Monday 25 March 2013

Thank you, and silent running

Thanks for all the support during #DABWAHA. Though I'm not progressing to the third round, that does have some positive aspects overall:

1) We did get some nice voting total numbers going for the m/m category. The m/m community seems a lot more mobilised and ready to get active than many m/f sub-categories. That was really cool to watch. I think, now that Abigail Roux has unleashed her minions, we'll see some huge-a** numbers. So, kudos to you, and everybody who voted on their partner's computer, kindle, cafe hotspot, and smartphone. Well done you.

2) I don't have to write a Silvio extra. Now, that may sound cruel or petty, but one of the reasons why I've been so quiet is that, after laying waste to London and taking almost three weeks off (not hanging out on forums much, not really responding to many emails, and staying off reviews), I've found my groove again and am writing (first time in six weeks or so that I'm making serious numbers). While most of that is currently going into the incredibly research-heavy Birds book, I'm also working on the Scorpion sequel (and will get skinned alive if I'm not delivering a decent draft by end-May, which is in two months). Lastly, LA Witt is leaving London tomorrow, and I expect her to be jetlagged for a day or two and then start writing again. We have a half-written cop story that needs finishing, and now we're both in the frame of mind to actually do that, so I expect to be working on three full-sized novels between here and end-May. Considering I have a day job and other activities going and am rarely a very fast writer (unless I'm co-writing), that's a huge amount of work, and writing about Silvio, tempting as it is, will have to take a backseat while I'm wrapping up the novels that people want and that I need to finish or I'll lose them, or the series suffers weak momentum. So, not having to add a fourth project to my already wobbly work pile is a huge relief, actually.

Essentially, the DABWAHA campaign cost me some time (it's HARD to concentrate and stay off the internet when you're nominated, in my case for the first time), but it's good that it's over now and I don't have to put in any more time or effort, because my plate is full, and that's not even covering dessert or snacks. That's one of the reasons why I'd really like to quit my day job, because my time is spoken for when I do my writing, and all promo/interviews/emails/comments is cut from that small block of time I have for writing, and I've always held it that the proof of the writer is in the writing, whereas the rest is just extra.

Which brings me to another thing. I've pretty much managed to stay off reviews (apart from a number shown to me or that I knew would be extremely positive), and I do wonder if my recent surge in wordcount is related to that. I used to beat myself up over reviews, read them daily, used them to procrastinate, but I'm no longer doing that--I stay deliberately away. It's a bit weird to see how deeply ingrained it was, and the old reflexes are still there, but I'm managing pretty well, all told.

For the record: I'm immensely grateful to people who do review my stuff--THANK YOU! And reviews certainly help selling books, especially if they are posted on Amazon or review blogs. (Goodreads seems to have less of an impact.)

While my brain has several modes ("writing", "day job", "depression", "kick-ass optimism", "critical analysis/editing"), I'm trying to keep my brain now in "writing" mode, which is "silent running", to take a term from submarines (the German term "Schleichfahrt" is actually much cooler). I'm largely under the surface, doing my thing, and out of sight, out of mind, for the most part. This can get eerie for people who know me as "out there all the time", but is really my productive mode, which is essentially incompatible with my "loud/out-there mode".

I will eventually come back with a novel, and hopefully three, even though one of them might not see the light of day for a long time, as I'll be seeking agent representation for it. (May work, may not work, but I promised the Dude I'll try.)

That's not to say you won't get a Silvio story, it just means not yet. That character isn't done with me, but similarly, you deserve better than a half-arsed thing I put on the page while my brain is being eaten by three novels at the same time. 

1 comment:

  1. I was pleasantly surprised with vote numbers for GLBT category. Silvio had tough tournament from the beginning... I love both finalist, but Abi's call of Doom is one of the most original campaign I saw and I'm a loyal minion.Dark Side calls me.;)
    As a reader,I'm happy there's a possibility of three new full size novels, but I understand it's a process; combination of mood, state of mind and everyday stuff...I'm looking forward to it.:)