Stories that Matter

Cathy West

The Next Best Step

The one sure thing about life, the one thing you can pretty much count on, is that it won’t always be easy. You know this. You’ve already been through some tough stuff. And you’ve survived. Maybe even triumphed. But then it all comes back for a second round. Or a third. Maybe you’re getting hit…
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What To Do With Fear and Failure and Other Nuisances

I’m fine. I’m fine. I’m fine. Maybe you’re familiar with the mantra? It’s easy to say. Easy to repeat. And easy to convince yourself of. Because if you say something enough times, eventually you begin to believe it. Even if it’s not true. So last week I wrote about change, and how I was going…
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Change. Again.

I didn’t pick a word for the year. I don’t know why, really. I guess I didn’t give it much thought. But now I kind of feel the word picked me. Change. Ironically, it was my word for 2015. And I wrote this blog post about it. Just a few months before I would announce…
Read More

Maybe It’s Time

“You gain strength,courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”  — Eleanor Roosevelt. So we…
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WINNERS!

Thanks so much to everyone who followed and participated in our Favorite Christmassy Things Giveaway! I hope you all had a fantastic Christmas! Here are the winners! AND, the winner of my giveaway is – DIANNA GARDENHOUR!! CONGRATULATIONS to everyone!! And thanks again for participating! Wishing you all the best for a very happy 2019!
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My Favorite Christmas Gift!

     I hope you’ve all been enjoying this fun giveaway, and enjoyed learning about all our favorite Christmassy things! Today, as we wrap up our twelve days, it’s my turn. And I’m delighted to tell you about my favorite Christmas gift! Actually, I have two, but they kind of tie together, as you’ll see.…
Read More

Welcome, Christmas! A Fantastic Author Giveaway!

Can you believe how fast the weeks are flying? It’s hard to believe, but Christmas is just around the corner. To celebrate my favorite season, I’ve asked some of my favorite authors to join me in sharing “Our Favorite Christmassy Things!” I’m excited to see what my friends have to share over the next twelve…
Read More

Summer Fun, France And Family!

How did it get to be July already? And I haven’t blogged since my book came out in May! Well. To be honest, I’m still on the fence with the blog, as it doesn’t seem to be the best way to connect anymore. But anyway, here we are, so until I decide to close it…
Read More

What To Do After Launch Day!

So Where Hope Begins is now out in the big wide world. Godspeed, my lovely. And yesterday was a little nuts. The nerves. The onslaught of notifications. The well wishes and fun comments, and feedback. All wonderful and totally mind blowing, not to mention a tad overwhelming. Oh and did I mention a Facebook LIVE…
Read More

10 Stages of Book Birth – An Exposé

Today we are one week away from the release of my new book, Where Hope Begins. And there are a million things I should be doing right now. So I’m blogging. As you do. Also, since I connected my blog to my new website, I’m really not sure anyone is seeing it. So if you…
Read More

The Next Best Step

March 25, 2019 | 2 Comments

The one sure thing about life, the one thing you can pretty much count on, is that it won’t always be easy. You know this. You’ve already been through some tough stuff. And you’ve survived. Maybe even triumphed. But then it all comes back for a second round. Or a third. Maybe you’re getting hit…

read more...

What To Do With Fear and Failure and Other Nuisances

February 18, 2019 | 0 Comments

I’m fine. I’m fine. I’m fine. Maybe you’re familiar with the mantra? It’s easy to say. Easy to repeat. And easy to convince yourself of. Because if you say something enough times, eventually you begin to believe it. Even if it’s not true. So last week I wrote about change, and how I was going…

read more...

Change. Again.

February 9, 2019 | 23 Comments

I didn’t pick a word for the year. I don’t know why, really. I guess I didn’t give it much thought. But now I kind of feel the word picked me. Change. Ironically, it was my word for 2015. And I wrote this blog post about it. Just a few months before I would announce…

read more...

Maybe It’s Time

December 27, 2018 | 0 Comments

“You gain strength,courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do.”  — Eleanor Roosevelt. So we…

read more...

WINNERS!

December 27, 2018 | 0 Comments

Thanks so much to everyone who followed and participated in our Favorite Christmassy Things Giveaway! I hope you all had a fantastic Christmas! Here are the winners! AND, the winner of my giveaway is – DIANNA GARDENHOUR!! CONGRATULATIONS to everyone!! And thanks again for participating! Wishing you all the best for a very happy 2019!

read more...

My Favorite Christmas Gift!

