A funny thing just happened. I realized I hadn’t really written over here about what was going on in my writing life lately, and that the last Saints 2 update was on 1/24. I remembered, however, that I once did a 20k in 10 days post, and kind of unraveled what this story was about and why I was writing it. I’ve been steadily writing Saints 2 since that post on 1/24, but it’s felt very stilted and slow. I thought, for sure, that I was nowhere near the pace I’d set for the first Saints.
Uh yeah, so I was wrong. 30k in 15 days? What up, what up!
It’s been very interesting this time around. Weird, almost. The story is coming together quite nicely, and I’m pleased with what I have so far, but it’s different. It’s very different. I guess it’s because it’s the second novel instead of the first? I mean, that makes sense. I’m not doing all the world-building this time around, just some of it. There are some new characters to introduce, and with them, the POVs are stretching wayyyyy out. It’s crazy. By chapter 9 in the first book, we’d had three Landon chapters. I’m about to start chapter 9 in book two, and we’ve had one. Which is not a bad thing, I don’t think, because there’s so much more story to tell with the rest of the characters, so many more things to unravel. Plus, the beginning of the second book is hella crazy, straight out of the gate. Alex, one of my dear friends and new readers, just finished the first book last night, and shouted at me several times in both texts and comments in Google Docs about the cliffhanger. So, the second book opens up right at that cliffhanger and starts peeling it apart. A lot has happened in these nine chapters, and a lot didn’t happen in the first nine chapters of the first book since it was mostly here are our characters and our world and how everything fits together. But man, it’s been wild, and it’s finally starting to calm down a little, so I’ve been doing Nothing scenes. What is a Nothing scene, you ask? My favorite author, Maggie Stiefvater, wrote about The Art of Invisible Movement the other day and wow. Yes. All of that, and more.
There aren’t a lot of Nothing scenes in the first Saints. There are a few, scattered here and there, but right now, I’m in definite need of some. It has been nonstop for eight full chapters, and my poor characters need a break, so there’s just a little
a heck ton of kissing going on right now. One of my biggest requests from my Saints readers is to keep me updated on who their favorite character and favorite couple are throughout the novel because damn, mine changes so often.
But back to the weirdness, because I was just rereading one of my first Saints posts, and um, okay, so this is exactly how I feel about this novel all over again:
This really has been a strange novel to write. Not that I’m anywhere near done, but–well, I just crossed 20k words. Is that crazy? That’s crazy. It’s been 10 days. Yesterday, I was at 10k. I don’t know what’s going on. Because when I was writing Pen boys like this, in an absolute fever, I felt ecstatic. I felt like I was floating. I felt full of magic and light and energy. Right now, I’m just content. I feel good, but not over the top. I feel settled. These chapters are taking a while to write, and instead of just moving on after I write them, I immediately go back and edit them. Already, I want everything to be finely tuned. I want the words to be as perfect as possible. I want the story to be right.
That’s how I felt while writing the first one. It is exactly how I feel while writing this one. I really don’t know what it is about this story that makes me feel so rooted. That’s the perfect word for it. Rooted. I feel grounded. I feel in control. I feel stable. This story, these characters–there’s just something about them.
One of my readers, Chelsea, just finished the Pen boys. I was super excited to see what she thought about the ending, and I felt so invigorated by her comments that I kept telling myself that I wanted to go back and work on the chapters with each new comment, and then I would end up reading or pinning new stuff for Saints. Which was strange, to say the least, because I adore my boys with all my heart, and I want to write their story, but someday? Not right now? I really can’t explain it, guys. I don’t know what it is about the Saints. From the second I first woke up that Monday morning in October last year, they have consumed my every waking thought. (That’s not true, there’s a lot of Alex the Destroyer still going on in there, and always will be.) I don’t even want to write other stories. I just want to write theirs, and I keep waiting to feel terrified because Saints is only two novels, but I’ve already got plans for Saints at sea, and I think I’m just going to keep writing in this universe.
I don’t know.
I don’t know.
Is that okay?
Is it okay that I don’t know what the heck is going on? Why I’m so in love with these characters and their story, but in a very muted sort of way?
I think it’s okay. I think it means I found the story I was supposed to be writing all along. Or maybe it just means it’s a good story, who knows. Maybe it’s not all wishy-washy, and maybe it’s just a book, and I’m just a weirdo. But maybe it’s Something More.
I don’t know. I really don’t. But I do know that I’ve written 30k in 15 days, and that I’m getting kind of close to the end of part one, and I’m excited, I’m really damn excited, about where this novel is going. It’s definitely only going to be two, so I’ll actually have to end it this time instead of just throwing a cliffhanger at you and running away. But I’m not even worried about that. I know a few things I want to do at the end of this novel to tie everything up (spoiler/translation: give Miles a freaking viper, it’s happening, prepare yourself for his mania), and then it’s time to send Henry and Cole & Co. off into the Vast Sea and see what happens.
And since we’re onto our second month of 2018, I figured it’s about time to check in with my 2018 goals.
So, Saints is going out, Saints 2 is getting written, Alex the Destroyer is getting edited–what else? I’m going to write both the first Pen boys summer novella and their junior year, and hopefully have at least the summer novella edited by the end of the year. I’m also planning on finally writing one of the following: Mason, the desert witch (Shri), or Pendulum (vampire detective). In a crazy world, I’d also write Saints at sea, but we’ll see.
Alex the Destroyer has been edited and is ready for consumption, though he’ll continue to collect dust on my hard drive since I’m handing Saints to my readers next. I still have high hopes that I’ll be able to write at least the Pen boys summer novella, but I’m feeling like their sophomore year might not happen since I’m probably going to write Saints at sea instead of that. I still really, really want to write at least Mason, Shri, or Pendulum, and I think the last one is going to be the one that happens, but again, we’ll see.
So, it seems I’m on target for my reading (12 read so far!) and writing goals for this year. Happy Thursday!
PSS (Post Script Spoilers): In the last 15 days, I’ve done quite a bit of research on how much blood the body can lose before you die (HA, sorry not sorry), poring over popular names, trying to read books with villainous boys (heyyyy, Vicious), and the Cliffs of Dover. Not a ton of exciting stuff, but just you wait. Hell is coming.