A couple weeks ago, I finished my contracted book. It’s a great book, coming out next year, titled (for the moment) The Duke’s Cunning Plan by Jade Lee. It was a ton of fun to do, but before I dive into the next one, I decided to do something weird. I’m now writing a book just for me. I’m making it as fun and quirky as I want. No thought of contracts or market or even genre. Whatever comes out, that’s what I’m writing. Now you have to understand, I’ve been a professional writer for two decades. The idea of creating something with no eye toward selling it? Something just for me? Well, that’s…like going to your job on your vacation. Except writing isn’t just a job for me, and somewhere along the road, the magic got buried under the technique and business of writing. But there is good and bad with this process.
The great thing about writing just for fun is…
A. No deadline. If I don’t feel like writing today, I can sleep in and read Pride and Prejudice. (Actually, I’m listening to it in audio which is making it much more fun)
B. We’ve entered conference season. With Barbara Vey’s luncheon just over and the Romantic Times convention just over a week away, I’m so scattered I can’t think coherently, much less write. It’s probably good that no one reads what I’m producing right now.
C. I am forced-I say forced-to watch all of Firefly again so that I can make all the Capt. Tightpants references I want
D. I giggle when I write. Yes, I actually do. Now there are lots of times when I giggle as I create my marketable books, but this time I’m actively looking for the giggle. If there isn’t one, I’ll go watch another episode of Castle just to make sure I’ve got my Nathan Fillian speech patterns down.
E. I have lusty alien frog-people in this book. And contrary to what Elizabeth Hoyt says (if you’ve read our twitter discussions), these green-skinned water people do not lay eggs. If I want mammalian frog-people, I can have them. In fact, they quite enjoy sex. As do the dolphin people. So there!
Answer: all of the above! But of course, the most important one is C. Because…hello, Captain Tightpants!
The horrible thing about writing just for fun is…
A. It’s still work. Yeah, it turns out that a book just for me still needs to make internal sense, have a good love story, and use proper grammar. Who knew I was such a stickler for that stuff?
B. There’s only so much Jane Austin I can listen to before I have to write something a bit more modern, that flows faster, and has…er…sex. Like lusty frog sex. (My deep apologies to the Austin fanatics)
C. I need deadlines. This no goal stuff is really hard for me. Without someone else saying, By this date or your dead, I’ll just go create an evil Jason Ackles who makes me do whatever he wants. *grin*
D. Despite all my posturing, the horny frog people are secondary, funny add-ins. My hero is not a frog person. Don’t tell Elizabeth Hoyt. He is (in my head) Capt. Tightpants. (Yes, this is just another excuse to put up another Firefly picture. Here’s the doctor who is possibly prettier than Nathan. *cringing at the thought*)
E. I have no ready answer when people ask what I’m working on now. I usually say: my next lively romp historical. Or another hot contemporary (as Kathy Lyons) for Entangled. Now I say: um, well it’s this through-the-closet-door to another reality which may or may not be a delusion that has frog people who are not the hero, but a ripped Capt. Tightpants who is really too pretty to die. They either stare at me and say, what??? Or they’re authors who say, cool. Just for you then, huh?
Answer: All of the above, of course. But most important is E because I’m going to conferences this summer and need a better answer.
If you get anywhere close to the right answer and you comment below, you’ll get a goody bag from Jade Lee, can’t wait to see what you’ll get!
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