Celebrating a Dream Come True

10703511_10152380630076453_1262269125577226364_nMy good friend and fellow author, Ashley Clark, had a fantastic post on The Writers Alley yesterday. It caused me to ponder this whole transition from one side of ‘published’ to the other.

A few weeks ago, Ashley was kind enough to remind me of something.

I’d lost sight of celebrating.

That may seem really strange for someone who has waited over ten years to get “The Call”. I should have been swinging from rafters, blowing up balloons, dancing the Snoopy Dance that Beth Vogt is often sharing, and reveling in the reality that this writing dream of mine was finally coming true.

But I didn’t take the time to do it.

10410810_687711704630281_2999907603008707572_nTruth is – my life didn’t change all that much from before and after. I was still busy. I still had deadlines (just different kinds), and I still had to fit writing into the regular everydayness of being a wife, mother, and speech-language pathologist. There didn’t seem to be TIME to celebrate!!

There were three new deadlines to meet, so I just scheduled them into my life as a usual course and didn’t STOP to celebrate.

What was I thinking?

I wasn’t. I was resorting to my usual survival skills without celebrating something BIG God just did in my life!

So it took a friend to hit me upside the head with an encouraging word to help me realize what had happened.

mama'ssigningI’ve had a dream come true. A lifelong dream. A dream God started cultivating in me when I was a little girl. To be a writer. To see one of my stories in print. To have the opportunity to share the beauty of God’s love through the avenue of storytelling.

That’s worth celebrating.

And God didn’t just answer my dream with one book. Within three months I had three contracts. WOW!

So today … I’m celebrating a dream come true.

My husband’s taking me to dinner tonight so we can celebrate too.

Nothing changed on the outside really. I’m still busy. I still have deadlines (just different kinds). I still have to fit writing into the regular everyday things, but … my perspective has changed. I’ve stopped to be thankful for this long-awaited moment instead of pushing it behind all the things I ‘have to do next’ in my day.

Today, as I sit here with my stuffy nose, I’m celebrating all the wonderful family and friends who’ve dreamed this dream with me. I’m celebrating hard work and diligence. But mostly, I’m celebrating God’s timing. His perfect timing in making this dream come true.

Thank you all so much for your encouragement, support, guidance, and laughter along the way. I’ll still need it, as I hope I can also give back to you!

mama's crazy bookCome celebrate with me.

I’m not new to deadlines – as a speech-language pathologist and university instructor, I’ve had deadlines on a smaller scale for a long time.

News to Share

10646741_10204870944154085_8514285265217180766_nWell, so much has been going on lately that I figure it’s time for a recap…and just maybe I’ll get back on track to posting at least once a week on this blog 🙂

Ever hopeful!

God has an amazing way of surprising us with more than we expect.

I’ve been pursuing writing for the past ten years and in that time God’s done some amazing things like:

Introduced me to the fabulous Alley Cats

He brought the FABULOUS, Julie Gwinn to be my friend first – and then my agent

Brought wonderful authors like the Seekers, Janice Thompson, Beth Vogt, and so many others into my life

He’s brought teaching and resources to help hone my skills.

And now..well, I’ve joined the roller coaster of published authors.

1. I signed my first contract with Lighthouse of the Carolinas for my Contemporary Romance novel, A Twist of Faith, at the end of September. It’s a fun story that is a modern day retelling of My Fair Lady set in Appalachia. It’s scheduled to release in June 2015.

2. I signed my second contract in mid-November to co-author a Middle Reader/YA novel that accompanies a new video game releasing in 2015.

3. Yesterday I signed a three book contract with Vinspire Publishing for my historical romance series, beginning with The Thornbearer to be released in October 2015. This Penned in Time series takes place during World War 1 and follows the lives of three friends who each struggle with forgiveness and the definition of true beauty as they face a world at war.

I’m excited about these new opportunities but also nervous about how to make it all fit into a very busy schedule as a full-time speech language pathologist and mom of five. It’s great to know if God provided the opportunities, He’ll also provide the ability to complete them 🙂

Here’s to seeing what God ends up doing with MY story in the middle of writing these stories!!

ACFW!!

Just a quick stop in to share some pictures from ACFW. You can see some more over at The Writers Alley.

It’s been a fun time so far. I’m not expecting crazy stuff to happen (unless I’m spending time with the Seekers), so the HIGHLIIGHT of my trip has been getting to meet some of the Alley Cats – and especially rooming with Casey Herringshaw and Mary Vee. Our other roommate is Carol Moncado, my long lost twin. It’s been a blast.

(this pic is of me, Angie Dicken (Alley Cat), and Mary Vee (Alley Cat).

This next photo is just how crazy things are with Casey Herringshaw. Seriously! Look at that face. 😉

 Big stuff is going to happen for the gal to my left. Ashley Clark was a fantastic buddy to make – perky, fun, and totally nailed her pitch to a certain agent that I saw. WTG, Ashley.

There’s more to come, once I upload the pictures from this morning. But I hope you enjoy this sneak peek 🙂