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Well, I’ve escaped Dante’s Inferno. For now. I’ve done just enough to feel comfortable saying I have a “Second Draft” and I’m walking away. For at least four weeks.

Given my tendency to perfectionism, that’s really hard. I want to make the book perfect now. I want to keep working. But I know it’s better to let it breathe. Besides, I have some awesome people lined up to read it, and I know getting their feedback is going to make it way better. So I’m putting it away. I really am.

Now what to do with my time? I plan to go back and do some more work on my Mississippi novel. I feel like now that I’m in the writing groove, it will come much more easily.

But, I also want to do some structure and function research for this book. Which means, I want to read books and watch movies that I can learn from to help make my book better. This is where you come in. I’d love to get some recommendations from you for the following categories. (And honestly, even if you think it might be obvious, mention it, because, especially when it comes to movies and pop culture, I’m really clueless.)

1. Books or movies that are the first in a trilogy/series.

2. Books where the protagonist is entering a world he or she is not familiar with.

3. Dystopian books or movies.

4. Books or movies that have some action, but not a super-fast pace, and have proven to be at least somewhat popular. (Is this impossible?)

5. Books or movies where characters have special powers.

6. Books or movies where one person is fighting against a government/social order/etc

Thanks for your help! If your recommendation proves especially enlightening, I’ll put you in my acknowledgments once the book comes out ;)