Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Switching Gears

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I've been working on a novel for about a year (a gothic romance, working title The Architect and the Heir). It's going well and I want to keep plugging away on it. I gave myself "until school ends" to finish a draft…and I failed to do so. 

I made great progress, especially considering that I do this part time and you know…COVID, police violence, terrifying fascism rearing its ugly head everywhere. If 2020 is the year of seeing clearly, I sometimes wish I could back to being blind. 

And now, I have to shelve A&H and switch gears, hard turn to starboard. 

The reasons are positive. I have a contract! That's a lucky position for an author to be in: knowing I have a publisher ready and waiting for my book, willing to help bring it out there into the world. 

But contracts come with deadlines--external deadlines, imposed because of schedules for editing, proofreading, cover art, etc. My next deadline is January, which means it's time to set down Devon and Victor and pick up the Menopausal Superheroes again or I won't make it. 

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I'm also coming back to this series after a nearly two year break during which I worked primarily on other fiction: short stories, editing for work that already been submitted, and another shelved novel before this one. So, I'm feeling a little daunted. 

This is the first time in my writing career (all five years of it) that this has happened to me. I've heard other writers talk about juggling different projects and now I finally understand how wrenching it can be to slam on the brakes and screech to a halt, leaving good rubber on the road, so I can keep my promises. It's not that I don't love the other projects, too--I totally do! It's just the moment of switching gears that hurts a bit. 

I'm hopeful though, that Devon and Victor will be there waiting for me when I come back to them. I've made good notes about where the story is going. I have already managed to set it aside three times in the past few months to complete edits on novellas for the Menopausal Superhero stories, and each time I fell back in within a few days. 

Any advice for me on switching gears and finding my groove on the new thing quickly? The clock is running guys, so I need to get this booty moving! I'd love to hear your ideas in the comments!


  1. Congrats! I think most of us wish we had your kind of problems. hehehe

    Anna from elements of emaginette

    1. Truly, I am grateful to have these problems…and I also want to whine about them a little. Human nature, I suppose.

  2. I think, ultimately, it's better to have deadlines that are imposed. It's easier to be responsible to others than to yourself.

    1. I hadn't thought of that, but it's true for me at least! I keep promises to others better than promises to myself.