Jul 23, 2012

on the verge of book 2

As I write this I'm standing on the edge, gazing down into the deep, plunging abyss.

The edge, of course, is LUMINANCE HOUR 2 and the deep, plunging abyss are all the words I haven't written yet!

That's... a long way down.

These cliffs aren't foreign to me. I've stood on them many times before, when the stories I dreamed up were no more that images swirling inside my head, waiting to be planted to the page, word by laborious word. I've jumped and let the fragments of words piece themselves into sentences, scenes and stories. It's a really cool thing to see, to realize the world that sprang to life from inside your head.

But sequels... Sequels are strange beasts. You have to take the plot and character arcs you tied up in a neat little bow in book one and unravel them all over again. You have to push your characters and your story further without being gimmicky or predictable. You have to challenge your world-building, your writing, your plot twists and take them to the next level. Add all this with the pressure of writing under contract (with deadlines and editors and fans all piercing you with invisible stares) and you have yourself a book 2 writing scenario.

I'm scaring myself just writing about it!

Apparently I'm not alone in the fear of starting a sequel. A lot of the Luckies (YA and MG authors debuting in 2013) have blogged about this very issue: the paralysis of the blank page. Erin Bowman, author of TAKEN, wrote a great post here about why starting a new novel is terrifying. Ever. Single. Time. It doesn't matter if you've written one book or twenty. Every new project has it's own new string of challenges.

So I'll stand at the edge of this sequel cliff and say, "Okay, Book 2! Bring it on!"


  1. How exciting! You can do it! There are so many cheerleaders in your corner! :D *hugs*

  2. Book two is scary. And challenging. Especially if book 1 is already in reader's hands. My advice is to get as much done as you can before LH1 ARCs come out because that's when the pressure seems to come down tenfold.
    And most importantly...have fun with it. Your characters rock. Let them lead you. :)

    1. Ah! Thank you for your sagely advice, Wendy! *rushes off to finish before ARCs are born!*

  3. I'm in the middle of my Book 2, Ryan, so I know exactly what you mean. It's such a different experience from the un-contracted, nobody-ever-seen-it Book 1 (la-la-la, I'll take all the time I like). But it IS fun. I know your sequel is going to be fabulous!

    1. Oh yes. So different! I'm glad I'm not alone in this, for sure! Good luck with your book 2 as well!