What’s Next?

nowwhat1So, I’ve published a book (HOORAY!). Now what?

I could twiddle my thumbs a little. Work on a few of my other three hundred different hobbies, or find a nice semi-gloss paint for my office cuz this puke yellow that it currently is does nothing for my creativity. I could also Netflix and chill for a bit cuz, dammit, I deserve a good binge watching after all the work I’ve put in.

But, that is not how the life of an author goes. The creativity doesn’t stop just because one project has been completed. The compulsion to write continues. In pure cHaOtIc fashion, I now simultaneously write three different projects while binge watching all the shows I have on my list of things to watch, taking breaks to do my part time paying job, and looking over two projects from someone else entirely who has asked for my help in getting their books published.

What does that look like in a normal view?

  • Project 1 is for CampNaNoWriMo. It is my fantasy novel, now 20 years (yes, 20, sue me) in the works through various changes, iterations (including 4 D&D campaigns, several stories and 3 failed attempts at this dang novel), and heartaches. The plan is to have Ashes to Embers (working title) ready for publication by December (if not sooner) of this year.
  • Project 2 is for Corrugated Sky’s 2018 anthology. This year, the theme is Zombies. Naturally, I had this grand idea for something kinda quirky, kinda fun, kinda scary-weird… that I absolutely hate as of… literally7a or so yesterday morning. For real. I was on the treadmill when I went ‘Gods, really?? Why am I writing this crap??”. *sigh* Version 2.0 now in the works, draft 1 is due April 30. HA!! Might need an extension on that one.
  • Project 3 is the thing that (hopefully) everyone really wants: the follow up novel for HellfireRight now, the working title is Hellfire: Time Paradox (yeah, probably not the most creative but that’s why it’s a working title) that will pick up 1 year after the end of Hellfire. If all the stars align, the planned release for #2 will be this July or August.
  • Part time job is marketing for the local community restaurant. It’s fun and I love the staff and it is right up my alley of things I know how to do. Plus, I can do it from home and get free fries. Bonus.
  • Other – I’ve had a few people ask how I did all the things I did for Hellfire. My answer is usually “with a lot of blood, sweat, tears, booze, and selective cursing at my screen”. In layman’s terms, it means I just spent a lot of time doing the formatting before handing it off to a friend to do the digital formatting cuz InDesign hates me. BUT I’ve also had these same people ask if I’d be willing to help them with their formatting and edits and such. And, while I’m not entirely 100% sure I’m qualified for any of that, I’m at least willing to take a look for a friend cuz that’s what friends do.

Obviously, the big ones are the writing projects that are all in progress. See, the ‘work’ for a writer never stops. It continues at all hours of the day or night, even in our sleep. You don’t make it as a ‘big time’ author by stopping after your first success. You don’t even make it as a mediocre author by stopping at your first success.

I’ve published. It’s out there for the world to see (you should go read it). Now I write the next one. And after that, I will write the next, and the next, until my fingers cease functioning and my voice is but a rasping whisper. Because I am a writer and that is what I do. This is how I live my dream.

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