Yes, I have been my reclusive self lately. That's because I have been deeply immersed in writing. Since I write best at night when I have no distractions, this also means I have taken to a night shift type of sleep schedule. So yeah, my days and nights are a bit mixed up at the moment.
My plan had been to focus on trying to knock out the first drafts of the works in progress I had started. And it had been working until I hit a point where I started second guessing myself while working on Fractured Palace. When that happened, my motivation dwindled. So I decided not to force it and took a break.
Anyway, here's an update on what I have accomplished in the past few month or so...
The first draft of the short story I wrote for Dead Bound Publishing's Hope In The Darkness anthology is finished. I have since sent it off to be read by a couple people to get their feedback. I have yet to name this short story. What keeps coming to mind is Axel Falls. But we shall see. It is the story of Isaac, who sinks into a deep depression after the loss of a loved one shortly after graduation from high school and how another guides him out of the darkness. I know I've mentioned this before but I'll say it again. I am not a crier. But just writing up an outline for this story (which I never do), I teared up multiple times. It's a bittersweet story about love, loss and finding a way to move on.
While I was writing The Ilia Stone, I started writing a New Adult Romance, (Fractured Palace). At first it started as something I could do to take a break from all the historical, paranormal and twisted aspects of The Ilia Stone. I assumed if I wrote something without all that, surely it would go more smoothly or would be less of a brain drain to try to write.
Well, we all know what they say about assumptions. I somehow managed to make this one a complicated one to write as well.
After The Ilia Stone was published I decided I would jump right in and try to write The Ilia Redemption and Fractured Palace at the same time. So that is what I started doing. Since I already had a pretty decent jump start in writing The Ilia Redemption and since I believed Fractured Palace would in some ways be easier to write, I thought I could get both first drafts finished within a couple months. Great plan, right?
I reached a point with The Ilia Redemption like the one I reached last week with Fractured Palace. Yes, in a sense it was my self doubt about the direction I was going in rearing it's ugly head. The reviews on The Ilia Stone have been great. Amazing actually. Which creates a bit of pressure to make sure the next book is as good or better than the last. That pressure and self doubt then clouded the story as a whole which I envisioned over two years ago. So yes, even though I don't outline, I have known since I first started writing this story where it was going. In fact the end of the third book has been written since before I had half of the first draft of The Ilia Stone written. But when that story started to get muddied, I decided I needed to take a break.
When I hit pause on The Ilia Redemption, I shifted focus and decided get Fractured Palace down. Get the first draft done and let The Ilia Redemption come back to me when it was ready. Which it did...finally. Unfortunately or fortunately -- however you want to look at it -- Nia and Gabriel began trading barbs which were impossible to ignore and fueled my already sleepless nights. But the timing was bad. I was so, so close to finishing the first draft of Fractured Palace that I wanted to ignore Gabriel and Nia so I could at least finish the first draft of something. However, I have learned that when parts of a story come to me while driving or as I'm going about to go to sleep, I have to write them down as soon as possible or I risk losing them forever. When my mind began to tune back into The Ilia Redemption I started to do just that. While I haven't written much on either story this past week I have jotted down several pages of notes on The Ilia Redemption.
So where does that leave me right now?
As much as the past has shown me that making plans rarely pans out with my writing, I am going to continue to make goals to keep me pushing forward. I could finish the first draft of Fractured Palace this week. Yes, I am that close. I also could then push to try to finish the first draft of The Ilia Redemption by mid-March. I do believe it's possible. However, at the end of the day, I will not publish these stories until they are as close as possible to how I envisioned them to be. So while this may create for a lot of waiting right now, I'm very hopeful there won't be as large of a gap between the release of these two books.
Tonight, I plan on working on The Ilia Redemption so I can get at least some of what has been weighing on my brain out. Then hopefully that will free up my focus so I can finish the first draft of Fractured Palace. This is my goal for the week. Whether it happens or not, we'll see.
In other news...
If you missed the announcement, I will be attending the Naughty In The South Author Event, June 6, 2015! This event will be held in Birmingham, Alabama. I will be updating my blog soon with an "Events" page which will be found along the top of my blog next to "Books". All information regarding events and signings (location, ticket information etc.) will be found there.
I may be forgetting something but for now, I think that covers most of what I've been busy with. Thanks for being patient with me. If there is anything you would like me to post to tide you over until these books release (word counts to show my progress, quotes etc.) just let me know!