Welcome to the world of publishing, where sleep is scarce, tea is the hottest commodity since running water, and the amount of crumpled papers littered across the floor rivals the dirty sock pile in your younger brother's room. This is the house of a writer. This is also the current state of my office. On June 6th, the fourth installment in my bestselling Collapse Series - State of Pursuit - will be available around the world. It's an exciting thought. I am constantly amazed by the sheer volume of people that read the book every month - not to mention every single day. New readers from the west coast of California to the shores of England and even Japan are delving into the story of Cassidy Hart. Every once in a while, I still have to pinch myself to convince my brain that this is actually happening - it's not just a dream!
So what's next for The Collapse Series? Well, here's a Question and Answer session with all of the top inquiries that I get from readers!
Is State of Pursuit the final installment in the series?
The answer, Kemosabe, is no. The series that I am writing is comprised of several installments thus far, and the story is not at a final end yet. So yes, there will be a fifth book. Do I know when I am going to cap the series? I can't tell you that! What kind of a writer would I be? Let's just say that Cassidy and Chris aren't done yet.
Are your books available in paperback?
I periodically get asked this question, and of course the answer is yes. They have always been available in paperback on Amazon. I own a digital publishing house, but nothing can beat the terrific smell and feel of a physical book.
How many characters are there in the fourth book?
Can I just say that Cassidy Hart is in pretty good company? In State of Emergency, there were just five supporting characters. In State of Pursuit, there are a total of seventeen peripheral supporting characters that all get a chance to jump off the page.
How do you keep all of your characters in order?
When you are writing from the first person point of view, it can be quite tricky to maintain character development in supporting players. Why? Because you're telling the story through one set of eyes. You, as the reader, must perceive the growth of the characters around you through the protagonists's eyes. I have given a great deal of thought and development to each individual character in the book - from the major players to even the bit parts. I have a system, and believe me, it takes a lot of work to make sure every character gets their page-time. But I love it. Every minute of it.
If there will be a fifth book, when will it release?
Well, this Friday will herald the release of the fourth installment, and then I begin work on book five. I really don't get more than a one-week break between the publishing process of each book. Keeping up this pace is like enduring a long-distance race, let me tell you! The fifth book will most likely release sometime this Fall.
You always end with a cliffhanger. Why?
I never plan the cliffhangers. I plan the book, the story, the characters, the plot points, etc. I plan everything - except for the cliffhangers. They have all happened on their own. I get an inherent, "Okay, this is where the book ends," feeling. And I end it. Just like that. I call it the "storyteller's sixth sense." I just know when to close the chapter. It simply happens. As for whether or not State of Pursuit ends with a cliffhanger, I can't say. Which, of course....leaves you wondering. *wink*
What will you be working on this summer?
In addition to owning WB Publishing and writing The Collapse Series, I love teaching creative writing. Over the summer I will be busy developing my upcoming creative writing program for children, which should be available around August 2014. I'm very excited about it. I will include all of the details very soon on Writing Belle. I will also be writing the fifth installment of The Collapse Series.
And what will you be doing for fun?
I like to think that my work is fun. Telling stories and working in publishing and teaching for a living has always been my dream - and I am blessed enough to be able to do so. But I plan on taking some trips to the ocean over the summer, as well as to the mountains. I also love picnics, bonfires, movie nights, sun bathing, double dates, reading, shopping and visits to the local coffee shop for a leisurely chat with my friends. So, as you can see: I like to do lots of things!