It’s been one week since Darkweird finally entered the world. To be honest, it feels like it’s been a whole heck of a lot longer. Vast epochs of time. I won’t even bother to link to it here. If it’s something you’re interested in, it’s not too hard to find if you know how to look. That said, a week has gone by and I’ve got some thoughts and feelings to express in the wake of my new book.
Writing a book is hard. Writing a book is work.
Writing a book is hard work.
It’s a thing that you can hear, be told, a thousand times and it will never quite resonate until you do it. It’s a thing you can think, in the abstract, that you have a pretty good hold on. And then you do it. I think every writer struggles at some point with their work in progress. I also think more than a few writers struggle with recurring feelings of doubt and anguish as they push themselves through the pages to completion. When it works, it works and you find this glorious stride, a kind of inspired momentum and the words and story seem to form themselves before you. The “muse” is kind, its blessings pour forth. When it doesn’t work, though. When things just don’t want to come together. When each word is a grinding, plodding chore and even with the best outline you could’ve possibly crafted the end (never mind the middle or anywhere else) seems impossibly far away.
Writing, the creative process, life. All hills and valleys. All ups and downs. Stratospheric, breathless highs and crushing, abyssal lows. The trick, as in most things, is in figuring out a way to push forward. Which is sometimes almost impossible, it feels like. I believe you’ve got to love not just writing but storytelling to keep moving forward. You have to love everything about stories. The crafting and the world building, the rapturous moments of light when a story is unfolding itself. The despair and grim darkness when you grope through mire and fog just to find the story again. It all comes from the same place, it’s all part of the same thing and you’ve got to invest yourself in all of it.
There were more than a few times while writing Darkweird that I honestly thought I was never going to finish it. There was at least one time where I thought I’d abandoned it.
Red Sky Blues, and now Darkweird. There is one more, one final book to complete the set, to create the strange occult fantasy that is the Grey Days triptych. One last ride with Thomas, Swift, Rosa, and all the weird and sundry Others. I have to finish the story.
Sacred Engines will pick up hot on the heels of Darkweird. It will build on everything established in the first books, and tie up quite a few of the disparate threads–one way or another. It will be the biggest, weirdest, most action-packed installment of the series. Everything will be bigger, stranger, and more dangerous. It will also give the series, the story, a definitive ending. As all things should have. Sacred Engines will put Thomas Grey to the test, will show what he is really made out of, and push him to the bleeding heart of oblivion itself.