Sequel-Hell: About to Commit Manuscript-icide

I’m in that horrible, gut-wrenching place called “Sequel Hell.” Where you frustrated-writerquestion everything about the plot, the characters, even the overall plausibility of the trilogy. My confidence is near bottom on this thing.

I’ve finished the first novel in the trilogy and sent it out to several publishers (it’s a romantic suspense). I have the plot outlines on both the second and third stories, and I’m not quite halfway through writing the second. And I want to rip it to shreds already. Not just rip it to shreds, but make snowflake chains of it and watch it float over the edge of a massive canyon. Call this the edge of Manuscript-icide.

I’m hoping this is just a case of the ‘drastic willies.’ I’ve told a few of my friends who visited “Sequel Hell” recently that they were just overreacting. I helped talk one of them off the ledge of manuscript-icide as well. The stories were fantastic (because they are!!! *Cough* Kim and Chrissy.) But I’m not so confident that’s the case with mine.

My goal was to have the first draft of this novel completed by Dec 31st. Not going to happen. Mild panic attack set in last week when I realized there was only 2 weeks left until that deadline, and I still had a crap load of non-writing related stuff to do. Which takes away from my fragile writing time. Throw in a few minor complications with a pregnancy that requires more doctor visits…bottom line is that deadline is just unrealistic at this point.

So now I have a more realistic goal: finish the first draft before this baby comes.

That is, if I don’t have to start all over again. Which is very possible with the way my brain is functioning right now. *manuscript in hand, approaching the freakin’ ledge*PaperOffLedge

3 responses to “Sequel-Hell: About to Commit Manuscript-icide

  1. OK, sweetie, I’m going to tell you the same thing you told me … step away from the computer. It’s going to be fine … better than fine, it’s going to be fantastic. And, if you want to email me the MS for safe-keeping, I’m happy to save you from yourself.

    It’s hard, and I think the only thing that saved my sanity in writing book 2 is reminding myself that it is an entirely different book. You’ll rock this – don’t worry!

  2. Deadlines are really more like suggestions and not always realistic. And I’m with Kim, step away from it! Work on something else if you must. Then reread the first (Solana) … cringe inwardly (because you’ll never love it like you want to) and then read what you’ve written on the second so far. Laugh out loud, cry, bite your nails… but mostly look at it and say ‘Holy F#$%ing S#$%balls I’ve grown as a writer! This is GOOD!

    And now panic because how are you going to make the second half as great and memorable as the first 😉 (Only slightly kidding on this one) You’re a rockstar and you know it – clap your hands.

    If you’re gung-ho on making the push RIGHT NOW… then I recommend grabbing a non-alcoholic beverage, sit down by a fire after the kids are in bed, and let your playlist run rampant through the air as you think of all the wonderfully delicious ways you intend to torture your characters and make it up to ’em like Christmas morning.

  3. Pingback: What’s the Funniest Thing You’ve Found When You’ve Editied Your Manuscript? | Jennifer M Eaton

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