December 21, 2018 | 39 Comments

     I hope you’ve all been enjoying this fun giveaway, and enjoyed learning about all our favorite Christmassy things! Today, as we wrap up our twelve days, it’s my turn. And I’m delighted to tell you about my favorite Christmas gift! Actually, I have two, but they kind of tie together, as you’ll see.…

read more...

Welcome, Christmas! A Fantastic Author Giveaway!

December 10, 2018 | 28 Comments

Can you believe how fast the weeks are flying? It’s hard to believe, but Christmas is just around the corner. To celebrate my favorite season, I’ve asked some of my favorite authors to join me in sharing “Our Favorite Christmassy Things!” I’m excited to see what my friends have to share over the next twelve…

read more...

Summer Fun, France And Family!

July 9, 2018 | 1 Comment

How did it get to be July already? And I haven’t blogged since my book came out in May! Well. To be honest, I’m still on the fence with the blog, as it doesn’t seem to be the best way to connect anymore. But anyway, here we are, so until I decide to close it…

read more...

What To Do After Launch Day!

May 23, 2018 | 3 Comments

So Where Hope Begins is now out in the big wide world. Godspeed, my lovely. And yesterday was a little nuts. The nerves. The onslaught of notifications. The well wishes and fun comments, and feedback. All wonderful and totally mind blowing, not to mention a tad overwhelming. Oh and did I mention a Facebook LIVE…

read more...

10 Stages of Book Birth – An Exposé

May 15, 2018 | 4 Comments

Today we are one week away from the release of my new book, Where Hope Begins. And there are a million things I should be doing right now. So I’m blogging. As you do. Also, since I connected my blog to my new website, I’m really not sure anyone is seeing it. So if you…

read more...

The Next Best Step

The one sure thing about life, the one thing you can pretty much count on, is that it won’t always be easy. You know this. You’ve already been through some tough stuff. And you’ve survived. Maybe even triumphed. But then it all comes back for a second round. Or a third. Maybe you’re getting hit in a different way, from a different direction, but that punch still slams just the same. Sucks the air right out of you.

Anybody?

Yes, it is. Hard. And sometimes my coping skills go into hibernation. Like the turtle who shrinks back into her shell at the first sign of trouble. It’s good to have a shell, sometimes. Sometimes we just need to feel safe for a while. Until we’re ready. But sometimes? Sometimes we have to leave that safe place, ready or not. Because until we do, we can’t move forward. And if we don’t move forward, or at least try to, we’ll just be stuck. Safe, but stuck.

Is that any way to live?

Deciding what to do next with my writing career has been a challenge. An unexpected challenge, but one that I’m grateful for. While I’ve been sitting in my safe place, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking. And here’s what I know.

I’m not giving up. I’m moving forward. And I couldn’t be happier about that.

So all that to say, be encouraged. If you’re in that place of not knowing what comes next, wait it out. Answers will come. And then, take the next step. The first step.

What’s next for me? Well, I’m glad you asked. 🙂

First of all, I’m going to be publishing a new Indie novel in September. It’s called As the Light Fades, and I’ll be sharing more about the book soon. If you’ve read The Things We Knew, you’ll be familiar with Liz Carlisle, and this is her story. So if you haven’t read The Things We Knew yet, you may want to do that!

As I mentioned in my earlier post on Change, writing for the general market was one of my options going forward. After much discussion with my agent, family, and friends, I have decided that this is the direction I want to go. Which is exciting and daunting at the same time. BUT, I’m taking that step in faith. I also know I have a lot to learn. This is a MUCH bigger pond with many, many more fish, and I don’t feel quite ready to swim in it.

To that end, I’m going to be working with a writing coach, a former NY editor with vast experience in this arena. I’m likening this to going back to school for my masters. Because that’s how much I feel I still have to learn. We’ll be working on the book I completed a few months back, The Rose Garden. The story is set in my island home of Bermuda, a first for me. But it’s not a great story yet, good, but not great. So I’m really looking forward to seeing it soar to the next level. It’s going to be a lot of hard work, but I’m jumping in with both feet, because this is what I want.

I’m a dream chaser. If you’ve followed my blog for any length of time, you’ll know this. And my next big dream is to get a contract in the general market. Yeah. It’s lofty. But if you can’t dream big, what’s the point?

Do I have the chops? I don’t know. I’d like to believe so. Others say I do, so I’m holding tight to that encouragement and moving forward. But it’ll take time. And did I mention a lot of hard work? So I can’t say for sure if and when I will have another book published by a traditional publisher. But I can say that this is still my dream. Still my goal.

So I’m going for it. As always, I can’t do it without the support of friends and family, so this is my thank-you for being there, and keep all the good thoughts and prayers coming please! I’m going to need all the cheerleading I can get.

Thanks for joining me on the journey!