OK, new stuff is fun, but it’s not always a good thing. When you’re distracted by something new and shiny while you’re supposed to be working on something else, that’s bad. This is something we try to instill in our children, yet as adults it plagues us just as badly.
As a writer, this is something I struggle with. New ideas pop into my mind, and I want to pursue them. They are much more fun than the editing, promo, formatting, and other tasks on my plate.
Sometimes, the shiny is a new idea that percolates. Often, I’ll make some notes then set it on a shelf. Other times, the shiny is an opportunity that presents itself. For example, I have one query pending for Kingdom Come, and if something good comes of it, I’m chasing that shiny rainbow!
I recently was presented with an opportunity to publish a serial novella on a new science site. More details later… the plan is for it to be up starting in September. I’ve started doing the prep work for it, choosing a setting that meshes with The Cities of Luna.
The other shiny project is Pangalactic Sojourners, which has been on the shelf for a few years now. It’s contemporary romance; the world is our present-day real one. In some ways, that makes it more difficult than if I’d built the world myself. When I started writing the stories, I imagined it was happening in real time, or close to it. However, there have been so many incredible changes in the LGBTQ community in the last few years that I wanted to incorporate into the stories, but I didn’t have a crystal ball to see what would happen. (I also needed a better arc to join the five books, but that’s a different issue.) Today, I created a Google Plus community for the series’ prep work. A major character point is that these characters do a lot of their interaction on social media, which is very normal for many people these days. I can’t add fictional people to the G+ community, but I can make notes there, such as “Pokemon Go is extremely popular now” and I can think about how that might affect my characters. In a year or so, when I’m ready to plot out the series, I can look at the notes on Google Plus and have a very realistic timeline for them to exist in.
This is good prep work that I think will all pay off in the long run. That’s important for writers…the long run. So much of what we do is working and creating and hoping and putting in the time and effort in hopes that, somewhere down the line, it will all pay off. Hubby asked me if I would be overwhelmed if I got a positive response on my query, which is for a duology of novels. I said no. For one thing, if I have a publishing contract, that will take precedence over most of the other things I do. Secondly, these are novels I’ve already written. They’ve gone to beta readers and been edited, revised, and polished.
I already put in the prep work.
So how does this affect my ROW80 and CampNaNoWriMo goals?
I’ve done some good writing, though not as much as my goals prescribe. I’ve barely touched my NaNo project, and there’s only a week left. Maybe I’ll catch up (I set a low goal to begin with) but maybe I won’t. I’ve done better about doing “something” for promo every day, but I could do better. I have a number of promo-related things (like interviews) that I believe will pay off in the long run…
I just need to do the prep work.