DISCLAIMER: This post contains subject matter that seems to flip back and forth. It reflects the ambivalence I feel as I pen the third book in a trilogy. It flops from thought to thought and back. Is it great? Is it sad? Is it happy? Is it fun? Is it hard? Is it…so many different things? What I can promise, it is honest.
I am knee-deep in the third book of the Young Inventors Guild. 'Knee-deep' does not reveal the times when I am, in fact, in over my head, however. There are times when I am over my head. We all get attached to our characters and the worlds we create around them. By the third book, I sometimes feel overwhelmed by the final piece and all that it must contain.
While my publisher and I have discussed the idea of other Young Inventors Guild trilogies along different timelines, these specific characters during this particular time and place are contained in the three books. That means the mysteries are revealed and the story is given closure. It is exciting…and a bit sad. It’s like running to a finish line while loathing the end of the race. It is something you work so hard for, so relentlessly, so long. And, with one swift step or stroke of the pen or finger on the keyboard, it comes to a close.
So much goes into creating a world- heart, soul, love, madness. I find myself referring back to moments in the first two books to be sure I have it right and rediscovering things I’d almost forgotten about that story. The third book takes place in Cairo (good thing I came back!) and I find that I really do have to roam the streets, peruse the venues, explore the ancient markets to reestablish my own connection with a place that hasn’t changed much since my characters were there over a hundred years ago. I am lucky to have the opportunity to explore the very place that my characters will. But there is a sense of finality that goes along with the pleasure of exploring. It’s like a final walk-through, knowing you will close the door behind you and leave that house you built with your own hands, that home you love, forever.
I know that, even if I continue and create new Young Inventors Guild books on their own timelines, it will be different. It will feel different, coming back to the first. Revisiting a place that was home is not going home again. That said, it is a wonderful thing to rediscover places where once we did dwell. With that in mind, those of us who have series that will come to a close, enjoy the time in that world, embrace it, and, as the adventure comes to a close, know that these books of ours become part of the world and people will get to enter the story and have a chance to be there. While we write, we are experiencing the adventure for the first time, too. The books then become their own destination. And we, too, can find our way back to visit them.