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Wednesday, May 9, 2012

You Mustn't Be Afraid to Dream a Little Bigger, Darling

I finished up Tidal last week, so I'm working on edits today (my own and Eric's), and then I'll send it off to my editor for her to begin her edits.

I wrote the outline for Elegy last night. That's the last book in the Watersong series, and it's weird to be writing it now. Or getting ready to write it, as it were. I mean, I'm really excited about it, and I loved working on Tidal, and I think I'll really love writing Elegy. But it's just weird to be at the end, you know?

My new goal in life is that I will never again publish the first book in the series before I have written the last book in the series. What I mean is that if/when I ever publish a series again, it will be complete before I start publishing. Wake won't hit bookshelves until this summer, and the entire Watersong series will be written by then.

The reason for this two-fold:

1. It is much harder to write when you have the reader in your ear. It's not that I don't think of you guys when I write or try to keep my audience in my mind. But it's hard to think and plot when you're remembering readers saying, "I love Betty but I wish she were taller or smarter and she should totally hook up with Jerry," and other readers saying "I hate everything about Betty except how short she is and if she hooks up with Jerry I'm going to shoot myself in the face." (Fact: I have actually received messages from fans saying they would shoot themselves in the face or kill themselves if the characters didn't do things the way they wanted.)

Part of the reason I've had so much fun writing these Watersong books is because I have no idea what anybody's opinions are on anything. I'm writing because I love it and I like where the story is going. I've taken input from previous books, and I'm applying it to my writing in general. But that's not the same as people threatening suicide over characters.

And it's not that I don't like critiques. I love getting notes back from my editor, and I love working on different angles and improving the book. I just like not feeling like I have somebody standing over my shoulder while I write.

2. The series will be complete, which means that readers won't really have to worry about if/when the subsequent books will come out. It's just a matter of getting them ready and releasing them. And then if something happens to me - God forbid - the series is still complete. (Before Stephen King finished the Dark Tower series, I used to have nightmares that he would die and I would never know how it ended).

Anyway, I'm going to back to my editing, since it's my job, and I want to do it.

But I'm going to leave you with my favorite quote from any movie ever. I'm literally considering getting tattooed somewhere, but since I don't know where I would put it, I probably won't. But then again, I might.

P. S. Ascend was #25 on the USA Today Best Seller list, and the Trylle Trilogy was #3 on NY Times Children's Series Best Sellers list. Thank you to everyone who picked up a copy, and to everyone for being so crazy supportive!


  1. Yay! Congrats on the re-success of the the Trylle books!

  2. I WISH I could finish a whole series before publishing!

  3. I totally agree with your logic about waiting until a series is written to publish. I definitely love all your work so far and cannot WAIT to read the Watersong series. It is always great to hear from an author that they do keep their readers in mind and to know your thoughts/reasoning behind the things you do. I personally enjoy reading your blog post for the updates and also the little tidbits of information or randomness - it keeps the day interesting :-) So, THANK YOU for all the writing you've done and published so far, and for all the things you'll write and publish in the future. I'm looking forward to it!

  4. Haha, I LOVE that line :) He's dreamy, too. That one could go...lets see, shoulder blade? Ankle?

    Congrats on the book! Very exciting :)

    Sarah Allen
    (my creative writing blog)

  5. I know I'm just a completely random person and this comment probably means very little to you, but just so you know, I think your books are great. And the speed with which you write them is incredibly inspiring.

    I'm looking forward to the release of Wake this summer. :-)

  6. Always follow your heart and trust your instincts because your books are great. Congratulations on all of your success!

    BTW, I love Inception but I can't wait to see Tom Hardy as Bane in The Dark Knight Rises.

  7. That quote makes me wish I liked inception.

  8. I must admit the main reason I came to this post was because of the quote. LOVE that movie<3 And that's easily one of the best lines in it.

    Totally agree with you on not wanting to feel like people are looking over your shoulder (actually people doing that is one of my biggest pet peeves...cannot handle it).

    P.s. I so very greatly envy how quickly you can crank out your books. I write 5000 words in 3 days and I feel like a boss haha
    The Fiction Diaries

  9. Great congratulations on your success!

    I'm writing a series right now as well, and you've definitely given me something to think about. There are certain aspects of publishing before the whole series is done that make me feel a little bit like Dickens publishing serially--what if I get a great idea for the endgame, only to discover that the first "chapters" are already out, and I can't go back to stitch in the foreshadowing?

  10. I love your blog so much :) You're really such an inspiration & I can't get enough of your posts! Lol. You'll probably be seeing a lot of comments from me within the next few months. :P

    Love the inspiring quote, too! "You mustn't be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling." <-- I should remember that!

    - Esther

  11. YES! If only more writers did this. It's so disappointing to have a series drawn out for decades, and the author lose sight of what originally made the series fabulous. (I'm looking at you in particular, Mr. Martin).
    Also, you are making me very anxious to read your new series!


  12. Thanks so much, Amanda. I will publish three series (only three for now) and your advice of writing each book of the series prior to releasing the first book is very timely. I fought with myself for a long time about the next novel that I would publish after I finished my second book, but your advice helped me to answer that question too. Thanks again and congratulations on your success. Writing is fun, isn't it?

    James Fant

  13. The logic is tight, I probably would have inflicted bodily harm if JK Rowling wasn't able to finish the Harry Potter series. I just wish I was able to crank out novels that fast.

  14. I LOVE the Trylle trilogy. Its a set of the most mesmerizing books Ever! Thanx for writing them! Although i do hope you finish "Swear" soon because i have been waiting for sometime, hoping to read the series only when all the parts are out (to save myself from dying out of curiosity). But no pressure, take your time. Publishing a good book is more important than publishing it fast.

  15. Amanda, I think you are an amazing writer and I look forward to reading all your books! I have read the "Trylle" and "My blood approves" series numerous times! Keep up the good work!


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  17. I loved reading the Trylle series, they were gdgjxbskjbkgdgs EPIC!! You are in my favourite authors list along with, Mr. Golden God Derek Landy, J.K Rowling, SF Siad, Suzanne Collins and others. Authors like you inspire me, a twelve year old, to write. I can't wait for Wake to come out!

    White Willow, Queeb of Blogland.

  18. I think it's a really good thing you write all your books before publishing the first one :)
    there are times i really love the first book of a series but the following ones are just... disappointing :( it feels like the author pressures himself too much to meet the expectations of his/her readers.
    By the way, i simply LOVE all of your works! I keep rereading them again and again and they inspire me a lot!

    Keep up the great work! <3