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It was a long two years, but this week I received feedback from my professor on my thesis marking the official end to my MFA journey. Whew! I am happy to report that she had good things to say, some suggestions for revision, of course, but her feedback was a tremendous boost to my confidence.

A few things have changed since I first began drafting this book. The biggest change is the title and the duration of the plot line. A good chunk of what I thought would be in book one has shifted into book two. Which means, August doesn’t make it to Warwick in book one, so it felt strange to keep WARWICK as the title. So, book one is tentatively titled, New Jericho (aka Newark after Reverend Carolina renames it!).

When I started writing this book, I had no idea we would soon find ourselves living in the middle of a pandemic…talk about real-life research! I’ve reworked some of the book to include some real-life lessons learned, but it’s a little spooky to read back through earlier drafts and see things like toilet paper hoarding jump off the page. And I have to be honest, every time I see an article talking about solar flares, I get a case of the goosebumps. While it was interesting to explore what life might look like in a post-pandemic world sans electricity, I don’t ever want to find out what that would actually be like.

Now the hard part begins. Revisions and querying. It’s tough to decide if I want to pursue traditional publishing or investigate self-publishing. I’m getting mixed signals from the market…a pandemic story in the midst of pandemic-weary times might not be a good fit. I’m examining a handful of small publishers and fingers crossed I find a home for not only this first book, but the entire series.