The Dreaming Writer’s Imminent Demise (A Working Example)

This might be a beginner writer’s problem. Or it might not. Either way, here’s a glimpse of what my brain wants to work on right now. Yup. All at the same time. It scrolls through the ideas, switching between the tabs several times a week (sometimes, the fun times, even in a single day) and concoting new ones.

In no special order, I would currently really like to be writing…

Timetraveling Werewolves

The subtitle’s a scam, I’m sorry. I’m not actually writing about timetraveling werewolves. (Although, come to think of it…) What I am trying to write, though, is the conclusion to Werewolf Novel #3, and the plot to WWN#4, but… My brain, apparently, would rather write the Werewolf Novella, and that one short story about two side characters from the novels, taking place several years before the first novel.

Since this is one of the last things I’m writing in Croatian, it’s under more scrutiny from my dreaming brain than the other ideas. Is it worth it? How much time do I want to spend with this? Will anybody even care…? If it’s any consolation (it sometimes is), I’ve become aware that this is a series I’m not willing to drop. I will write these. I just cannot say when.

The Archipelago’s double-sided blade

So here I was, mid-summer 2020, trying to finish the accidental short story collection started last summer, but written mostly in Spring this year. (As I’m writing this, I’m tackling the story which will be the last one in the collection itself, but there are at least two more which I haven’t managed to finish yet.)

Which, of course, had so many awesome character and location and plot sketches that I really wanted to write a novel set in this universe. Which became a trilogy early in the planning stages. Which now serves as a playground for testing out ideas from this awesome book. Which is, in a way… all I ever wanted. Except the characters seem to want to be in their late teens, and of origins I’ve never written, and with issues I can’t truly comprehend as of yet. But I’m working on it.

That one story from 2010 which wants to become a new mystery series (ungh)

Honestly…. this is the one thing I couldn’t have forseen. I’ve had this story on my drive, unpublished due to being porn problematic, but with the best relationship dynamic idea ever. The thing which separates this particular idea from all the others is that it’s, well, set in space. (Space! I love space! Who doesn’t?) I’ve basically never written anything set in space, though. For one, I wouldn’t know where to begin my research from (the final chapter from The Warrior’s Apprentice, one of my favourite books of all time, is not enough). And every time I do end up dreaming of, or even writing futuristic sci-fi, I tend to focus on other aspects of humanity, those which are more suited to planet dwelling. (There’s nothing to say I couldn’t have the same plot on, say, a space station. It just never occurs to me.)

But fairly recently I’ve devoured and loved Yoon Ha Lee’s space opera trilogy to bits, and, for one reason or another, my mind decided that early 2020 is the best possible time to try to pick up the character ideas from this older story—they were already on a spaceship—and try to develop them into yet another mystery series I could be writing. Once I pick this up, I’ll try and write shorter installments, if I can. We’ll see. (Shelve this one under shipper problems. Which actually is correct.)

Johnny’s Sequels

And we’re not talking the second part, you know? I’ve already got that plotted out, and I’ve even written a few scenes (including the first and one of the last ones, which is always fun). We’re talking the third and the fourth ones. Mostly the fourth one, right now, because the third one is a bit bigger and more complex tale (not a thing I can focus on in 2020), and the fourth one is yet another isolated house, possibly closed room case. With a snowed in party. I might be on a mystery & crime kick, alright? I’m not giving it up for the world.

The Queer Urban Fantasy YA series (in Croatian! gasp!) I should want to write

An old idea, this one. I happen have a new (2020) concept for this, thirteen books sketched out (in, uh, very short sketches). The problem is that I’m not currently in the mood for urban fantasy, not to mention YA. (Unless the Archipelago idea noted above ends up being YA-ish. Which it wants to become so hard.) I’ve never succesfully written anything YA so far (we’re not talking about the award I actually got for writing YA), too…

But boy, can I dream.

And, to tell you the truth, everything was alright until those stupid werewolves started sticking their fluffy tails and fluffier ears all over my stupid plans for the whining season of 2020/2021. That was the moment I lost it. Coincidentally, that’s also the moment I wrote this post. I did it in part to share my current planning process—because I know, deep down in my bones, that I’m not the only one going through something similar, from time to time. The other reason for typing this piece up is, well, because I can’t afford, timewise, to write the werewolf stories right now. I can’t afford the YA urban fantasy series, either—it sounds more like an autumn/winter writing escapade, anyway.

Most of the ideas above will eventually see their time arrive, I believe. Either way, everything will be plotted out in the various gdocs. Because, of course all of these things already have folders all for themselves, including other, older folders I haven’t touched in a while. (Historical queer stuff. Why do I always fall for the hard ones?) Whenever I think of something which makes my writing Spidey senses tingle, no matter which setting, no matter where in the (possible) series timeline, it gets written down. Plotting and writing are quickly becoming two distinctively separate things for me, and I’m not sure I’ll ever be going back.

In conclusion… what I actually can afford to spend time on—and what I will do this year, dammit!—is to write the Archipelago novel(s), and Johnny’s Girls first sequel. That’s what I’ve been planning for a while. That’s what I’m going to do.

Okay? Okay.



Photo by Stefan Cosma on Unsplash.