First, Last and Always

I'm not sure where to begin. I want to tell you everything "first," but I haven't mastered that ability yet :)

The First First

This week, IN NAME ONLY, is on sale for 99cents at Amazon. I would love if you'd share this with your friends.
No Home. No Family. No Place to Hide.
For Summer Newcombe, that's only the beginning.
IN NAME ONLY is the story of a young woman who learns she's been trapped inside the Federal Witness Protection program her entire life.

The Second First

The first book of my trilogy is drafted. I finished the initial draft in the middle of May, so only a couple of weeks past my goal. However, my 60K goal turned into 74K. I learned that my story had more going on than I thought.

I'm currently in the middle of a quick inspection pass before sending it to my critique partner - mostly filling in the notes I made while drafting. My goal is to have it to her by mid June.

I'm also working on the timeline for the second book. My goal is to begin drafting it on or before the first Monday in July. And to complete the first draft by the end of September. As with Book One, my goal is 60K. We'll see how I do this time.

You've probably noticed I still haven't shared anything much about titles or stories. It's way too early for that, so you'll just have to wonder. I will say this story fits my Crime Fiction with a Kiss brand, just in a slightly different way since it's a trilogy.

I'm also going to share the current first paragraph - the one that starts the whole shebang rolling. Just remember it's subject to all kinds of changes since it's first draft.

   Slaton Enloe relaxed in his desk chair, his booted feet propped on the windowsill. Spread beyond the glass, as far as he could see, was the rocky, rolling land that had been in his family for generations, since 1851--six years after Texas became a state in 1845. Patches of bluebonnets paraded their beauty in the early morning April sun.

The Third First

It took me a little more than four months to draft the first book. That was with blogging every week in January and February, and twice a month in March, April and May.

My goal to finish the second book in three months means that during the summer, I'll only be here the first Monday of each month with a new post.

It's open-ended as to when I'll return to twice monthly blogging, as I'll still have the third book to draft and all three books to edit. So for the foreseeable future, I'll be here on the first Monday of each month only.

It probably also means I'll be straggling by your blogs to visit at various times during the month. So if I don't respond to your comments right away, give me a couple of weeks. I'll get there. I'll also be sharing what's going on with me on Facebook and Twitter. Links are in my left sidebar here.

And remember ... I don't love you any less. I'm just getting my priorities in order. Finally.

It would be much easier if I didn't love you and blogging so much

See you back here on Monday, July 6



You do what you have to do. Awesome the first one is done and almost ready for your critique partner.
Nick Wilford said…
Sounds like it's shaping up well so far. Good luck for the rest of the series!
That's a great first paragraph. I'm glad to hear everything's going well. Enjoy the time away - as long as it's productive, that's all that matters. However, if we keep seeing you post about Candy Crush on Facebook while you're gone...
It sounds like your progressing well and will continue to do so. Congrats.
L. Diane Wolfe said…
Going down to one day a month so you can write and edit 3 books seems like a wise decision.
Bish Denham said…
Sounds like a plan! Blogging can take so much time. So it's completely understandable that you'd want to spend more time writing your novels. Have fun!
L.G. Smith said…
Sounds like things are cooking along. I had to set blogging aside while I work on a revision. Just don't have enough brain cells to do it all anymore. Focus, focus, focus. :))
Rachna Chhabria said…
Congratulations on drafting the first book of your Trilogy. And that too in just four months.
Carol Kilgore said…
Alex - Exactly. It was a difficult decision.

Nick - Thank you!

Beer - Thanks! If you ever see ANY FB game from me, you'll know I've been hacked. I don't play them. I may, however, have a little fondness for kitty videos :)

Southpaw - It's going well. I'm hoping #2 will be speedier.

Diane - I hope that it will be. I'll be staying on top of things, so I'm hoping nothing gets out of hand.

