The Juggling Act

By Julie, looking forward to a long weekend writing

Dear Readers, do you like hearing about our writing or publication process? If the answer is no, I am so sorry. You’re not going to love this post. But if the answer is yes, buckle up. I’m appointing you all my accountability partners.

I have two books due this year–one on August 1, one on December 1. I spent January plotting them both.  I set up a schedule. I put my plots in Scrivener, and started on the second book in my Theater Cop series (the one due August 1). I hoped for a pre-Malice finish of the first draft. Missed it by a week, but hit it on Sunday. With A Kiss I Die (working title) is clocking in at 75,000 words so far. I am determined to give both manuscripts time to breath, so I can read them with fresh eyes. Trust me when I say this isn’t my norm, so I am happy I met this first self imposed deadline.

Top binder, A CHRISTMAS PERIL, ready for copy edits final round. Bottom binder, WITH A KISS I DIE, ready for first read before I send it out.

Top binder, A CHRISTMAS PERIL, ready for copy edits final round. Bottom binder, WITH A KISS I DIE, ready for first read before I send it out.

What I neglected to add into the schedule was the arrival of copy edits and proof pages. Both have been done for Chime and Punishment, which will arrive in bookstores on August 1. I got the copy edits for A Christmas Peril, my first Theater Cop book, which will be published September 8. They are due next week, and then the proof pages will come in. According to my schedule, the book that is due December 1 should be started soon so that a draft is done while I am working on With A Kiss I Die (working title) edits.

Then there will be launches of Chime and Peril. Two series, two names, one woman.

How lucky am I that I have the great good fortune of juggling all of this? Very, for sure. Even luckier because Liz (aka Cate Conte), Jessie (aka Jessica and Jessica), Sheila (aka Sheila, but with many series), and Edith (aka Maddie) have been down this path before, and I can learn from them. The imagination part isn’t the difficulty. It is the switching gears to the publication process that makes my head spin.

2017 trading cardThis weekend I will be working on the Theater Cop series, books one and two. Here’s the printed copies. Very soon there will be post its, sheets of paper, and highlighter marks marring both manuscripts.

So, dear readers, this is where I need your help. Would you mind if I keep you up to date on this journey over the summer? Will you help keep me honest? I’ll post updates on Twitter and Instagram, let you see how it is going. Next month I’ll tell you the story of the trading card I created, including the picture of me.

I will send you some updates on Instagram and Twitter, and I’ll check back next month.

Dear readers, should we lay odds? Am I going to keep to my writing schedules? Or am I going to go off the rails and be writing for Thanksgiving?

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About J.A. Hennrikus/Julianne Holmes

J.A. (Julie) Hennrikus writes the Clock Shop Mystery Series under the name Julianne Holmes. JUST KILLING TIME, the first in the series, was published in Oct 2015 and was nominated for a BEST FIRST NOVEL Agatha award. CLOCK AND DAGGER was released in August 2016. CHIME AND PUNISHMENT will be released in August 2017. Julie's Theater Cop series will debut in the fall of 2017. A CHRISTMAS PERIL is the first in this series about an ex-cop who runs a theater company. wears two hats. Her short stories have been published by Level Best Books: “Tag, You’re Dead” in THIN ICE, “Her Wish” in DEAD CALM, and “The Pendulum Swings, Until It Doesn’t” in BLOOD MOON. Julie is an arts administrator and arts advocate. She tweets her writing life as @JHAuthors, and her other life as @JulieHennrikus. She is an avid theater goer and a member of Red Sox nation. Her website is jahennrikus.com, and she blogs with WickedCozyAuthors.com and KillerCharacters.com.

33 thoughts on “The Juggling Act

  1. I think it might be tempting fate to lay odds, Julie. I know you can do this thing, it’ll just take honing your ball juggling skills – which you’re already great at!

  2. Julie–I love knowing about the writing and publishing process. I’m on a two book a year schedule too,(Witch City Mysteries–Kensington) and reading your post, just after Cheryl Hollon’s description of her writing system is both helpful and daunting! Book #6 is due this month and Book #7.in November. I am trying hard to be more efficient!

  3. I’m ashamed of myself for being terrified of writing ONLY one book every 8 months. You gals are my inspiration.

  4. You sound very well organized–and I know whereof you speak, since I’m currently working on proofs of my November book, heavy-duty revisions (what, you say? you want me to add a character?) of next January’s book, and awaiting first-round comments on the June 2018 book. Somewhere in there I’m supposed to write either two or three additional ones, with deadlines of 3/18 and 4/18, which means I should be starting them now. Remind me again why we do this to ourselves? (Because we love it–mostly.) I’ll be happy to keep you on track–it’s so much easier to tell other people what to do than to do it yourself!

  5. You absolutely can do this. You sound like you have your schedule very worked out. I will love hearing about your process and how this is moving along for you. I follow you all because of the things you write …and my love of New England. Born and bred there before moving away years ago.

  6. I’m in awe of your organization and ability to juggle so many things at one time. I love the “insider” story of writing. It makes me appreciate the books all the more. I believe taking about what one is doing is a great way of staying accountable. Go for it, hon!

  7. Are you kidding me, of coarse , we, your readers want updates on your writing schedule. It make the anticipation of your next books more fun. And of coarse, you will do it all in time, on deadline and do a great job as well.

  8. I neither tweet nor gram (or whatever the proper term is), but I do TRY to keep up with the blogs. You go gal.

  9. I am trying to learn from authors just like you, so I hope you do share your process and progress 🙂 I am amazed at your schedule and am confident your accountability partners will be celebrating your success. Blessings!

  10. I thought some more about this posting and would love to see more about your plotting process and your first drafts too.

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