Think of yourself coming into a painter’s studio. The wooden floor is splashed with colors. Lots of light streams in from the windows on the south side. Some windows are open and you can hear the murmur from the market below. And the room is full of paintings. Large paintings, small paintings, bright paintings, dark paintings, but – most of them are not yet finished. The painter creates his paining in a flash of inspiration. One morning he is inspired to work on landscapes. The morning after, he wants to paint still life, but his landscapes are not finished yet. They are waiting for the next flash of inspiration.
I write like that. My first book is almost – but not completely – finished. It’s not too far off (I think, I hope), but the scenes I have in my mind right now are from another story, the second book.
Now, my commercial thinking tells me: No! You’ve started Book ♯1 and you have to finish it. Then you have to publish it and then you can start writing another book. But the problem is that it doesn’t work like that. At least not for me. I need to see the scenes in my mind, and I need to write what I’m seeing, and if they are from Book ♯2 or Book ♯6, then that’s what I need to write at that particular moment.
Now, all of this means that my Book ♯1 is not yet published (and my plan was spring 2013. Ha-ha-ha!). And as long as I’m writing Book ♯2, the first one is delayed.
Obviously in a business environment, that doesn’t work. You need to get your product out in the market, get some money coming in and then you can work on another project. I had a real problem dealing with this because I was working on Book ♯1 while at the back of my mind I saw scenes from Book ♯2. And Book ♯1 simply wouldn’t progress. Finally, I let it go. I continued writing Book ♯2.
And I’m enjoying it immensely!
This just means that Book ♯1 will be finished when it’s finished. The second story will be finished when the second story is finished. And that’s just the way it is.