Wow, it's been a really long time since I wrote one of these! Most of that can be chalked up to mental exhaustion. Writing a trilogy (especially one set in a post-apocalyptic fantasy world where the plot refuses to happen for less than 120k words) is an excellent recipe for creative fatigue. I'm not sure I'm completely recovered yet, and a lot of that has to do with how much rewriting I did for both DECEPTION and DELIVERANCE.
Sometimes when I tell people I rewrote DECEPTION five and a half times in six months and that I rewrote Logan's half of DELIVERANCE three times, they look at me with something like shock and dismay. I think there's an assumption that if you're good enough to be published then you're good enough to churn out near perfect drafts the first or second time around. This is not the case. Not for me and not for any of my published friends. Rewriting is a necessary part of my craft. If drafting is me pulling all the ingredients out of the pantry and laying them all over the kitchen counter, then rewriting is refining the measurements, figuring out in which order the ingredients need to be used, and doing a few taste tests with my editor before figuring out exactly what seasoning I'm still missing.
All the rewriting, the touring, the personal upheaval in my non-publishing life ... all of that combined to make me feel like I was scraping the nearly-bare walls of my creative well at the end of working on DELIVERANCE, but I'm really proud of the book. I'm excited to put it in my readers' hands. I think I did Logan and Rachel justice. I think I did the Commander, Quinn, Willow, Frankie, Ian, and others justice too. I hope my faithful readers feel satisfied and well-filled once they finish reading.
And yes, I've heard your requests for a sneak peek at DELIVERANCE, and that is coming soon-ish. Those of you who subscribe to my newsletter have already read chapter one ... :)
So now that I've put the trilogy to bed, it's time to update you on the other projects I'm currently working on. Here's what is currently in the works:
1. OUTCAST: I'm finishing edits on Quinn's prequel story this week. I love this small glimpse into Quinn and Willow's world before everything they knew fell apart.
2. Mystery Project #1 (aka TSQ): I'm in the midst of drafting a dark, epic fantasy adventure complete with a wicked queen, a thief of a princess adept at parkour, a courageous guardsman with an agenda that could be his death sentence, and a prince trapped by a contract that will destroy him even while it saves the country he loves. This project is YA.
3. Mystery Project #2 (aka CS. Also aka Something Hinky on the Mountain, but my agent won't let me keep that title.): I'm working on revising an adult urban fantasy series that will actually be aged down to new adult (college age). Think Supernatural meets I Love Lucy set in a small mountain town in eastern Tennessee.
I have a couple of other projects that are in various stages of development but aren't ready to be drafted yet. It's always fun to be building playlists, working on synopses, and letting characters play around in my head without the commitment of needing to turn it into a full blown story yet.
Which project are you most looking forward to reading?