The Next Novel

I’ve started another novel.

I stopped working on the last one, The Counterfeit Emperor, nearly two years ago. That was a difficult decision, but I think it worked out. I spent some time  exploring AI, and recovering from novel-writing burnout.

Well, I’m recovered. Let’s rock and roll.

I’m not picking up Emperor again. First, because I still have a bad taste left over from before. And second, because I think the main character is fundamentally flawed. Going back would mean rewriting almost from scratch, so I might as well start something new – something I’m excited about.

The next novel is called The Crane Girl. Fantasy this time, rather than sci fi, although the lines get blurred in my stories anyway. I’m uber pumped for it, planning to do a lot of things differently.

For one, the hero is going to be strong, active, and (gasp) perhaps even likeable. I’m also doing a lot more research this time around. I’m taking my worldbuilding nice and slow, basing my nations on real historical empires (like the Byzantine Empire) rather than trying to imagine it all from scratch.

And I’m using images a lot more, searching online for photos and paintings that match the way I imagine my characters, locations, etc. This helps me get a good visual sense of what my story looks like. It’s a new technique for me, but I’m loving it. Everything feels so much more…alive.

More details to come. This is a writer’s blog, after all.

And don’t forget, you have till the end of the week to Ask Me Anything. I’ve gotten four great questions already. Keep ’em coming!

8 responses to “The Next Novel

  1. The new novel sounds interesting so far.

    I also started gathering inciting images earlier this year; I am using Pinterest to store them so if (when) I become popular they are available as a resource to go with each book.

  2. There are definitely times when starting something new is the far more appealing option. I’ve gradually come to the conclusion that my third novel will never be done, so now I treat it like a turkey carcass the weekend after Thanksgiving, picking bits off it when I feel like it.

    There can be a feeling (I’ve had this) that you have to go back to it or the effort was all wasted, but I think it wasn’t wasted if you learned something (even if it was just learning that it was time to do something else).

    (I think some writers feel bad about saying goodbye to the characters, but I never say goodbye to my characters, so that’s not a problem.)

    • “There can be a feeling (I’ve had this) that you have to go back to it or the effort was all wasted, but I think it wasn’t wasted if you learned something.”


      Learning to recognize and reject the Sunk Cost Fallacy has been one of the most important lessons of my life. You can’t change what’s done, only what you decide to do next.

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