Also know as: the reason I was so horrible at keeping up with this blog as of late.
A ten month long obsession, conceived in misery and sorrow, but born in the light of better days, is now allowed to exist on its own, untethered from my brain. The third book in the After Terra series, Lunacy, is now out there for the world to see.
Though conceived and (mostly) outlined prior to this date, work on Lunacy did not begin until precisely November 1st, 2016. It was my first foray into the world of NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month, the goal of which is to produce at least 50,000 words in one month. In so doing, one has effectively drafted a novel in that one month. Suffice to say, when I hit that goal on the last day in November, I already had a way better head start on this project than my previous books.
Because of that great start, and the experience gained from the previous two books, as well as my conscious and unconscious obsession with the material, completing Lunacy did not feel nearly as much like work as Baron’s Shadow did. By this point as well, the characters are so well realized and present in my head that writing them does not take much effort, leaving me to focus more on plot, continuity, setting, action, etc. What was difficult about the process of writing this book was the emotional state I was in.
Thanks to, oh, I don’t know, every other blog post I’ve made since the end of last September, it’s no secret what I’ve been through in my personal life. The most haunting, damning thing to me during the writing process was dealing with that grief. Writing provided some catharsis, yet at times it exacerbated the sadness, since the primary protagonist of After Terra and I are dealing with similar heartbreak, disillusionment, and suffering (albeit his problems are more extreme than mine). The principal events of this book and its prequel were already well-established when I was still with my fiance, so there is that little voice inside my brain that wonders if somehow, through fiction, I forecasted what was to happen in reality? Could I have projected some of my biggest fears into real life, somehow? I’m not equipped to answer that question right now, but it has given me cause to ponder.
All of the above was said to set this up: I am proud of the work I am now able to share with the world, but I am happier still to let it be considered “done.” Now I can let that part of my mind, the one that began this story, that was still trapped in the agony of November 2016, rest.
This is my epitaph to the loss. May it rest in peace.