And I have decided that my summer plans for fiction now include writing tie-ins to my novel as well as drafting the manuscript itself.
But wait. I know what you’re thinking: “He’s talking tie-ins before he’s even written the whole book? Is he crazy?”
No. I don’t think I am, at least.
What I think I am is pretty damned smart.
You see, I have a really interesting kick to my SF/F novel. It’s a piece of technology inspired by my love of MMOs, and while it’s not the main focus of the story, it’s interesting enough that I think it makes my universe unique.
And it doesn’t matter what character is around to utilize it; the technology still has an interesting SF spin no matter what.
So my goal for the summer is this: finish two additional short stories based in the universe of my novel.
One story will center on my novel’s protagonist, Ceril. If my novel keeps its current progress and structure, there will be a six-year block of time between the events in the prologue and the actual meat of the novel. I have a short story planned to bridge that gap.
The other story I have in mind will take a supporting character from my novel (or a new character; I haven’t decided fully) and explore an aspect of the universe that my novel doesn’t really touch on. I don’t expect my main character to even be referenced in this story, though I would expect the setting to be familiar.
Because I want to test the water. I want to stick my literary toe in the pool and see what the temperature is. I figure that I should be able to gauge interest about a lot of aspects of my novel given what kind of reactions I get from these stories.
That kind of feedback (not to mention platform building and whatever paltry cash comes from them) is going to be invaluable to actually making a go of being a novelist.
So yes, my planned summer quota of (at minimum) 2,000 words per day—10k per 7 days, actually, based on John Scalzi’s schedule—is still in place. I just can’t guarantee it’s all going to be on my novel anymore. And with my blog, too, I expect to be spending a lot of time this summer becoming very intimate with a keyboard.
It’s going to be a good summer, methinks.