By Diane Moore
The first book is published, ongoing media interviews, book signings, and social media networking fill your schedule, further outward signs that you’ve made it, Congratulations. So, why do you have that gnawing feeling of unfinished work still looming?
For many of us, the second novel (and beyond) is more challenging because we have something to live up to and there’s pressure to work harder, better and smarter. After my novel Love Thy Neighbor was published this past Spring, I started focusing on Novel #2 — not just to make it a better seller, but also a better story.
As Christian writers, we have further challenges to:
1. Share our testimony,
2. Honor God through our writing,
3. Create a story that leads our readers to deepen their relationship with God.
That, I believe, is the inspiration that drives many of us. Thankfully, we have uplifting moments to feed that inspiration — fellowship with writers through our ACFW groups and the great ACFW conferences.
When I attend writer’s conferences, I’m always amazed at the number of writers, representing the number of unique and compelling stories we have to tell. The energy that we writers share at those meetings and through social media is great.
And nearing 50 (remember I’m a fiction writer!) nudges me to reflect on how many experiences I have lived through and God willing, how many more I will live through — providing more fodder for future novels. Those are the drivers for Novels #2, 3 and beyond that help me, and I hope help you to remain focused.
So congratulations. You have completed your first novel. That accomplishment proves that you had a story and you worked hard enough at your craft to tell it and tell it well. In my first novel, heroine Deirdre Morgan demonstrated how one can maintain one’s faith and be a good steward of Christianity while surrounded by adversity.
My next will build on that theme, but with an added take-away, along the lines of can a bad person have good, redeeming qualities — and how much slack do you give that person. Because we don’t want to play with fire. But, as Christians we cannot isolate ourselves totally. So, keeping that balance — maintaining our faith within the mainstream, by not isolating but acclimating and sharing our faith appropriately.
That gnawing feeling isn’t just the drive to tell a better story, but an opportunity to honor God. And I believe that’s enough to inspire most of us.
Diane Moore is the author of the mystery romance novel, Love Thy Neighbor, Released in March 2012 by Parson Place Press. Her second book, D’Vine Intervention, is set in Florence, Italy, and Corpus Christi, Texas.
Diane and her husband Pat call San Antonio, Texas, home and travel extensively.