People have in general been very nice about the two-year lag between books. I get mild complaints (“so long to wait!”) but most of my fans are pretty understanding. Which is cool, because in the meantime, I have been writing all the other things.
Well, I have said this before, but it bears repeating: I had no idea how successful Out of Position would be. Writing is a weird little business. You can do the best you can and work and polish a book and send it off into the world…to no fanfare and little acclaim. And then you can rush a book out the door, and people will see something in it. So in the meantime, I was working on what I thought was a more sure thing: a book continuing an already-beloved universe, with better pacing and some exciting characters.
As it turned out, Out of Position did, well, okay. As I mentioned yesterday, the story that became Isolation Play was originally supposed to be part of it, and it became clear the day of the release, actually, that I would be able to write that and continue the story(*). But Shadow of the Father was already written at that point, and the book schedules meant that I didn’t really have time to write Isolation Play for the following year unless I did it in a mad rush, and I didn’t want to do that for any of the books. So “Shadow” came out, and I happily went off to write Isolation Play.
*Longtime followers of the blog will know that the most common question I am asked about anything I write is “will there be a sequel?” (followed closely this past year by “when is it coming out as an e-book?”). It is always flattering to be asked that, and in many cases I do want to continue the story. It’s just that in one particularly high-profile example (you know the one), the story is over, and I don’t have anything else to write about (although in the last year I have been getting a few ideas).
And I thought in the back of my head, maybe I’ll just keep writing. Because I knew that there would be a third book and probably a fourth, and if I had them ready to go, I’d have lots of time to polish them. But as I finished IP, I had so many other projects that had been languishing that I said, “Well, I’ll take a break from Dev and Lee and will get back to them.”
Now here it is, right when I would’ve been starting the book anyway, and I’m starting it because it needs to be started. And although I have vague thoughts that I might just start the fourth one right away after the third is done, I probably won’t. Because I have the Calatians to take care of, and a Cupcake to write, and lots of other things besides. But every two years seems about right(**), and in the meantime I promise you will have lots of other cool stuff to read, new characters to meet and love.
**Another consideration is that I like to have series illustrated by the same artist when possible, and the every-two-years schedule lets me do that without being a burden on the artist or putting them in the position of having to decide between continuing a franchise they like and working on their own projects.