It’s been a month or so since I’ve welcomed a guest blogger so say hello to Sorchia Dubois who’s going to tell us about her journey as a writer and how she never does things the easy way…
Zoraida Grey and the Voodoo Queen is only my 4th published book. I’m still very much a novice novelist but I seem to be trying all the hardest ways to write a book before I settle down to just –um—writing a book.
The first book I published was a nonfiction memoir kind of thing that shall remain unnamed. It was the result of a master’s thesis in creative nonfiction and needs lots of work before I ever mention it again. It was hard to write because it was so personal. I wrote it mainly to provide an account of some family stuff for my kids. While it was definitely a purgative, it was also painful and emotionally draining to write. ‘Nuff said.
The second book Just Like Gravity, is actually three books in one. It deals with reincarnation and the events in three lives of the main characters in three different time periods. I love the reincarnation thing, but it was hard to have all the stories going at once. I present them in alternating chapters with clear chapter titles. I think it is pretty clear, but then . . . I would. A few readers mentioned they were a bit confused until they got into it a bit.
One of the real problems with Just Like Gravity was I didn’t want to get in the position of trying to explain the be-all and end-all of reincarnation. So there is no AHA moment where everything about the Universe becomes clear at the end. I think it contains enough story and enough universal mystery to work and I’m proud of it. It was my first full-length fiction book and it took about two years to complete because I had no idea what I was doing and I was trying to write three interconnected tales at once.
The next two books on my list of published works are Zoraida Grey books. These are part of a series, which is the root of the problem. Three books comprise the series—along with an anthology of short stories. They are Zoraida Grey and the Family Stones (on sale for 99¢ until August 30,) Zoraida Grey and the Voodoo Queen (released on August 1, 2018, and the reason for all the hubbub,) and Zoraida Grey and the Pictish Runes (just about ready to go to the editor—so probably a late-2018/early-2019 release.)
Writing a series is tricky—you have to keep a lot of plates in the air at once and you have to remember what the plates are named, where the plates are spinning, and to whom the plates belong. I complicated the process by publishing the first book in the series before I had finished the draft of the last book. So I was stuck with the details I’d included in book 1 even if they were hard to maintain by book 3. I did know how the series was going to end from the very beginning. I just didn’t foresee the circuitous route the story would take to get from book 1 to book 3. It’s been a fantastic adventure and I will write another series one of these days, but I will go at it with more respect next time.
Fantasy, especially, lends itself to a series. As a writer, I could indulge my interest in castles and folklore and Scotland and magic by including lots of world building—mostly as hints that become more important as the series really gets going. Then I could expand that world with each installment in the series. That was the good part. The hard parts were staying organized and staying focused through the over 240, 000 words involved in the entire series—that’s nearly a quarter of a million words and as I write this, I am amazed I can still think in complete sentences after that.
I’m currently looking for another incredibly difficult way to write a book. Suggestions appreciated. Maybe I’ll try writing it while scuba diving or maybe from the perspective of a fly on the protagonist’s wall. How about a multi-volume exploration of one family from Adam and Eve to the year 3020?
Or maybe I will just write a nice mystery with multiple murders and a bunch of red herrings. That sounds about as complicated as I want to get for a while.
I live in the backwoods of the Ozarks with a bunch of cats—yes, I am quickly becoming the weird lady in the woods with the cats. For a number of years, I taught English in the local high school and at a couple of community colleges. That was fun, but writing is a long-neglected passion that I began rediscovering a few years ago. At the moment, I am deep in paranormal romance and fantasy but I plan to branch into other genres in the near future—romantic suspense as well as a horror tale or two are in the offing. Drop by my website to see what’s going on in my Universe.
To find out more about my writing and to take part in the Book Launch festivities, drop by my Witchmageddon page and follow me at any of these social media sites.