It’s been almost two months now that my debut novel Lost has been out in the world, and I’ve been pretty quiet on social media. Part of that is because I’m busy with everyday life, and part of it is because there isn’t a whole lot going on that’s worthy of posting to my socials. But that doesn’t mean there’s nothing happening at all. So what’s next now that Lost is out?
I’m slowly working on a few things.
The furthest along of those things is the next novel I’m looking to publish, In the Days Before. I first drafted this one for NaNoWriMo 2021, used NaNoWriMo 2022 as my focus to get the first round of editing done, and then posted it a chapter a week to Wattpad to get some feedback so I could keep improving it. Luck was in my favour, because I managed to shortlist for the Wattys 2023. A win is doubtful, but the nod of recognition is all the encouragement I needed to get back to working on this one.
My aim at the moment is to fix all the problems I can see in it myself, add more to the narrative and the characters, and then hopefully get a few beta readers to take a look at it. If all goes to plan, I’d like to see this one out by the end of 2024. Let’s see how we go with that, shall we?
In the Days Before is the first in what I’m hoping will be a number of teen crime novels. They’ll mostly be standalones (maybe with a sequel or two thrown in) set in the same universe, with little things interconnecting them. Think Karen M. McManus of One of Us Is Lying fame. I was heavily inspired by her and my love of true crime YouTubers, and I’m excited to get this one out into the world. (And then hopefully get started on the others!)
Besides this, I’m starting to look back at an old paranormal trilogy I started. It’s very rough, and I haven’t planned out the second and third novels very well (or at all), but it’s something I want to finish. One day I want to hear people say, “Oh, Renée Shantel. Yeah, she writes teen crime and young adult paranormal.”
The last thing on the agenda is a romance novel that I’m playing around with. I am by no means a romance writer, and I read less smut than most people on Booktok, but multiple friends have joked around and encouraged me to attempt to write something…spicy. So I’m toying with the idea. Taking it slow. Letting it come when it wants to. I have a separate pseudonym in mind should I decided to start publishing anything like that, but we’re a long way from there yet. Still, I felt it worth mentioning. Total transparency. This is what’s going on in my writing world.
So, not much to tell the socials yet, but that doesn’t mean nothing’s happening. I’m no Taylor Swift, but definitely don’t take my silence to mean there isn’t anything on the way.
I’m curious to know if anybody is interested in anything in particular!