Happy Monday, guys!
Today, we're thrilled to have Anne Pillsworth on the blog! Anne's book Fathomless came out in October, and it's the second book in the Redemption Heir's series!
Read on for her thoughts about writing second books, how these books are centered around HP Lovecraft, and stick around for the giveaway!
A guest post by:
Anne M. Pillsworth
Author of Fathomless, (Tor, October 2015)
Q: Other authors have told me that it can be an advantageous experience writing a second book in a series, because you have a firm foundation and concrete deadlines. But conversely, it’s also more challenging, because you have to make sure that you fully recap everything that happened in the first book, while building momentum andmaking sure that you tie in enough unanswered questions for a following book.
How do you handle writing a second book in a series? (I hope this question makes sense - I’m always very curious about this process!)
Writing Fathomless, second book in the REDEMPTION'S HEIR series, was easier than Summoned, the first book, in that I felt I knew the characters and setting better -- I did have that solid foundation, in other words. My first step, however, had to be rereading book one with fine-toothed eyeglasses, so I could make a detailed continuity log. Otherwise I was sure to forget someone's eye color or age or whether he was the one who sprained an ankle chasing that monstrous familiar, or was it Uncle Gus? I had started book two a year before book one was published, so the deadline wasn't a problem. Except for the last couple rounds of edits, that was. Those always seem to be sprints in comparison to the early draft marathons, scary but exhilarating.
The recap was tricky. I wanted it to be unobtrusive, to avoid the dreaded backstory infodump. Putting protagonist Sean in a situation where it was natural for him to remember the main events of book one took several tries and lots of edits.
My plan for the series was to center each book in one of H. P. Lovecraft's fictional New England towns. Summoned is set both in (real place, really!) Providence, Rhode Island, and fictional Arkham, Massachusetts, home of notorious Miskatonic University and its still more notorious library. Fathomless features Innsmouth, MA, decaying seaside town of many secrets. Book three will star Dunwich, MA, a village isolated among stone-crowned hills, where the veils between worlds have worn dangerously thin. Each book recounts a self-contained adventure, interwoven with threads from the past and threads snaking into the future.
Oh, and let's not forget those character arcs, their growth from book to book!
Hmm, this is getting complicated.
So Fathomless needed to revolve around Sean learning a trajectory-changing secret about his magical "bloodline," while new friend Daniel became romantically involved with Sean's BFF Eddy (Edna, but don't dare call her that.) Daniel also had to draw the trio into a harrowing adventure that paralleled Sean's personal journey. All while building up to a revelation to the reader which Sean won't share until book three.
Exhausting as that may sound, I had great fun writing Fathomless, and great assistance from best beta Deb and editor Miriam Weinberg.
Back now to book three and the road that goes ever on and on, down from every door where it begins, whether the writer's feet are too weary to pursue it or not.
Me, I just keep buying new running shoes.
Thank you so much, Anne! We loved learning about your thought process, and I'm sure readers will too!
About the title:
Published October 27th 2015 by Tor Teen
Sean dips even further into his magical destiny, but will blood prove thicker than the mysteries of Innsmouth's briny depths?
Sean Wyndham has tried to stay away from the lure of magic—the last time he tried to dabble in the dark studies, he inadvertently summoned a blood familiar, wreaking havoc on his town, and calling the attention of the Elder Gods. But now Sean has been offered the chance to study magic with a proper teacher, overseen by Helen Arkwright, a friend of Sean’s father and heir to ancient order of much power, who protects New England from that which lurks in the coastline’s unseen depths. But will learning theory be enough, when there is a much greater magical secret hidden in Helen’s vaulted library?
Accompanied by his best friend, Eddy, and their enigmatic new friend Daniel, Sean wades out deeper into mystical legend and shadow. With hints and secrets buried long in family lore, they turn to the suspicious Reverend Orne once more for assistance. But as Sean deepens his understanding of his power, a darkness is waking...