"Open up your broken heart, and keep on wanting."
I always wonder how many artists set out to reinvent themselves, and how many are just broken-hearted dreamers who never stop wanting to go to new heights. It's something I pondered this weekend, as I worked on two polar opposite stories, both of which have reached the uphill, chain-catching stage of the roller coaster. One of them is the next Russell novel - Keeping Bad Company - and I realized, somewhere between the eight- and ten-thousand word mark that this book can't follow the formulaic series approach of one central romantic relationship per book. I worried about this at first. Formula really isn't my favorite thing, and even when I try to, I can't keep it inside the box. But this book...this is going to be a great big epic thunderstorm of a book. Forget the box; the box is not in play. I consulted the oh-so wise and powerful mother, and she said, as always, just what I needed to hear. "You're at your best," she said, "when you're doing the things no one else is doing." So I took the box out back to the burn barrel (you think I'm kidding about that, but no, I have a burn barrel) and torched the sucker. Goodbye, box, I never liked you anyway. (No actual boxes were harmed in the making of this metaphor)
So here's the plan. I thought I'd share it with you because I like it when the authors I read keep everyone posted on what to expect in the future.
- Russells volume 3: Keeping Bad Company
- A literary novel about second chances and horses, inspired by the greatest second chance of my life (as of yet untitled).
- At some point beyond that, my historical.
- And at some point beyond that, Trey and Paige.
Why do I always harken back to that work "keep"? There's something magic in the examination - not of the things we throw away - but the things we choose to keep. I've learned that I can follow through on promises, and that it's okay to keep on wanting.