Well after bashing my head against the keyboard repeatedly, I’ve decided that the problem with getting back into Book 4 (probably to be titled WAR MAGIC) is that I just need to give myself a break. I need to let my creative battery recharge.
Because, let’s face it, if I’m not enthusiastic about what I’m writing, that’s going to show. It’s not that I don’t love the characters, world, and story of the DUAL MAGICS series. It’s that I’ve been living with it 24/7 for at least two years. And the story has been running around in my head for much longer than that. (This is the third version. The first book had been written in full twice, once very badly, once in a misguided attempt to make it YA. And the second had been written all the way through once, again, very badly. It took two complete rewrites of THE SHAMAN’S CURSE and one of THE VOICE OF PROPHECY before I felt they were ready for the world to see them.)
Even during breaks–like while a manuscript was cooling before revisions or while it was out with my beta readers–I’ve mostly been working on either the tie-in short stories or the next book in the series. Or just giving another editing to pass to something I’d written earlier and formatting it for Amazon, like DAUGHTER OF THE DISGRACED KING, which was actually written just before I started on the rewrite of THE SHAMAN’S CURSE.
Sometimes, you can recharge by taking a vacation. That’s probably something I need to do. It’s a great way to get inspiration, among other things. But it’s not going to be this year. Or probably next.
But there are other ways to recharge the creative batteries. Fortunately, one of them is to allow your mind to play with other toys. So, even though I don’t have a first draft, yet, Book 4 does have a cover. (Well, except for the title, etc., anyway.)
Another way I’m going to recharge is by playing in another sandbox for a little while. So I’ve given myself permission to spend a little time in the world of my next epic fantasy series. Not for long. But it’s amazing how much more writing I can get done on something new. I need to bring that “new” energy back to the final book of the DUAL MAGICS series. Maybe this is the way to do that.
This new series doesn’t have a name yet. I’m playing with THE GODDESS’S OWN, but we’ll see. It’s either a trilogy or a duology. The first book is currently titled BECOME: TO CATCH THE LIGHTNING. We’ll see about that, too. It’s sort of a Hercules story, turned completely–or almost completely–upside down. (Hint: The hero’s not the son of the sky god (like Hercules’s father, Zeus), but of the mother-earth goddess.)
So, Book 4 is coming. But I think it will actually come faster–and better–for just a little break to let my imagination play with other toys.