Bish - It does take time. At one point I was spending about three hours every day blogging. I can write a lot of words in three hours :)

L.G. - I feel much better when my focus is focused :)

Rachna - Thanks! Aiming for three months on the second one. Not sure I can draft a novel any quicker than that.
Slamdunk said…
Glad to hear you are being productive and have so much good news on the horizon, Carol. Doesn't leave you too much beach time. Darn!
Robin said…
Congrats on meeting your goals. I think the setting specific timelines for each project is working for you.
This is ALL great news. See you whenever!!!
VR Barkowski said…
Congratulations on you progress with book one! Less blogging is good for writing, bad for us, but your priorities are spot on. Love the first paragraph.

VR Barkowski
Just snagged my copy of In Name Only -- Thanks for the heads-up.
Julie Flanders said…
It seems like lots of bloggers are slowing down for the summer. The writing definitely has to come first. Good luck!
Will share about your sale right now. :)
Carol Kilgore said…
Slamdunk - And that IS a downside :(

Robin - The timelines help a lot. Meeting my goals has been a long time coming. It's taken a lot of work, but it feels so good!

Teresa - I'll be around...probably when you least expect me :)

VR - Thanks, all the way around.

Patricia - My pleasure! Thanks, and enjoy :)

Julie F - I'd hoped to slowdown only for the summer, but then I learned about something I get to do in October, and then the holidays . . . so I'm leaving it open. Thank you for sharing :)
DMS said…
Sounds like you have been getting a lot done with your new schedule! Congrats and hope the modified schedule will help you get even more writing done. :)

Happy 4th of July to you too!
Ticking off some firsts is a good feeling isn't it
klahanie said…
Hey Carol,

Totally understand that you need to focus on your writing endeavours. Blogging is there when you feel it's the right time. A blogging schedule can just add a bit too much pressure. Your own pace, twice monthly, monthly, or in my case, every six months.

I'm sensing a blogging orgy, um, blogging love-in here :)

With that, Happy early First of July, eh!

Melissa said…
Yay! Good news! :D

I'm with you on priorities. Totally understand. I feel like such a blog slacker, but I had to do it if I was going to finish my WIP, and I still didn't make my self-imposed deadline.
Helena said…
I'm so glad (and jealous) that you've made huge strides in your writing. I'll miss ya, Carol, but since I enjoyed Solomon's Compass and Secrets of Honor so much, I'm also selfishly glad you're finishing more stores. Don't forget to have a little bit of fun in between all the hard work.
I'm also impressed with your opening paragraph, Carol! It's exciting how much you've accomplished! Good luck with the rest of your writing!

Carol Kilgore said…
Jess - Thanks! I hope so, too.

Jo-Anne - Yes, it surely is. It's great!

Gary - You're so funny! I love "blogging orgy" :)

Melissa - But you finished! That's the important thing.

Helena - I'm glad you like my books. I'll do my best on the fun part :)

Julie - Thanks! And I'll take all the good luck wishes I can get.
Mark Noce said…
Sounds like you're writing a lot...always a good thing for an author:)
Denise Covey said…
I hope your CP likes your draft! I have IN NAME ONLY, but haven't read it yet. Wouldn't it be nice if there were more hours in the day! Awesome writing goals. :-)
J.L. Campbell said…
Priorities are important and I'm glad somebody has theirs right. :)
Michael Di Gesu said…
Hi, Carol,

SO impressive. Congrats on the first draft! I wish I had the drive to make such incredible goals as you...

You first paragraphs reads great! It certainly pulled me into the scene immediately. All the best!

I think we ALL have cut back on blogging for various reasons, but mostly for time restraints. No need to worry. We LOVE you, too....

Jennifer Shirk said…
I love hearing others get so much writing done. It inspires me to do the same!
Anonymous said…
Wonderful progress. I've thought about writing a trilogy. It is very ambitious. Happy writing.
Carol Kilgore said…
Mark - I think so :)

Denise - More hours would be awesome. My reading is so backed up. I'm hoping to read six books this year. I've read four so far. I used to read a book a week.

Joy - As right as I can make them at the moment. It's an ongoing balancing act.

Michael - I'm glad you like the paragraph. It's a little like that first shot in a movie. At least that's the plan. You're so sweet for understanding - sending you a big cyber hug :)

Jennifer - Same for me about the inspiration from others.

