Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Contagium updates

It's been a while since I've written a real post. A lot has happened in that time, a lot of stuff that's not too exciting as well as some pretty exciting news. First of all, I want to thank everyone who participated in the Reaper cover reveal blog tour. I had meant to compile a list of bloggers, but I've been sick for two weeks now and have fallen behind on pretty much everything. I have asthma, so when I get a cold it turns into a respiratory tract infection and then bronchitis (and sometimes pneumonia) pretty easily. Yes, I know how much this will suck in the ZA. I'm considering growing penicillin in my basement for this very reason. Preparation is the key to survival, remember? I have a bad habit of ignoring feeling sick and hoping it will go away. Makes no sense when you remember I'm in nursing school. I know the pathophysiology of bronchitis. I know I'm susceptible to it. Yet I ignore it and then end up really sick. Which is where I'm at now. I'll live and learn someday...I hope!

Speaking of school, I have a little over a month left until graduation! Yay! I cannot wait to be done but I'm nervous at the same time. Graduation means taking boards (which I'm really not too worried about...I've done well in school; boards shouldn't be any worse) and getting a job as a nurse. I'm really looking forward to working and being able to take care of patients. Once I don't have studying and homework, it should free up a lot of my time for writing. I have so many outlines and new stories that I want to write!

My current project is the third book in the Contagium Trilogy, and the point of this post. I've talked about this before, so I'll just recap really quickly. I made outlines for the three books in the series before I started writing. I knew what I wanted to happen, and I knew what I wanted to write to get to those things. I never intended on the books being as long as they are. I had planned on introducing Hayden's character around page 75 and it ended up being way past that. The characters literally took over and told me their stories. The first book goes beyond what I had imagined, but it was all in a good way. They characters had more depth, more to them that makes them relate-able, realistic, and gives you a better change to connect with them. I enjoyed writing the gross zombie scenes and got a little more descriptive than I wanted to as well, which added to the length.

The whole point of DC in outline form was to show that there are worse things than zombies left in the world. The ending of the book (spoiler alert!!!) where the guys find the prison is about halfway through DC's outline. Again, the characters had more to their stories and wanted to be heard. Though DC didn't get everything I had intended, I still think it's a good, solid read. I was worried about it, to be honest, and didn't want it to seem like a 'filler' book. I had many beta readers and got good feedback and since publishing, it seems to be doing well, though I'm still open to feedback about it.

I'm currently working on the third book, which was supposed to be the last book. This book was supposed to cover the second half of the out line for DC as well as everything I had for the final book. The ending is pretty epic and cannot be summed up quickly. If I were to put half of DC's outline with book number three, it would be really long. I don't have a problem with long books at all (I actually prefer them) so I'm really not worried about having the final book be 'too long'.

However, I say 'supposed to' in the above paragraph because I'm seriously considering making The Contagium Trilogy into a 4 book series. Obviously it wouldn't be a trilogy anymore. There was part of DC's outline that I was going to throw out/shorten to get a better flow of the third and final book. I really like that little section of plot and can develop it so much further. It adds a bit of a twist to the plot and shifts the main characters' attention to a different kind of problem. I really wanted to show that horrible events bring out the best and worst of people as well as show that desperation can make people do some terrible, unthinkable things.

Another thing I should mention is that I never thought I'd enjoy writing anything not paranormal. I had no idea I'd absolutely love the characters in The Contagium Trilogy as much as I'd do. I didn't anticipate totally loving writing about zombie fight scenes and the hardships of survival. But I do. I dream about zombies all the time, and they are always good dreams to me. I've become a bit of an obsessive 'prepper' and second guess wearing heels when I go out. (What if zombies attack?? Heels=bad getaway) Being able to write as Orissa and making myself learn new survival skills for the sake of my characters has been an unbelievable blast.Once this series is done I want to write another zombie series. (Or keep writing about Riss and Hayden...)

So, my plan would be to keep writing and sticking to the outlines, expanding on my above mentioned plot a little more (I have so many ideas for this!) and end the book when it feels right, which will probably be close to the end of DC's original outline. Then book number four will be the final book. I know I'm being vague, but that's because I don't want to give anything away. When you read the 3rd book, you will definitely understand what I'm trying to say...or at least I hope you will!

I cannot make up my mind. Three or four books? There is something nice and neat about trilogies, so I am a little hesitant to write four. But, I have so many ideas for where this could go. What do you guys think? Keep it as a trilogy? Or the more the merrier? I'd love to hear your input!


  1. More the merrier! I am so not ready for this series to end!

  2. I say go with your heart you know what feels right :) I just cant wait to read another one and I would love to have another one after! !But in the end its up to you ...

  3. More stories about Orissa and Hayden the better!!! Thank you

  4. I do like writing about Orissa and Hayden :) I got an overwhelmingly positive response from everyone on my FB page. I'm pretty sure 4 books will happen! :)

  5. Hi I really liked da books and I keep checking up on wat date da 3rd book coming out. Can't wait. If you can pls make a fourth book pls. And pls don't take toooo long and keep us hanging. Well tnx. Looking forward to getting da 3rd book. ooooh if you do decide to make a 4th book pls pls let me know @ imeldabermudez1@gmail.com your biggest fan of contagium triology tnx a mil. And tnx for writting such wounderful books. Luv melda

  6. I agree with "the more the merrier"!!!! I love this storyline, and would hate to see Orissa & Hayden's story end!!! You are correct, there are so many "places" this sotryline can go!!!

  7. I love your books and your writing and would be absolutely happy for the series to go to five or six in the series. Mark Tuffo's series started as a trilogy and is still going after six. Some people gripped but they kept buying and reading. I think your writing is much more meaty and indepth so pleae take ever how many books you need for your characters to say and do what needs to conclude the series. Again I LOVE YOUR books. Thank you.

  8. I found the first book in this series by accident, on amazon, so I decided to give it a chance. I stayed up all night reading the first one. The second I finished it I immediately bought the second and devoured that one too. The minute I finished the second I went online to find out when the last one is coming out. I am so in awe of what you did with Orissa's character development. She is so strong, and yes, flawed, but I haven't seen a more deserving woman to take on the lofty title of heroine or role model. These days, main characters that are women shame me with their neediness, manipulation, and just general pettiness. The way you handled Orissa's personality and interactions with the world and people around her has really touched me. I've already recommended this series to several other women I know who are also tired of the way females are portrayed. Thank you sincerely for such a thoughtful storyline and I cannot wait to read more!!!

    1. Thank you, Jess! I agree with you 100% with not liking those types of characters. I refuse to write one like that! :)

  9. Thank you for your writing !! Just love the stories you write and Hope you are feeling better so you can continue to write cause i am anxious to read the Contagion book 3 !!

  10. p.s I fed the fish those are the coolest !