Barely a month has passed since the release of the second book in the Cycle of the Six Moons trilogy, An Eclipsing Autumn, and already I’ve jumped into the first of many edits for The Last Winter Moon.
Since April began, I put off opening the document containing book three for eleven whole days. I’m halfway through it as I write this post, and oh my gosh I can’t wait to share it with everyone, but I wanted to take a moment to think about why I’m so terrified of completing it.
It’s a Feels Trip
I wasn’t even fifteen percent into the manuscript, and I kept reading with tears in my eyes. The first five chapters are pretty much nonstop action, and then BAM! Feels. Bam! More feels. Bam! What? You want more feels with those feels?
The second half of Part One encompasses the feeling of depression. When I think about that part, it’s shrouded in gray, like on a dark winter afternoon when the skies threaten rain. I won’t say exactly what happens, but Michelle sinks into depression.
It hurts so much, I can’t feel anything else.
Almost all my bouts of depression are compressed into that part, so while I think it does well to show what depression feels like, it’s difficult to read. I had to mentally prepare myself to edit these scenes so they would be more powerful. In doing so, I had to make myself vulnerable to make myself feel everything Michelle does.
Oh, and if the first half of the book is a feels trip? Phew, just wait till you get to the last. (And that’s probably why I stopped halfway through the book so I could write this blog post.)
I’m Afraid It Won’t Live up to Expectations
I like The Starriest Summer. It’s a fun, cute, colorful introduction to the world and the characters. I like An Eclipsing Autumn even more. Relationships deepen, the lore darkens, characters become less black and white…
As the finale, The Last Winter Moon is supposed to wrap everything up, answer all mysteries, and leave the reader satisfied that they had embarked on this journey.
I believe it takes care of all these things, but I’m the writer. No one else has set eyes on this book. I’ve had beta readers for book one and book two, but I don’t know if I can trust anyone else with this book. That’s why I’m trying to take my sweet time to make sure that the book is near perfect, and that’s why the release date is later this year.
I Don’t Want It to End
This is the Cycle of the Six Moons. It has always been one complete story. When I started to write this new version in 2011, I knew all the characters and their fates. What has changed are the little details that make the whole world come to life. The food, clothing, the sights, sounds, smells. I absolutely love this story. I love the people, the lore, the world. I believe in it. That’s why I’ve held onto it for literally half my life.
I do have other stories I want to tell, and I can’t wait to get around to writing them. I have a hard time letting go, and CSM is just one of those things. Once book three is out, I don’t want the whole series to fade into obscurity.
But I think I love it too much to allow that to happen.
Regardless, I will complete The Last Winter Moon sometime this year. It will be wonderful, and I can’t wait to share it! Now that I’m actually doing the edits, I’m not sure if I will release it November 11. It might be earlier.
Anyway. In the mean time. Here’s some old-ish book three artwork.