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Sunday, January 16, 2011

What next???? Help me decide!!

Along with finishing a book comes the fun part of figuring out what to write next. I have three or four choices that I've been playing with and I'm having a lot of trouble deciding. I thought I'd throw out these ideas to you and see what my followers think.

1. Write Sam's Wish. I have the sequel to Nikki's Wish mostly outlined, the first 8 or so chapters in my head, and I wrote a brief first chapter. I know that they say not to write the sequel until you actually get a contract for the first one, but this story is the most clear in my mind right now. I know exactly where I want it to go and I know the characters well. Should I get a head start??

2. Bettina (will be renamed) - is set in the 1960's about a boy who believes he's the reincarnation of a famous bootlegger/bank robber from the 1930's. In the course of the book there's a hot romance, some physical abuse and a possible murder. It's pretty much outlined, but the problem is that I'm not sure if I can do justice to the MC, Erik. I want the atmosphere of the book to be dark, sort of like Fight Club, but I don't know if my writing skills are up to that. I'm also still debating where to start the book. Do I start where I have it currently, with Erik being kind of an overly confident, overly popular teen because he knows where he's been previously or do I back it up and make him kind of repressed until he comes to the conclusion that he was this dynamic reincarnated person and then he comes out of his shell so to speak? All of this leads up to him standing up against his father, if that helps. The other problem is that I want to weave a lot of the history of the 1930's into this one and again I'm not sure if I'm up to it having never done any historical writing. Maybe it'll come out sounding silly.

3. Daniel's Song - this would be a stand alone and yet sort of a spin-off to Nikki's Wish. It's about a boy opera singer who wanted so badly to keep his voice that he made a bargain with the devil. Later, Daniel finds out that boys with voices like his were destined to be guardian angels and that's why they were given the voices of angels. The story itself would begin after Daniel's made the bargain - at this point in his life he's a rock star and getting involved in sex and drugs and stuff because he figures what's the dif, he's already going to hell. I think that it needs to be completely re-outlined because I want to include a second MC, a girl who is deaf and has the ability to see people who are marked for hell. Obviously she sees Daniel's marks and tries to help him. And there's romance between the two. A given.

4. Untitled middle grade - this is more just a premise that I started working on about a month ago. It's about three brothers who are cursed by gypsies with the old saying, ''hear no evil, see no evil, and speak no evil". So the three brothers are respectively deaf, blind, and mute (I'm not sure why I keep coming back to the idea of my characters being handicapped, is it strange?). The eldest brother goes missing in the second chapter and the rest of the book would be about the other two doing everything it takes to find him. It needs to have a lot of action in it - as per my son's request. It's not outlined and I have no idea where the story would take me, but then again, I didn't have Nikki's Wish outlined at all when I started and I think that my writing style is well-suited towards boy middle-grade type books.

So those are my four choices. I would really love to do Sam's Wish, but I know that I shouldn't. My second choice would be Daniel's Song, but the market is flooded with fallen angel books right now, and while Daniel isn't really a fallen angel (he's more of an angel that never was), I'm not sure if it's the right choice either. So, any opinions guys? Your wisdom is much appreciated. :)


Karla Nellenbach said...

You should definitely go with what you're feeling right now. I know from experience that forcing your way through what others have asked for only causes you to beat your head against the wall. And that doesn't help anyone.

Although, if I were you, I'd try to steer clear of writing a sequel until you've got representation and then talk to the agent about the need for a sequel.

Hope that helps :)

Michelle said...

Oh gosh, I'm having the same problem - I've started writing the sequel to my book I'm querying. Bad, bad me! You really shouldn't do it, but since I'm a hypocrite I can't advise against it! :P

I kinda like the sound of Bettina! But, as always, write what you want to!

Sniffly Kitty said...

Why do they say not to write the sequel? Is it because of how much editing will happen with the first?

Mostly I think, any writing is good practice whether or not it gets published~~

Joann Swanson said...

What a wonderful problem to have! So many ideas, so little time... :) I think whatever story is knocking the loudest should be your focus. Not sure I agree with what a lot of folks say about sequels pre-publication. I'm with Sniffly Kitty (and not just because I love his/her name) - any writing is great practice.

LM Preston said...

I know how you feel. Go with Betina. The benefit with starting something other than the next book in a series is that you have more to sell, increasing your chances of finding representation. In my case by the time my first book got published, I'd written the first books to 2 other series.

Angie said...

Sniffly - yep that's sort of the idea and along with what LM Preston said, then you have more work to shop around. I do agree that any writing is good practice, but on the other hand it took me 18 months to write this first novel. I don't want to waste time with something that may never have a chance.

I'm kind of thinking, wow, two votes for Bettina. I was starting to lean more towards the MG novel because it'll be shorter, but maybe I'll give it some more thought. Still looking for opinions though. And thanks so much for the input guys!!

Angelica R. Jackson said...

How can I be expected to help you decide, when I can't make up my own mind? ;)

But seriously, I'm not going to cast a vote because I think you need to follow your own heart on this one. If your heart isn't in it, you may not make the kind of progress you want (or the story deserves).

Nomes said...

these all sounds awesome.

the lazy me would be saying give yourself a month to play around with whichever one you feel like :) i get that oyou want to keep writing about sam and nikki :) i'd love to read more of them myself :)

love all your ideas BTW. i struggle with this A LOT. being indecisive...

Melanie said...

i'm for bettina because i friggin loved what i read and it's such a great, great story/concept.

KO: The Insect Collector said...

This is the good kind of problem, right?
I think writing a sequel to an unsold book is tricky, but I also (personally) have to write the book that's on my mind at a given point.

Ellen said...

The MG idea (slightly) reminds me of Nancy Farmer's the Ear, the Eye and the Arm. Have you read it? :) Course, they're not handicapped, per-say, more like have super-powers that can sometimes be a handicap... But they're solving a kidnapping! >.>
I like the 1960s/30s historical idea. But that might just be cause I'm trying to do a historical for the first time, and it's scary/fun :)



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