How Very Strange

libra: libra is at the threshold of new thought, new identity, new new new. Lauds to you for taking the risks and venturing into the unknown to find a sweet, profitable,transformed you. No plastic surgery, this isn’t TV. — from Astrology for Writers, Editors, and Filmmakers

It’s funny. I’ve finished my last contract. Haven’t sold anything new, nor am I trying to at the moment. I have money due me from two publishers now, and assume that some of it will be coming in shortly, and that will be enough to live on for a while.

We live on what I make from writing. Only. So I should be in a complete panic at the absence of contracts and the absence of striving, not because I have to fear for this month or next month (assuming my publishers do pay me), but because without contracts now, I’ll have problems four months or six months or a year down the road.

But I’m not panicking.

I’m trying to figure out what I want to do next. Where I want to go. At the moment, I have no clue where that is.

For this moment, I feel weightless, timeless, suspended in a radiant bubble that protects me from stress, panic, fear, worry, and uncertainty. I sit in my office, and the light flows through the window and illuminates the dustmotes that the heating vent blows upward, and the words flow into my little personal writing project, and I am oddly and blissfully content.

I’m writing the e-book. I’m putting together my e-book store. Planning on offering my own writing e-books, and when it’s finished, a wonderful piece of writing software, plus e-books from other writers (names withheld for the moment, when they start mentioning the projects on their own weblogs, I’ll link up here). I’m putting together an affiliate program that will pay between 15% and 20% on gross products sales (and 13% on second-tier sales), and monthly on any amount earned over $10 (because I know I’m not the only one who’s had a crappy year financially, and I figure I’m not the only one who could use extra income.) I’m considering doing a very inexpensive e-book version of Hunting the Corrigan’s Blood, and considering writing the follow-up series, whether I find a publisher for it or not. I loved Cadence Drake, and I want to know what happens to her, dammit.

I have some books that I want to write for professional publication, of course. I have what I’d planned intially as a four-book light-hearted fantasy series on ghost-hunters (Ghosts and Gremlins, Inc.) that I’m considering reconfiguring into a single, much heftier, book. I have the Seven Accursed books that are pinging at me to be written. And all those paranormal suspense proposals that I did for Claire that I’d still like to write, albeit for the fantasy market.

Maybe it’s the post-book decompression. Maybe it’s that this time off (and even though I’m writing, somehow it feels exactly like time off) is something that I’ve desperately needed, and my mind is refusing to look at the future. Maybe it’s that I’m hoping the e-books will do well enough that I’ll have a buffer when the pro publishers don’t pay.

But whatever it is, I’m back to reinventing myself again. Breathing in this little space of moments that I have before the bubble bursts and I’m back in the thick of struggling to survive. Maybe hoping that this time, finally, the bubble won’t burst.

And I’m enjoying the light. The dustmotes. The silence.

The weightlessness. Especially that.

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About the author: Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and self-publish my new ones.

11 comments… add one
  • Chassit Dec 3, 2005 @ 15:34

    I’m really excited about CCC, and I’m interested in your new e-book store. Any e-books you write I am definately going to get, I just hope that my computer lets me. It’s really old, and runs slow, πŸ˜€ All the best from this corner!

  • klharrds21 Dec 3, 2005 @ 8:24

    I think it is the time of year for contemplation. There is something about the weather in early December that fosters quiet contemplation. Especially when there is snow on the ground.
    I hope you enjoy it while it lasts. Life always has that habit of intruding on our quiet moments. And I really hope that the Seven Accursed gets off the ground. The feeling of that poem made me tingle inside. I havenÒ€ℒt read any of your fantasy work being only newly introduced to you via MR and LSG but I can’t wait for it.

  • arrvee Dec 2, 2005 @ 14:25

    Enjoy the month of December. You’ve earned the time off and need it. I have a feeling we’ll see some really interesting book ideas coming up over the next couple of weeks.

    If you do decide to do a print version, 8.5 x 11 or A4 with a plastic comb binding would be relatively inexpensive to produce and ideal for lying flat on the desk when in use. Just a thought.

    Counting the days until release…

  • Angela-Marina Dec 2, 2005 @ 14:04

    I think…I think I know what you mean.

    I mean, I’ve experienced a few similar phoenomenon (excuse my horrific spelling), but lately…

    You just feel, like you can do it. Like this IS.
    Writing Nirvana. πŸ˜€

  • Deathbyabsurdity Dec 2, 2005 @ 13:02

    I would definitely buy any ebooks that you produce. But, would you consider using Lulu.com or something similar to get them into print form, too?

    I like reading ebooks, but for a reference book or workbook, I’d really like to have something that I could scribble in, take with, etc.

    Curently redoing my book budget,
    Heather

  • Linda Dec 2, 2005 @ 11:35

    I just want to wish you the best, no matter where you end up going with your writing and e-bookstore and everything. πŸ™‚

  • PJ Dec 2, 2005 @ 11:15

    I’ll be very curious to see how you work your e-book store. There are so many ways to create one – some more user-friendly than others. Have you thought of a name for your store?

    I always think of storms when I finish a book. There’s that strange time when the rain has stopped, the lightening is finished, but the sky is still overcast, and the distant rumbles of the thunder can still be heard. Maybe another storm is going to start. Maybe the sun is going to peek out. You just have to wait and see.

    πŸ™‚

    Good luck. Oh, and my husband wanted me to remind you not to neglect your keyboard when cleaning.

    ~PJ~

  • peggy Dec 2, 2005 @ 11:12

    Cadence Drake? More about Cadence?

    Where do I sign up?

    (I loved that book, in case you couldn’t tell.)

  • hollylisle Dec 2, 2005 @ 10:36

    At the moment, I find that I have enough energy to:

    * Clean my trackball
    * Clean my monitor
    * Do my workouts, sorta kinda
    * Write on CCC, sporadically
    * Read and comment on things other people have written

    At the moment, from within my shell of calm, I’m waiting–in a somnolent, dreamy fashion–for the other shoe to drop.

  • tambo Dec 2, 2005 @ 10:26

    Oh, Holly, that sounds wonderful. I hope you recharge and find your future path.

    Wish I could.

  • shay Dec 2, 2005 @ 10:14

    “Entering the void” is what I call it, the point when a book is finished and no other writing project is on the table. i’ve found it goes eventually.

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