I’m not one for multi-tasking. For me, it doesn’t work. I can toss junk mail while I’m on hold, but I have no illusions that I can do two tasks at once and do justice to either.
So while I’ve sometimes envied authors their giant traditional publishing contracts, I’ve never envied them their workloads: the writing of a complete book in three months, during which time they make revisions on the previous book, proof the galleys of two books ago, and plot the next book. I could do all that sequentially, but not concurrently.
Imagine my surprise when I found myself, as an indie author, in a similar situation.
I finished my three-book series about the haphazard CIA agent—when? Last winter? It’s only been months, but it feels like years ago. I have the revision letters of all three books from my dev editor sitting on my hard drive. I have begun changes on the first book. I’m about 10% in on that one.
In the meantime, I’ve started the new project, and it’s not going well. I’ve rewritten the first chapter about five times. It still doesn’t work. Same with chapters two and three. I found some juice for chapter four, but the ideas my critique group put forward to improve the opening will mean that chapter four will have to change substantially.
The WIP is miles different from the three-book Haphazard CIA series. This book is in a serious FBI series. (What is it with me and cops?) I have to think harder with this one, because in addition to putting in the emotional arcs and all that, the crime has to make sense to people who read actual police procedurals.
To keep ahead of my critique group and keep the momentum going, I keep working on the WIP. It sucks up all my time, and I don’t go back to the Haphazard CIA. The dev editor has given me a lot to think about, and right now I can’t think about it. I don’t have the bandwidth. I’ve moved on to this other world.
However, I’d sure like to get those CIA books published. But how? And when?
You guys must work on different series simultaneously. What do you do?