Fifteen years, seven months, and twenty-three days. As best I can tell, that’s how long it’s been since I first picked up a pen and said, “You know, I’d really like to get a book published.”
If I had known then that it would take that much time to be able to write these words, I maybe would have reconsidered that notion. Maybe. Because at that moment I took one small step onto a road of unknown distance and grade, thinking it would be an easy stroll.
Is that how it is with most dreams? Do we all fool ourselves into thinking the path from where we are to where our goals wait will be straight and flat with a slight decline to push us onward?
As is usually the case when my expectations collide with my reality, the road I took didn’t really take the form I thought it would. Or even should.
Far from straight and flat, my road was a long and winding. There were hairpin turns and potholes that I both fell into and eased my way through. There were steep climbs and harrowing descents. And the faint glimpses of an end were only false horizons that taunted rather than encouraged.
The only comfort I found during those long walks were my faith, my family, and the daydream of a phone call from an unknown someone who would tell me that it had all been worth it. That even though I had much walking left to do, that part of the journey was done.
That unknown someone turned out to be my agent, Rachelle Gardner. And on a warm afternoon about two months ago, she called to tell me just that.
I can now officially say that I’ve signed a two-book deal with FaithWords, an imprint of the Hachette Book Group. My first novel, Snow Day, will be published just in time for Christmas 2010. If you’d like a sneak peek, just click on the Snow Day tab above.
I’ve had much help from two of my blogger pals to fix up what I think is a rather awesome website. Katdish’s artistic ways came in very handy, and Peter Pollock was nice enough (and patient enough) to get things just right on the technical side. I don’t know how I can thank the both of them, but I’ll think of something.
And speaking of thanks.
People always seem to thank God whenever something wonderful happens. Even people who really don’t mean it. I do. The last fifteen years hasn’t always brought out the best in me. I lost faith, love, hope, and everything else I was supposed to never let go, only to find and lose it all again. The whole notion of the suffering saint has never really applied to me. The suffering? Yes. The saint? Not so much. And yet through it all, God was there.
So was my family, who learned quickly that life with a writer isn’t all bubble gum and cotton candy. If I endured much, they endured more.
It’s no accident that all of this has come about now rather than years ago. I’ve only been blogging for a little over a year, but I can honestly say that each and every one of you who have taken the time to stop by my cyber porch for a story have made all the difference. From what I understand, the comments you all have left over the months went a long way to convince my publisher there was an audience out there, even if it was just for a redneck hick like me.
We’ll keep you up to date in the coming months as things move along. In the meantime, feel free to visit often and take a look around. I’ll be right here on my usual days to share what’s on my mind. So grab a rocking chair and settle in. The weather’s fine, the breeze is cool, and there’s plenty of tea.
And the light’s always on.