It’s been rather longer than I intended since I’ve talked about my novel. Admittedly, there have been times when I have avoided the subject simply because I’ve had nothing new to report. (And because having nothing new to report usually means I’ve been procrastinating yet again.) But this time, my avoidance of the subject hasn’t been by design. In fact, I’ve worked diligently for months on round after round of tedious edits, the kind that make me want to renounce writing entirely.
The truth is, writing isn’t at all glamourous, and anyone who tells you otherwise has read too many books written by the Lost Generation. It is as much about the story as it is about nitpicking over punctuation and repeatedly hesitating over the perfect adjective. Actually putting the story down on paper is the easy part – at least for me. It’s everything after that is real work.
But it looks like another period of real work is finally coming to an end. Last week, I hired a graphic designer to create two covers – one for the new edition of After the Shots and one for the novel that will follow it. If I am disciplined (and, admittedly, this is never guaranteed because it is entirely too easy not to hold yourself accountable when there is no one else to do it,) they will both be released in mid-2018. The fact that four years have gone by since I published my first novel seems almost unfathomable, until I remember that I spent nearly thirteen years working on it. When I remember that, the fact that I finished the second in less than four seems almost heroic.
The idea of publishing a second novel feels a bit surreal. The fact that so many copies of the first one, that so many copies of anything I wrote, are out in the world, still makes my knees wobble a bit. It doesn’t even really matter to me if anyone likes it, which sounds silly, but it’s true. It’s the fact that I did it that matters. I wrote a book. I published it. And soon, there will be another one.