You might notice a new look to my site. I decided it needed a refresher since my old parent theme wasn’t getting updates anymore and the dropdowns no longer functioned. I switched to this new one, and though I’m not sure I’m in love, it’ll do.
(EDIT: I just noticed the url is missing from the comments form, so if you wouldn’t mind putting that in the comment body until I get this fixed, I’d appreciate it. Thanks! EDIT 2: This should be fixed now.)
While I was in maintenance mode, I also changed from trying to use follow.it to mail chimp for the posts-via-email feature, so some of you might get an email from me later today. Sorry if that’s not what you wanted.
March took me by storm with spring break and birthday celebrations (I’m the big 40 now!), so I’m behind on my obligatory visits to other blogs. As I scramble to catch up, I leave you here with another installment of Insecure Writer’s Support Group!
I’m happy to report that I’m not insecure at this time. Some time ago, on the cusp of finishing my book 2 rewrites, I felt it was necessary to split the book in 2. At the time, it was the only way I thought I could relate my hero’s subplot to the main plot. Once I made that decision, however, I promptly put aside all progress and avoided doing the work.
Well, I recently hit a spot in my companion novel that isn’t working for me. Jim Butcher has some excellent writing advice, and in his discussion about scenes, he says there can be four answers to the conflict question of “will they succeed?” He says don’t answer with “yes”, because yes is boring. That’s exactly where my scene is, and I’m not sure how to change the answer to a “yes, but…” and still make it work like I need to.
Therefore, I do what I do best: put it aside and avoid it.
But the writing advice triggered my natural tendency to take what I learned and apply it to whatever situation I can, and that included book 2. As my brain organized mental notecards to lay out the events, it became glaringly obvious that splitting the book was going to undermine some of the dramatic moments I had planned. Then it came to me—a way to rework the existing subplot to and make it work. That burst of adrenaline had me running like a squirrel who discovered an extra cache of winter nuts.
After almost a year of not working on book 2, the ideas are back and the passion is strong. And the best part? I can go back to calling book 3 book 3, because it never really felt like a book 4 to me. The companion novel is getting shoved into the drawer for now, but since it takes place between books 3 and 4, it doesn’t hurt anything if I get to it later.
I will show off the companion novel’s cover, however.
I have to admit I am rather proud with how it turned out, and if you’re wondering, yes, I digitally painted it myself. I had to start over on the character four times to get her right, and that doesn’t count the background that my husband had said wasn’t good enough once I finished. It took me a month of fiddling to get it to this point, and I still see little things that make my eye twitch. Oh well. Maybe I’ll fix them when I return to writing the book.
IWSG Question of the Month – Have any of your books been made into audio books? If so, what is the main challenge in producing an audiobook?
Alas, the answer is no. I can’t afford it (my books are loooong). I do have a microphone and Audacity though, so maybe a podiobook or two exists in my future. I just have to finish writing all the books first.
Have you ever had a problem in one book inspire the solution in another? What writing advice have you found most impactful? What do you think of the companion novel’s cover?
About Insecure Writer’s Support Group
You can find the sign up for the IWSG here. We owe Alex J Cavanaugh a huge thank you for thinking this blog hop up.
27 thoughts on “Book 2’s Back On! #IWSG”
Yay for everything! Ok, maybe not the stumbling block in the novella, but I’m sure it’ll come to you.
And I still absolutely adore that cover.
I like that cover! “Yes is boring” — don’t we know it! In one of the Creative Penn podcast episodes I listened to recently (and that doesn’t mean it was an episode from this year… maybe last year?) someone said that they published their audiobooks as a podcast with advertising which made it financially viable, can’t remember the details though (ADHD at its best!); so maybe your idea will work 🙂
Ronel visiting for IWSG day The Difference Between Reading Books and Collecting Books
‘podcast with advertising’ – I like that idea. I might borrow it, once I work out how to do podcasts.
Wow! I took a good look at that cover, and I can tell you, it looks professional. Although not as boring as some professionals. Not sure what the purple and orange things behind the dress stand are – maybe some sort of pots? And I took a long look at the shadows, which might be something you’re itching about, but there’s little to worry about. I’m not sure that messing with them might upset the rest of the balance.
And great pointers for other insecure writers stuck in the same hole as you were.
