Plotting a new book is perhaps one of the greatest joys in my life. Plotting, outlining, and the early drafts of a new story tend to be my favorite part of the process (even if I do want to burn said outlines and drafts once it’s over.)
One of the things that inspire me the most when developing a new story is reading about other people’s WIP’s. Reading about the other stories coming out of my fellow writers’ minds is always captivating and inspiring to me. So, with that being said, I’ve gathered for this post a group of fellow writers (some published and some not) who are sharing their WIP’s. Hopefully, this helps other writers get some ideas, get those brainstorming circuits turned on, and introduces everyone reading or writing this post to some up-and-coming writers and stories.
I’m excited for today’s post as it features authors and stories from across the Instagram community and spans multiple genres and ideas!
I’ve had the pleasure of befriending and working with Claire Golden (@onceuponayarn) on my own book Spirit Followers in which she was invaluable as an editor and reviewer. She’s also just a great friend and person all around. I’m super excited about the stories she’s developed and what she might one day publish!
Claire: My current project is called How to Breathe in Space, a YA sci-fi about a dying girl’s quest to leave a dying planet. Several hundred years in the future, Earth is all but uninhabitable. The remainder of the population is controlled by the Foundation for Intergalactic Travel (FIT), whose sole mission is to find another home for humanity. The rich live in oxygen-filtered homes, while those who can’t afford air filtration systems are left to become ill from the polluted, ash-filled air. Such is life for fifteen-year-old Halley, whose lungs are failing. Her only chance is to join FIT’s training program and leave the planet.
I’ve been working on this story for the past 4 years, and it’s important to me to get it out into the world. It’s a way for me to channel my frustration at how humans are killing our planet and how class inequality affects people. Have you ever looked up at the stars and felt how insignificant you are in the magnitude of the universe? Rather than finding it scary, I think it’s beautiful. We are just a speck in the galaxy. And that’s the feeling I hope this book evokes.
I’m passionate about #DiversityinYA, a movement that seeks to write characters of different ethnicities, sexualities, abilities, and so forth. My YA fantasy novel, Unraveled, is a retelling of Sleeping Beauty where two girls fall in love while trying to break a curse. In How to Breathe in Space, Halley has a disability and uses a cannula and oxygen tank. Although fiction can be escapist, it should still reflect the beautifully diverse world we live in, and that’s something really important to me!
Katlyn DeRouen (@authorkatlynderouen) is a writer and poet whose debut poetry collection Breaking Free is coming out very, very soon! (August 16th!!!) I love reading more about it and am excited to get to read it as poetry is one of my favorite genres!
Katlyn: “It’s very hard to put into words quite what BREAKING FREE means to me. It’s been a long time since I felt so free to be myself. I didn’t have to hide how I viewed the world. Or hide the pain. Characters weren’t my friends that let me use them as a shadow anymore. Being a poet was something I never truly expected to happen. Especially due to the fact that written word within itself about me was the hardest task to accomplish, but I guess after so much pain, that’s really all that you can do is let it out. BREAKING FREE was birthed through memories of pain and anguish and even happiness. I didn’t want my own memories to be lessened in my writing because such sensitive topics about abuse, familial neglect, sexual assault, or even getting your heart broken are such things the world is afraid of. BREAKING FREE broke boundaries and gave me a chance to explore everything I’m afraid of. It gave me the chance to bring life to strangers out of situations that brought me death. And as an artist, that’s all you can really ask for.”
I’ve had to pleasure of working with Gentopher Adams (@authorgentopheradams) through beta reading her wonderful upcoming debut Rage. I love what she’s written in the sci-fi genre. She regularly talks about the abundance of stories buzzing around within her, so I’m excited to read and have her share more about them!
Gent: “Hello, I go by the name Gent Adams. I’m a nineteen-year-old author. I mainly love writing sci-fi novels but I also try fantasy and horror novels. I started writing at a young age, writing short stories for my siblings and I to read. I published my first novel at fourteen and soon after published two others but I took all the books down for rebranding. My new debut novel is called Rage. Rage, a young adult sci-fi novel, is about two main characters trying to survive a zombie-like apocalypse in the future. It’s the first novel in my new sci-fi series, Rage Worlds.
I wanted to create a novel series unique and different. You’d have to read the series to know what I mean, haha. Inspiration for Rage is what I wanted to create a novel where all the odds are against the main character and yet, they know they will survive. Even if everything is so bad and they are bitten by the rage craving monsters, they still move forward and keep pushing on. No matter what.”
I had the pleasure of meeting Destiny Harris (@itsdestinymanyana) through a mutual friend about a year ago. Her heart for Jesus is so beautiful and I’ve loved every conversation I’ve had with her. She writes to inspire and love others towards Christ and truth. Her first book isn’t out yet, but I’m excited for you all to hear about it and to be able to read the final copy!
Destiny: Hey, readers and writers! My name is Destiny Mañana Harris (but I typically go by Destiny Manyana, though. If you’re looking for me, that is). I’m 19, a sophomore in college, and just trying to maintain my love for writing whilst I must often beckon to the call of another dreaded essay due by midnight. As of now, I’m working on a book called, “Jesus Was Ugly”. The title is quite a red-herring, but I hope it draws both Christians and non-Christians. It is my journey in uncovering the mystery of confidence, identity and beauty as someone who loves Christ, but for years struggled to love herself. I had heard cliché quotes my entire life about beauty and self-worth. They were always nice to hear but were ultimately void of meaning when I tried to live with it. These are quotes like, “Beauty comes from within” and “You just need to have confidence in yourself.” It sounded pretty, but I just couldn’t grasp it, take hold of it or apply it to my soul. I still avoided mirrors like the plague. I still couldn’t leave the house without makeup on. I still hated myself.
But one night, I came across a scripture about Christ and his lack of beauty. (Isaiah 53.2, New King James Version). The wheels turned in my brain as I began to see the gravity of this scripture. Without hesitation, I fell down a rabbit hole of reading scripture after scripture about beauty. And I began to see beauty for what it was. So, I immediately began to write, the words pouring out like a flood. I looked in the mirror that night and felt a freedom I had never felt before. This is because, for the first time, I had invited the Gospel into the concept of beauty. And I was never the same. Now, every time I see someone who is losing in the fight against self-hatred and insecurity, I don’t only see myself in them. Now, I see hope for them. Like how I saw hope for me. And I was drawn night after night to this book, desiring to spread this hope throughout the world. I so dearly hope it spreads.
Thank you all for reading! I hope you found this inspiring and interesting! Until part 2 on Friday, blessings to all!