I remarked the other day that lately I’ve been in novel mode. Whereas short stories used to be my primary focus, and the most fertile ground for my imagination, lately I seem to have progressed into full-on novel mode. Which isn’t to say that I haven’t been working on short stories, but the few that I have been working on have come slowly and without the sense of energy or excitement that I’m accustomed to.
Novels, on the other hand, I have nothing but enthusiasm for. Perhaps too much.
Currently it would be fair to say that I’m working on four novels. Yes, four.
1. The first is the middle grade fantasy that (I hope) is almost finished. It’s currently in the hands of someone whose opinion I greatly admire and respect and once I get that feedback, I’ll be able to (hopefully) fix it up and send it to my agent (I love saying that).
2. The second is an adult post-apocalyptic novel that I started last year. I recently hit a stalling point about midway through the book, but I intend to push past this and try to finish it up by the summer. Overall it’s one of my favorite things I’ve ever worked on. But I’m just in that mid-novel icky part now.
3. Number 3 is a YA book that I wrote years ago (though not targeted to a YA market). I got feedback on it from my writing group, Altered Fluid, then let it sit for a while. Now I’ve decided to go back to it and work on revising it, substantially rewriting sections and, for lack of a better term, complicating it. This one is what I like to call postapocalyptic fantasy.
4. This is a new project, an adult urban fantasy but with a character I’ve been writing (unpublished) for a while. The idea for the novel was originally a short story, but one I could never seem to trim down and get to work well enough. With a slight reimagining (kinda like squinting at the story sideways) and some expansion, I think it works much better as a novel. It’s a concept I can see working as a series (at least for me). I’m only a couple of chapters into this one, but what helps is that I already know the shape of the story. It’s just filling in parts at this point.
But wait – there’s a fifth! Lurking in the background is the adult fantasy novel that I had been sending out to agents last year. It turns out that it needs a good deal of work – work I’m intending to do – but right now I’m trying to digest and internalize what exactly needs to be done. I got a lot of feedback and I just need to figure out how to make it work.
Do you think that’s enough?
(That’s not to mention the other three novel-length projects that are waiting in the wings, anxious for their time on the center stage).
I’d better get writing…