Lately, I've been taking stock.
I've had three contemporary
young-adult novels published. All are realistic novels written in first
person. Despite those similarities, I tried to cover somewhat different
ground with each. I've written about romance and friendship and enmity,
break-ups and make-ups, loss and gain, grief and joy. Some of the
endings are happier than others. The parental characters run the gamut
from neglectful to overprotective. The protagonists come from different
socioeconomic backgrounds. I've used male and female narrators, past and
I could keep exploring these worlds--there are
are more stories to tell within the territory I already inhabit--or I
could try to break even newer ground.
I currently have nothing new in the publishing pipeline. So it's a good time to take stock. The question is: What next? And so this post by Kelly Bennett, part of Janni Simner's blog series on "Writing for the Long Haul" seemed rather timely. For example:
"After deciding that I wanted—want—to be a writer, I visualized what I wanted that new writing life to be."
while I don’t recommend doing anything as dramatic as calling it quits,
I do suggest doing what I should have: in the same way you take your
car in for servicing, schedule regular career check-ups."
taking stock a few years ago that led me from literary short stories to
YA novels. I don't foresee a genre shift of this magnitude in my future
right now, but it's good to ask ourselves, from time to time: Is there
anything I want to try to do differently now?