The first day of a new year is always an opportunity for looking back in reflection and forward in anticipation. On a personal level, 2013 was a remarkable year for me. It was our third year in our new town and, almost without realizing it, at some point this past year we made the emotional and psychological transition from feeling like “the newbies” to feeling as though we really belonged here. Both my husband and I accepted leadership positions in our church and have been blessed with the sure knowledge that we are right where God wants us to be, doing what we are supposed to be doing. There can’t be any more incredible feeling than that, and we are deeply grateful for the opportunities we have been given to serve and to enjoy ever-deepening relationships with the people we have met since arriving here.
On a professional level it has also been an interesting and exciting year. In the spring, I signed with my amazing agent, Alice Crider, of WordServe Literary. It is an amazing feeling to be part of a family of such talented authors and agents and to experience the support and encouragement that comes from belonging. By the end of the summer, I had worked through the editing of the first of a two book series and completed the first book of a trilogy I’m working on. In November, I took the plunge and signed up for NaNoWriMo. With the help and support of my NaNo buddies, most of them members of The Word Guild, I met my goal of writing 50,000 words, then pushed on to hit 77,000 words and to complete the novel, the second in that two-book series I mentioned, on November 30th. As I mentioned on Facebook that day, “The End” have to be two of the most beautiful words in the English language. They are also, for me, two of the saddest as I let go of characters that have become (alarmingly) real to me as I told their stories and journeyed alongside them as they grew and changed and learned.
So 2013 was an exciting and productive year. I have no idea what new family and ministry challenges the new year will bring, but I look forward to each and every one, knowing God will be with my husband and children and I and will give us the strength and courage to face whatever He brings into our lives. And by way of a resolution, I declare that, whether or not a publishing contract comes my way this year, I will persevere and continue in obedience to the call to write the stories that are given to me with gratitude and joy.
My hope and wish for each of you is that you will experience an overwhelming sense of the presence and love of our great God throughout this new year, whatever 2014 brings into your life.
Happy New Year everyone!