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Author Nancy J. Cohen discusses the writing process and life as a Florida resident.

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The Great Void

Posted by Nancy J. Cohen on November 2, 2010

I finished the second book in my paranormal trilogy at 444 pages. This comes as a great relief but with one downside. It leaves me mentally floating in a void. I want to take a break and catch up on all the household chores left by the wayside the last few months, but my mind needs an anchor. That’s usually a WIP. It’s what I wake up eager to work on every day, a purpose, a calling if you will. But before I begin writing again, I need to develop the characters and the plot for the next story. Sometimes, this takes a while, because the characters have to brew in my head and the plot needs time to gel. I can tackle these stacks of papers in my office in the meantime, free of a daily writing schedule.

With vacant time, I can also turn to my final backlist book that needs conversion to digital format. It needs quite a bit of revision, not only sentence tightening, but adding a glossary and fixing paragraphs where I jump POVs. This task is likely to take me several months. Keeper of the Rings is 521 pages, a long book. But those characters are haunting me. A new generation of readers are waiting to discover Leena and Taurin’s story. And I’d like to bring it to them. So I am working on this revision, while also spending time cleaning the office. It’s a good time for a break with the holidays approaching, vacations coming, and relatives soon to visit.

Or I may zero in on a target book depending on my agent’s advice. Part of me wants to lounge around for a few months and part of me doesn’t. Can a writer ever be happy? We’re damned if we do and we’re damned if we don’t. We can’t wait to finish a book and have time to relax but then our mind stretches for a new challenge.


5 Responses to “The Great Void”

  1. You’re right, writers are never happy – I guess that’s where the tortured artist thing comes into play. But you should take this time to clear your mind and recharge. Often that when the best ideas are born. Just relax and don’t force it.

  2. I feel your pain! As soon as I finish a book I want to jump into everything that needs to be done in my house but I have too many ideas for new books and stories – they never leave me alone!
    Congratulations on finishing the book.

  3. M. E. Kemp said

    Nancy – it sort of depends upon how fast you write. I can only get out a book a year at the rate I go, but I’ve got my new book, DEATH OF A DANCNG MASTER, coming out on Nov. 20th and I’m all ready well into the next book set on Cape Cod. I think you have to keep writing, but not necessarily a whole book. Take a break and do short stories for instance. That works for me, anyway. Best of luck.

  4. We took a break to Orlando and now I’m back at work. Just got edits for Shear Murder so that’ll keep me busy. There’s always something. I’m not one to be idle for long.

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