I began the first book of the Peacebringer trilogy in 2001. Peacebringer was supposed to be a single volume, but it turned out the story was bigger than a single book.
At the time, I planned to seek a publisher. E-books weren’t viable yet (they existed, but they were invisible to the average reader). Distribution – getting in front of readers’ eyes – has always been the key to success. I knew how hard it was to get self-published books in bookstores, and I didn’t want to deal with it.
Immediately after finishing the first book, Root, I began the second, Stem. I’ve read trilogies where storylines got dropped or endings felt rushed, and I didn’t want that to happen to my story. I’m a slow writer, too, and didn’t want to feel compelled to meet a publisher’s deadline. So I decided from the beginning the entire trilogy had to be finished before I shopped it around.
Lucky me! Now I can publish myself and reach a large number of potential readers. But first I have to finish it. I’m currently one-third of the way through the first draft of Leaf. Then I have to edit Root. That will take some time. Root was the first book I ever completed, and my writing improved substantially between the first chapter and the last. After editing Root, I’ll edit the other two. Stem looked pretty clean when I last read through it, but there may be changes needed to better mesh with Leaf.
I’m optimistically looking at a publication date of 2015.