That thing I keep forgetting to mention, i.e. the second novel

Oh, that’s right, I have a blog.

I’d hoped to get the manuscript for book #2 wrapped up before I left for graduate school, but we know what that road is paved with and where it leads. As I was getting acclimated to Vancouver and life as a graduate student, and while I was writing a thesis proposal and getting stories ready for critique (and trying to remember how to draw for my graphic novel class), I was also writing about Amazons, gods and goddesses, a vicious three-headed dog, and a sixteen-year-old high school junior who’s trying to make sense of all of it and, maybe, learn some things about trust, courage, and love while he’s at it.

Writing this book was really fun—when I was a kid, I read voraciously for escapism. At the same time I was looking for characters who were like me, even if I wasn’t sure who “me” was. (I figured maybe I’d find a character who’d help me answer that question.) Jamie’s not like me, not really, but he’s someone I would have liked to come across in the books I was reading. Maybe someone will pick up the book and feel the same way about him.

Writing this book was also a course in risk taking of a different kind for me. I suppose the last one was as well—changing from third to first person between the second and third drafts on Detours was nerve-racking at the time, but in the end it worked out for the best. In the case of the second book, I came to a point in the story where I departed from my outline significantly. If I were to think of my characters as real, living people (and while I’m not so far off the deep end that I’m talking to them, they’ve taken up a lot of space in my head for the past three years), I’d say what I did to them was downright cruel. After writing one scene, I stopped and sat and stared at the screen for a while and thought, Can I really do that?

Yeah, I really can.