Month: December 2016

A new chapter

dsc_0017_1Thanks for sharing 2016 with me!

I’m seeing out the year with a bang – a family holiday to Canada and Mexico, then we start 2017 with my brother’s wedding and the construction of my new house!

Those commitments mean it’ll be a while until I blog again, but I’ll keep you all updated with the progress of ‘Hating Jeremy Walters’ and my new writing project (first draft at 19,000 words!)

Have a wonderful Christmas and New Year’s. 🙂

Trusting God

Am I 100% happy with everything in my life right now?

Well, probably 95%. 🙂  I’m pretty excited about my new house being built.

wp-1481146988555.jpg

Sorry that it’s sideways. 🙂 Won’t let me rotate. 

But what do we do with that area of our lives that’s frustrating, disappointing or scary?

My ‘5%’ certainly plays on my mind sometimes, as I wonder how I’ll change that circumstance. Because it’s actually a decent-sized issue (maybe worth more than 5%) which really affects my future.

Then this morning I read 1 Samuel 7-15, which follows the adventures of the prophet Samuel and Israel’s first king, Saul.

There were a few critical points in time where King Saul was freaking out over stuff, like countries attacking Israel, and the actions he took demonstrated a lack of trust in God.

And that cost him his kingship.

Now, the situations he was in were legit. There was a big army about to crush his army into oblivion.

But in the end, the circumstances didn’t matter, because God will always be bigger than circumstances. Saul should have used his life to glorify God through trust.

Imagine what he could have accomplished if he trusted God!

So I’m going to remember that today. I might not be able to change a frustrating circumstance, but I can trust God, and that will be something that really matters to Him.

What My Book Has Taught Me

 

I finished this round of edits for ‘Hating Jeremy Walters’ on Saturday. WOOHOO!

It’s been about 3 years now since I first started working on this story, 7 months since I started this round of edits. And the process of writing HJW and this blog has taught me some pretty interesting stuff.

  1. How to step out in faith and rely on God for something I can’t do on my own.

In late May last year, I had 3 chapters of my second draft written. I’d taken a writing break for 6 months after burning out while trying to work full-time and write.

Then I got an email that I’d finaled in a competition, which announced the winner at a September writing conference in Dallas. It was a great chance to go to a conference and talk to agents, but I knew I’d need a finished book for that.

Which meant I had about 12 weeks to write 60,000 words and a book proposal.

I had never written half that fast before. I kinda expected my head to explode from stress after week 3. But God got it done.

2. Keep God at #1, don’t make success an idol

This is something that’s always been a tug-of-war for me. But this blog has really helped, first in processing my thoughts about it, and then as a practical example.

When I first wrote this blog, I put an effort into getting the word out there about it. I had about six times more readers than I did last week.

Then I put it on a hiatus, and when I took it up again this time, I decided not to ‘market’ it. I just didn’t have the time. Therefore, my readership is much smaller.

The thing is, I’ve enjoyed the process just as much this time, if not more. And that’s really helped me to see that while I’ll enjoy the process of trying to make my book as successful as possible, I’ll have just as much fun if I sell 500 copies or 50,000. It’s no reflection on me as a person, and if it didn’t sell a lot, it just means I’d try a different strategy next time.

3. Edits are not as terrible as they first appear.

Don’t get me wrong, they’re still terrible. But they are possible.

And when I got a looooong letter from a freelance editor telling me all the things that needed to change in my book, I wasn’t sure if it was  possible.

But again, trust in God and a lot of persistent effort got us there. And my book is so much better now because of it.

So, thanks for travelling with me on this journey! There’s still much further to go; Hating Jeremy Walters could need a lot more work, still. And then there’s the other three writing projects currently in a Hunger Games match for supremacy in my head. 🙂

But it feels like a victory every time I hit a milestone.

So, thanks for your support!