I like the web design too.
In fact – it’s all looking fantastic 🙂
Hooray for NOT being insecure! Woo Hoo!
I’m so happy to hear that the ideas and passion are back for Book 2! That’s awesome news!
And I love the new of the companion novel cover. You create such amazing art.
Happy belated birthday, by the way. I hope it was a good one.
Book 2 is back on – good job!
A microphone + Audacity? It can happen. Mmm, who knows. Maybe not now but sometime in the future…?
So glad your writing is going so well. And I love your cover. It’s an intriguing cover too.
Happy (belated) Birthday, Loni! Hope you had a great day!
I do love that cover you made. 😍 And great news on getting back to book 3 as book 3!
I’ve had to change themes when they stopped updating too. It’s tough to find a new one and then get a look you’re happy with. I do like that your giant squirrel is prominent in the sidebar! 😊 And yay, to having working dropdown links. 🙄
I like your blog. It’s nice and clean looking.
Yay! You got your writing mojo back!
You are a talented artist. I’m in awe.
40 wasn’t the hard one for me. 30 was, because I hadn’t achieved what I had planned to in my life by then. We won’t discuss 50. LOL
Cover looks great!
Glad you are passionate about completing the series again.
And belated happy birthday.
First, I love the cover so much. Second, it feels like we were having the same issue with our work. My mind might have been working on my problem, but it took someone else saying, “blah, dee, blah, blah,” for me to get going again. Your kick just came from another source.
Thank goodness we are at it again!
Anna from elements of emaginette
Happy belated Birthday!!!
And I am thrilled that the passion is back and strong for Book 2. 😀
It’s great you found the solutions to your writing problems.
And I love the cover! I absolutely love it.
Blog format looks good. It’s easy to read.
Glad to hear that inspiration and motivation has been revived for you.
That cover art looks very nice.
Tossing It Out
That sounds like some good advice. Glad you found some solutions, even though some of that is letting the book like fallow for a while. It’s good to come back to things when you’re ready for them, and right now might not be the time.
I love the cover. You did good! Wish I could hire you to do one for my novel Dead Witness. That’s one thing I haven’t mastered and that’s creating covers. I’m so impressed, Loni.
Yay for the epiphany that rekindled your passion for your stories! That’s fantastic! Love that cover. You’re an amazing artist. I’m looking forward to reading Book 2 whenever it comes out. The podcasting idea sounds interesting. I haven’t gotten the courage up yet to try a podcast, but maybe eventually. Good luck with your many projects!
So glad you followed through and produced such a great cover for your book! That’s wonderful.
Websites can be a pain. I just went through a month of dealing with mine. This new one of yours looks very nice and it’s easy to navigate.
I think your cover is great, Loni! And the title is intriguing. I know smelts as fish and smelting as ore processing, so I’m curious about what smelted is. I don’t even want to think about messing with my website. Good for you!
Your cover is awesome! Happy (belated) birthday! 🙂 Jim Butcher has such great advice. I’ve taken so much writing advice over the years, I can’t remember exactly where I heard anything. As long as we’re continuing to learn and improve, that’s all that matters.
Book 2 will work as one with a little adjustment – bet that is great news to you!
Congrats on getting back to work on Book 2. That cover is awesome, too. I feel you when you said you put stuff aside and avoid it. I’ve been doing that this week. ^^;;
I’m so glad to hear you’re feeling the muse in your fingers! Three cheers to the advice that caused it. Advice that I will be tucking away in my brain for when I edit my next story.
LOVE the cover. It’s gorgeous. The blog looks good. Cover is better, but hey, it’s good. Not everything in life can be stunning.
So much “Yay!” here. I like the new site. It’s…clean and streamlined. And you know I absolutely love that cover. Thrilled you could rework the book. And happy birthday, again. You don’t look a day over 20. (Isn’t 40 the new 20 anyway? It was when I turned 40. It may be that 50 is the new 20 now. Who knows.) Cheers!
That cover’s fantastic! How cool that you did it digitally. It’s great you were able to work out the Book 2/Book 3 issues.
That’s a great cover. Very creative to integrate the letters into the art.
Sometimes those ideas take a while to come together. And the spark usually comes from something you didn’t expect. Glad you’re back on track!