I’ve written two novels since November 2008, so please understand when I say that I’m a bit at loose ends right now. Novel No. 1 is in the publisher’s hands and being prepped for publication. Novel No. 2 has just entered a round of agent queries, and so much of my time now is spent waiting to hear from someone. Anyone.

It’s an unavoidable part of the writing game. Patience is a valuable commodity, and one I’m desperately short of. So I’m learning to stock up.

I told my dear wife, Angela, that I would take a lengthy break from heavy-duty writing once I finished with Novel No. 2. Oh, I’ll still be dabbling around the edges — I have a couple of short stories I want to write, and the emergence of Novel No. 1 will involve a book blog tour, and that’s a big writing commitment. But the tunnel vision I develop when I’m in the middle of a novel-length project will be set aside for a while. Angie’s been a saint to put up with nearly nine months of absentee husbandism.

When I do start writing again, it will be for NaNoWriMo 2009. The monthlong novel-writing dash spawned my first manuscript last year, and it’s a wonderful way to do a quickie mind dump (my friend Jim Thomsen calls it “a creative enema”). I’d be highly surprised if something publishable develops in that one month, but perhaps December will dawn with 40,000 or 50,000 words that I can begin to shape into something worthwhile.