That’s a tough one to answer. It went through numerous incarnations as a screenplay first. And then I finally decided, nope, I can’t give the ensemble cast of quirky characters the attention they need from me in one hundred and ten mostly white pages. So I started converting the screenplay to novel form where it went through numerous additional drafts. In between, some years lapsed where I was writing other things, and allowing life to get in the way (always a fatal mistake.) No matter what’s going on in a writer’s life, he has to discipline himself to not let it get in the way of the writing, otherwise, life always will. I started this one when I was younger and, well, less disciplined.
Back then no one saw the greatest global economic downturn since the Great Depression coming until it landed. When I went to dust off the manuscript, I found that it was curiously more relevant than ever, as the hardships experienced by the characters had become a far more global phenomenon. Suddenly it wasn’t just a curiosity, or something to pull at your heart strings if you’re empathetic to the plight of others; it was something most of us were living in one way or another.
The short answer: years and years. But rest assured, now that I’m older, wiser, and more mature and disciplined, I expect the sequel will be accomplished within a year without breaking a sweat, provided there is a demand for it.
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