On making traction with book 2

Feb 27

So.

Book two.

The sequel.

Underground.

Well, the good news is that I’ve been writing. Or, at the very least, I’ve been trying to write, very hard. And I’ve got some good stuff going. It’s just that it isn’t all coming as easily or as quickly as I kind of thought it might. In the first few weeks post-release of Terra, I was SO PSYCHED about getting started on Underground. I flushed out my main plot points and character additions right away, and was all set to get down to business and crank the story out. See, I was just so eager to get the next part of the story out to you all! So eager, in fact, that it didn’t hit me until I actually sat down with a blank Scrivener window open in front of me that I have no idea how to start a sequel.

I know that I’ve probably got rose-colored glasses on when I think about how it was to write Terra, but it just seemed so EASY to do in comparison with this one. I feel like there’s so much more to consider, more to worry about, more to really THINK THROUGH with book 2. Because not only do I have to continue on with the loose threads left hanging from book 1, but I have to think them ALL the way through with how I want them to tie up in book 3. It’s just kind of a different beast than creating a world and story and characters all from scratch.

I kind of equate to how it feels when my house gets really, really messy. Sometimes, it gets so messy that I think, “It would be so much easier if I could just move all my crap into a brand new house, and set up shop all over again.” As if it would somehow be less work to start over from the very beginning, instead of cleaning up the messes that I’ve already made. When, in reality, it’s the same amount of work–or, actually, probably more–but it’s just different. And because it’s a completely different task than the one I have in front of me, somehow my brain translates that into being easier.

Okay, so it’s not a perfect metaphor. But basically what I’m trying to say is that I’m still learning a lot about how this book-writing thing goes. And I understand why some authors choose to only write stand-alone books. Because thinking things in a serial way can be really challenging. It’s super rewarding, because it means the story gets to continue and I get to keep living with these heroic, passionate, fiery, snarky, getting-more-and-more-kickass-by-the-day characters. But challenging.

I was in a bit of a writing funk for the past couple of weeks that I’ve only just started to crawl back out of. My mind being split between continue to market and promote Terra, while simultaneously wanting to have the words for Underground magically fly out of my fingertips at the drop of the hat, not to mention that little ol’ dayjob I’m still plugging away at… it’s a lot of mental juggling. But I’m VERY happy to say that I’m finally back in a good place with my writing, with scenes starting to pop into my mind and characters developing in a not-annoying way (for a little while there, Terra was getting so angsty she was starting to border on Order of the Phoenix-Harry Potter and that was NOT a good thing).

Despite the fact that things are progressing more slowly than I originally would have liked, I think I’m still well on track for getting Underground out sometime this summer! Another plus for self-publishing, right? Slightly less torturous wait times between books (I’m looking at you, Divergent #3!). So here’s to many more inspired nights of writing (my brain is still a dbag who only seems to let me write between the hours of 10 PM and 3 AM), more intrigue, more world-building, more revelations, and more Terra!

4 comments

  1. Officially your biggest fan! I can’t wait to read #2!

  2. Glad to hear you’ve found your way out of your writing funk. The second book of a trilogy is the hardest, because your audience is expecting what you delivered in book one, but with more – and I mean more of EVERYTHING!

    Good luck! I can’t wait to read what happens next. (No pressure)

  3. Good luck with the writing. My girls are anxiously awaiting Terrestrials #2. And you are right, Divergent #3 is way too far removed from #2.

  4. I love your metaphor! I feel the same way when I have to clean up my room. I just need to throw a LOT of stuff away. seriously, I have papers from middle school in my closet. I’m in college now and when I look at them, I go “Wow, I was really bad at writing back then,” but then I can’t put it into the trash can.

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