Cover Crops

An author friend of mine hired a graphic designer and has been working with her on where to actually crop the actual cover art for her actual debut novel to be published very, very soon, which is super exciting, but that isn't what this post is about. This post is about compost! Metaphorically speaking. And now that I've got the dad jokes out of the way...

Eight years ago, I literally composted printouts of my work while dreaming that I might finish my debut and begin my novel writing career within months. Ha!

Instead, a few months later, I got pregnant. As it turned out, pregnancy and motherhood were extremely distracting from my writing goals, and I accepted that, because I wanted to make a baby even more than I wanted to make a book. Eight years later, I'm still glad I slowed down my writing to become a family woman. I was an overly optimistic young person with few important responsibilities, which is excellent for starting a family and garbage for writing a good novel.

Meanwhile, I never gave up on that writing career, I just slowed it way, way down. Eight years later, I have about a decade of research on the 11th century Eastern Hemisphere under my maternity belt and much more experience as a novel reader and writer. The longer I spend practicing the writing of novels, the better they get. So the way I see it, the longer I wait to release a debut novel, the better that debut is going to be.

I am now developing the middle bits of my historical thriller, Matka Danu Miklagarth, fantasizing about making it my real debut novel (this is the one, I swear!), and turning over some ideas about ripping apart my musty fantasy work (called at various times Sleeping Beauty and the Beast of Vepreskastel, Briars and Black Hellebore, and The Grove of Thorismud) and reusing the story material to make up a very silly trilogy of legends written by a secondary character in Matka.

Whatever comes of my old fantasies, je ne regrette rien--as my man-muse Till Lindemann sang more than eight years ago on Rammstein's last album. I'm trying to be patient about that.

In the mean mean meantime, I'm thinking of all my previous novel attempts and ideas and drafts and rejected submissions as cover crops enriching the soil of my soul (God, what a light-hearted springtime metaphor) to grow something wonderful next time.


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