I have an interesting conundrum.
For the next two or three years, I’ve got a plan to release the rest of the Razia series, and a couple other books and series. My goal is 3-4 a year until I’m living comfortably on my royalties. As with Razia, most of these books have been stewing for many years now, so I’m really excited to get to work on them.
Next June, I plan on releasing the first non-Razia book, called Empath. It’s at 40k right now, pretty much outlined, just filling in the blanks. All I need to do is sit down and fill in the chapters and get to the right word count. Chapter One, down. Chapter Two, down. Chapter Three, down.
I love it, don’t get me wrong, but there’s just this tiny little puffy white cloud in the otherwise cloudless day that says, “You’ve got to get this done by X date.” Basically, I am forced to write, the one thing that gives me joy in the world, and I would be doing anyway, because it gives me joy.
It’s kind of like being paid to eat cupcakes for a living.
I know, right? Problems.
Usually when I’m working on one “main” story, I’m also working on 2 or 3 others. Call it a side story, or a palate cleanser, or whathaveyou. And as an I-write-what-I-want-person, I usually end up just jotting down a couple scenes before diving into “work” writing.
The conundrum happens when the side story begins to formulate so well in my head and on the page that I begin to want to work on it instead of my main story. Which is what’s going on now, with my other story where I’m dumping 3,000-5,000 words a day between the three books (this is my pilot WIP, more below). And every day I wake up and write more on it.
Again, super terrible problems I have.
I love both of the two stories I’m working on, in different ways. Empath, well, it’s another truth-telling story, set in a fantasy world with a girl struggling to keep her head above the water after a break-up. Transported to a new world, she now finds out that she’s got the ability feel what other people are feeling when she touches them. Unfortunately, there’s a fire breathing dragon that likes to devour empaths, and he keeps haunting her dreams, offering to basically take all of her problems if she’ll just give him her soul.
I like this one because it’s honest, there’s a lot of retelling of things I went through before my quarter-life crisis. I like a present-day-girl-in-fantasy-world. I like Cefin, the beau who she can’t touch without reading his thoughts, which is an interesting dichotomy to the “I don’t know what he’s thinking” issue. I like holding up a mirror to my own avoidance issues, and how I would much rather run away from problems than face them head on. (Except when I avoid writing the book about avoiding my problems, which was an ironic discovery)
And then there’s the other one.
I call it my Pilot WIP, as there’s no working title. It’s set in a world where two countries are at war, and have been at war for a long time. It’s a two person-POV told in first person story, which is a different animal entirely. One of the POVs is Theo Kallistrate, one of the best fighter pilots in the Raven military, who is just trying to stay alive long enough to retire one day so she can be free to make her own decisions. The other POV is Galian Helmuth, the youngest crown prince of Kylae, and would-be-doctor, except now he’s been conscripted by his father to serve as a pilot in the royal military. On his very first mission, he and Theo face off in the sky, which ends up with both of them crash-landing on a deserted island. Even though they’re sworn enemies, they have to band together to survive.
I’m not just writing the first book – I’m writing all three at once, and it’s just….OH IT’S SO GOOD. There’s the time on the island, the slow progression of hate to trust to friendship to… dare I say, love? The second book, which has some stuff. And the third book, which has some other stuff. But it’s good stuff, intrigue and longing and romance and just ugh. It’s just different from everything else. And it’s juicy and delicious and dramatic and awesome.
I love writing Theo and I love writing Galian, and I love how I jump between his POV and her POV. I love how I can tell the same story from two angles. I love, love, love, love, love it.
But I love Empath, with the avoidance and the love and the self-saving.
And I love Alliances, with Lyssa and Lizbeth and girl power and trust.
And I love Book 3 of Razia, which I need to start writing in December.
This isn’t a love triangle, it’s a love heptagon.