Stage 1: This is a brilliant idea! Once this thing is published, it will make me instantly famous and very, very rich.
Stage 2: Okay, it’s a good idea, but how in the world am I going to make this work?
Stage 3: Whatever possessed me to think this was a good idea? Joss Whedon himself couldn’t figure out how to make all these pieces come together.
Stage 4: Okay, okay, I think I see how it can work. I really am pretty smart.
Stage 5: But I SUCK as a writer. This has to be the most boring pile of manuscript crap ever committed to paper.
Stage 6: So that was a pretty good scene. Clever banter, a little humor. Maybe not every reader will abandon ship on page 1.
Stage 7: I have a book! It didn’t turn out quite like I thought it would (or, it turned out nothing like I thought it would), but there’s a worthwhile story here.
Stage 8: Okay, it’s out in the world. How do I make people aware of its existence?
Here’s where I am with the first three books in my demon series:
Book 1: Stage 8
Book 2: Stage 7 (with sudden trips back to Stage 3 as I work through my editor’s feedback)
Book 3: Stage 3
How about you?