Works in Progress

Glenn’s recent comment on another thread reminds me that I’m overdue not only in posting new material but also in explaining the state of things on the fiction front.

Gate of Hell, the sequel to the completed Shards of Heaven, is in rather fine outline, and I had started writing it.

Only, well, I’ve stopped.

There are several reasons for this. One, of course, is the press of the semester. Another is the academic side of my life, which has seen me dealing with quite a few little things in addition to the big one of the Battle of Brunanburh book.

A bigger issue, though, has been my hesitancy to devote a great deal of time to writing a sequel to an unpublished book. I’m currently seeking representation to alleviate that lack of publication, but thus far no attempts have struck gold. The first agent I queried requested a hefty partial of the MS, held it, held it, held it, then said “no.” The second agent declined the partial. The third agent has the query right now.

I also wonder — and recent events with a now-novelist friend of mine bears this out — that it might be a good idea if I have multiple novels at hand when it comes time for shopping my services. As Mary Robinette Kowal puts the matter, it would be a good idea to have an answer if an agent or an editor rejects one novel but is interested to know if I have something else I can show them.

So the work spread out on my desk at the moment is my dusty half-novel Odalisk and Basilisk, retrieved from oblivion for consideration as my next fictive mistress. It’s interesting to see old material like this after a long time apart from it. It’s… intriguing.

4 Comments

  1. Funny, I’m also in the middle of an older project I had long abandoned. It was a short story then, but 1 epiphany later, I am sure it will make for a short novel. Progress is. 🙂 And also the joy of writing.

  2. A short novel, eh? That’s a good arc of expansion, my friend.

  3. A reason to work on the sequel now:
    get it written while it is still fresh in your mind and because it seems from an audience stand point sequels are much better when they are written back to back. You know that whole flowing together with uninterrupted thoughts/ideas.

  4. True enough, Kate. Decisions, decisions!

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