Confessions of a first time author (part 1)

T-minus 7 weeks till book launch…

I honestly thought writing the book would be the hardest part. But dear Lord, let me write a million more books instead of promoting just one! I am an introverted introvert. I crave quiet and order; anonymity and alone time; jammies and soft pillows. And I am terrified of public speaking; answering on-the-spot questions; and small talk. Oh, and I have horrible handwriting. So basically I have no natural skill-set for what is to come over the next few months.

And yet even just writing those words makes me feel guilty. I mean, I know there are so many people who would trade places with me in a millisecond. Many waiting to hear back from publishers. Many who have been told “no” more times than they can count and are dangerously close to giving up on their dream.

So why the heck am I whining about seeing mine come true?

But maybe that’s part of the issue. For the fact is, my dream was just to write a book. And to touch people’s lives with the fingerprints of hope.

My dream was not to stand on a stage and talk about the book. Or walk into a bookstore and tell them about my book. Or build a social media platform to promote my book.

My dream was to wear fuzzy slippers and type on my laptop. My dream was observe the world around me and turn those observations into stories. My dream was simply to craft stories of hope.

And yet…what good would those stories be if no one ever read them? Or how would anyone ever read them if they didn’t know about them? And how are they supposed to hear about them if I don’t share about them?

And so, here I am. Less than two months away from the release of my first book—and smack dab in the middle of marketing and promoting said book.

And it’s hard.

And glorious.

Overwhelming and humbling.

Confusing and exciting.

It is all the feelings, tossed together and shaken until they come flying out in a torrent of laughter or tears.

I have never felt more vulnerable or more exposed in my entire life. I have never been more nervous or more excited. Or experienced such rapid-cycling emotions.

And at least once a day I fantasize about telling everyone “never-mind,” pulling the covers over my head, and hiding for a week. But that is simply not an option.

Nor is it really what I want.

Because while this part is indeed uncomfortable, it is important. And I am slowly accepting that. And while I will have to speak from a stage, make small talk with strangers, sign books, and post and comment on social media, I am finally starting to realize (slowly but surely) that this entire uncomfortable process really isn’t about me at all.

Let me write that again so it soaks into my thick head: This is not about me.

None of this is about me.

It’s about Him.
It’s about writing what God laid on my heart to write.
It’s about sharing the message of hope—a message He led me to see.
It’s about getting over myself so I can love people in His name.
It is all about Him.

And so I put on my big-girl pants. 

And I pray for strength and peace and endurance.
And I trust Him to speak through me.
And I depend on Him to provide answers and give me words.
And I even surrender my horrible penmanship to Him.

Then I let Him lead me away from my comfort zone—reminding myself that He is bigger than my inadequacies, stronger than my insecurities, and more powerful than my fear.

And I commit to taking time to ponder and treasure every moment of this beautiful, amazing journey.

Which I will remind myself daily—hourly if need be—really isn’t about me anyway.

It is, in fact, all about Him.

Much love,
Jen

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2018-03-19T13:30:29+00:00

About My Work

This blog serves as an online journal of sorts. It is where I go to process my thoughts and feelings. It is where I write about what it means to shine the light of Jesus in an ever darkening world. And it is where I record the beautiful glimpses of God’s extraordinary grace in the midst of my very ordinary life.

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Release Date: May 8th, 2018
The release date for the Joey book I wrote is almost here! Would you add your email so I can keep you updated about events, book signings, and what the LORD has been doing through the book? As a thank you, I'll give you a link for a BEAUTIFUL digital poster that features a painting of the Joey bookcover painted by my friend Michelle!
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