So you’ve written ‘The End’. Your baby’s polished and out the door to face the world of agents and/or editors all alone.
There you sit, staring at the blank screen or pad of paper before you, knowing full well its time to begin the next wip.
Oh you’ve got plenty of ideas brewing. You may even have a short outline. But now you’ve got to interview the next set of characters. Get to know them. Their likes, dislikes, and omg their conflicts. Maybe you’re on deadline. You’re fingers sit on the keys waiting and still you stare, no longer at the blank screen / paper but now off into space wondering…
Speculating how is Sam (insert your hero’s name here)? Or asking yourself, what is Abby shopping for now? (you know the drill by now, insert heroine’s name)
You see, you’ve been with them for months and for some of us years. Going through every happy and sad moment right along with them. You wanted to kill Sam when he forgot Abby’s birthday and then had tears when he made it up to her with a surprise trip including rose petals lining the pathway. (One of mine really did do something like that only it wasn’t a forgotten b-day).
The thing is you miss them. They were you’re comfort. If you had to you could write scenes out of order during this book. Some that wouldn’t happen for several chapters since you knew them so well. And now their gone.
Should you write a sequel? They could visit in. That would be lovely. No, their book really didn’t leave room for another. Besides, it’s time to let go. But how do you do that?
Take a couple of days to read, paint, watch a movie, or clean house and do laundry. All the things you’re characters didn’t let you do while writing their story. Refresh your mind. Then begin that new wip. Allow yourself to write POS (forever grateful to Nora Robert’s for that one). You can fix it later. The important thing is to write.
Look through magazines find out what/who your hero and heroine look like. Maybe go to the mall have lunch and people watch. What are they doing? Take notes as you watch their quirks; perhaps hear a snippet of conversations, and anything else that make you smile.
In other words do whatever it takes to get you into that new work. You’re muse may have stubbornly stepped out when Sam and Abby’s story was completed, but not for long. In all actuality she is just as curious as you are about the new couple. Oh, she won’t tell you that at first. No, she likes to be in charge of what words hit the paper.
In no time you’ll be back in the swing and a new story has emerged. Lives are taking shape; conflicts are getting in their way, danger, sexual attraction, odd things happening, and love / hate begins to blossom.
You sit back and smile. Once again you’ve got a new world building and new lives to get to know.
Shaking out your fingers, cracking your knuckles, and stretching your neck from side to side you back you begin typing as words pouring out. Your muse is back. She didn’t go far and she’s ready to work. You grin as the screen / page is no longer blank.
The race to the end of the book is back on with a new set of friends and family. A new baby is born.
So, what do you do when you’ve finished your book? Tell us how you get started on the next one.
On Sunday I’ll announce this week’s winner.
Writing Wishes and Plotting Dreams,