Well, now what?

I have no idea what to write.

To be clear, I don’t have writer’s block. There’s many options. I’ve got a four-novel series I’d like to start outlining. I got a really good idea for a short story in a unique world. I’ve got a few short stories that could use some cleaning up before I submit (or resubmit) them. Lots of ideas sprouting around here.

And for the moment, I’ve carved out enough time most evenings to get something written.

No, the problem is not in my ideas nor my time. The problem this time around is everyone else.

Well, not everyone else, but a few specific people.

I have what is either a long novel or a duology of novels complete and sitting with an editor. I shouldn’t touch that project until I get it back from her and then work through the revisions she suggests.

I have a book under my real name at a publisher. It’s been edited, but I expected to have to do more work with the text or doing marketing and such, once the publisher gets that far. So I’m done working that book until I hear back from the publisher.

Another publisher has told me he wants to commission a book on depression. Awesome! I can do that! I’ve asked some specific questions, like word count and such. This particular person has told me that he needs to get back to me. However, assuming it happens, he’ll need it written relatively quick for an event happening in June. That means that I’m holding off on starting, since word counts would greatly change what I end up writing.

What all that means is that I’ve got three major projects in holding patterns, hanging not far over my head. Is it worth starting another major project in the meantime? I mean, the project that looks the most appealing to me at the moment is outlining that four-novel series. But if one of those other big projects gets back to me, I’ll have to switch in the middle of things…

So, does that mean I then pursue another short story? I just finished working on a cycle of four short stories (half already accepted at publishers), so I don’t know that I really want to tackle another short-form project.

And honestly, it’s a little maddening.

Now, to be clear, I don’t blame anyone for this. My editor is busy and still working well within parameters. My publishers are both friends, and I know where they’re at. No one is “behind” a timetable. It’s just where I happen to be at the moment.

So, now what?

I’ll probably just sit down and see what I feel like tonight. Right now I feel like outlining that novel series, but by the time I sit down I may feel more like a short story.

In other words, I’m more just complaining that I’ve got three big projects hanging over my head that I can’t do anything about.

Yet.

We’ll see which one of them returns to me first, and what I’ll get done while I’m waiting!

Ever been in a position like that, where projects are hanging over your head but at the moment you could tackle something else? What did you do while waiting?

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