Kelly Haworth

Author of Queer Speculative Romance

BiaY: Month 5 Update


Oh, Book-in-a-Year. You’re a great idea but just as difficult in practice as I was expecting.

So in the past month I managed to add about 1500 words to my WIP, bringing it to a bit under 5000 words. I enjoy what I’ve written so far, I’m having fun with it—but my brain is so shot from raising two young kids that summoning the focus to keep going has been very difficult.

Added to that is the possibility that I may change gears and work on a different book for the remainder of the year. It’s a book I’m equally excited about, but it was admittedly unexpected.

Until I figure out which book is going to be my main focus moving forward, I’ve been working on world building in the fantasy universe of Pick Her Up (the name of my BiaY project). It’s an alternate history and takes place in 2002, and features not only 6 different types of magic but also a complete polytheistic religion that intimately integrates with the magic. So I’ve been planning out gods and religious practices and how the different magics have influenced technology, politics and everything else. I mentioned some of these things in passing in the books I’ve already written in this universe (Chasing Fire and Claudia’s Gift) but now I’m working on adding all the details and intricacies that will make the religion and magic feel fully incorporated in the world.

This pre-writing world building is fun, but tedious. I’m reading about greek gods for inspiration, and I’ve been looking at etymologies of words for god names. My hubby has also been a major sounding board for ideas and a brainstorming partner for figuring out the impact of the magics on society. That’s a role he’s played for my entire writing career, and I’ll always be thankful for it.

It’s common advice to find out everything you can about the characters and society of your book and then only show bits and pieces of that as needed in your narrative. I’ve always had a really hard time with that, because when you figure something out, you are very inclined to share. I’m hoping that my efforts to become as well versed as possible in this fantasy world will allow me to bring up appropriate details easily as I write, and make everything feel organic without being “over-sharing”.

My goals for the next month is to continue to work on world building, and to work on Pick Her Up and this new book as I am inspired. Hopefully, I’ll be able to share more info about this new book soon.


Have a great day y’all!

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