More appropriately, it’s a dilemma for someone who tests out with a J as the last letter for the Meyers-Briggs. Judgmental, better known as someone who is more attuned to the result than the P, the process.
I normally spend minimal time between books. Uusually researching the next book before the prior book is finished, so I can dive right into the writing, once the current book is into the production cycle.
Hallows Eve has been done for a while and is ready for a 1 October pub date. Pre-orders on kindle and print book are live, and just waiting on final approval of the audio.
But I’m not writing it yet. For weeks now I’ve been re-reading the series, researching, but most importantly, I’ve been thinking. I know, surprising for those who know me.
It makes me irritable and not nice to be around. Even Cool Gus isn’t thrilled with me when I’m like this. I hit this sometimes when I’m in the midst of writing a book. When I know something isn’t right and I have to hit pause until I sort it out. And you can’t make it happen. It has to come. That doesn’t mean I’m not working. Plenty of other things to do to be an author, like run a business.
And I’m researching, making notes, re-reading books. I’m getting things out of my head (what’s in there is dark and dangerous and not real). Putting it down in some format makes it real. So it’s time for the Excel Spreadsheet and the Mindnode (above). I have to see what the pieces and parts are. I’m a big picture guy. Terrible with details. Just ask my wife. “Bob, go get X from the bedroom.” I come back without X. She’s learned to say: “Bob, go get X from the dresser in the main room, second drawer from top on the right, on the left side. Underneath the t-shirts. It’s red. It looks like a pair of shorts, because it is a pair of shorts. Got it?”
And I come back without the shorts. Seriously, she wants to hide something from me in the fridge, it’s easy. Just put it behind something. Just a little while ago she pulled out some apples and said “Here are the apples you bought. They’re going in this drawer to stay fresh, but I know you’ll never look in this drawer.”
I think I’ll go get an apple right now.
Anyway. Between books is tough. Not pushing ahead with the writing is hard. But I want to do it better. Put out a better book every time I write. So I’m focusing on some aspects here that I usually rush through. Just had a great breakthrough while lying down for my mind-floating. I set my timer on my iPhone for 20 minutes and lie down, usually with Cool Gus lying his head on my feet. And I just let my mind float.
It’s a tough job, but someone has to do it.
And I remembered the very first Area 51 book. And had one of those Ah ha! moments. That book came out 20 years ago under a pen name. The flying saucer on the cover? Not in the book. But I’ve gotten plenty of letters from kids over the years telling me that’s why they got the book. So maybe the cover designer was smarter than me. Not that it’s that hard.
Nothing but good times ahead.
And I will be writing soon!