I often scratch my head when I see the pile of books on my daughter's bedside table, not because it's messy but because she will read 4 and 5 books at a time! That just doesn't make sense to me although I am finding more and more people who partake in the activity of multiple-book-at-a-time reading. As I pondered how she does it, I heard that little voice inside asking me one of those questions in that tone that I know is going to make me say "duh" to myself. The voice simply said "what about you writing more than one story at a time?" Well, of course I had to counter that my multiple story writing is somehow different. Not exactly able to pinpoint how it is different, I decided to drop the whole questioning of the multiple book reading issue. Instead I began to focus on why/how I often work on more than one story at a time.
We all know I am working on my novel A Marriage of Necessity, which is somewhat the focus of this blog...or the process and thoughts that go along with writing a book anyway. But, you may not know that I do additional writing at the same time. I write this blog for one thing. I do website content writing. I have to answer the never ending stream of emails that come in every day and that is writing as far as I'm concerned. I often answer a simple email with the return of an email the length of a small book. Although I have not taken the challenge in a few weeks, I almost always enter the weekly writing challenge on FaithWriters.com which requires a work of 750 words or less in response to a simple prompt. Their prompt for this week is "shhh" which I have not yet decided if I will do.
I'm also working on additional books of short stories. I have my Love With A Twist Of Lime that was to be a trilogy of stories (actually, it started out as all short stories and has continued to evolve). The "story" with the same name as the book title (handwritten :( at the moment, of course) ended up being too long for a short and then was to be the anchor of the trilogy. The other two that were to go with it then ended up being too long; one being A Marriage of Necessity! I let my stories tell themselves. I CAN force them into a certain word count but I prefer not to. So, I continued to write these twisty lovey limey stories (as co-writer Pat likes to call them) but they will mostly be hosted in a book titled Echoed Heartbeats: when you feel his heart beat next to yours. I've already designed the cover for that one even! I'm excited about those stories because they are love stories and we all know that's right up my alley. The difference is they all have a twist or something unexpected thrown in. They've been fun to write and I'm pretty sure that comes through. Sometime I'll have to post a couple here on the blog to give you a feel of what they will be like.
So now back to multistory writing....I REALLY want to get finished with A Marriage of Necessity. Thankfully, as a self-publisher, I have the luxury of changing my timelines though one must be careful about not following through with self-mandated goals....another blog entry idea, perhaps? I will say I have actually written the ending of Marriage and am now writing to that ending from where I left off when the ending demanded to be written. I'm anxious in a good way for everyone to read it. Considering the fact that this story was to be part of the Twisty Lovey Limey stories, the ending is unexpected but good. I love happy ever after. Is that too much to give away? I hope not! Scroll down and read my profile. It says, in part, "Her stories almost always have a happy-ever-after ending and leave you feeling satisfied that the characters have had or are walking into a life of complete fulfillment." A Marriage of Necessity will be no different. I don't like sad....or sad endings, I should say. There are certainly sad parts in many of my stories. And I am constantly reminded by my husband that I did, in fact, have the dog die in my first children's book. BUT Sadie has a wonderful life and the book concentrates on the good aspects of her life as well as educating on the benefits of rescue organizations. Her death is also depicted as a wonderful reunion with her friend Sami as she crosses the Rainbow Bridge to meet her. (How Sadie Learned to SMILE).
Tangents....that seems to be the way my day is going. BACK to multi-story writing! I was NOT going to multi-story write while working on Marriage. I told myself I would buckle down and work on nothing else (hence the reason I have ignored FaithWriters and other challenges as of late). Last week, however.....you guessed it....another story began knocking. I tried, I REALLY tried to ignore it. It won and over the weekend I began writing on it. Good news.....I was having a bit of a block on Marriage. That was part of the reason I decided to give in to this new story. Guess what? The block went away and what is pouring forth is, in my opinion, better than what it would have been. Sometimes creativity frees one up for greater creativity. Bottling myself in and mandating a one-story regimen simply wasn't working....for me. Writers come in all different shapes and sizes and genres and styles. You may not be able to work on more than one or, like me, you may find that limiting yourself clogs your brain instead of focusing it.
How many books do you read at a time? How many stories do you write at a time? How does this affect your work? I'd love to read your side.....