I wasn't able to succeed last year, though I did manage to write some. Beltrunner was born of this process, so I decided to give it another try. There are a few wrinkles in it this time:
First, I'm participating in this with another writer, so that will help both of us. She's quite talented and operates in a similar genre to me, so we "get" each other's sensibilities. Hi, writing buddy, if you're reading this!
Second, I'm taking more cues from popular culture than I usually do. My wife and daughter are very fond of that show The Walking Dead, which I am led to believe is doing reasonably well. Also, the book series Game of Thrones seems to have caught fire and is similarly popular on the small screen. What both of these shows share are a sort of "mosaic" approach to storytelling, which I have not done. So that's happening. In addition, i am scaling back the "science" element, setting this story in a more mundane setting that does not require a lot of investment by the reader. In short, I think I'm trying to expand my audience.
Third and most interesting--this story literally came to me in a dream. That's not just unusual for me: it is unprecedented. Every novel I've written (five in total: A Muse of Fire, Vale of Stars, Stonethinker, Beltrunner, and Caretaker) has been the product of careful, deliberate planning and thought. This one came almost fully formed one night. This is new territory for me, in many ways. It's good to know at my advanced age (which my aforementioned writing buddy never tires of pointing out) I can still be enthusiastic, excited, and downright giddy about a new novel idea.
Oh, and it's very possible I will make this into a series. That's also new.
Be seeing you!