Writing–Sophomore Slump?

Rainbow paperI’ve spent the month working on the next Ivy Russell novella, The Timeless Man. It’s been sort of a slow-go due to a bit of a crazy work schedule. Most days I can only get a page or two done, though I try to get more than that in on the weekends and the days I’m only working one job.

But the day jobs aren’t the only thing slowing me up.

So far I’ve spent the entire first draft (which isn’t yet finished) comparing The Timeless Man to Cheaters and Chupacabras. It’s an unfair comparison because I’m comparing a finished project with a first draft. That’s like comparing a gold medal skier to a guy who just put on skis for the first time. It’s not right.

But I’m doing it anyway.

Every time I pull up the first draft to work on it and start typing, in my head I’m asking myself, “Does it have the same tone as the first one? Is it as much fun? Are the characters consistent? Is it enough like the first one?”

The only valid question is about the characters. They should be consistent at their core from novella to novella, and since I have two more novellas in the idea stage, that’s pretty important. It’s something I should definitely keep in mind for the first draft, but I don’t have to be a nag about it.

The rest of it, I can’t ask those questions now. I’m not even sure if I should ask those questions at all. Since this is going to be a series of novellas, I realize there should be a certain feel to the stories that is similar between novellas, but that’s really something I shouldn’t be thinking about in the first draft stage.

I’m hoping I can file those questions for later. I can look at them again when I get to revising.

Right now, I just need to be writing.

I won’t be able to answer them if I don’t get this first draft done.

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