I know I've mostly been posting faith-based posts on here lately, but this blog is also for me to share writing updates and about my WIP's and writing advice and all that. I've mostly reserved writing-related posts for whenever the mood strikes me to write about writing.
Today I realized that I did a post about Golden Touch, but not about the series and my intentions for the series that goes along with Golden Touch. Golden Touch started out as a passion project in December 2019 and it's now morphed into something much bigger and just as (if not more so) exciting! So, I thought I'd give everyone a bit of an update on where I'm at with that because why not? :)
First of all, I want to announce the series title. I got really tired of having to explain my Instagram posts which book I'm working on and if it's the second or third or first book in the Golden Touch series. That wasn't what I wanted the series to be called, so I figured I should come up with a series name before the Golden Touch series sticks. So, from now on it will be called The Archive Series!
Story of Golden Touch and The Archive Series:
Like I said, Golden Touch started out as a passion project last December. I had no idea where the story was going to go or even if there would be a sequel or room for more books. Well, I finished book 1 and realized that there had to be a book 2. By the time I was halfway through writing book 2, I realized I sort of didn't ever want this series to end. I love these characters and the world I built so much. I knew there would be at least four books because I could already see book 3 in my line of sight and what book 3 would become and that book 3 would lead into a book 4. Anyways, long story short, I realized while writing book 2 that this would become an actual series. Longer than any series I've ever written before!
I've never experienced anything like this before. Usually by book 2 or 3 (as I'm learning with the St. Croix Falls trilogy) I lose steam for characters and the world and start to fall flat in my motivation to write it. But with the Archive Series, I'm genuinely excited about the world and the characters and I'm genuinely excited to keep going with these characters. I have so many character arc ideas and journeys I want to take these characters on. Seriously, I can't wait for book 4, I can't wait to do more with these characters and to deep and grow them and go along on this journey with them. I don't see myself slowing down in that excitement and motivation any time soon. It's a really amazing feeling. This isn't just some book I'm writing to make money. I am 100% committed to this book and to these character's stories whether they ever get published or not. If you want to learn more about Golden Touch you can find the blog post HERE which details how Golden Touch (and this series) came to be.
What I Plan To Do:
As I was writing book 2 and now book 3, I want to be super intentional with this series. With Weapon Icean and Project Hellion, I had no idea what I was doing. There was no launch party or building an audience for it before it released. With the St. Croix Falls series, that just happened on a whim. I was challenging myself to see if I could write a marketable clean paranormal romance. I was writing to market and while that did fairly well and grew me so much as an author and as a writer, I feel I could have done better with the series. Marketing it, growing hype and letting about the characters and the world and the story with my audience more than I did. I also learned how extremely hard it is to write a series one book at a time. To publish book 1 and then write and publish book 2 and then book 3... It leaves less wiggle room for you because once you publish a book, those rules and the world and characters are solid and can't be changed.
With The Archive Series I want to do something different. First and foremost, this started out as a passion project and it still is one. I want to enjoy every moment of writing this series. I don't want to rush or feel any pressure to put out the next book in the series. I also want to make this series the very best it can be and that means writing the entire series from start to finish without ever publishing the first book. Before I publish Golden Touch I want to have written the final book. That will be a lesson in extreme patience for me because I love publishing books and I have a feeling I'll want to share this one so much next year, but I really want to do this series justice and if I need to go back and change something or fix a detail in book 1 that makes like book 5 or something more coherent and make sense, then I want to have the freedom to do that. In an interview with Victoria Schwab, Kiersten White was saying how one day she'd love to just write a series from start to finish without ever publishing a single book until the entire thing is done. And I realized... I have that creative freedom. That thing, that she wants to do so much is something I can do, so why not? I've wanted to write a series from start to finish without ever publishing the first book until it's done with for a long time too. The thought of keeping a series all to myself for that long though and making zero money off of it the entire time just kind of scared me for a while... But The Archive Series is too important to me to not put it out there as the very best it can be. I don't feel any pressure to have it published and stuff right away. I can keep it to myself for a while while I work on it.
This series also delves into a whole lot of history stuff. A lot of different historical periods, one of which I want to be particularly sensitive to and really do it justice. One of the characters goes through a lot having grown up in a time period that wasn't very kind to him, and I just want to make sure that my history facts and his experiences are historically accurate before I ever even publish book 1. That's another reason I want to be so careful with this series and take my time with it because it does deal with such an expansive time line with several characters from all different cultural backgrounds and time periods and I just want to do all the time periods and cultural backgrounds the justice they deserve.
However, just because I don't plan on publishing it until I finish the whole series doesn't mean I want to keep it in a closet. I'm way too passionate and in love with this series to not talk about it. Gabriella Slade, a writer friend on Instagram seriously inspired me by creating her own Instagram account for the immersive and expansive world of her WIP. Her book isn't even out, and she's taking steps to share about it and to build hype and a following for it. I want to do something like that for Golden Touch. I want to share my progress during this endeavor of writing the series from beginning to end without publishing it. I want to share about the world and the characters as I go. I want to be intentional about sharing about this series and this journey I've set myself on in writing it. I don't know how I'm going to do that yet. There are a few tentative ideas I have, but I just know in the next few months I'm going to take some steps to put The Archive Series out there a little more. I just know Gabriella really inspired me to be creative in the way that I share my WIP and try to build some sort of audience or excitement for this series, so be on the lookout for that! I'm sure I'll be updating this blog once I know what I'm going to do to put The Archive Series out there.
Progress So Far:
At the moment I have book 1 and 2 written. They could probably go through one or two more rounds of edits (especially book 2), but I edited them enough to where I can set them aside with a clear conscious and work on book 3, which is what I'm working on right now while I simultaneously finish editing and revising St. Croix Falls #3.
As of today, book 3 is at 30,000 words! One of my goals for September is to get to 50,000 words in it by the end of the month. I'm not super strict about my goals for my Archive series. I take as long or as short an amount of time I want to with each book. I wrote book 1 in like a month, book 2 took four months and so far it's been two months since I first started writing book 3. I do want to have it finished and do plan to have it finished by the end of this year, though. That's like a for sure goal that will happen.
Books of The Archive Series:
Book #1: Golden Touch
Book #2: Emerald Phantom
Book #3: Scarlet Phoenix
Book #4: Untitled
So there you have it! An update on where The Archive Series is at and where I want to take it. I'm nervous to put out into the world the fact that I'm going to finish writing the whole series before I publish it, mostly just because it gives me accountability now. I want to do this series justice and to do it justice, I don't want to publish it prematurely. Who knows, maybe once I finish book four I'll feel like the series is complete enough to publish book 1, but I'm just going to wait until it feels right before I share book 1. That doesn't mean I won't be publishing anything until I finish this series. I'm not sure what will come after St. Croix Falls, but there will be something... But that's another post for another time. I'll definitely be doing another, more generalized writing update post on what I'm wanting to do once St. Croix Falls #3 comes out.