If you’re still with me, thanks for sticking around. I’ve been preoccupied with the second draft of Book 3 and setting up a publishing company.
You read that right. I decided to take a middle road between traditional publishing and the indie route. Since these novels are not my day job, I have little desire to spend years pitching literary agents and traditional publishers, and even less motivation to fork over most of the profits for that privilege.
So, in addition to self-editing and beta readers, I’ll be using professional freelancers to edit, copyedit, proofread, format, and illustrate the Earthpillar novels. This gives me the flexibility to follow my vision for the books and perhaps publish other authors in the future.
Details on the company and publishing timelines coming up next!
Today I finished the first draft of Book 3, earlier than expected. The characters demanded I keep up with them, so I just rolled along. The book practically wrote itself in ten weeks (excluding early development), thanks to my sabbatical.
What happens next? I’ll let the draft marinate a while, followed by months of editing and critique from beta readers over the summer. Then I’ll post an excerpt while I’m navigating publishing options for all three books. In the meantime I’m organizing notes for Book 4 and will submit related short stories to magazines for publication.
As always, thanks for following. Though I’m not revealing much yet beyond excerpts, I hope you’re enjoying watching a budding writer’s journey. I’m having a blast as I hit my stride!
I’m about three weeks away from finishing the first draft of Book 3. I nearly doubled my writing quota during the past week as the book is coming to its exciting conclusion. My weekly goal is to write ten chapters; I wrote 17 this week!
My writing goals originally focused on time put into a project, but obviously you can put in a lot of time with little result. I briefly switched to setting daily goals of words written, which is very popular among writers. But since I do all my first drafts with old-fashioned pen and paper, this method was tedious and estimates were always off.
It was hard to know how much progress I was making. I finally settled on a weekly goal of chapters written. This works for me because my chapters tend to be short. Books 2 and 3 have about 130 chapters, enough pages for a standard-sized novel. For me, knowing my progress propels me forward to finishing the project.
For anyone interested in small snippets from Books 1-3, I added a new page here for bits shared on Twitter. Nothing grand, but gives you a taste of some scenes and characters. You can also find chapter-length excerpts here and here, and additional descriptions on the novels page.
Thank you to the new followers who have joined the website since my last post! I don’t post often because I’m focused on writing, but I’ll soon have a chance to revisit publishing options for all the material I’ve been hoarding, editing, and re-editing.
Now, back to writing…
I completely re-wrote the prologues and epilogues for Book 1 and Book 2. Danleri the historian has been replaced by a more interesting dialogue between characters that will appear in Book 3. Read the new Book 1 prologue here. Don’t worry if you liked the studious Danleri as he’ll make an appearance in Book 3.
Speaking of Book 3, I’ve drafted the first 40 chapters! Like all my books, they are short chapters but this is still about one-third of the book. So I’ve made great progress over the past month.
As always, thanks for following. Now, back to writing…
Today I return to writing Book 3. Four years ago I stopped after writing about 100 pages because I didn’t want to tackle its complexity (four main characters) as we were expecting our first child. Then I was compelled to write Book 1 and Book 2 as prequels to Book 3. Now that I have two novels under my belt, along with two novelettes, several short stories, and an Earthpillar atlas, I’m ready to return to Book 3.
What atlas? I drew it while working on the short stories. I wanted to give scale to the continent of Pemonia and be consistent when writing about places separated by long distances and centuries of time.
For now the atlas covers 28 province-sized regions of Pemonia (only about half the continent) fitted together on a giant 8 ft x 7 ft heavy art paper map. Rivers and elevation changes are illustrated with Derwent tinted charcoal. It is a tool for my writing and a professional can improve it in the future, but you can view a sample on the Maps Page.
Thanks for reading about the progress of my work. I’ll pursue publishing options with more gusto later this summer. Then hopefully you will enjoy reading it as much as I’ve enjoyed writing it. For now, back to writing…