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Sunday, November 10, 2019

In Which I Dip My Toes In the Mainstream Pool (Sort Of)

I've noted in past blog posts (or maybe just one) that I'm considering taking the plunge into writing more mainstream gothic horror or gothic horror that appeals to a larger and more generalized audience. Of course, the genre alone pretty much limits my reach especially since I've never been a huge writer of romance, though I've produced my share of romantic stories. But if you've read my books in the past, romance tends to be secondary to other, larger story conflicts.

At any rate, I've hinted over at Twitter that I already have a new story plotted along those lines, and I'm looking into breaking tradition by writing two books concurrently. However, I'd like to clarify that Automata takes precedence, and I'll be writing the other book (still untitled as I write this post) whenever I can set aside time for it given my full-time day job and other real life responsibilities.

I do hope to publish that other book at the end of 2020 while Automata comes out, hopefully, in June or thereabouts. I'm still seeing if I could whittle the length of both new stories down to long novellas in the 49K-50K range, but things almost always never go according to plan, especially when I tackle historical fantasy. Those books tend to end up more complicated than originally planned, but I'd like to make sure that I keep a firm hold on the stories, or I'll end up with massive, unwieldly tomes that turn into a major bitch to revise and edit.

Helen Mirren as Sarah Winchester is the model I'm using for Prudence

So for now I'm just finishing up my edits for Dollhouse, which are coming along as nicely as I'd hoped since previous revisions have also involved edits. This round of cleanup is quite smooth and headache-free, but I still can't wait to be done with everything, so I can finally share the book with you guys and move forward with the next novel(la).

And if I do succeed in turning Automata into a long novella, there's definitely a third plotbunny lurking in the shadows that can be turned into another installment of the Curiosities series.

As for the mainstream gothic horror book, it's going to be a dark comedy told from two POVs, though one will be more prominent than the other. The primary MC of the book is Prudence Honeysett, an aging and fabulously wealthy curmudgeon spinster (widow?) whose bullshit meter is stuck on max power. The secondary MC is her young nephew, Frederick Honeysett, a medium who runs to his aunt for help when his family boots him out for being (a) a ghost whisperer and (b) gay.

This young gentleman is my model for  Fredrick

There'll be ghosts - lots of ghosts care of poor Freddie's ability - and a lot of snark from an older woman who only wants nothing more than to be left alone by the world, by family, and especially by ghosts. There'll also be some romantic intrigue nipping at Freddie's heels, much to Pru's dismay. But as usual, that detail's going to be secondary to the developing bond between a couple of odd ducks who can count only on each other for anything.

I'm definitely taking a crazy number of elements from previous books I've written, particularly when it comes to the dynamics between an older woman who won't suffer fools and a nervous young man. And I can't wait to get started on this book, but I'll take my sweet time with it as I've got a whole year to make sure it comes out right.

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