The journey of writing is often quiet. Time is spent at the computer, typing away in a desperate attempt to get the story/voices/characters out of the head and onto paper. At least, that’s how it is for me. But, something happened that I honestly did not anticipate happening with my writing. Thee friendship that developed with readers. There was one reader in particular who was the first person to send me any kind of feedback and it was done the day after I published my first book, Penance: A Love Story. That was my now best friend, Michele Ziemer. She didn’t know what she did when she sent that email, but I cried. Yeah, I cried. My husband asked me what was wrong and I could barely get the words out. I said, “This chick sent me a message about my book–saying she loved it.” He asked, “Okay, why are you crying?” I said, “Because I do that! Now, someone did it to me and I’m so freaking floored right now.” True story.
And now, Michele and I have not gone a day without speaking with each other since May 2014. She even came to visit the end of June this year. This woman, is truly my soul friend and I adore her.
Okay, enough of the mushy shit. She nor I would like to stick with that. Onto the cool stuff.
Through these discussions, we have learned we share a love of character and ideas. She has become not only my closest friend, but also my editor and an amazing voice to speak into my stories. She reels me back in when I go to far and she never gives me any bullshit. She knows I can’t stand false praise and I want to know if what I write sounds like shit or is lacking in story. Then the beautiful part is, I trust her, and then she trusts me when I say, “Believe me, just go with it–it needs to be in the story.”
I have never had such an open and honest working partnership.
We also share a love for The Walking Dead, The Fall, Outlander, and other television shows. We are addicted and love those shows because of the characters and the continued stories throughout the season.
I’m trying to get Michele into comic books now as well. A new comic comes out every month and I’m obsessed with learning what happens next in the story. Michele–you MUST read Saga, Sex Criminals, Outcast and TWD comics. Just saying.
That said, we are taking our partnership to the next level.
As you may know, I have been working on my end of the world, shit hitting the fucking fan book since 2013. It began shortly after I started Penance. But, it has sat and sat and kept sitting. It has gone through so many different changes that what I have now is nothing like what I began with two years ago. The IDEA is still there though. I started the story farther in the future and told it after the fact. But have now moved it back to where it needs to be–to a time closer to our present. And, I brought it back home to tell it in my neck of the woods. (AKA Central Illinois) The story is told from different characters point of view.
As I spoke with Michele about it, we realized, she needs to fucking write part of this. She needs to be an active voice with the characters and write a portion of the series. So, we will be writing a serial novel together.
Our plan is to release chapters once a month at the start, but if we have more to release we will. There is not an end to this story yet and we want to take you, the reader, on the journey with us. In a way, it’s freaking cool because as I write, I don’t write out a plan before I begin. I think I still stick with what I did in school. A paper would be assigned and we’d need to have an outline for it. Many created the outline first. I wasn’t part of the many. I wrote and then filled in the outline after the fact.
I’m anxious to see where this story goes and we would love to get active feedback from readers as we move forward.
So, be on the lookout for the first chapter in EPOCH Erasure by Sarah Buhl and Michele Ziemer soon!