I am a writer. Soon to be an Author. Pe,rhaps, I’m already one. Not sure what the qualification is. Doesn’t matter, for I feel like one. I have become insular, writing constantly, and quite boring at social events. I set goals for myself. Last year, at this time, my goal was to get published before my next (monumental) birthday). I fell short by four months. Those four months were spent doing what I am still doing today– dedicating myself to my craft, constantly at it, and not doing much else. Oh, I step away for coffee, bringing my daughter back and forth to school, and making dinner. After the goal I had set for myself was reached I decided I needed to complete a WIP that requieed much editing and re-writing, and I threw in the project of writing a sequel to the book currently being published. I reached that goal and then some. I decided the series would be a trilogy and that is 50% completed.
I realize when the proofs do arrive I will be going through my story again with a fine-toothed comb with time available for little else, hence the writing frenzy I have been engaged in. I do love this earlier stage of writing. I am writing scenes but being careful to keep within a time sequence. I have learned to avoid mistakes that catch up in the editing stage causing major re-work, but then again there are plenty more mistakes to go around.
That reminds me. I went back and read some of my earlier blogs. So many mistakes, but I decided not to edit them at this point. It’s a reminder of how raw I really was starting out. And still, after all this time the editors at the publishing company have their own style that is inherent and no amount of my re-working and sweating over commas and participles will gel. That is the point I was at when I submitted Summer Palace after four grueling months of re-work. I was adding commas during one pass and removing them on another. I closed the cover (so to speak) and sent it off with all the necessary attachments. Of the ten queries I sent at that time only two were responded to. One was a hit. Within two weeks of sending three sample chapters a request for a full MS came through.
Summer Palace was originally a short story. I wanted to enter a contest and asked my sister for a prompt. From one line, a mere suggestion of a story, a stand alone novel turned into a trilogy.
Now, if they react to the sequel as they did to the original, and so on, it’ll be the best news I’ve heard in about seven months. The protagonists Katia and Wiley are fifteen and seventeen years old respectively. In the third book they are mid-thirties. The setting goes from Russia in the first, to Poland in the second, and Hungary in the third installment. Each book spanning about eight years average from the end of the Seventeenth Century to the beginning of the Eighteenth Century. It’s a love story wrapped up in Historical Fiction. So much uncertainty from wars, slavery, and childbirth to contemplate.
I am intrigued by Eastern Europe in this time period. In my research I run across people, places, and things that inspire me. It is the passion for these things that come through in my stories, keep me writing, and creating characters that might have lived then working their way through each crisis. The odds are against Katia and Wiley every step of the way. Read about their lives and the interesting people they meet along the way, places they make their own, and lives they influence.
Thanks again for comments and keep reading the blog for updates and the final announcement that the book is in print and where you can pick it up.