My last day of writing was June 10th. I’m very close to finishing The Vintages (about 15.000 words left) and am hoping I can honor the July release date (because of some health issues over the past few weeks I’m not as far along with the manuscript as I would have liked to be at this time).
Anyway, since I’m nearing the end of The Vintages, I’ve spent increasingly more time wondering where to take the story from here. Mindguard is a self-contained story. You can read it and be done with the “Weixman Universe”. To a certain degree, The Vintages is also self-contained, though it does function as a sequel. When I was writing Mindguard, I had no intention of it ever becoming a series. When I got the idea to continue the “story arc” I knew in my heart that it would take more than two books to tell.
Now, I don’t like the concept of ending a book on a cliffhanger that tries to “force” the reader to buy the next, so The Vintages will also have an ending that will hopefully leave readers satisfied. From there, they can decide whether or not they would like to continue the journey. So I had to conceive The Vintages as a self-sufficient story (placed ten years after the events of Mindguard), that could also work as a bridge between Book 1 and Book 3. But I didn’t know what would come next.
Yesterday morning, while working on something entirely different, the complete story of the New Mindwar Timeline started unraveling before my eyes, down to its last detail. It’s over now. The journey is complete. It took months of unsuccessful brainstorming and less than ten minutes of figuring it out. Now all that is left to do is start writing. I always make fun of the concept of "inspiration" but when the pieces do fall into place it's glorious. I don’t know if it was my being relaxed and thinking about the upcoming vacation, but I’ve got months of work done in ten minutes. You can set targets and write 6000 words a day, but you can’t rush a good idea. I’ve often found myself stuck at a certain scene for weeks because I just couldn’t figure out a small detail and had to patiently wait for the puzzle to solve itself. It can get frustrating. You can’t imagine how grateful I am for having two years’ worth of story to work on.
Anyway, I thought I’d use this post to reveal the timeline for the books (which I’ve unofficially decided to call the “The New Mindwar Timeline”):
Book 1 - MINDGUARD (released September 2014)
Book 2 - THE VINTAGES (estimated release date: July 2015) The Vintages will be a direct sequel to Mindguard, taking place ten years after the fated mission on Carthan.
Book 0.5 - AYERS (estimated release date: December 2015) Ayers will be a self-contained prequel set roughly seven months before the events described in Mindguard. As such, it will not be part of the “main timeline” and the overall story arc.
Book 3 - THE WEIXMAN FALLACY: a direct sequel to The Vintages (release date N/A)
Book 4 - THE MIND MALIGNANCY: a direct sequel to The Weixman Fallacy. This will be the final book of the main timeline, wrapping up the overall story arc and bringing the journey to its unequivocal end.
There you have it, that’s the plan for the future. I’m also entertaining the idea of writing a Book 1.5, possibly called The Christians of Kalhydon, but for now that’s only an idea.
I hope that many of you will want to join me for the whole “mind journey” but if you get off somewhere along the way, I’m glad to have had you on board.
I’m “logging off” now to finish packing. I’ll be back from Sicily on June 23rd. Love you guys & talk to you soon!
P.S: I’ve had some free time this morning and that gave me the idea to redesign the cover for Ayers. I love the new “mosaic cover” and it’s almost certainly going to be the one I run with. Would love to hear your opinions on it. You know how to reach me ;)