I’m in the writing phase when I’m close enough to the end of the book that I have an extra surge of adrenaline and want to keep plowing ahead while everything else falls by the wayside. In a way, that’s good because it means the book gets written, but it also means that I emerge blinking from the book haze after typing “the end” and notice the piles of dishes and laundry, as well as all the administrative tasks that have fallen by the wayside.
I’ve given myself permission not to worry too much about all that. At my current pace, and with the amount of story I have left, I should finish this draft this week, and then I can relax during the Labor Day weekend before catching up on all the other work I need to get done.
I have figured out that maybe writing two books in a series back-to-back without much of a break in between is a bad idea. By the end of the second one, I find myself wanting to write anything other than these people. I can seldom read two books in a series back-to-back without wanting to abandon the second book midway through, so it makes sense that I’d be the same way with writing.
So, I’ve figured out that I generally need to be writing something. I can take about a week off, but I need to mix a little writing in when I’m doing other tasks, like editing or proofreading or promotion. But I can’t write two books in the same series back-to-back. I don’t know how those people who have something like thirty books in a long-running series do it. Most of those people are working in romance, so they have different main characters with each book, and that may help. Or there are people like Terry Pratchett, who was mostly writing in the same universe, so it’s technically all part of the same series, but there are miniseries within that universe, so he was dealing with different aspects of that world and different characters. I don’t think he did two books on the same topic in a row. He seemed to rotate among the guards, the wizards, the witches, Death, etc.
For next year’s writing, I think I’m going to be better about planning what I’m going to be working on and setting deadlines so that I can space out my work and the tasks I need to do instead of getting into weird crunches like I tend to have. I’m bad about going on a whim and not setting deadlines for myself. Which is weird because I make plans for fun. You’d think I’d do that for my work.
And now I have a couple thousand more words I want to write today. My heroine is about to carry out a madcap plan for catching the bad guy.