I have been taking writing very slowly. There is this nagging voice in the back of my brain telling me I can’t do it anymore. There is a lot of self doubt and worry with each page, which is why my editor K. Smith has been a godsend lately.
I try to ignore it, but sometimes it is really hard because it gets louder than my own thoughts. I’ve been a little afraid of writing since I published Fortified Dreams because that book came to me so easily. I had it written in just three weeks. And it is my favorite of all the books I have written. It is the only D&R novel, I have sat down and actually read cover to cover.
However, since the changes started in June, that voice has been my constant writing companion, so I am taking it slow. I used to have goals like 8,000 words between 9 pm – 1 am. Now I have goals like 1,500 words between 9 am – 1 pm as I learn to be a daytime writer and I know that voice is the creature that creates rambling illogical unintelligible gibberish that occasionally happens in my blog posts. I know it and still can’t silence it. It’s not a very nice creature. I’d like to force feed it a handful of Xanax and tell it to chill the fuck out. Of course, I can’t because my brain doesn’t function real well on Xanax either.
There’s some insight into the mind of a writer…. our brains create things good or bad and we have to live with them. It’s like being mentally ill, in a weird way. There’s not any medication that can treat it, so we write because that is the treatment. To get the voices out on paper and silence them.
I still have amazing days where I add a few thousand words in a matter of hours. But they aren’t like before and I’m okay with that. People used to joke that I was a writing machine, but some of the cogs seem to have lost their teeth and slowed down a little bit. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, just a thing. Give me a year or two and I’ll be back to churning out novels like Fortified Dreams in a matter of weeks, not months.
Until then, I’m finding my groove slowly. And instead of working on the incredibly dark Demonic Dreams which starts where Flawless Dreams left off with Aislinn and Gabriel in the clutches of a madman, I’m working on The Dysfunctional Mob. Since I switched gears to the lighter novella, the writing has gotten smoother. It isn’t just that it’s lighter or shorter because it’s a novella not a novel, it’s that it isn’t about pain and suffering nearly as much. A change from my everyday so to speak. I do have some date goals in my head. They aren’t firm and I’m not going to announce them because I don’t want to stress myself out if I miss them, but date goals are much further along than I was in September or October or November when I was thinking it was a lost cause and I’d never find my voice again because of that thing in my head filling me with self doubt.
Plus, I feel if I can write The Dysfunctional Mob and get it finished, it will prove to myself that I can still write which might pave the way for easier writing on Demonic Dreams.
Day writing does have an unexpected and wonderful side effect! I can play video games at night. A lot of people relax by watching TV, but I don’t find it relaxes me. It doesn’t stress me out, it just doesn’t do anything for me, entertain me for a short time. Video games relax me. They put my mind at ease and prepare me for bed because I don’t have that nagging creature telling me what I can’t do when I play games and it doesn’t matter if I think it’s perfect or not. Day writing means I am playing more video games and writing more. It’s kind of perfect for me actually. And I am finding myself happier as a result.
So, the next book I release will be The Dysfunctional Mob. If you haven’t read The Dysfunctional Chronicles, I do recommend them. I get a lot of complaints about the entire series being novellas, but sometimes that’s the perfect length for a book or series and Nadine’s stories can be told in 30,000 words or less. However, they are much lighter than Dreams & Reality and they are fun. My sense of humor comes out in them more, which is still kinda dark, but I consider them crime comedies, so it works. However, for every complaint there is someone there telling me it is the funniest fiction book they have ever read, which makes me feel good since they are meant to be comedies. They are not cozy mystery style comedies, there is a touch of sedated romance in them, but there is blood, gore, swearing, everything that a cozy mystery can’t have, and there is always a mystery. I consider them more mystery than I do Dreams & Reality.
For my die hard, D&R readers I know that’s a blow to think that Nadine Daniels will come out first, but I want to make sure I can write Demonic Dreams and give it the touches that make it a D&R book… in other words, I don’t want to screw it up. So writing The Dysfunctional Mob is my test run for real writing again and making me think on my feet and working out plot problems without being 20 chapters into something that needs to be completely rewritten, which is fuel for that nagging creature in my head. Hold on a little longer for your Aislinn fix and try to get into Nadine Daniels and her dysfunctional life if you haven’t already. The first one, The Dysfunctional Affair is free everywhere in ebook form. The Dysfunctional Mob will be number 7 in the series. If you wait a few more months or until I get #10 in the series written, book 2 The Dysfunctional Valentine will most likely join my list of perma-free books. Having the first 2 D&R books free boosted sales tremendously on the series, as a matter of fact, it made it my best selling series. So eventually, I’ll make one and two free in The Dysfunctional Chronicles to see if that boosts the sales of it. Sadly right now, I still need the $2.31 I get from the sale of The Dysfunctional Valentine, which is a chicken and egg problem. I could probably sell more of the entire series if it was free, but whatever…