Last year at this time I didn’t have a direction, there didn’t seem to be a path for me to follow, I thought God was absent, and maybe that writing wasn’t a part of my future.
I was sick—stuffy nose, cough, sore throat, you name it—and worn out. Considering Christmastime is my favorite time of the year, beings sick was extra crushing. I couldn’t enjoy the holidays 100%. It’s just not possible when you’re not feeling well.
My mom came to me countless times and would talk some wisdom. I would cry. She’d tell me that maybe God had another path for me. I was stubborn and prideful and rebellious. She’d advise me to pray and ask God for answers. I would, but I ignored his answers and wanted my “truths” instead.
That went on for months. More months than I’d care to ever relive. However many months later, I was still sick and had gotten literally nowhere. Maybe backwards.
Ya’ll are probably going, “Really? You’re that blind?”
Well, reality check speed bump for you. Yeah, I was.
So then, I began writing my novel “A Rose for Grace.” I was happy with the story and enamored with my characters…in the beginning. And, I need to add, I wasn’t sick anymore, halleluiah.
But when I got closer to finishing ARFG, I was losing momentum, inspiration and the love of my characters. I spent eight months writing—which isn’t bad, if it works for you—and I was 100% burnt out.
Following that, I was forcing myself to edit that 80k word manuscript—no Bueno. I finally realized, by mid-October and God’s grace, what I wanted to write.
Therefore my book baby “Christmas with Cocoa” was born. “Christmas with Cocoa” covers many firsts for me.
1. My first contemporary (modern) story. Ever.
2. My first Christmas story. Ever.
3. My first novel of my own. Also ever.
And it happens to be releasing on Dec. 31st of this year! *pauses for a mild freak-out*
(For a synopsis of said book, read the end of this post.)
But, that’s not my only exciting news. My new series is titled “Faith to Love”, and for numerous reasons.
(Yeah, another bullet point list.)
1. It took a whole lot of Faith to get to a point where I Love what I’m writing.
2. My characters learn to have Faith in order to have strong relationships—whether that be friend/family or romantically.
3. Faith is a key component in life, and so is Love. Together? Priceless.
My logo—thanks Mom for brainstorming with me!—was designed with a cross to signify “Faith” and a heart for “Love.” The symbols represent “to” as in Faith “to” Love, as well.
A year ago, I never would’ve imagined the beautiful blessings God would give me. And guess what? None of this happened overnight. There wasn’t a huge movie lightbulb moment. Sometimes I didn’t know God was extending me a hand up out of my self-induced darkness. (I didn’t think it was self-induced at the time, by the way.) Nor that he was playing a huger role in my life than I gave him credit for.
Thanks to God, my family, my beloved dog and my friends, I am here today. Those months of sickness and doubts were dark for me, but I made it out better than I’d ever imagined.
I hope my “testimonial” can inspire others to find light in the dark and realize God does have a plan, whether you comprehend it or not.
Stay tuned for news about my upcoming novel release “Christmas with Cocoa” and more books to come with my new “Faith to Love” series.
Blessings and a Merry (early) Christmas to you!
1 Corinthians 13:13, “Faith, Hope, Love. The GREATEST of these is Love.”