I love books. I love story. I love creating stories. I love reading stories. I love sharing stories.
Apologies for my long absence here of late. Part of the reason for it is that I’ve been traveling. Hubby and I spent two weeks in Hawaii – a long awaited trip that was perfect in every way, even the misting rain that seemed to fall each day in certain areas of Maui. But that didn’t stop us from having a blast…
We did a lot of driving around and sitting around and flying…crazy flying…this entire trip took us on seven flights – Bermuda to Atlanta, Atlanta to Los Angeles, Los Angeles to Maui, Maui to Los Angeles, Los Angeles to San Fransisco, San Fransisco to Atlanta, Atlanta to Bermuda. For a chick that hates to fly, that’s a lot of nail biting. But God was good. On all those flights, there was hardly any turbulence. That’s my kind of plane ride, people.
So we did Hawaii, then ended in Monterey, California, to attend my agency retreat. If I haven’t said it before, I am so proud to be part of the Books & Such family. The abundance of knowledge, wisdom and encouragement flowing through this gathering was astounding. It’s always a blessing to spend time with my writer soul-mates and my fabulous agent, Rachelle Gardner, and this past weekend was no exception. I came away super-charged, refreshed, renewed and truly excited about the future of Christian publishing and my place in it.
Which brings me back to what I know.
Books aren’t going to go away. Great books will always be written. Great authors will be discovered. Story will not disappear. How could it? Because story is who we are. Why we exist. God himself is the greatest storyteller of all time. And He’s writing my story at this very moment. And yours. He is the master of the plot twist, the cliff hanger and yes, even the happily ever after. That’s what I know.
If you’ve been reading any of my ruminating over the past year or so, you know I haven’t exactly been in my happy place. I’ve had doubts. Questions. Lost hope. Held on to faith by a few thin strands and wondered why in the world I ever thought I could do this. Did I dare call myself a writer? An author? Well…yeah. I do. That’s my final answer. Because this is who I am. My desire to create story is not going away. I’ve discovered that. Accepted it. And so it became more a question of how I would use it. I wondered where the best place in publishing was for me. If you’ve shared my doubts, frustrations and dubiousness about the future of Christian publishing or just publishing in general, you know what I’m talking about.
You’ve heard “The Sky is Falling!” more times over the last few years than you care to think about. Me too. But guess what? The sky is not falling. It might be changing color, might be more gray than usual, but it’s not falling. And the sun is still there behind the clouds. Publishers are changing the game, some doors are closing, people are rushing to pound out books faster than CreateSpace can put them out…because surely this is the easier way…the press of a button and BAM! Instant fame and fortune. Okay, that’s kind of a joke. Maybe for some people it works that way. I don’t know for sure and I don’t really care. But here’s what I do know.
All that is not important. It doesn’t matter how you tell your story, whether you go Indie or traditional or simply print out the words and read them to your grandmother in her nursing home…
What matters is that you tell it.
Write it. Feel it. Breathe it in. But please, please tell it. Share it.
Story matters. Your story matters. We’ve been given a gift here. It’s not about the contracts or the money or the fans that gush over every word we write. The true gift is this amazing ability to share our hearts. To bare our souls and let others take a walk in our shoes. Sharing story is a privilege. An honor. It’s been happening since the beginning of the world and it will continue until every last one of us on this planet is gone. And I like to think there might be libraries in heaven. 🙂
I know I’m going to keep writing. I know I’m called to it. I know I will write words I want to share. I know this because to deny it would be like cutting off my supply of oxygen. I live to do this and I will do it well. The world deserves good stories. Not mediocre drivel about subjects that make your hair stand on end. You know? The ones that kind of make you throw up in your mouth a little…and why are there so many of them out there?? But I digress.
Those of us who determine to make the world a better place through the words we write – we’re called out. We’ve heard the battle cry. It’s time to suit up, people. Time to prove that there are books worth reading. Books that make you laugh, and wonder and weep. Books that leave you wanting more. Books that only we can write. Tell your stories. Tell them well. And shine your light. There is much darkness, but in the midst of thick black night…there is hope.
This is what I know.