This week, I feel compelled to share insights into the process behind my latest project, Anna, Daughter of Creed. As many of you know, writing a novel is a journey full of unexpected twists, and this one has been no exception.
The Unique Challenges with “Anna, Daughter of Creed”
About a year ago, while Bodacious Creed and the San Francisco Syndicate was in its pre-sales phase, I embarked on this new adventure. Having finished the first Bodacious Creed trilogy, it was time to start the first spin-off series, The Anna Lynn Chronicles.
Every novel I write requires something different. It reminds me of a quote I once heard, though its origin eludes me: “If you’ve written one novel, you know how to write that novel.” Each book is a unique challenge, presenting a fresh learning curve that requires adaptability and persistence. And Anna, Daughter of Creed has demanded its share of both.
First and Second Attempts
Initially, I dove into the Creedverse, the world of my novels, once more, crafting an outline and beginning the draft. At around 25,000 words, I hit a realization. What I had written wasn’t the story I wanted to tell, but it was a necessary step to understand the true heart of my novel. It became a foundation to build upon.
On my second attempt, the draft grew to about 66,000 words. Concurrently, I was expanding the Creedverse series bible, adding around 300,000 words of characters, locations, and other rich details. This extensive world-building not only enriched the current project but will also enhance future novels in the series. That’s about 391,000 words in the Creedverse alone and doesn’t count all the writing I do for my day job, or in my journal. Yes, I write a lot.
A Moment of Clarity Leads to A Powerful Start
Just last week, a clarity moment struck. The new novel draft felt cluttered, overambitious in its scope. It was time to streamline the narrative, focus on the core story. After extensive brainstorming and reorganizing plot points using my favorite beat sheet method, I’ve now crafted an outline that feels just right. It’s focused yet rich with character development, action, social commentary, and the twists you’ve come to expect from the Creedverse, and it weaves in several important subplots, too.
On To The New Draft
I’m eager to embark on writing this new draft, more streamlined and focused than before. While it’s true that the previous drafts accounted for a whopping 91,000 words, and the series bible saw a massive expansion, it’s all part of the creative process. Every word written, every character fleshed out, contributes to the depth and richness of my fictional universe.
Transparency with you, my readers, is vital. I want you to know that your anticipation and support fuel my commitment to this story. Once this next draft reaches its completion, I plan to launch a Kickstarter campaign to cover editing and other publishing necessities. If you’re curious about the kind of rewards and perks this might include, take a look at the campaign we had for Bodacious Creed and the San Francisco Syndicate.
Regarding “Anna, Daughter of Creed”: Set in the 1870s, this steampunk western follows Anna Lynn Boyd, daughter of James “Bodacious” Creed. A former prostitute turned madam and brilliant inventor, Anna’s journey is a testament to resilience and ingenuity. She faces societal challenges and corporate intrigue, striving to uplift the lives of women in Santa Cruz. Her story is one of empowerment, set against the backdrop of a world grappling with rapid changes and the challenges that come with them.
I’m thrilled about this novel’s potential and the fresh perspectives it brings to the Creedverse. Your continued support and enthusiasm mean the world to me. Stay tuned for more updates, and thank you for joining me on this incredible journey!
Until next time, keep the gears turning and the pages flying!
“There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.” ~ W. Somerset Maugham