’s next, so I thought I’d blog about it and let you know!
Aside: I have been overwhelmed by the support from the writing community since my debut was published, especially romancelandia, and by the responses to One Summer in Santorini from readers. I’ve had messages, Tweets, Facebook comments and so many wonderful reviews and ratings. Around 95% of readers love my book and it is still sitting well in the charts. I am humbled, grateful and excited by this. Thank you!
But what now?
As you may know, I work fulltime for an educational company as a professional development specialist. My work is 90% reading, writing, and editing educational materials, so sometimes finding the impetus to write and edit fiction is tricky.
But, I have found a solution!
On weekdays, I get up 2-3 hours before I go to work, and I do author biz (respond to emails and messages, post to social media, and so forth), then I write or edit. The early starts have worked well for me.
In July, I participated in Camp NaNoWriMo and wrote 35000 words of a Christmas novela – all in the wee hours. I’ve set that story aside for now, as I am currently (re)editing book #2.
Book #2 is actually the third book I wrote – after the sequel to One Summer in Santorini – and because it is in the same world (it’s about Sarah’s sister, Cat), I am editing to ‘fix’ the chronology. It now takes place right after One Summer in Santorini, and I’ve edited out all the spoilers for the sequel to Sarah’s story.
I had edited this book – I call it Cat’s book at the moment – last year, after I finished writing it, but I am a better writer now, so I have also tightened it up in this editorial pass. I will soon hand this over to my editor for their edit. When it comes back to me in a month or so, I will incorporate their edits and it goes back across to them. In the interim, it will get a name and a cover(!)
When I hand over Book #2 (sometime in the next 2 weeks), I have a few options. I can work on the Christmas story, which will now be a full-length novel, go back to Book #4, which is based on a character Cat meets in Book #2 (I’m about 50000 words in), or begin a structural edit of the sequel to Sarah’s book.
So many choices!!! However, the two unfinished stories do call me.
Essentially, what I have learned about being an author, is that there is always something to do. I move between writing and editing, and while I work on these 4 books – each in its own stage of development – there are other book ideas busting to get out. I temper those ideas by making notes, but not letting them take up any real estate in my mind – it’s already crowded in there.
Book #2, That Night in Paris, is about these two, Cat and Jean-Luc… Oolala!