Two days ago I finished the third and, in theory, final edit of Bowerbirds, the sequel to Empty Nests. They were originally one book that clocked in at a completely unmanageable and inconsistent 130,000 words. And as of two days ago that giant unmanageable book is now complete and the second half is being formatted for publication.
This leaves me with one question.
What do I do now?
I started Empty Nests in 2010. In preparation for my blog tour I’ve been answering some interview questions and one of the common ones is ‘where did your idea for this book come from?’. Flat out truth is I don’t remember. I have scraped at my memory and I have no clue. I know lot happened in the five years between starting and now. I finished that first mammoth draft somewhere in late 2011 in between completing some very lengthy works of fanfic, my first published novella, international travel, teaching myself to knit, and the Rugby World Cup. I sent it to a friend to edit in 2012. By the time I got it back I was pregnant with the worst case of pregnancy brain and bouncing emotions. After I had my kid the brain melt just continued for another year and a bit when I declared that the kid would be in daycare two days a week and I got back to it in July 2014
Now Empty Nests will be out June 12, 2015 and Bowerbirds in late August/Early September. That’s five years which is a long time to be working on one project.
I guess I should write another novel. That’s what you do when you’re a professional writer, right? One novel after another. Except which one? This next bit isn’t an entirely rhetorical question.
I have a M/M BDSM novella which is already 30k and not even half way through the plot I have planned. My evil enabler, Cooper West, has bet me it’ll be at least 90k by the time I’m done. It’s contemporary, domestic, with lots of sex and a slow emotional Friends to Lovers to Possibly Love build.
There is the M/M interoffice romance taking place in the halls of a vague, yet menacing, government agency (bonus points if you get the reference). That’s looking to be the polar opposite of the BDSM one as every time I try to write a sex scene in it the main love interest says no. I’m starting to think I’ve accidently created an asexual love interest. Is anyone even going to want to read a romance where at the most there will be some really passionate hand holding?
There’s my YA novel which has become a bit of a monkey on my back since I think it could be good but I’m missing the better part of an act two. It has a bisexual main character and it’s mostly about her relationship with her step mother and by extension her father.
Or I could finally cough up a sequel to Eden Springs. I’m not sure if it’s got much of a story arc. What I have is mostly a list of scenes as the two main characters get snowed in for the winter. That came out in 2012. Will anyone still be remotely interested?
And I have my big non-romance, urban fantasy, murder mystery which will be completely out of any other genre I’ve written in.
A part of me just wants to go back to fanfic where I get almost instant feedback and I don’t have to rewrite if I don’t want to.
I could say fuck it for a few months and just watch TV. I half a season of Agents of SHIELD to catch up on. I haven’t seen any of Agent Carter. I started watching Forever on an international flight. I’m only up to episode 8 and I’m already pissed it didn’t get a second season. And I haven’t had a chance to listen to Welcome to Night Vale since November!
So this is it, my big What Next. What keeps the ball rolling? What fills the back catalog the best? What justifies those two days a week at the fancy, private, daycare?