What next?

So, I recently finished a draft of a novel — Take Three at Mulholland, Book 3 in the Mulholland series — and I am now trying to decide what to do next. Usually when I finish writing a book, I have a fairly good idea of what I will work on next. Now? Not so much. I realize this isn’t very author-ly of me, but this is due to a few behind the scenes things beyond my control, so I thought I might share some of my options.

In no particular order, here’s what I could work on:

  1. Edit the sequel to Confessions of a Teenage Band Geek.
    1. Pros? The first draft is actually in good shape, and it’s a lot of fun.
    2. Cons? My publisher still has the rights to the original book and there are some things I want to do differently to rebrand when the sequel comes out.
  2. Edit the Fates project.
    1. Pros? I’ve come a long way as a writer since finishing the last draft in (checks notes) 2010??? I’ve also already written the sequel.
    2. Cons? It’s going to be a lot of hard work as the current draft is 120K.
  3. Edit Under the Rain of Light.
    1. Pros? It’s my most commercial novel.
    2. Cons? I hate the current draft and I’m not sure I have the motivation to make it better.
  4. Start writing ‘Cousin at the Wedding,’ a rom-com.
    1. Pros? New project! Fresh start!
    2. Cons? I have a ton of unedited work (see, 6 unpublished novels).
  5. Finish writing Counterfactual.
    1. Pros? I’ve already got a 10K head start.
    2. Cons? I have no idea where the book is going to go.
  6. Chill out and spend time marketing.
    1. Pros? Selling books is the whole point of being an author.
    2. Cons? I really suck at it.
  7. Re-edit Room 702.
    1. Pros? In theory, it shouldn’t take too long.
    2. Cons? Is this the best use of my time?

Thoughts?  Feelings?  Suggestions? I welcome them all.

Week by Numbers.

As usual, it’s been a minute.

I managed to finish an edit of another sequel before leaving on a belated Spring Break of sorts, before coming back and fixing the second draft of Take Two at Mulholland High.

  • 166, pages the ‘almost final’ draft finished, Confessions 2.
  • 172, pages the ‘final’ first draft was completed.
  • 61,534, words. Although I expect that to change, there’s plenty of room to write in new scenes.
  • 74,818, words in the Take Two at Mulholland High second draft.
  • 73,765, words in my editor’s draft.
  • 75,616, words in the final second draft.
  • 1, trip outside the country.
  • $251, dollars for a PCR test on Silhouette Island (Seychelles).
    • Per person.
  • 1, cookbook I’ve been asked to ghostwrite (let’s see if anything happens).
  • 1, podcast I was on, chatting about the A to Za’atar origin story.
  • 14, number of unwritten book ideas I have. How do I know this? I organized my Pinterest boards (yes, when between projects my procrastination gets specific).
  • 2, tickets purchased to the States this summer (well, I suppose it’s 4 in total, but still, so excited!).
  • 14,064, steps average for the past week.
  • almost 1, year since Poppy came to live with us!

Take Two at Mulholland High: Numbers.

Hello! I come to you from the depths of editing Take Two at Mulholland High.

A few numbers to share with you.

  • 69,523, original word count. I knew this was going to have to change, because I (intentionally) skipped writing two chapters.
  • 72,709, first draft, after adding and subtracting a lot of words. I have a Google doc with 10 pages of cut scenes, so there was a lot of movement, including cutting a few plot lines that went nowhere.
  • 71,104, what I would consider my ‘1.5’ draft. After meticulously going through and removing a ton of unnecessary words, this was the lowest point.
  • 74,818, with added chapters and final second draft.  I’m not sure where the final draft will end up, but I don’t expect a change too much on +/- 1,000 words, which is nearly identical to the first book in the series.

I’m currently waiting to send this draft to my editor, and once back, I will have a few people read the next iteration (it’s not quite there yet). I will say this draft took longer than I thought it would, but that’s okay. I’m happy with the efforts so far (and yes, I know what the third book looks like, which may or may not get written this year).

What’s next? As Mulholland 2 was one of two books (!) I wrote last year (!!), I’m moving on to edit the sequel to Confessions of a Teenage Band Geek.

And yes, the cover for Mulholland 2 is already lined up.