Erin and Karen at the awards banquet
Erin and Karen at the awards banquet


Proposal: A big long document I have to write to convince the publishing company that they should spend thousands and thousands of dollars publishing my book. And just an FYI—when I say they spend thousands, it’s not me they give that to. It’s the managers, editors, sales reps, marketing folks, cover designers, interior designers, administrative assistants, the paper company, and on and on. I mean, they might give me a teensy slice of it in the way of an advance, but writing is NOT a get-rich-quick scheme. It’s not even a get-rich-slow scheme.

It’s a do-it-because-God-is-calling-you-to-do-it scheme.

I’m okay with that.

Not that some writers don’t make a stinking fortune in this business, but those are the folks whose name on the book cover is WAY bigger than the title. At this point, I’d be happy to see my name in any size on a cover.

So, my agent and I work on getting the proposals for my novel and my dog book all spruced up (read the beginning of that story here). I need to revise the dog book, but only if anyone should want to make an offer. I still think it needs…uh…something, and honestly, based on the prior feedback I’ve received, I kinda don’t expect anything to come of it right now.

In the meantime, I’m working like crazy to finish my novel and loving every bit of it.

And something cool happens. I enter the novel in a big contest—the ACFW Genesis—and make it to the finals.

Yay! Except one tiny frightening possibility—the winner has to give an acceptance speech in front of 700 people at the conference banquet.

And I’m stuck wearing a dress.

SO not me, but it’s kinda inescapable.

The night of the banquet, I can barely eat three bites of my dinner. Here’s an idea. Feed us AFTER the awards.

When they finally get to my category, I truly don’t mind when my name isn’t called as the winner. It was all in the hands of God, and I was smart enough to save my dessert, which I can now chow down.

The best thing is a boost in my confidence that pushes me onward. Finaling in this contest feels like a very cool seal of approval. I’m finding my stride with this novel, and my writing journey is gaining traction. I’m excited and growing with every chapter I write, and it feels like my direction in fiction has been well set.

Of course, a curve ball always looks predictably straight until it, well, curves…

(Read more of the book contract story)

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