That's a Really Good Question
Despite the fact that I'm floundering through the life of a college freshman (at Boston College!) I'm working on a fifth book. Surprise! (not really. what did you expect?)
The goal is to traditionally publish my two new books and this third one. When I self-published TWCGT and TWBTS, it was like jumping into a black hole. This time I'm going to be more informed, prepared, and (hopefully) have some experience to rely on.
I've recently read a book written by an author and an agent (they were actually husband and wife, funny how life works) about writing a book, getting it published, and everything in between. The sad truth it revealed to me (though I was already getting the idea) is that big publishers don't accept unsolicited or un-agented manuscripts.
So bottom line: you need an agent to get noticed.
But agents only want authors who have already been noticed, have established a solid marketing platform, yada yada yada.
So to become well known you need an agent, but to get an agent you need to already be well known.
Someone obviously didn't think this through.
That means I have to connect with more people (again, gross) and spend more time on the media to keep followers posted and interested.
WHICH MEANS the more eyes I have on my website, facebook page, twitter, etc., the better. You're probably expecting this (and as an author I probably shouldn't be asking this), but this isn't me shoving my book in your face, it's me asking you to follow the links, glance at my sample chapters, follow me on my media pages, and just generally remember that I exist. Thanks.
The more people I can say "hey! they know me!" the more a future publisher or agent will be impressed. And my parents won't regret birthing me.
Speaking of which, this is what I'm working on now:
My third, fourth, and fifth novels have nothing to do with TWCGT and TWBTS. (As of now) They takes place on earth, in a made-up town in California called San Paolo. My main character is a girl who wakes up in a hospital room not knowing who she is or what happened. Next to her bed is a woman called Rachel, who tells the girl her name is Alice, and she will work for an organization called the RotS-DS by going on missions to solve crime before the police does.
Alice doesn't know why, and she doesn't wonder either. She does what Rachel tells her to do. And one day Rachel tells her to go to high school.
Alice can shoot a gun. Alice can disarm a grown man.
But she doesn't understand humor. She doesn't understand people. She doesn't understand love.
That's the gist of the story for now (notice the suspense), but to be honest, when it comes time for publication it may have transformed into a novel about pink elephants and bananas. That's how little control I have over my writing.