About a month ago, I was inspired to write a new trilogy after a fabulous day spent in a quaint town right out of a cozy mystery novel on an exhausting pilgrimage to attend a favorite author’s Q&A and book signing with some amazing friends.
I’ve been slowly scribbling notes (I use color coded note cards, longhand btw – it’s great for outlining and capturing scenes or characters or important plot points) ever since then, but I’ve been trying to keep it on the back burner because hours in the day, yadda yadda yadda.
Yesterday, I had a huge breakthrough. I now know the name of my adorable fictional town, and the name of the series – which of course ended up adding colorful piles of new note cards to the stack.
I *cannot* afford to start a new project right now – but when I dreamed about the town last night I realized I’m just going to have to make time.
Sleep is for the faint of heart!
I’ve not been blogging, but I’ve been writing. And writing. And writing.
Since my last post, I’ve written four full length novels in the Hurricane Arly series, and started a new series with Maddie the Finder, currently at two books with the next one knocking at the door. To make matters worse? better? I’ve got a great idea for a three-parter, the first of which is mostly outlined already.
Updated my website today to include Maddie and lo and behold, poor Elle starts screaming at me that she wants attention too! First child syndrome, I guess.
Need more hours in the day. Want to write more.
Need to start to think about putting these books out in the world beyond my trusty critique group. Should I look for an agent or go the self-pub route? At the rate I write (and then agonize over edits forever!), I tend to finish a book and jump into the next project immediately – I need someone pinging me to let my books out into the wild and let others enjoy them too!
I love writing supernatural thrillers and urban fantasy. It’s fun. It’s scary. It’s dark. There’s something exciting about writing and reading about things that scare me, and creating characters that are out there in the dark fighting the good fight. Elle York is more than my favorite character to write, she’s my imaginary friend.
But she’s not the only voice that’s trapped in my head, begging to come out and play in the real world. That’s why I decided to let Arly Briggs out. Unlike Elle, she doesn’t fight monsters. She doesn’t exist in the secretive shadowy corners of the world. She lives in the spotlight in her very own series of cozy mysteries.
I know what you’re thinking – Urban Fantasy and Cozy Mysteries are about as far apart in genre as you can be without writing smut by night and children’s illustrated books by day. And it is different. Challenging. New rules to learn (and break).
The Hurricane Arly books are light and fun, and written in first person. But they aren’t all doilies and lace. Each book, like me, has a dark side. Drugs. Cheating partners. Identity Theft. Jealousy.
And of course, murder.
Lots, and lots of murder.
So hang on to something, Hurricane Arly is headed your way!
What started out as an edit turned into a complete re-write, as in delete and start all over again. Total re-write of Book #1, which is easier than it sounds because I know the characters and the plot already, I’m just spinning them in a new direction and so far, I love the results! Then again, maybe I still have writer’s high.
When we are kids, we sould see something and think “I can do that!” It didn’t matter if it was cartwheels or going to the moon or even flying. Nothing was out of our reach. Nothing was impossible.
Once we grow up, it’s like a switch gets thrown. It’s easier to come up with excuses to not try things rather than try and fail. It’s easier to take the safe road than to make a fool of yourself or do something that might hurt later. It’s easier to dream small than admit we’re scared, or to take a chance and realize we can’t do a cartwheel, we might never go to the moon, and if we tried to fly, we just might look like an idiot.
That’s no way to live. It’s ok to be scared, but it’s not ok to let the fear of failure stop us from trying something that just might be spectacular.
I’ve been so obsessed with the same idea for so long that I’ve had a hard time understanding why no one believes in it as much as I do. Maybe it’s just not good enough or fresh enough or maybe I’m not trying hard enough.
Or maybe…. just maybe…. I’ve been on the wrong track for the past few years.
I’m stubborn to a fault. Set in my ways. But even I can learn, and grown, and change – so why can’t my characters? I’ve been looking for a fresh spin, and tonight, I think I’ve found it. It will take a whole lot of hard work and more than just a major edit or even a re-write. We’re talking a full on overhaul. These are characters and plot lines that I love and believe in, and while I could just rip them up and start all over, I think that I can breathe new life into them and maybe, if I’m very lucky, the whole world will someday love them as much as I do.
Why do I write? Because in real life, actions have consequences. In fiction, actions still have consequences, but someone else gets to pay them.
In a lot of ways, writing is like identity theft. You get to pretend to be someone else for a while, and they end up picking up the tab.