Alright, so with the first draft of novel WIP#6 finished, and while I am in full head-rinsing time from my Belfast Ghosts trilogy, I have been re-reading The Buddha’s Bone as I gear up to outline a synopsis and chapter plan for the sequel. Easier said than done. The Buddha’s Bone was published in October 2021, so it has been two years since I last visited my characters.

When I wrote The Buddha’s Bone, I had intended it as a standalone novel. An idea for a sequel hadn’t crossed my mind, admittedly. Since then I’ve had a handful of requests for more of Kimberly’s story; some directly from readers who have DMed me, and a few in the reviews posted on Goodreads and Amazon. If even one person wanted more of a particular story, then that is enough motivation for me to start planning a sequel, but not quite enough to write one. As the author, I have to be excited enough about a story to invest a year, as a minimum, of my time to devote to writing a novel about it. I’m not prolific like a NaNoWriMo writer to crank out 50k words in a month. Reaching above 40k words, the minimum word count of a novel, takes at least 6 months for me, if not more.

Lucky for those readers hankering after more of Kimberly’s escapades in Japan, I have an idea for a sequel that excites me enough to put other novel ideas aside for the time being. Like The Buddha’s Bone, this one will also be a psychological literary fiction book, though I will also be drawing inspiration from Japanese folktales for some of my inspiration, particularly from stories such as those by Koizumi Yakumo (Lefcadio Hearn). Is that enough of a teaser, without bleeding into spoiler territory? Hopefully. Wish me luck with my chapter plan!

About Leilanie Stewart

Leilanie Stewart is an author and poet from Belfast, Northern Ireland. She has written four novels, including award-winning ghost horror, The Blue Man, as well as three poetry collections. Her writing confronts the nature of self; her novels feature main characters on a dark psychological journey who have a crisis of identity and create a new sense of being. She began writing for publication while working as an English teacher in Japan, a career pathway that has influenced themes in her writing. Her former career as an Archaeologist has also inspired her writing and she has incorporated elements of archaeology and mythology into both her fiction and poetry. In addition to promoting her own work, Leilanie runs Bindweed Magazine, a creative writing literary journal with her writer husband, Joseph Robert. Aside from publishing pursuits, Leilanie enjoys spending time with her husband and their lively literary lad, a voracious reader of sea monster books. CONNECT WITH ME ON SOCIAL MEDIA:

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