Last Friday was my deadline for turning in book 3 of the Dreaming Anastasia trilogy - currently titled Again and Again. Been mostly chained to the laptop for the past few weeks. The end of any book always gets me to that crazy place - the one where all I want to do is write. You forget to eat (at least anything beyond green tea, coffee or chocolate). You are distracted and possibly snappish (not that you'lld admit it) when someone (your husband, your best friend, the AC guy who you called to your house) asks you something. You stay up until the wee hours and find yourself up again early to get at it. You find places back in chapter five that you hadn't revised when you did that last draft. The ones that still say things like "Ethan (dressed in something really hot and historically appropriate)..." And yes, that's what you have typed still - that stuff in the parentheses.
Did you like how I tried to distance myself from the crazy by using 'you' ? Uh huh. I'm just that clever.
In any case, I cleaned my work space yesterday and can actually see the desk surface. Amazing.
And I find myself very sentimental about these characters I've lived and breathed for so many years. Anne and Ethan popped into my head in the late fall of 2004/early 2005. An enormous amount of change has gone on in my life since then, much, but not all of it caused by the ripple of these two characters and the stories I've been lucky enough to get to weave around them. The more I wrote them, the more I fell in love with them and their world. I loved writing about this girl who had no idea she was destined to be a hero and the struggles and loss and love that would come from that destiny. And I adored writing about this guy who had lived a very, very long time but would come to realize that he knew very little about himself or love or destiny and that he was about to learn it from this brave girl who would steal his heart. It doesn't spoil book 3 to say that Anne and Ethan take a while coming to their love. Because the central conflicts of their stories are not about love as much as about life and choices and the things life throws at us that we can never ever expect. Love is just a surprising and glorious extra event that makes the loss and struggle bearable.
If you have read Dreaming Anastasia and/or Haunted - thank you! If you have bought a copy for a friend, thank you! If you have mentioned the books or reviewed the books, thank you! If you turned a copy face out at the book store, well thank you for that, too! If you haven't read yet but are reading this post, well thank you for that, too. Readers and book bloggers and librarians - you have rocked my world for a long time now, and your support has helped me be able to write this third and final installment because you spread the word about this little series. I can't thank you enough.
But right now, I'm telling you, people! It's hard to let go of these characters!! And I'm already excited about next spring when book 3 is actually out in the world.
So today's question: If you're a writer - is it hard to let go when you finish a book/series?
If you're a reader - what are books/characters that you found it hard to let go of? Are there characters who rattle around in your head still?
Later this week: a July giveaway of all sorts of cool books!!
And check out Lisa and Laura's(my Sourcebooks sisters) latest post on WriteOnCon - coming up next month!!