Saturday, August 28, 2010

And so it begins...

As I enter the final mile of this marathon otherwise known as my journey to become a published author, I've decided that it is time for me to introduce myself and my work to the world at large.

By way of a introduction... I am Caroline Wilson--historic preservationist by day, author by night. I've been writing since I was a child. First in my head as a means to put myself to sleep at night; then by hand as a means to help me sleep at night because all the story lines were beginning to get crossed in my brain; and finally, as the computer age dawned, by word processor, desktop computer, and most recently, lap top computer.

I'm a lover of all things historical, which is evidenced by my occupation. I work in the State Historic Preservation Office in a vain attempt to save historic buildings. Ok, maybe not vain as we do manage to save the really important buildings from being completely screwed up by vinyl siding, windows, and other eggregiously awful materials.

I have two main novels in the hopper at this time. One is set in Charleston, SC during the Revolutionary War. I'm having a hard time with this one...I just can't connect with the main protagonist, and so the novel is now on hold.

The one that I am about to send out to the realm of author agents is called "The Enemy Within." This novel will be one of the main subjects of this blog. It's set in Kentucky during the Civil War, as well as England during Queen Victoria's reign (sans Prince Albert).

I've been working on it for ten years. And yes, that is a very long time. The idea came to me in the midst of a Socratic-style seminar during my senior year of high school. My english class had studied an excerpt from "Time and Again" by Jack Finney, and the teacher asked us who we thought (amongst our classmates) could survive in a past time. One of my classmates pointed at me and said, "Caroline could, definitely. She would be a Civil War bounty hunter or something cool like that."

And so Julienne, the protagonist of "The Enemy Within" was born.

Actually she did not make her way onto the page until the latter half of my freshman year in college. It had been a time of upheaval for me. I was away from home for the first time, struggling with depression (if truth be told), and so Julienne's story began to form in my mind.

She's a tragic figure who refuses to allow herself to be a victim after her twin brother goes missing during a battle, her father is shot by Union soldiers, and her ancestral home burned to the ground. Technically these events make her a victim three times over, so she decides that she would rather die than be on the receiving end of another tragedy.

How does she do this in a time when a woman's main purpose was to raise the children, keep the house, and be a credit to her husband?

She becomes a spy.

Being a good Southern girl, she joins a ring of Confederate informants, gladly risking her life to bring down the Union. But deep inside, she has a dream of restoring her family's horse farm to its former prominence.

There's lots more to the story, and I will review a little more with each post. I will also detail the research that I did (along with photos and websites, of course) and even throw in a post or two about my preparations to search for representation.

I hope you decide to follow my journey.


  1. Hi Caroline! I wandered over here from the forums--first, thanks for your vote of confidence in my query letter :)

    Second, I am stoked to find another historical fiction author floating around out here in webworld! I am double-stoked that you've worked on a Rev War era novel...and even set in Charleston...because my first project was set during and just after the 1780 Seige of Charleston. Small world :)

    Anyway, if you ever need an ear to bend or a fresh set of eyes on a query or passage, feel free to touch base :)

  2. Thanks Rowenna! It is a small world. I went to college in Charleston so inspiration came easy. But geez, I'm having a hard with my characterizations!
    Thanks for following me! I was ridiculously excited when I saw I had a follower. :-)