Those Other Books I Make

Hello My imaginary Friends,

For the past 5 years, I’ve been creating books that you can’t read.

Don’t worry, they’re not fiction or that semi-autobiographical Dinosaur Road Trip. (I should work on that again… maybe.)

Every year I make photobooks of the Dragon and now of Pegasus.

It feels extra, but we take roughly 2500 photos of the kids a year and we rarely go look at the digital albums. It’s nice to go pull out the books. It’s like the old photo albums, but without the fading.

So every year I make a copy of the pictures and sort through them and eliminate them until I have 200-250 for each kid and I create a photobook through Costco. It takes a long time. Actually, every year I swear I’ll start earlier or maybe just let a software do it for me, but I can’t do that.

So I’m proud to say that my first two books of the year are printed and published. Yay!

It’s a good thing they’re cute.

Now to write a story that has been percolating for over 13 years. It started as a dream that Jen had and I came up with a basic plot. Over the years it’s changed a lot, but now it’s time to get it written, and since it was Jen’s dream, she’s going to help me.

We’ve planned and plotted and now I’m going to go write.

Stay safe and be kind,

Éric

Holy Moley! We did it again!

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

I was going to say Oops! We did it again!, but there was no oops; we planned and plotted and then wrote.

Jen and I have finished the second book in the Gates of Westmeath series, Monsters! Incidental Wedding Guests.

I’ve considered writing with someone else in the past, and it’s always felt like more work than it’s worth. I like control of my worldbuilding and I like when my story and characters suddenly go left. I didn’t think I could do that with another writer.

Jen has listened and helped me with my books for over a decade. She knows more about some aspects than I do. (I have a terrible memory.)

It’s been a joy writing with her. Being able to bounce ideas of each other and build on our mutual excitement makes writing more fun. It’s helped eliminate the slump I usually get at the third mark of a book.

It’s not all perfect; we fought a few times over silly things (mostly because of my insecurity and feeling like I didn’t contribute enough words), but overall it was amazing and I can’t wait to do it again. (Okay, I can wait. I’m tired and I need a break.)

The next book we’re writing together is going to be a spin-off of the Elizabeth and the Gates of Westmeath series. I’ve been playing with this idea for over 12 years. It was based on a dream Jen had, so I think it’s fitting that she’s going to co-write. I’m so excited.

We’re planning on writing the next book in the Gates of Westmeath in Fall 2022, around the same time that book one will be published.

I couldn’t dream of a better partner in life, parenting, or writing.

I love you Jen,

Éric

P.S. Jen also wrote about it on her tumblr:


From Jen’s Tumblr

Sixteen years ago, my husband and I decided to officially date. Best decision ever! Married for 12.5 years, two amazing children, six published books, one published game, a fantastic business, and more! Love you so much, husband of mine.

This year, we took a giant step into the next phase of our relationship; in the middle of a pandemic, while homeschooling one child and the other having free reign, we decided to try to write a book together. It ended up working really well. Not only did we finish the first one in 3.5 months, but we got it betaed and submitted to our publisher before June. It was accepted before the end of summer and will be coming out next Fall (2022). Talk about a whirlwind!

But that wasn’t all! We so enjoyed our world that we wrote a collection of short stories in the spring, and then we wrote book 2 this fall. It took us 2 months and a week this time.

This summer, we also decided to both start learning an instrument. I chose guitar and my husband chose ukulele. We also bought a cheap ukulele for the kids to try out and for me to play when the metal strings on my guitar hurt me too much to practice.

All of this, and we’re still very happily married and excited to work together again. Not only do we have two sequels plotted (bare bones), but we have a spin-off that we’re going to start writing in the new year.

I feel so privileged to be able to be creative like this with my husband. He challenges me to try harder and be better every day.

I played my songs today. I tried using a pick for strumming. Not sure I like it. Feels weird.