When I’m asked why I write, the answer is pretty straightforward—there’s a story (an idea or a scene or a character or a combination of all three) in my head that's occupying my internal landscape, and the only way to maintain some semblance of sanity is to write it down. Once I start writing, I fall in love with the process of transforming whatever is living in my imagination into something visible. This has the advantage of clarifying and creating sense out of what is often a nebulous concept.
The beauty of this misty amorphous idea is its openness—the potential is cosmic—especially when writing science-fiction/fantasy/urban fantasy. The downside is while I’m having a brilliant time in my own sweet world, I can’t share it in this form. The upside of writing and publishing a book is that the conversion from abstract to concrete is complete.
Of course, there is always the possibility that no one else on the planet has any interest in what goes on inside my head, but the desire to share, to give back, and, hopefully, for others to enjoy my stories is a powerful one.
Veiled Planet started life in 2014, written in a blast of furious activity as a NaNoWriMo project. This is an annual internet-based creative writing challenge that takes place during the month of November where the goal is to write 1,667 words a day, and emerge at the end with a 50,000 word first draft of a novel. This is a serious task if you’re working, have kids, or any kind of social life, but gives aspiring writers the chance to flex and build their creative muscles. The sense of achievement I got from participating and achieving my target inspired me to keep writing.
I put the rough draft aside and kept it as something to work on while I rested whatever novel I was writing at the time. Okay, it has taken several years more than anticipated to expand and edit that draft. However, Veiled Planet is due back from my editor at the end of this week, and that means the pre-publish butterflies are starting to flutter as I’m aiming to publish mid-June. This is the first book in the Hidden World Trilogy, though I’ve made a promise to myself that Book Two will not take another three years to write and publish.
I’ve always read science fiction since my older brother started buying paperbacks way back when, but apart from a flash fiction story, this is my first sci-fi novel. The book also falls into the YA (young adult) category as the heroine, Kara, is eighteen, and the story tells of her journey from an introverted student to a strong young woman who faces tremendous odds in a fight to choose her destiny. (Yes, that’s me cheering ‘Go, Kara!’ from the sidelines.)
I’m thrilled, apprehensive, and can’t wait to release Veiled Planet.
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