Work-in-progress musings

So while I’ve had some down time after finishing The Ruby Project: Origins, I’ve been thinking very hard about character series arcs for the three Ruby books. Usually this involves sitting alone in the living room after hubby’s gone off to bed. I’m sipping on a shot of whisky or something of that ilk, and just letting my thoughts wander.

This project is the first time that I’ve tried writing a complete series before marketing or release. Back in the day, writers were discouraged from such behavior. You wrote the first book, then started shopping it around while writing something unrelated. But these days, especially in the era of self-publishing, one of the recommendations is to get a series written, then release it all within short intervals. Both of my existing series, Netwalk Sequence and Goddess’s Honor, were first written during the old days. Both series expanded further than I expected, probably because they were written over a span of years. In this instance I’m going to go ahead and write all three books before releasing the first one. I’m thinking it could be easier than writing a series over a span of years, especially since this is one that wants to be written in a white heat.

Not that this means the series is going to lack depth, at least judging from what I am seeing as I develop these character arcs. Along with the agtech stuff is a heavy dose of family politics, relationship stuff, and…yeah. Human trafficking comes up in these books as it intersects with technology and the development of a culture of indentured servitude as a response to financial ruin. Go broke and bankrupt? Sign your life over to a corporation for a number of years. Owe a lot? Welp, you’ve just become a slave.

So far everything’s been written from one character’s POV. I haven’t decided yet if I’m going to bring in other POVs or not.

In any case, the projected order is The Ruby Project: Origins, The Ruby Project: Ascendant, and The Ruby Project: Realization.

I suspect that work on the rough draft of Ascendant will start next week if what I’m doing now comes together like it should. Especially in this era of COVID-19. If it flows like Origins, it’ll be done by mid-April. Ideally, I’ll take a week off, and then it’s on to Realization.

I’ve done this once before, when I wrote three books in the Netwalk Sequence, ten years or so ago when I went back to writing. Netwalk and Netwalker Uprising ended up requiring significant rewriting work. Netwalking Mars was a total trainwreck and I ended up scrapping it, though pieces of it ended up in Netwalking Space. Part of that was due to some very improbable physics and…yeah. Character development really, really sucked. As it turned out, those books ended up being better but it took rewriting Uprising to include the Gizmo and issuing a second version of Netwalk to incorporate it.

But I have many more years of experience under my belt now, enough to not make those mistakes. Part of that also includes not releasing the first book until all three are finished, then doing revisions.

It’s not at all what the publication plan I drew up in January projected. COVID-19 kinda screwed those plans up. So this is the year of Ruby, and if I get lucky…then perhaps I’ll get the Vortex Worlds stuff started.

We shall see how things unfold.

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