One of the most frustrating things I deal with as a writer (this is in terms of writing and editing, not the process of actually getting our work published) is the ominous in-between stage. It’s that moment (or seemingly endless period of subsequent moments) after I am done with a book (all the way done) and I need to start work on the next project. I must write new material sometimes because I go a little batty and become something of a monster to live with if I don’t.
However, I also have four completed novels waiting for additional editing (not including the three that are sequels to books my agent already has), eight novels that are partially written and placed on hold for assorted reasons (two of these are also sequels), a novella awaiting editing and numerous rough outlines for other novel ideas. These are all books I want to bring to completion and send out into the world. The problem is deciding which one’s next?
The process goes something like this: I’ll start to work on one, then something in that book or in my daily life will make me thing of a different one and I suddenly find myself yearning to finish that one next. It’s almost as if my characters are in my head battling for my attention. It’s a cerebral Thunderdome and THERE CAN BE ONLY ONE!
Do I force the issue or wait until someone wins? Writers, do you suffer this problem? If so, how do you deal with it?