A writer’s life often involves a lot of juggling, and apparently, so does the month of February. This short month had me juggling work on five different books. I know many authors do that, but since I write one book a year, it’s a little unusual for me, and can be very confusing!
When February began, I’d just finished the second draft of book 4 (Scandal and Murder!) and sent it off to my critique partner for her review. The same day, I was contacted by my Spanish publisher. Book 1, A Lady’s Guide to Etiquette and Murder, had just released in Spanish. Hooray! They wanted me to do a short video introducing the book, and they’d add subtitles in Spanish. What a great idea—except I’ve been working on book 4 for the past six months. What’s book 1 about again? Once I refreshed my memory, this is what I came up with:
By the time I finished that little project, I received page proofs in the mail for book 3. (Mischief and Murder!) Page proofs are the final, type-set version of the book, and the author’s last chance to find and correct any errors. There is nothing automated about this process. You just go through the pages, with painstaking care, until your vision blurs. It’s a necessary evil.
Before I finished the page proofs, my critique partner returned book 4 with her comments. I was eager to dig in, but I’d just come up with a great idea for book 5 and I had to jot down my thoughts before I forgot them. One thought led to another and that led to the end of the day, but I finished with a strong blurb and a shaky synopsis. I’ll call that a win.
By the third week of February, I’d finished the page proofs and was back into edits for book 4. But on the 21st I had to put them away to be part of a panel for the Desert Nights-Rising Stars Writers’ Conference at ASU with fellow Desert Sleuths Deborah Ledford, Shannon Baker, Denise Ganley. We were talking about crafting mysteries and our most recent books, which for me is book 2. (Gossip and Murder!)
I’m a very linear person. I like to work on one book until it’s done, then go on to the next one. That’s just how my brain works. But I have to admit, it was fun to have a little project going for each of them this month, even the one that’s just an idea!