As of today, Mark and I have been on lockdown for a full month, but I’ve been on writing lockdown for almost half a year.
Regular readers of this column will recall that I submitted “Dropnauts” to Pitchwars in late September. My failure to get a single request for the full manuscript sent me into a bit of a tailspin, and as an extended round of soul searching.
Over the last few months I’ve started to move on, completing two new short stories and sending them out into the sci fi magazine submissions world, and sending “Dropnauts” itself to a bunch of agents for consideration (12 down, 15 to go on that front. I’ll keep you posted).
I’ve also debated what my next project should be, and I’ve finally settled on one to work on. Well, two, actually, but first things first.
I just started writing a full-length novel set on Tharassas, the world where my stories “The Last Run” and “Tharassas Rain” (as yet unpublished) take place. It’s a colony world, recently cut off from Earth, and filled with symbionts, unknown wilds and mystery.
In preparation, I just re-read “The Last Run” and started a series bible to keep track of all the little details. I’m excited to dive into something new, a blank slate where I can run with reckless writer abandon.
But I did say two things, right?
My plan is to first draft this new novel over the next three months, and then dive right into another project.
“The Forever Cycle” will be a new trilogy that will bridge the gap between “Liminal Sky” and “The Oberon Cycle”.
The first book will be a retelling of the first book I ever finished and submitted (but that was never published), and I’m hoping the extra three months sitting around in my subconscious will give that story new life when I am finally ready to bring it to the page.
It feels damned good to have a direction again, even if I don’t know how or when all of these new works will be published.
In the meantime, I am getting ready to self pub a new short – “Chinatown” – that I wrote last year for my SFWA break-in attempt. It never found a home, so instead I will release it to y’all directly. I hope you enjoy it. And later this year I’ll be publishing my short stories that appeared in Galaxy’s Edge, after the exclusive period has ended.
It feels really good to be moving forward, especially when we are stalled on so many other things here at home in this strange time.
So to my writing friends – how are you moving ahead with your careers in this time of universal waiting? What are your goals during the Great Pause?