I have been writing a good deal. Queen of the Cow Towns is at 19 chapters and 47,000 words. I am very happy with the progress and the chapters I’ve presented to my critique group have been quite well received. I am winding the story down from the climax to set up the ending that leads into book 3. I know publishers want books that will stand alone, but I imagined this story as a series of events and locations, taking the women across the West over a number of years. It would have been way too much for one novel.
Although the Ruby Queen ends with a future destination alluded to, I believe the book stands alone as the introduction of a young woman into the life of a prostitute in the 19th century West. In the second book, the characters are older and have suffered some life altering experiences. I am trying to relate another part of their journey, telling a story that will stand alone should a reader pick it up who has not read The Ruby Queen. I struggle with dropping in too many hints that might encourage the reader to go back and pick up The Ruby Queen. I have read books by other authors who allude to happenings in a past book and have generally tried to find said book to read it and get the whole story. It is difficult to write these and not feel like I am deliberately trying to sell the former book.
I digress. I am trying to keep on track with my writing in order to have my first draft completed in the next month. Some personal issues have come up and I will be making a move to another apartment within the month. That will certainly slow things down. If I can get the first draft finished by the end of May, I can present four to six more chapters for critique, spiff up the draft and turn it over to my editor by the end of June. Editing for a month puts a final draft ready by the end of July.
Hopefully that gives me time to set up a launch party for sometime in August for an early September release! I just have to keep on track!
Until the next time, Write On!