From the beginning, I’d thought that Evernight would come out in fall of this year, but it turns out I’m wrong; apparently the plan has long been for the book to be published in summer 2008. Although I’m eager to see my book in print, I really think the later date is going to work better for a lot of reasons. But the suspense!
I am sort of in limbo right now, waiting for my editorial notes on Evernight before I start work on book two in the series, Stargazer. I already know a lot of what happens — I submitted a rough outline for books two through four back in October, and my editor gave me the thumbs-up for the overall plot structure — but I’d still feel more comfortable plunging into the detailed outline after I know precisely what will and won’t change in Evernight.
Speaking of detailed outlines, I checked out First Draft in 30 Days: This isn’t about writing an entire book in 30 days — it’s about building an extremely comprehensive outline, from which your “second draft,” aka what anybody else would consider the “first draft,” will flow very quickly.
This book is probably extremely useful to writers who haven’t used outlines in the past, but I’ve blocked stories out for years, so I didn’t learn as much. However, I think a lot of writers are reluctant to outline for the wrong reasons, feeling that it will hinder creativity. Although this is undoubtedly true for many writers — and more power to every one of you — I think inspiration is sometimes romanticized as something that has to be completely spontaneous. I personally find outlining to be one of the most enjoyable parts of the entire process, and the outline never feels like a constraint on my writing. Instead, it provides support, and a baseline level of comfort.
And now I’ve somehow managed to make an outline sound like a sports bra. Clearly I need coffee.
In short: I’d recommend this book to anybody who hasn’t outlined in the past and wants to see how it would work, taken to an extreme. Even as an outliner, I feel like I’ve gotten something out of it. The outline for Evernight wasn’t extremely detailed, which meant I spent a solid six weeks wrestling with the pacing in the middle section of the book. I’d already decided to do something much more detailed for Stargazer, and this helped me focus on how to do that.
While waiting for my editorial notes, I am finishing up what will probably be the last long fanfic story I write for a while. (The fic will still be written, but for the sake of my sanity, not to mention avoiding carpal tunnel syndrome, I’m going to have to keep it to shorter pieces!) I’m also poking at a romantic thriller idea that I’d like to dive into between books two and three.
In short, even though summer 2008 feels like it’s a million years away, that’s also probably the next chance I’ll have to look up from my keyboard. Now, to locate coffee —
FYI, the normal lag time between turning in a book and publishing of same is 12-18 months. Sometimes it’s less, but as a general rule it’s that far ahead for ease of production.
(Outline as sports bra? Gotta remember that one…..)
This analogy embarrassed me a bit when I wrote it, but since then I’ve come to realize it’s pretty much on the money.
I have never been an outliner, but as I get more interested in writing plottily that’s becoming an Issue. Maybe I should check this out.
Want to borrow mine?
Please! I looked for it in the local B&N, to no avail.
BTW, it’s my THIRD anniversary at my job, and we still haven’t gone to Katz’s, though not for lack of not-trying…
Hmm, sounds pretty good. Maybe it will get
and me out of our writing stagnation. There’s still fic, but our novel has ground to a sad halt.
I think inspiration is sometimes romanticized as something that has to be completely spontaneous.
Isn’t that Wordsworth’s fault? (Or are all my lit teachers cringing in pain right now?) “Spontanous over flow of emotion recall in tranquility” – or something close to that. Ah, early Romantics. They manage to be utter genius and kinda boring at the same time.
I really think outlining is a joy and a pleasure. There’s something to be said for following the spontaneous inspiration, but I think it’s more likely to arise while you’re following your road, not searching for it.
You are probably right re: Wordsworth.
I’m sorry to hear that Evernight (<-- ooh, book italics!) won't be coming out as soon you'd thought, but it does give us fans a chance to suck more people in during the extra time... :)
I have since been informed that oftentimes editors will fib to first-time writers, whose ability to make deadlines has not yet been established. Did this happen to me? No idea, but I’m fine with it either way. 😀
Off-topic: I heard that your agent no longer works at Writers House. Where is she now? She was interested in seeing my new novels. Thanks!
Oh, and I’ve been writing synopses before I dive into first or second drafts of novels. It makes plot holes so much more obvious. Three cheers for outlining!
She is weighing options! But never fear, she should alight somewhere else in short order.
Outlining! It is our friend. I am presently hard at work on an outline for Potential Adult Romantic Suspense novel, which at this point has 30 chapters, plots and subplots but requires me to do some research before it can really gel and I can hit the ground running.
Thanks for the info! Now, back to work on my young adult urban fantasy synopsis…