I usually work on one book at a time, but now something else is happening and I feel like I’m cheating on myself. It’s the strangest thing. I recently started a novel I’ll call Rainy Roof, and it completely engrossed me. I loved the character and the weirdness of it, and it was challenging to write. My agent asked me for pages, so I sent him the opening chapters. Then, the anticipation that I’d get feedback soon made me pause, and into that pause leaped an idea for another novel.
An irresistible idea. What the heck? I started that, too. This book, which I’ll call Big Steps, is completely unlike anything I’ve ever written. I’m way out of my usual territory, and it’s really fun. I adore this character and her school world feels incredibly real, so I’ve sunk a week into it, blissfully.
Now I’m torn. I ought to be working on Rainy Roof. It’s further along and it makes better sense as a follow-up to the Birthmarked trilogy. A responsible writer, the type I used to be, would knuckle down and get that first draft done, but because the girl in Big Steps needs me so much, I want to ignore the responsible side of myself and help her. In fact, isn’t it most responsible to keep Rainy Roof on hold until I get my agent’s feedback?
Now here’s the real kicker. I keep my novels shrunk in my dock, and without looking too closely, I accidentally clicked open the file of Rainy Roof this morning and it took all of two sentences for me to be completely sucked into that book again.
As of this morning, the book I ought to be writing, Rainy Roof, is once again the book I want to be writing. The book I really shouldn’t be writing, Big Steps, is also the book I want to be writing.
I have two books I want to write. I’m writing them. I don’t know how yet, but I am.