Medeia - So far it's fun. I have much of the second book in my head. We'll see how I feel when we get to the third :)
Lexa Cain said…
Holy cow you have A LOT going on! Congrats on finishing your draft. (I've had two WIPs and no finished drafts in the last 3 years. *sigh*) I've tweeted your book sale, and I found your RT of Chuck Sambuchino. He's awesome and I'm totally following him now! Have a great break and get lots of revising/outlining done!! See you in July!
Romance Reader said…
Good luck for the rest of the series!
Carol Kilgore said…
Lexa - I'm trying to stay focused. My reward is next month I'll be writing. I've been in those endless WIP years before. It's no fun. So I decided to do something about it. I hope it works! Thank you for the tweet - much appreciated. I love Chuck Sambuchino - I'm happy to have connected you. See you in July!

Romance Reader - Thank you!
Lynda R Young said…
Writing is far more important than blogging. May your drafting go as you planned... or better!
yup Im going through this too lately..i just love blogging and visiting so much! xoxo
Carol Kilgore said…
Lynda - Thanks. I agree about the writing.

Beth Ellyn - I'm seeing this seems to be a common feeling.
Man, it's tough being a grown-up and having to set priorities, instead of trying to do everything we want to do, isn't it? Only so many hours in a day, and only so many years in a lifetime, dammit. Sounds like you're well on your way with the trilogy. You go, girl! Really... GO! Don't you have some writing to do...?
Carol Kilgore said…
Susan - I just wanna play!!!!!!! Writing for the day...DONE :)
Christine Rains said…
Great work with with your stories! You are moving along wonderfully. Have a great month of June! :)
Carol Kilgore said…
Christine - Thanks. I'm really enjoying writing this trilogy. Happy June back :)
We're in the same boat, Carol -- getting those priorities in order. Keep up the good work!
Nas said…
Keep up with all you doing. All the best!
Carol Kilgore said…
Milo - It sounds so easy in theory.

Nas - Thank you!
TBM said…
How exciting for you! And I hope the sale went well. Don't worry about not blogging that much or commenting that much. I'm cheering you on! And Happy 4th of July :)
Loni Townsend said…
Those are some great firsts! And I really like your paragraph. Best of luck with your drafting!
Carol Kilgore said…
TBM - It did go well, thanks! I appreciate the cheers :)

Loni - Cool, and thanks.
M Pax said…
Congrats on all the writing. I need some of your mojo. Will look for you on Twitter to RT your sale.
Carol Kilgore said…
Mary - Sale is done. But wait, there will be more over the summer :)
Jemi Fraser said…
Stories come as they come - sounds like this trilogy is well on its way! Enjoy the time immersing yourself in the story!!
Ava Quinn said…
I know what you mean about sporadic blogging. I loved the first paragraph of your new book! I'll see you out on Twitter since I'm not on Facebook! Happy writing!!
Carol Kilgore said…
Jemi - I'm having a fantastic time!

Ava - Cool. Tweetie buds :)
Crystal Collier said…
That sounds awesome, Carol. I need to get my time-stopper working again so I can sit down and read. Then again, maybe that's not the priority right now, eh? Life can be so crazy.
Carol Kilgore said…
Crystal - You've got a really cute top priority who trumps everything else right now :)

Romance Reader said…
It sounds great that you can take time-out and do that.
Carol Kilgore said…
Nas - I had to put the writing first to get it done in a timely manner.
cleemckenzie said…
You've got a great plan! It will work, I'm sure of it.
Crystal Collier said…
That works for me. I've slowed down to posting every other week, and it's working out ok. I miss chatting with everyone weekly though.
Carol Kilgore said…
Lee - I appreciate your confidence!

Crystal - I did twice a month for a while, too, but I needed more. I miss chatting so much. I hang out on Facebook and Twitter more. It's not the same, but it takes much less time.
Great planning. Sounds like you've made good progress with the trilogy, Carol.
You're on a roll! Yay!
Carol Kilgore said…
Michelle - Still rolling :)