I love that we titled this week’s topic “Progress” on our new works. I have to chuckle/whimper when I see that. It’s about the same noise I make when people ask me how my next book is going, even though I’m still doing events, promotion, and all-around worrying/looking after Chasing the Sun.
The truth is, I’m not sure how it’s going. My agent’s reading the first few chapters because I decided I’d appreciate the early feedback. Aside from those pages, though, I haven’t had time to write much else. I’ve been plotting and outlining, which I suppose should make me feel better. (It really doesn’t.)
Instead, I’ve been trying to bury this perpetual sense of guilt that I’ve had for the past six months or so. That voice that says you should be writing. Some days it’s louder than others, but it’s constant, even as I’ve taken time to launch and celebrate and soak in the fact that my first novel is out after seven years of trying and failing and trying again.
That little voice that says don’t stop, always be writing—I’ve had to tell it to STFU.
I’ve had to ignore the one piece of advice I heard over and over again: write the second book before the first one comes out.
I could say I simply haven’t had time. Most days, it really feels that way. But I know what’s really happened is I’ve chosen to spend it in other ways. Writing is a huge part of my life, but it is not all of my life. It goes in phases and on days when that guilt-trippy voice is really, really quiet, I can take in all the pieces of my life and know that Book 2’s time may not be right now, but it is coming…soon.