Mar 28, 2011
Cowardice and Sequels
The second book in my series, The Unfinished Song: Taboo, launches today. It's all about being brave enough to break rules if those rules are wrong. Which makes it especially ironic for me to make this admission: I'm a complete coward.
I wait with trepidation to see if anyone will buy the sequel, and if they buy it, if anyone will like it. It's ridiculous, I'm sure, but I'm really terrified no one will. What if they people who read Book 1, Initiate, and hate book two? Also, in this book, more than the first, I edge ever so gently toward more controversial subjects. (Book 3, Sacrifice, will be the real dousy, though.) It's all very well to tell myself I will remain true to my artistic vision no matter what anyone else says, but then I am faced with real reader reaction, and I can't help shaking.
Like I said, I'm a big coward.
It's so much easier to write when you are unpublished and don't have to worry about whether anyone will actually like it.
It's deadly to a writer to fret over what people think, or try to anticipate it. (You can't, anyway.) Some readers, even if they don't like every last bit about the book, will like enough that they will trust me to take the rest of the journey down the road to the concluding volume. Some readers will fall by the wayside. I have to hope that I can more eager readers as more books come out, not lose them, but there's not any guarantee. I have to be true to the story, even if I am afraid.
If you see someone stumbling around on a road, moving forward even as she has her hands over her eyes, that's me, going ahead with the revisions on the next book, Sacrifice, which is due out at the end of May.