Last time on My Journey to Publication, I shared how the dream began and why I decided to start blogging.  Get caught up here!

Being pregnant definitely has an impact on a woman in so many ways.  It affects her thoughts, her body, and her heart.  It makes her examine how she wants to be a mother and the example that she strives to be.

In the three months that I was home before I delivered the girls, I spent a lot of time thinking about these things.  Finally, I had time to write.  Problem was, I had no idea how to get started.  Or, what really to write about.  I found a resource online (I can't find the source of it now, sorry) that gave me advice on the timeline of my book.  At the time, it looked something like this:

Planning stage: 30-90 days. April 2010 – July 2010

Use this time to determine your vision for your book, a marketing plan, and the main points you will cover. The most time you spend planning, the more successful your book will be. Most authors find an outline essential in this phase.

Writing stage: 90-240 days.  October 2010 – May 2011

Many authors can write their book in six months, even with a busy schedule. The key to success: proper planning and a committed writing appointment in your schedule at least 5 days each week.

*******************May 2011 – Attend Blue Ridge Writer's Conference************************ 

(this obviously didn't happen b/c the twins were born two weeks before the event)

Editing stage: 30-60 days.  June 2011 – August 2011

After you have finished your manuscript, you will spend time editing it. Then, you will work with a professional editor to further polish and perfect your manuscript. You will go back and forth several times with your editor until you both agree that your manuscript represents you professionally.

Cover design: 30 days. September 2011

I suggest you do work with your cover designer in the while you are writing. You will finalize the cover during the editing phase.

Production phase: 60-120 days. October 2011 – January 2012

After editing and cover design, your publisher will complete the legalities, create the internal design, and send your book to the printer. However, if you go with a traditional publisher, the production phase can take up to 24 months. That is why I recommend self-publishing or working with an independent publisher who works under the contemporary publishing model.

Marketing phase: February 2012 – until

Actually, marketing starts in the planning phase. It continues for 3-5 years after your book is printed. Marketing is fun, sharing your passion and excitement with potential readers.

There you have it. In roughly 9 months, you can write and publish your book. Mentoring and education will help you streamline the process.

Looking back on this now, I realize how naive I was to really expect to have my book ready to be marketed by February 2012.  But, at the time, it was a way to set a goal.  And, I liked goals. So, I began to plan.  I checked out books on character, attitude, and researched how to be a woman of noble character until I couldn't stand it.  I filled up a notebook full of quotes and ideas.  I wanted my book to be written like Blue Like Jazz with a twist of How to Have a Mary Heart in a Martha World.  Honest yet practical.  My book was to be dedicated to Adeline & Maralee.  I even had the dedication written out: May they grow up to become women of noble character and to have a heart like Christ.

Sounds pretty, doesn't it?

Then, the twins were born three months premature.

And all of my ideas about writing a story about Ruth got all fuzzy.  I was knee-deep in fear and was trying my darnest to actually be a woman of noble character during the most tragic experience of my life.  It was easier to quote other people than actually live it out daily....but God was giving me what I needed during that time: an experience that was meant to be shared.

During those three months, I began to live out my research and formulate new ideas on how this present suffering could bring glory to God.  I struggled with spiritual warfare and strongholds.  I doubted.  I overcame fear.  I finally experienced the freedom of living life trusting Christ.  I understood His love in a way I never had before.

Once our NICU experience came to a close after 83 excruciatingly long days, I spent my time focusing on my new family.  I needed time to absorb what had happened and where to go from there.

Next time, on my Journey to Publication, I will share what happens next: I actually begin to write.

Before we part ways today, I wanted to share two articles that have been published!  In real magazines y'all!  I have to admit, it felt so good to see my name in print :)

If you are in the Wiregrass area, check out this faith-based magazine, Inspired By Him:

I also did a Valentine's Day celebration article in Alabama Baby Magazine.  To find the printables featured in this story, click here.

 

I am so honored to have been featured in these wonderful magazines.  It gives me a renewed spirit on this long journey to publication.

Till next time, let your light shine!

Christen

 

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