Hey folks! Page Turner here. Exciting news. Psychic Inferno, the second volume of the Psychic State series, is now available. The story picks up right where we left off in Psychic City. For those unfamiliar with the Psychic State books, they are mysteries featuring a large ensemble cast of polyamorous characters. There are male and nonbinary characters in the books, but to be honest, the narrative really revolves around women (as detectives, as suspects, as witnesses, etc.). I imagine that’s because I’m a queer woman who is inspired by other women. Most of my heroes are women.
Both books are on sale at special release prices at the moment, so it’s the best time to pick them up.
Anyway, please spread the word. And check out the series. I have it on good authority that the books are very funny and moving. If you like my essays, you will love them.
Inevitably, there’s a bit of giggling involved when people first look at the cover and see that they’re authored by Page Turner. That’s me! I’m the person behind Poly Land. The founder. Yes, really. Page Turner.
Will There Be More Psychic State Books?
I’ve had some people ask me if there are going to be more installments in the Psychic State series. They like the idea of a series but only if there’s going to be more to look forward to.
I get it. I’ve been in that position, where I get into a new series, and then it’s years and years between books. Or worse, the author abandons writing a series just when it gets good. It drives me nuts as a reader.
As I write this update, I have finished the first four books. The tentative publication order has Minerva the Liar (the story of how the Psychic State came to be) as #3 and The Ecumenopolis as #4 (which focuses mainly on Amarynth, a.k.a. “the Cassandra of PsyOps,” the long-suffering introverted Connections Agent with an uncanny knack for knowing things she shouldn’t).
I’m about a quarter of the way through writing the fifth book in the series — Psychic Salvation (which has the PsyOps team trying to prevent a holy war and disillusioned shapeshifter Change navigating his tenure as the romantic lead on a reality TV dating show). It’s chugging along, going really well. It helps that the fifth book is soooooo funny. As it stands, I have the first 10 books titled and plotted — with inchoate, hazy ideas beyond that (I suspect as I get closer, I will understand the later books better).
The editing and publishing processes are separate and proceed parallel to the writing (I have a wonderful editor and publication crew I work with that move more slowly than I do but are worth the wait) — so it does take things a bit to reach you once I’ve written them. But I’m not sitting around waiting for the books to come out before I write another. I’m hard at work. Yes, while blogging daily, maintaining large social media presences, and doing other freelance writing work.
No one said the writing life was easy, I suppose.
What’s Your Writing Process?
I get asked about my writing process fairly frequently, since I’m prolific and post consistently. My writing process has evolved over the years as I’ve had different schedules and demands on my time. The most important piece for me is making sure I’m writing regularly, on as much of a routine as I can muster. Sometimes this is easier than others. I have spanned quite a large gamut professionally — I was once a hotel maid, and I’ve also been a department manager in a corporate setting, and pretty much everything in between.
Back when I was doing quite physical work, I would try to use the time to incubate new ideas (and jot them down somewhere if/when I could, carried around scraps of paper and tiny nubs of pencil, back before cell phones). Even now, I find I do the same thing with housework. If I’m blocked creatively, I’ll go clean something — and it usually helps (that and hot showers and long walks, just something to make me relax/get bored enough that I start daydreaming).
When I had a long commute (90 minutes each way), I would dictate work using voice to text into my cell phone and then edit it later. That was always a process, but it made it so I had time to write. Truly, some of the very first daily posts on Poly Land were dictated in rush hour stop-and-go traffic on the freeway and then edited over dinner or my morning coffee the next day. When I started Poly Land, I was getting up at 5 am and writing or editing while I waited for my caffeine to kick in. And then dictating in the car. I also wrote and edited quite a bit over lunch.
This was a brutal period of my life — a time when I was working a full-time, high-stress job with a monster commute and also posting daily and getting my first book (a memoir about opening a marriage) ready for publication. I look back and don’t know how I did it. But I’m glad I did.
My current routine is a lot simpler (although it has the downside of being boring and lonely sometimes). I get up and write for about 20-30 minutes in a journal while my caffeine kicks in. This builds momentum for writer brain and gets the garbage out of my head so I can focus. Then I turn to whatever needs to be written that day — whether it’s articles for this site, articles for other clients, or fiction words.
I put on the appropriate music whenever I write. I have playlists for different kinds of writing, and each of my novels has its own one, that functions almost like an unofficial soundtrack. Here’s a link to the music I listened to while I wrote Psychic City. And here’s what I listened to when I wrote Psychic Inferno (Psychic State #2). And here’s the one for Minerva the Liar (Psychic State #3).
But I have a bunch of playlists I jump between for writing articles as well that help me get into the appropriate mood.
The most important thing, however, is that I write — every single day. No excuses. I write even when I think I have no ideas. Something usually tumbles out when I least expect it.
How Can I Help?
Inevitably, whenever I put out a new book, I’ll get asked by folks how you can help spread the word about the release. I can’t even express to you how much this means to me. Basically, anything you do helps me: Picking up a copy of the book, telling other people about the book in online groups and forums, and recommending it to your friends. Huge, huge, huge.
But there are lots of other things that help me tremendously too — when you leave an honest review/star rating after you’ve read one of my books, it’s a big deal. It helps people find them. Thank you to everyone who does that. Even if you’re critical, I appreciate it so much.
I’m happy to say that Psychic City (Psychic State #1) is even being carried by a few public libraries. Yay! I am a HUGE library hound and am so happy about this. A lot of library Overdrive systems have a feature where you can recommend books your library doesn’t carry to the librarian. That’s another way you can help the book reach more readers, by recommending the book to your librarian.
I’ve Been Blown Away By How Much This Series Appeals to Non-Polyamorous People
The most fascinating thing about the Psychic State books for me has been how much they appeal to people who aren’t polyamorous. I’ve heard from all sorts of people about Psychic City that it’s a good read. Not just polyamorous folks.
This is extremely important to me. As I said on Twitter a while back, accurate representation is a beautiful thing — but it’s so much more impactful when it reaches people outside of the echo chamber. My main goal in writing these was writing good books. Period.
It’s been a guiding principle with Poly Land, too — work reaches far more people if it’s actually entertaining. People want to be entertained, not lectured. It’s very important. So there’s value in teaching people about things in an entertaining way.
It’s a big reason I’m passionate about this project — I think it has the potential to make a huge mainstream impact. Thanks as always for reading!
You can purchase the books from the links below. Want to help out? Leave a review after you’ve read the book — and tell other people about it. Thank you all!
Psychic Inferno (#2):