I’ve been embarking on a number of exciting changes recently, this new blog and website being part of it all. As some of you might already know, I’ve also been reworking my first novel, Shadow House, not only improving the book but also altering it to slot well with two sequels.
Retracing my steps from several years ago has helped me realize a number of things. For one, as a writer and even a human, I’ve come a long way in that time. I’m not the same person I was when I first embarked on this journey of writing for a living. There have been good times and bad, lessons learned in fun ways, as well as means that are less-than-enjoyable.
It has become painfully obvious to me was that I was holding back when I originally wrote Shadow House. I didn’t want to do anything that would offend anyone, but since I’ve learned that as a writer you’re going to offend people if you do things correctly — it’s just a part of this business. Some people are going to absolutely hate how you write or what you say, or maybe both. I was too scared of this and so tried to play things safe. As a result, Shadow House was mediocre, a half-measure of sorts. I know many people said they liked it, whether out of grace or genuine enjoyment, but I can do better.
Needless to say, the new novel that is emerging is quite different, yet still similar. So far, I’ve shed easily forty but probably closer to sixty percent of the original book. More twists and turns, raw emotion and suspenseful elements have been added, while others that just weren’t doing it for me have been taken out. I’m sticking myself out there in a big way, and hoping it will pay off.
I already know that some out there who loved the original Shadow House will hate the new book. That fact doesn’t keep me up at night. You can’t please everyone, and I’m done trying. Instead, I’m telling the story that needs to come out.
If I can stand back from the finished product and say I left it all on the pages, that I gave my best effort, I’ll be satisfied. Back in 2009 when I originally published the book, that wasn’t the case. Instead, I was too afraid of rejection, and ironically I suffered quite a bit of it as a result.
I’m excited to share with the world this new book . I know there will be people out there who will understand what I’m doing and will look forward to more. Those are the people I care about and creating a story that will connect with them is what keeps me up at night.