How My Agent Helps Me Focus What I’m Working On

Under His Touch by Jeffe KennedyYesterday, Jana mentioned in her post that she was feeling superstitious about talking about her current work. I think that’s a very real consideration, probably for anyone creating a new thing. In fact, I posted about that very thing on CRC before, and how exposing your work too soon can be like Shaken Baby Syndrome. I think it applies to any new stage of work.

So I’m careful about how much I say about what I’m working on. And I pick who I say it to very carefully.

That said, I’m working on the third book in my FALLING UNDER trilogy, which is called UNDER CONTRACT.

I sold all three of these books to Carina on spec – that is, with a few paragraphs describing my concept for each. As with my FACETS OF PASSION series, these books are thematically linked only. They’re all BDSM Contemporaries (thus the Scorching Hot tag), that focus on a male/female pair. Though the concepts for each were quite different, certain themes have wound through each. It’s been interesting to see them emerge. One kind of fun aspect is that in each, a character has a thing for a different Neil Gaiman book, which plays into understanding who they are. In GOING UNDER, it was ANANSI BOYS. In UNDER HIS TOUCH, which comes out in January, it’s THE SANDMAN. For this book… it hasn’t emerged quite yet. It might be THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE. I thought it might be AMERICAN GODS, but that’s not gelling.

At any rate, that gives you a bit of insight into my process, right there. Which is hardly deserving of the word, really.

The other thing I’m working on is a concept for a new fantasy series. Right now I’m waiting to hear if my publisher wants to add more books to my TWELVE KINGDOMS series. It’s tempting to spin on that and spend energy on fretting and hoping. This is where having an agent has made a huge difference for me, in a way I didn’t expect. He’s not only handling the ins and outs of dealing with that particular deal, he also firmly redirected my fretting energy to thinking about another project. When I asked him about the status of this pending deal, he reminded me that it’s in and taken care of. Then he  pointed me to what I *can* be doing – which is coming up with a concept for this new series. He told me who he’s talked to about it and made the potential real. Since that conversation, the ideas have been bubbling up and I’ll be ready to sketch it out soon.
More, I’m excited about it. He very deftly reminded me, without exactly saying so, that I have a writing life beyond this particular series. Whether they bite on this or not, there will be other characters, other worlds and more books to write.
It was exactly what I needed to hear. Eyes on my own work!