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.
Ironically, it was my word for 2015. And I wrote this blog post about it. Just a few months before I would announce my first big publishing contract.
We’ve been through a lot of changes since that post was written. But one thing remains the same. I don’t like change.
It tips my world a little and makes me feel all discombobulated. Makes me use big words. Like discombobulated. See, I already made some big changes toward the end of 2018. Like promising myself to get healthy and stay healthy. Walking away from wine. Yeah. That was a biggie. But I did it, and I continue on that healing journey, and you know what? It hasn’t killed me. I did kind of think it might. But I’m here to say I’m far better off now. So I thought that was a big enough change. Not to mention our house is still on the market and who knows when that will sell and we’ll have to move to who knows where . . . and there I go feeling all discombobulated again.
One thing I’ve learned about life is this – it goes on. Actually, I ripped that off from Robert Frost.
“In three words, I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on.”
I use that quote at the beginning of Chapter Two in my book Where Hope Begins. (Which by the way, happens to be on sale at the moment – you can grab a Kindle copy for $2.99. See what I did there?).“
So. Change. It’s inevitable, isn’t it? I like to think it’s something that happens to other people. Not me. But sadly, I’m not immune, and when change comes, I have to cope. And since I’ve gotten rid of my regular coping mechanisms, I’m having a bit of fun watching myself fumble through this new season I’ve stepped into. Funny thing, though, I’m doing a lot better than I thought I would be.
I’ve had the amazing privilege of publishing three novels with the awesomely talented team at Harper Collins Christian Publishing. It truly was my dream to work with them and I will be forever grateful for the opportunity. But my next book won’t be coming out through HCCP.
I have no idea where it’ll end up at the moment. I’m back on the rollercoaster ride that is the publishing business. But this is a change that, honestly, even though I was expecting it, made me squirm a little. And I think I know why.
I was too comfortable.
That’s how it works, isn’t it? You get comfy, kick your feet up, think yeah, this is the life, and then, wham! Not so fast, bucko.
Oh, okay then. But now you’re on the floor, wondering how the heck that happened. And you can either lie there and moan and groan and feel like a failure, or pick yourself up and open the door and take a look outside. What you see might surprise you. Yes, it’s scary and it’s unknown, and your GPS might be broken, but you have to step out anyway.
I have to step out.
And I think, career wise, that path might be pointing toward a little foray into the general market. But let me say this first.
I love the Christian Publishing industry. I love the people, the readers and the authors, the book bloggers, the editors and everyone in between. But I’ve had a hard time really fitting in. I don’t have an answer to the why. I just know it to be true. It’s sort of like wearing that new pair of shoes you really wanted because they’re pretty, but they pinch. A lot.
I feel like I haven’t found my tribe yet. I’ve found some of them, definitely, and you know who you are and I’m soooo grateful for you. But I’m not sure my writing has found its true home yet.
Maybe there isn’t such a place. Maybe this is . . . the end.
Yes, that ominous thought has crept in more than once over the past few days. Because there’s so much about this that I don’t know. But there’s also a lot I do know.
This is not the end.
I will not stop writing. I will continue to try to the best of my abilities to get my words into the hands of readers. I’ve gone Indie before, so that’s always an option.
I have a kickass agent who absolutely believes in me and my writing, and I trust her implicitly with wherever we’re going next. I can also say I probably would have had a few nervous breakdowns by now if not for Rachelle.
I have a decent sized band of faithful readers who have really enjoyed what I’ve offered them so far, and I will continue to write for them. And I hope they’ll follow me wherever I land.
I will not compromise the things I stand for. Whether I end up someplace in the general market or back in CBA, that goes without saying. But one of the reasons I love general market fiction so much is that there’s something for everyone. I believe my ability to tell stories is a gift from God, and I’ll continue to honor that gift.
I have always trusted God. He put me on this journey, and I believe this is just another step along the way. We’re not done yet. He’s got the GPS, I’m just along for the ride.
So there it is. That’s where life is for me at the moment. As for what comes next, well, I’ll keep you posted.
Thanks for joining me on the journey!