Writing a lot brings with it a strange curse: I love reading, but being prolific means most of what I read winds up being my own words. There's the outlines, the first drafts, the editing, copy-editing, formatting, etc. By the time I'm done with a book, I've read it in full 3-4 times.
Right now, Rogue Bet is right at the start of the editing process. A sequel to the first trilogy I ever wrote (THE WILD NINES), writing Rogue Bet was a fun challenge - how do you step back, after years, to a world you used to know? To characters and relationships long fogged over with time?
The answer, for me, was to dive back in and go. Davin and his wise-cracking crew came back with their personalities, their dreams, and their conflicts. Like cracking open a favorite book or returning to a childhood haunt, the Wild Nines and their corporatized solar system with its citizens creaking under technological growth and rampant profit-chasing flowed right back from where it'd waited in my memories.
And as they did, I realized how many more stories these characters had to tell. The Wild Nines are brave, are dangerous, and are prone to getting themselves in trouble, but they're also dreamers. Davin, Phyla, and the rest have goals beyond assembling piles of cash, beyond shooting down the big bad, even if they don't always know it.
Starting a new novel, and a new trilogy, without the 'origin story' burden lets me run with this bunch, lets me see where they want to go, who they want to be when things don't quite go as planned. And the banter comes hot and fast now that our stars know each other, know how to hit each other's buttons. Writing this book is fun, fast, and I'm super happy to get back into this world for a new story.
Now I've just got to make sure Rogue Bet plays nice with the original books, but I've got a few read-throughs to make sure it all fits, and my well-worn, original copy of Wild Nines on my desk with me to make sure.
Sometimes, it's worth going back. Sometimes, you'll find old friends waiting to say hello.