It has been quite a few months since I wrote a Writing Life blog post, so I thought I would update you on what I’m doing.
As you know, yesterday I released the sixth book in the DI Hannah Robbins series – A DEEPER SONG (Download HERE). Up to this point, I have been juggling three writing projects. Now A DEEPER SONG is off my desk as all edits are done and it’s out in the world, finding its own path.
Yes, three projects. I love my job. I can’t sit at home and not work on something. If one project goes off to my agent or the editor or somewhere, then I start on another. I can’t twiddle my thumbs. I want to create. I’m a full-time writer (even though on a practical level it’s part-time) and hate not being able to go to my desk to work. It brings meaning into my life. My life is quite restrictive with the disability, and creating new worlds brings me joy.
What else do I have on my desk?
There are eleven thousand new words of a rough first draft of Hannah Robbins 7. It’s very rough and when I go back to it I will reread it and maybe edit that beginning before I move on. Editing as I go is not something I usually do. I’m a get it down and keep going, type of writer, but as it’s the part where the story gets going, I might make an exception.
The other project on my desk and the one I am currently focusing on are structural edits for the first book in a new series for my agent. We’ve done one round of edits so far and these on my desk are the second round. I completely agree with the suggested work needed, but at the same time, it’s very taxing on the old grey matter. It’ll be interesting to see the work when it’s completed. To see if I manage to make the changes and keep the timeline intact.
Structural edits are when the agent or editor suggests changes to the story itself. These changes are requested to make the book better. The characters are still the same people, and the overall book is still the same, but for this change, there needs to be a whole new story strand added in order to provide a more satisfying ending.
I’m a little stressed I have to admit. Not because I have to make these changes, but because I worry about my ability to do them. With every single book I write, I think the last one was a fluke and I’ll never be able to write another one again. Now this one is written I am terrified I am going to destroy the book that is already there by messing about with it so much.
Reading a book on how to write (Save the cat! – Writes a novel) is my comfort blanket at the moment. I’m hoping it will help me with the timeline issue and help me plot out the new part of the book within the confines of what is already written.
I’ve given myself a deadline of three weeks from now to complete this. I don’t know if I’m being optimistic or if I can knuckle down and do this but I’ll feel a lot better when it’s done. I’m genuinely scared I’m going to fail. That is the life of a writer, a huge cloud of fear that hangs over you as you move from one project to the next. Afraid the last time you did some work was the last time you were able to string a cohesive sentence together. This time you’re going to be found out, that you’re not really a writer, you were just playing at it. Now the truth emerges.
I hope the next time I update you I will have positive news. That it’s progressing well or it’s done and my agent is happy with it. If you don’t hear from me then I might be hiding under a rock never to be seen again…
What are you afraid of failing at? Do share your fears with me, I’d love to have someone to wallow with!