The problem is that even though I have an idea and a story concept, these characters aren't speaking to me quite yet. True, I'm only two chapters into the story and I haven't given it my full hearty-ho (Yeah, I have no idea what that word is either, but you get the gist, I hope). But when I'm being pulled in other directions by other characters in other works in progress, I know I'm in trouble.
Here's the other thing, most of the books I've written to date aren't ones that I feel my eleven-year-old daughter is of an age to read just yet. Not that eleven-year-olds can't read my ZOMBIE WEST Series--some have--but it's more that SHE probably can't. It's graphic. It's bloody. She likes to sleep in my bed when there is thunder and lightening. Imagine her reading about zombie hordes? Yeah, exactly. And have I mentioned that sleeping with her is the equivalent of sleeping with a boa constrictor/baby gorilla hybrid? Well it is.
The other day, I happened to open up an old manuscript I had been working on back in 2011 called ZIA The Teenage Zombie & The Undead Diaries. I had started this YA novel with the intent of keeping the language to a minimum and keeping the blood and mayhem at a tolerable, easy to swallow level. There will be humor. There will be teen high school angst. And, of course, there will be all sorts of monsters--vampires, zombies, werewolves, witches--fun stuff. This was for my younger two children who I didn't feel were ready for THE ZOMBIE WEST just yet. That was three years ago when they were ten and eight.
I read a section to them, wanting to get their opinions on a rather funny part I wrote, and the two of them told me to go back to the beginning and read it from there. Now, each night, they ask me to read them a chapter. My thirteen-year-old begs me to (how many thirteen-year-olds want to be read to? NONE. So I will take it. Teens are a tricky bunch, so you take every opening they give you).
Finally, my kids are reading something I've written. Their excitement for more has spurred me to keep writing on this story, and I'm enjoying myself. I really am. I forgot how much I loved these characters.
But what about my contract for OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT? I honestly don't know. I plan to keep the deadline (I need deadlines or else I find myself watching series marathons on Netflix--Oh, yeah! I've spent many days watching one episode right after another).
But what will I actually turn over come February? Not exactly sure.
All I know is that I'm happy. My kiddos are happy. And I'm writing. Maybe I'm not writing on the project I should be, but I am writing (I'm actually writing on another story idea as well at the same time, but that's for another blog post). I'M WRITING!
To me, that's the most important thing of all. That, and bringing smiles to my children's faces.
So yeah, here I am writing about more zombies (something four years ago I would have never embraced) and loving it. Oh, those zombies! They keep calling me back :)
I just have to give in.
What else can I do?