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Writerling Wreport

Hey, all! I thought it was about time for an update, a progress report, if you will, since I haven’t done one of those in a while.?

To be painfully honest, work on Falconsbane has been spotty for . . . well, for a while. I work on it in fits and starts between other projects that always seem to demand my attention. But on a positive note, I have just finished the final edits on the first book (since I had to go and turn the thing into a trilogy). Woot! I am making a conscious effort to keep this as a final draft, too, all but swearing on my great grandmother’s kitten poster to leave it alone until I can get a second pair of eyes on it. I would LOVE to pass it over to a few beta readers before pursuing professional editing, but I’ve had trouble finding folks to be consistent and timely in the past. Here’s praying I’ll find some reliable partners in the future.

What needs to happen in the meantime is, you guessed it, getting to work on book two! The bare bones are there from my first couple of drafts, but after spending so much time tweaking and fine tuning book one, I forgot how much work is ahead. There are cobwebs that need removing. Bones and joints and ligaments that need adjusting. Organs, muscles, and flesh to – okay, this is getting a little odd. But you get the idea? A story is a body of moving parts, and moving forward from book one there is a lot of pruning and grafting that needs to happen. And now I’ve moved into orcharding metaphors . . .? It’s a daunting task, to say the least (most everything about writing a book is), but also super exciting (most everything about writing a book is, too). Especially now that I have a clearer vision for the story and characters as a whole. This thing grows more and more all the time, which means one very important thing:

I do not plan on publishing until all three books are finished. I tried that with my first series, The Journey Taken , publishing before I had written the end of the story, and what happened was that the story kept growing, kept developing, as did my writing style, and by the time I got to book seven, some details earlier on in the story were no longer relevant. I had to go back and edit all the books and republish them, and even after all seven volumes were published the story continued to morph. My point being: hurrying to get something published makes for a dissatisfying product. I should have finished the manuscript first before doing anything else. I regret not doing that, because now I have pages of notes on changes I want to make to strengthen the story and reader experience, ultimately resulting in my taking the series off the market. I still love that story, and I want to give it what it deserves. I also want to respect my readers with a story worth their time. I don’t know when I’ll be able to return to it, but I know for sure I don’t plan on letting it sit abandoned and broken in the shadows. I spent five years of my life on it, after all.

It’s taught me a lot about my writing process, and so I want to move forward with Falconsbane more wisely. Taking the time to do it right.

That’s not to forgive my vice of procrastination, however. Which brings forward a new writing goal (which I confess with trepidation, considering my past with such things). I want to make an effort this year to make some serious headway into this project. What is this goal?

  1. Finish edits on book two by autumn (date: Oct. 31, because that’s usually when the local farmers market ends, and since I am not doing the market this year to focus on things like writing this book, it seemed as good a date as any).
  2. Finish edits on book three by spring (date: more ambiguous, but since it’s roughly four months to Oct. 31, a good place to start would be Mar. 1.)

After that, I want to look more seriously into the publication process, like editors, covers, and all the marketing/release gobbledygook. I am acquiring a plethora of ideas from what other authors are doing, and I need to figure out which ones work best and how to do them.

Which marketing techniques do you think would best help spread the word? Street teams? Cover reveals? Pre-order swag? Blog tours? What gets you excited about a new book or show/movie? I’m curious on what you think!

In conclusion:

Book one of the Falconsbane project is finished (so help me!), and the goal is to get book two done by this autumn and book three by next spring. The material is there, I just need to sit my bum in the chair and make it presentable. I covet your prayers in this, that I will not let myself be distracted by every shiny thing that comes my way. I can feel the enemy’s attack in that regard, using my weaknesses against me. It’s both frustrating/discouraging and oddly comforting. If this story won’t be a force for good, then there’s no reason to stifle it, right? I ask that you pray I seek God’s guidance and companionship in this project. After all, this is his story, too, not just mine.

Thanks, y’all, for coming on this journey with me, for your cheerfulness and encouragement. Many say that the life of a writer is a lonely one, but every Acknowledgments is proof that it actually takes an army!

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