Well, there's lots to cover, so please bear with me, here.
As many fans of the site know, I've spent the last year consistently plugging away at this dieselpunk adventure, The Assassin's Table, a tale of adventure in an anonymous city in eastern Europe in the early part of the 20th century. Since June of last year, I've taken pen to paper and crafted scenes, designed characters, plotted motivations, and essentially outlined a complete young adult novel of adventure and intrigue in the steampunk tradition. I've brought you readers along on this creative adventure, striving to share chapters every two weeks.
Now, I'm not a writer by trade. I have a day job. A very intense day job that I keep separate from this site. Writing is how I unwind, have fun, decompress, find that sacred space that helps me keep my life balanced. This works because I can write pretty quickly and pretty well (I trust) as I chase the creativity.
Writing is a weird undertaking. To do it well, you need time, space and focus. That last one is the most important. I talk a lot about chasing the creativity and going where the energy is. Chasing that creative energy has left me with a dearth of ideas, which is a good problem for a writer to have. The key to this energy is the excitement. Scene by scene, chapter by chapter, the excitement of writing the book I want to read has to be there.
But here's the thing that can happen. Day jobs get intense. Family responsibilities heat up. Life happens. And when this happens you know what's the last thing I need? Another chore.
Guess what? That's what The Assassin's Table became. I was working on the next plot twist. I was making my self imposed deadlines. I was keeping with the discipline that is essential for writing. But I wasn't having fun. These other ideas kept creeping in and calling. And I thought, fine, I'm six months ahead of my audience. Let me plug away at this other stuff. So I did. Then I was four months ahead of my audience, it was enough of a cushion. Then three, then two. Then I missed a posting deadline.
I should have figured it out. It was a chore. Not fun. I kept plugging away because I wanted to keep my promise to you, True Believers. Then I posted the last chapter and I realized that I really didn't fix the things I wanted to fix. I didn't, in the process of the second draft, address the things I wanted to lay out for the groundwork of where the narrative was going. I was cutting corners. Maybe you noticed, maybe you didn't. It didn't matter. The energy was waning.
But here's the thing. I still really believe in this book. And in my head, it's really done but for the writing of it. But I'm not going to finish it just to finish it. I'm going to make sure this thing wraps up with the quality of story, and most importantly, of writing, that you the reader deserve. Yes, I'm sure you're eager to see where Saman and her sister Arya, Miss Arbitage, the Adjuster and the Guild all connect and where all this exposition is taking us. And believe me, we'll get there and you are going to freaking love it. In October.
Yep, I need to take a bit of a break from the work on this one. A short one, until the spark comes back. The notebook is right there on my shelf with all the active work. All 18 writing projects I have going on. October's always a good month for writing for some reason. Again, it's a break, it's not an abandonment. We're wrapping this one up, maybe not by the end of the year, but... soon enough.
So, Joe, where's the good news? Well, just because I haven't been working on The Assassin's Table, doesn't mean I'm not working. Have you noticed that new tab on the site? Tales of the Half Moon Hotel? Seen that? Got one compound word for you on that one, atompunk. Got it?
And then there's those classically foolhardy classic steampunk stories of the crew of the Mullen (which needs a catchier title). Yep, there's some brand new stuff coming soon, as well as some seriously unfinished business with Revenge of the Squid Queen and Wolves of Edinburgh and an as of yet unwritten story that may or may not involve headhunters.
So let me get rolling on these, True Believers. There's good stuff coming and soon. To the die-hards who've followed me for years, I thank you for sticking with me. For the new fans, sit tight, good stuff is coming your way. Seriously, atompunk!
When I dive into a subgenre, I make it mine.
So let's go!