I’ve watched a few more videos from the conference before I decided to stop. I mean, I learned tonnes and all the sharing was precious. I intend to spread it out and go through everything before Vegas 2022.
Being a first timer, I attended the conference all bright eyed and bushy tailed. I was not prepared for the anxiety that would hit me after that. There were a lot of “oh shit” “fuck” when the speakers talk about some stuff they shouldn’t or someone else shouldn’t have done, and I’d done exactly what they’d said not to do. I also reflected on why my books are not selling. I mean largely because I’m not marketing well, but I should at least sell more than 10 books for the next book in the series, no? Without me having to ask my friends and family to buy it (I know it’s charity because they don’t read)
Of my books, the one that garnered more interest is Tiger Unbound. To be honest, I wasn’t planning for a sequel to it. However, it’s my “bestseller” so it makes sense to spend more time on it. That novella alone did outsell all my 3 space operas combined.
It wasn’t hard for me to come up with something for the sequel. My brain is full of plot bunnies. I was in the midst of writing it when the conference happened, so I attended it, hoping to find more inspiration to write, and also better quality writing.
I did find the inspiration. I did reflect on my writing more.
But I was also paralysed.
I couldn’t write my sequel at all.
I can’t write without the fear of fucking up my next book. My head is full of “where is this series heading?” “what’s the hook for this book?” “what is the genre?” “is it going to be marketable with the direction it’s going?” “don’t fuck this up like your space opera series” “do I need to redo my novella and make it full length before I write this one?” “is what you’re writing going to fit the cover?” “what’s the intended length of the book?”
The pressure is stronger for this one because it’s supposed to be my “successful” series. I’ve written, deleted, written more, deleted, then I gave up and wrote my free fun fiction because WRITING IS SUPPOSED TO BE FUN!
I let go and wrote my PNR/UF without a care in the world. I don’t know if you enjoyed it, but I enjoyed writing it. I didn’t think at all. I just wrote.
I need to find that joy again instead of so much fear for my WIP now. I can tell that I’m in danger of abandoning writing it altogether and just stick to writing for fun. I’ve already sat down and thought about not writing anything now, use Reedsy’s writing contest to brush up my skills, watch more conferences and do more prep work before I publish anymore novels.
I also know once I do that, I will lose everything that I’ve been building, no matter how tiny my reader base is.
So here’s the kick in my ass.
Here is my commitment. I will get this done by this year and get it out to Chris Barnes (my editor) regardless of the imperfections that it might have. I’m going to stop thinking of what genre it’s going to be and just write the story I have in my head.
I WILL ACHIEVE “THE END” TO THIS!
Should be latest by Feb 2022. Will aim for Jan 2022.