Last week, I went on and on about all the reasons I love my current WIP. This week, I’m going to pull a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde on you and talk about why every reason I love my WIP is also a reason why I fear and loath it.
1) Revisiting my favorite characters. OK, so I love my characters. That’s not news to anyone who reads this blog. But coming back to them in the second book is proving difficult, especially because I’m challenged to make them each more complex, with lots of issues that explore shame and guilt and doubt. Emotionally, this second outing with my cast is sapping me.
2) Getting deeper, and darker. What is too dark? What is not dark enough? Danger and paranormal happenings need to increase with the sequel, but I’m not sure I know where the line is, if I’m way over it, or if I’m sailing way below it.
3) New things to research. Not only does research take time, I also have the tendency to obsess. I want to make sure everything is factual, or at least hovering near factual. Once I start researching, it’s hard to stop, and I live in fear of missing something that might require a change in the direction of my story.
4) I’ve already sold it. But what if my editor thinks it’s shabby? What if it can’t be salvaged? What if, after all this work, it’s decided Everlasting doesn’t deserve a sequel? What if, what if, what if…
5) The race is on. A few weeks ago, I wanted to work on a new project. I got some seriously excited feedback at a retreat where I read the first chapter (and the author of my all-time favorite series as a kid—Sweet Valley Twins—tapped me on the shoulder to tell me how stunning my reading was!). But I had this crazy goal to complete my first draft of the sequel before the contract arrived, and I denied myself. It’s still driving me nuts!