Friday, May 5, 2017

SM Johnson ~ Aftermath ~ Mixed Reviews


Man, oh, man, my precious Darklings, ya'll are a tough crowd! Still, get out there and write more reviews of Aftermath, pretty please? Glowing or critical, I love to hear from you!

I did warn ya'll that Aftermath was different, right? That I organized it into three sections (four, if I count the short story, Secret, Secret) with each pairing (or triad) kind of a separate story. Here's the thing... I really didn't want to leave you all hanging, but juggling multiple points of view is complicated and exhausting. I did it with the vampires, and I ended up doing it with the boys from the Dungeon, and somewhere along the way realized that, as a reader, the books I love most tend to be told from one or two points of view.

I could have filtered the stories together into one novel, and it would have been less noticeable that some of the stories of the pairings were pretty short, as far as word count, but the truth is, it would have taken me several more months of tinkering. And I was already having a hard time keeping the next book, Nervous, at bay. My brain and my fingers really wanted to write Nervous.

And let me tell you point blank - my brain and my typing fingers are LOVING Nervous. And so far, (40,000 words in) my writer's group is digging it, too.

The writing life is tough right now, not due to creative constraints, but time constraints. See, I went and got a Master's degree and became a professional problem-solver, and I'm working a full-time literal "day job" for the first time in, oh, all of my authoring life.

And here's a secret - my old job had long stretches of b-o-r-i-n-g and I did a shit-ton of writing longhand while at work. Versus my new job, which is AMAZING and the best job ever and never boring.

So anyway. That's all I got.

I feel slightly bad that Aftermath is not meeting reader expectations, but honestly, the only way to keep the writing momentum going is to write what you want to read. Seriously. That's the best trick I know. And so far Nervous is a ton of fun. I'm getting the chance to stay in one point of view and really dig deep into characterization, and I haven't had much opportunity to do that before, except with Jermiah Quick, and even though it's my very favorite of anything I've written (with Dare in the Dungeon a close second) - no one else seems to like it all that much.

Writing is a weird job. Maybe not quite as weird as my day job herding cats, but still, weird.

I love you all to pieces, my beautiful Darklings, and swear I will make it up to you with Nervous (shootin' for Fall 2017), so don't give up on me!

~SM

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