I have a new book to write.
For an author, this is good news. And bad news.
The good news is that I have a book to write. I have a contract, and readers who are anxious to get my books into their hands. For this, I am forever grateful.
The bad news, of course, is that a new book means a new work cycle means an end to the goofing around I’ve been doing in the week since I finished my last book. I’ve woven a rug, done some house cleaning (not nearly enough), gone down to Kent State University to speak at an arts and entertainment journalism class. It’s been great to get a taste of life away from the computer.
But now it’s time to get back to reality. At least my reality.
Every book involves a different process, at least for me. Sometimes, it’s an idea that sparks what turns into a book. Sometimes it’s a character or a thread from a previous book that I was to follow up on in one of the later books in the series. The book I’ll start working on today–the second book in the Button Box mystery series–hasn’t exactly come to me in a flash of inspired genius.
Oh, I have the germ of an idea. I know what I’d like my heroine to be involved in, a international button show. And I know who I want to kill (going to keep that one a secret). I think I might have even made some notes about who dun it. What I need now is the plot!
I think I’m going to start by listing all the recurring characters in the series and making notes about who they are, what role they played in the last book, and what they’re up to as the second book opens. Maybe that will help things start to fall into place. After that, it’s time to start outlining.
Stay tuned, as I work things out, I’ll blog about the process. In the meantime, though, I’m curious . . . writers, how do you start a book? Do you plunge in? Or are you slow and methodical? I’d love to start a discussion about how we all approach the process and what does–and doesn’t–work.